WEF Davos 2016 LIVE: “It is the implementation, Stupid!”, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaueble points the finger to Greece from Davos

Alexis Tsipras World Economic Forum 2016 Davos

The Greek Premier, Alexis Tsipras, tries to protect himself from the Alpine cold on his way out of the airplane in Davos. Certainly he got this time really more than he could chew. The ‘shivering’ photo was shared by his Athens cabinet.

Here in Davos, while the second day already slips away, it was time for Europe to get under the spotlight of the richest people in the world attending the World Economic Forum. The “EU has become a microcosm of the world’s issues”, Robin Niblet, the moderator of yesterday’s morning panel discussion early underpinned.

Yesterday morning’s session, called “the future of Europe”, apart from the moderator who is the Director of Chatham House, hosted a number of EU leaders too. French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, the infamous German minister of Finance, Wolfgang Schaueble and the powerful Italian business woman, President of BUSINESSEUROPE, Emma Marcegaglia, were all there to ensure a stimulating dialogue on the future of Europe.

Manuel Valls

The French Premier talked mostly about the need for European coordination against terrorism. “Terrorism must bring Europe together.”…”It is not just Paris that was stricken. In the past terrorism attacks have taken place in London, Denmark, Madrid”.  “We are at war, world war, global war!”, the French Prime Minister cried out. Mr Valls mentioned the word war quite a few times indeed: “We will have to live for many years with terrorism, decades… that is why it is a war”.

For the French politician the solution to great problems lately like terrorism, security and the migration crisis is located in pursuing more Europe rather than less Europe.

Particularly, concerning the migration problem, he said “we cannot abandon Africa to terrorism. We have a total disorganisation… We also have this flow from Libya into Europe… We have to have the means to intervene: diplomacy, acting together… from the north to the south… The crisis in Syria does not only concern the mediterraneam countries, but everyone”.

Concerning the European economy, France supports a coherent united Europe with a liberalisation of the common market in digital and energy to create jobs and prosperity in the block.

Referring to the Greek crisis, he said: “It would be a historic mortal mistake to let Greece out of the Eurozone.” Similarly he described the event of a Brexit a “tragedy”.

“We need more Europe. Europe should be more united”, was the main message of Manuel Valls in Davos this year.

Mark Rutte

The Prime Minister of the Netherlands, whose country currently holds the Presidency of the European Council, mainly spoke about the migrant crisis and how the EU needs to agree on a coordinated solution to stop the influx, before the migrant number”quadruples” during Spring  and Summer in the Mediterranean sea. Topics like the EU-Turkey cooperation, the success of hotspots in Greece and Italy as well as the relocation procedures would be a vital part of the talks during the much anticipated February EU Council.

The salvation of the Schengen is for the Dutch politician a major point of discussion. His cynical view on the matter goes like that: “Before we kill Schengen, we need to reform Dublin system”. He later continued by saying: “We can save Schengen if we get a grip in the next 6 to 8 weeks”.

Concerning the sluggishness of the European economy, Mr Rutte was openly in favour of opening up the EU common market in every possible way: “Strange situation talking about a European common market… 35% of the European economy is a common market… What we will try to do is to liberate the digital, services directive, open up professions that are protected in many countries and are an impediment to growth and success. 1.5 trillion euro will come to Europe after this liberalisation of the 65% remaining market”.

Alexis Tsipras

Alexis Tsipras, the rookie of Davos, who would have never dreamt about sitting a panel discussion at the majestic Congress Hall of the Davos Congress Centre, gave a “Greek style” speech.  His arrival to Davos came post his humiliation during the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) last September, the wanna be competitor of WEF at the other side of the Atlantic, where Bill Clinton hammered him for his bad English and his poor knowledge not only about the world affairs and stakes but even about his own country.

To begin with, he chose to speak in Greek, not really to promote the Greek language to humanity but mostly because this Prime Minister speaks an elementary school level of English.

With his decision to speak in his mother tongue, he forced the organiser to hire the only Greek translator in Davos, as it is well known that Greece is almost always absent from Davos, with typically having anything from 1 to 0 participants. This clearly shows how Greece is considered of nano value in the world’s state of affairs and signifies how Mr Tsipras was not too well fitting here.

In fact, Mr Tsipras spoke to the top level public of Davos as if he was talking to his Syriza comrades at the Greek parliament, failing terribly to empathise with the stakes of the game. To a certain extent, his total inexperience can justify that.

The leftist Premier, who lately moves more and more to the centre because he likes his job too much, implementing harsh conservative structural reforms on his country, from the first moment denied any responsibility in the escalation of the migrant crisis at his Greek seas. Instead, he repeated an easy political artifice, underscoring how the problem is not just Greek but a “European” or “PanEuropean” or even “global” one, as he stated. Although his sayings are really an obvious common sense, he rather vaguely addressed the issue, possibly due to lack of knowledge, talking about how Europe has to find a commonly coordinated mechanism to solve the problem.

Coming to the hot issue of the Greek crisis, which by the way is not a hot issue any more and nobody truly cares about it so much rather than the Greek ambitious politicians, the Greek media and the Greek pensioner who is living in dear poverty, Mr Tsipras again did not say a lot either. Possibly he does not know or he does not have the necessary advisors around him to tell him that he cannot repeat the same agenda and the same arguments whenever he is given the microphone.

If someone pays attention to Mr Tsipras’s argumentation in the past 12 months, and even that is even questionable to a certain extent, she will notice that it has always been about Greece suffering 25% loss of the GDP, unemployment rates skyrocketing to 25%, how Greece needs growth (“not just balanced budgets”), the bad kleptocracy of the past and so on. Nothing is new in the Greek Premier’s agenda, and nothing is anticipated to be new actually, not just because of his inexperience but mainly because the Greeks seem to be living in a parallel sunny – funny planet with its own small size and understanding.

