EU, coordination: 7 days of Economics
In his speech to the European Parliament this week, Commission President Jean- Claude Juncker made no concessions concerning the “State of the Union in 2016”: it was increasingly difficult to find common ground between member states; the priorities of EU institutions differed from those of national institutions; and governments were being undermined by populist forces.
The European Union is in the midst of an “existential crisis”. Yet Jean-Claude Juncker’s speech was more about mobilisation than about sounding the alarm: he underscored the great principles that are supposed to unite the member states while elaborating a concrete action plan for his organisation in the years ahead. It was a matter of putting into practice what the EU is and how it can be useful. As we were writing these lines, the heads of state and government of the future 27-member EU were meeting in Bratislava to “pursue political debate” on the EU’s development. Donald Tusk also called on participants to avoid letting the prospects of Brexit drag theEU to a stand still, and to face up to the priorities of the moment: the immigration crisis, terrorism, and fears of globalisation. All these subjects are divisive, sometimes deeply so, but it is obvious that the only effective response is a joint one.