The UK's withdrawal from the EU on 31st January is above all a symbolic event. During the transition period planned to last until 31st December 2020, the Union will treat the UK like a Member State, but the latter will no longer be represented. The transition period will be used to negotiate an agreement whose aim it will be to maintain links as close as possible between the two entities. The 27 who will retain the same negotiating method as for the withdrawal will have to establish priorities in the discussions which will take place in a very tight time span.
The Irish are due to go to the polls on 8 February for early parliamentary elections a few days after Brexit. According to the latest opinion poll, the Fianna Fail (right) led by Micheal Martin is expected to come out on top with 25% of the vote ahead of outgoing Prime Minister Leo Varadkar's Fine Gael (centre right) (23%). Sinn Fein (SF), a radical left-wing party, is expected to win 21%, the Green Party 8% and the Labour Party 5%.
On 22 January, the Greek Parliament elected Ekaterini Sakellaropoulou as President of the Republic by 261 votes out of 300 in the first round of voting. Currently President of the Council of State, Ekaterini Sakellaropoulou will be sworn in on 13 March and will succeed Prokopis Pavlopoulos for a five-year term.
The failures of certain merger projects like Alstom/Siemens call into question the inadequacy, or even obsolescence, of European competition law and its place in relation to other public policy objectives. Other challenges arise: on the one hand, the existing law faces the challenges raised by the digital economy; on the other hand, European competition law does not take sufficient account of international competition. Should a rebalancing not be carried out between competition policy and industrial policy so that the objectives of the latter can be deployed?
The European Union and its Member States finance more than half of public development aid which totalled 153 billion dollars in 2018. These funds however have not had any significant impact on the development of the countries in the south. Just as France and the Sahel countries are discussing their future cooperation, the present goals of the public development aid policy should be reviewed and more concrete goals should be set for the short and mid term which would serve both the interests of the donor countries and the beneficiaries.
The Franco-German Journalism Prize, of which the Robert Schuman Foundation is a partner organisation, has started its call for applications.
In his most recent editorial, Jean-Dominique Giuliani writes about Europe's place in a world full of geopolitical crises.
Former Social Democrat premier (2011-2016) Zoran Milanovic (SDP) won the second round of the presidential race that took place in Croatia on 5th January 2020, ousting incumbent rival Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, who was running as an independent, with the support of the centre-right HDZ. According to an almost complete count Mr Milanovic won 52.73% of the vote and Ms Grabar-Kitarovic, 47.27%.
The unique character of the European Union as neither a State nor an international organisation has from the outset required the creation of a language regime that meets particularly high standards. Multilingualism, which is less widely practised today, meets a democratic requirement. The Union must invest in translation and interpreting and affirm its willingness to maintain the debate in several languages.
Just as the debate over pensions is emerging in some EU countries the Robert Schuman Foundation has published a table to understand the retirement systems in operation in the 28 Member States of the EU.
After the victory of the Tories in the British general elections, Jean-Dominique Giuliani writes "The reality awaiting those who have crafted Brexit is this: will they be able to meet the British population's high expectations which they have exacerbated?"
Contrary to popular discourse, Jean-Dominique Giuliani shows that the European Union has the means to address the new challenges of the 21st century. Europe has succeeded beyond the expectations of its founding fathers. It can still succeed in guaranteeing its place among the three greatest powers in the world by the end of the century.
"A Blueprint for tomorrow's Europe" is the first paper in the Open Horizons series. It offers new ideas in support of European integration addressing issues such as the importance of European sovereignty, the language we use to speak of Europe, it proximity with its citizens and the idea of the European people. The authors convincingly illustrate the priorities that must be made to redesign the Europe of tomorrow.
The Robert Schuman Foundation has published a new edition of its Permanent Atlas of the European Union. The second edition of this unique book, written by experts from the Robert Schuman Foundation, provides a comprehensive and easily accessible overview of the Union, the euro area and each of its 28 Member States. It summarises historical milestones and political and statistical realities of the Union and offers more than 50 physical and geopolitical maps of Europe.
The 10th edition analyses the challenges Europe faces. With the contribution of the best experts, original maps and commented statistics, the Schuman Report 2019 on the State of the Union offers a complete view of the European Union.