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  • Can Europe Recover?

    On February 27, 2015, The European Institute, in cooperation with the Center for Transatlantic Relations and the Hanns Seidel Foundation, hosted a discussion with The Honorable Manfred Weber, Member of the European Parliament and Chairman of the European People's Party (EPP) on the current challenges facing Europe. Regarding the EU’s economic situation, Mr. Weber emphasized the importance of building growth through the completion of the single market, especially in the energy and digital fields, as well as investments in infrastructure. As for the potential Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), Mr. Weber encouraged his American counterparts to take advantage of the new European momentum for a fresh start to negotiations so that a comprehensive agreement can be reached. Mr. Weber also stressed that a strong transatlantic relationship is vital to solving the Russia-Ukraine crisis, but encouraged the further deployment of sanctions, rather than weapons to Ukraine as the next step. Mr. Weber also noted that Europe needs stronger authorities and initiatives, like the EU-wide PNR system, to counter the rise of terrorist attacks in Europe.

European Affairs

The Journal of the European Institute

Perspectives: No Blank ECB Check for Greece

- By Alexander Privitera, Director Business & Economics at AICGS

alexanderpriviteraThe new Greek political leadership is learning how painful it is to transition from a populist political campaign platform to the actual job of governing a country in the euro area. Only days after promising voters a clean break with the recent past, the illusion that Greece could regain full sovereignty within the monetary union is already being replaced by a well-known pattern of jockeying for a better negotiating position. For the moment, Alexis Tsipras, the new prime minister, does not appear to have a coherent plan.

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What Next in Ukraine?

- By John Barry, former Defense and National Security Correspondent at Newsweek Magazine
johnbarryThe New Year saw three small gatherings.  One in Washington, one in London, one in the capital of a small east European nation formerly under Soviet rule.   All were discreet, unpublicized, invitation-only.   Only the largest had a formal name.  The Washington meeting was labeled SW21: acronym for ‘Strategic Weapons in the 21st Century.’   Since 2008, that’s been a quiet get-together where high-level government officials, academics and nuclear weapons experts meet annually to discuss the role of nuclear weapons in a post-Cold War world.
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Syriza Challenges the Euro-Austerians

- By J. Paul Horne – Independent International Market Economist
paul horneGreece’s new government insists on drastic easing of the draconian conditions imposed by the “Troika’s” €240 bn bailouts in 2010 and 2012 [1], plus restructuring of Greece’s €320+ bn international debt burden.  This forces Euro political leaders to  face up to the urgent need for overdue institutional and structural reforms to ensure that the euro, at age 16, remains viable as a reserve currency.
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ECB Launches $1.28 (€1.1 Trillion) Program to Buy Government Bonds

- By James David Spellman, Strategic Communications LLC

spellman

The European Central Bank finally launched (January 22) an unprecedented government-bond buying program – headlined as “quantitative easing” – to pull the European Union back from the precipice of deflation and stimulate economic growth.

The widely expected package calls for national central banks to buy their own country’s government bonds and thereby protect all Europeans from having to cover the loan defaults of profligate member-countries. ECB would, in turn, buy €60 billion ($69 billion) monthly in government bonds from the central banks starting in March. These purchases would continue until at least September 2016, or “until we see a sustained adjustment in the path of inflation which is consistent with our aim of achieving inflation rates below, but close to, 2 percent,” ECB President Mario Draghi said. ECB sovereign debt purchases would never exceed more than one-third of a country’s total debt issuance (the ECB holding of each type of bond would be capped at 25 percent). No corporate bonds would be included. Also, interest rates for four-year loans to banks were lowered by 0.10 percentage point, but other ECB borrowing rates were remained the same.

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Perspectives: Cascading Consequences of Russia’s Conquest of Crimea

- By John Barry, Former Defense and National Security Correspondent for Newsweek

john barry 1Russia’s economy is cratering.  An SAS flight from Copenhagen to Poznan in Poland has suddenly to change course to avoid collision with a Russian surveillance aircraft roaming the crowded air-lanes of the southern Baltic with its identifying beacon switched off.  A flight from Finland had a similar near-miss two days earlier.  A third near-disaster came last spring, averted only by the skill of SAS pilots.  Tiny Lithuania (pop three million) is training and equipping 2,500 of its military of 8,000 as a ‘rapid-reaction force’ to respond swiftly to any incursion into its territory.

What connects these recent events?  Answer: Russia’s increasingly embattled President Vladimir Putin.

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OUR MUST READS

- Sarah Lemmons

"Charlie Hebdo: What Is To Be Done?" In a compellingly clear assessment of the implications of the asymmetric attacks recently made and planned by Islamist terrorists in Europe, Robert E. Hunter, former U.S. Ambassador to NATO, outlines clear policy prescriptions for the U.S. and its allies to stem the rise of Islamic extremism.

 
- Erin Kelly

“The Quiet German” The astonishing rise of Angela Merkel, the most powerful woman in the world. By George Packer, in "The New Yorker,” Dec. 1.  Excellent piece showing how Merkel has deployed her quiet, laconic, even boring style into an extraordinary political success and become the crucial player in Europe’s handling of the Ukraine crisis and in relations between Europe and both Russia and the U.S. (Recommended by European Affairs).

 
- Natalie Fahey

Banking Union in Nine Questions,” Written statement prepared by Nicolas Véron, Senior Fellow at the Belgian think tank, Bruegel.  Veron provides a clear and authoritative picture of the soon-to-be-implemented EU banking union,  with analysis of its origins and its prospect for success as well as work still to be done.

 

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OUR NEWSROOM

"EU Energy Policy - Challenges & Solutions" with Lithuanian Energy Minister Jaroslav Neverovic in The Lithuanian Tribune: "Energy Minister Neverovic discussed EU Energy Policy in Washington DC" by Virginijus Sinkevicius

The European Institute's event with Julie Brill & Jan Philipp Albrecht on "Data Protection, Privacy & Security" in The Hill: "Overnight Tech: Showdown on Spying" by Kate Tummarello & Brendan Sasso

The European Institute's event on "Data Protection, Privacy & Security: Re-Establishing Trust between Europe & the United States" in POLITICO: "EU to D.C.: Friends 'do not spy on each other'" by Tony Romm & Erin Mershon

The European Institute's event with Natalia Gherman, Foreign Minister of Moldova in Radio Free Europe: "Moldova's Foreign Minister Seeks U.S. Political, Economic Support"   

The Honorable Richard Bruton T.D., Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation at The European Institute in The Irish Times: "Multinationals to advise on tax scheme" by Simon Carswell

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