At the end of his void speech, Mr Tsipras copied the populist void phrase that is being spread at the EU Councils in Brussels and was expressed also by the French Premier previously: “We need more Europe”.

Wolfgang Schaueble

The biggest worry of the infamous German politician is clearly the migrant crisis. Replying to Niblet’s question about how much more can Germany stand the influx, he plainly said: “the question of how long we can cope with such an inflow of this magnitude I dont want to reply to”. He later continued: “We agree the inflow is too high. We have to concentrate on how to revert this situation. We need to invest billions to reduce the pressure on the external frontiers”.

The rest of his speech was mainly about the perennial beliefs of Mr Schaeuble that the EU institutions need to steal more power and sovereignty from the national parliaments, how the member states need to follow ECB’s rules and EU treaties to the letter and how “every European country has to solve its problem”.

His most interesting remark though came out after a question from the public about a new Marshall plan in Europe to face the migrant crisis. It went like this: “we don’t need the Marshall plan for Europe, only for the regions that have been destroyed. We need something similar. Billions of euros into the countries of origin of the refugees.”

Emma Marcegaglia

The powerful lady of the panel, Chairman of Eni and President of BUSINESSEUROPE, Europe’s most powerful lobby business association, reiterated her points about a united Europe that will forge a clear competitive investment and business strategy. “Enhancing growth… We need more Europe… energy union, digital union… we need it….we are importing 50% of our gas!”.

She then continued by referring to the 4th industrial revolution: “Digital is very important…4th revolution… huge opportunity… we need to work on this and we need to do it in a very fast way”.

Coming to Europe’s biggest issue at the moment, the migrant crisis, the Italian businesswoman concluded that: “the real answer is to act as a whole”.

Stay tuned from 20 to 23 January as the Sting will be once more producing top class critical LIVE media coverage from the Congress Centre in Davos, Switzerland. 

Join the Hive!

Advertising

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

70 years on, landmark UN human rights document as important as ever

Eurobarometer: Not a single answer about what the Banking Union will cost to citizens

AI-powered automation will have an ethnic bias

Canada has created an Arctic conservation zone almost as big as Germany

Future EU-UK Partnership: European Commission publishes draft legal text

Ukraine pays the price for lying between Russia and the EU

Bankruptcy or referendum: which one is going to be first?

EU Justice Scoreboard 2019: results show the continuing need to protect judicial independence

European Fund for Transition to support more workers made redundant

Africa is launching the world’s largest free trade area – but these are the stumbling blocks

Nearly a third of the globe is now on Facebook – chart of the day

Our global system has spun out of control. Here’s how to rebalance it

UN General Assembly celebrates 20 years of promoting a culture of peace

G20 World Exclusive Interview: “The world, especially emerging economies and developing countries, require a more sustainable and quality development”, the Spokesperson of Japan underscores live from Antalya Turkey

Regional competitiveness and growth: a Gordian knot for Europe

An economist explains why women are paid less

UN Member States overwhelmingly support end of US embargo against Cuba

LGBTQI+ and health care: do they deserve more attention from medical universities?

What little Cameron got in Brussels seems enough to keep Britain in the EU

G20 LIVE: “United States and Turkey stand in solidarity with France and its people in handing the perpetrators of this crime and bringing them to justice”, US President Barack Obama underlines from G20 in Antalya Turkey

Coronavirus: 5 ways to work from home with your kids (and stay sane)

Global climate change: consequences for human health in Brazilian cities

Courage of terrorism survivors underlines ‘urgency’ of UN Investigative Team’s work in Iraq

End fossil fuel subsidies, and stop using taxpayers’ money to destroy the world: Guterres

#Travelgoals: why Instagram is key to understanding millennial tourism

The rise of techno-nationalism – and the paradox at its core

EU-Turkey leaders’ meeting, 9 March 2020

Burundi: Inclusive dialogue ‘only viable option’ for resolving country’s political crisis says, UN envoy

45th Anniversary of the French Confederation (Confédération Nationale des Junior Entreprises)

Syrian civilians must be protected amid ISIL executions and airstrikes: Bachelet

Privacy is a human right, we need a GDPR for the world: Microsoft CEO

Multilateralism: The only path to address the world’s troubles, signals Guterres

Syria: UN health agency highlights ‘critical health threats’ facing Idlib civilians

China’s lead in the global solar race – at a glance

Sustainability, peace, security ‘best guarantee against instability’ Guterres to Security Council

OECD Donor countries need to reform development finance to meet 2030 pledge

Four in five adolescents failing to exercise for even 60 minutes a day, UN health agency warns

World Population Day: ‘A matter of human rights’ says UN

UNcomplicating the UN: a new podcast is born over coffee in New York

Commission Vice-President Rehn exaggerates Eurozone’s growth prospects

An expert explains: the digital risks facing our children during COVID-19

How will EU look after French, Dutch and German Elections and what will be the implications for Youth Entrepreneurship?

EU plans pan-European network of cybersecurity services

Thousands of Syrians in ‘life and death’ struggle amid harsh conditions in remote desert camp, UN warns

Tuesday’s Daily Brief: #GlobalGoals progress, essential meds, updates from Cox’s Bazar, Sudan and DR Congo

Lagarde: Keep feeding the banks cut down wages and food subsidies

Crime and drugs in West and Central Africa: Security Council highlights ‘new alarming trends’

Country origin ‘best predictor of outcome’ for children with cancer, UN experts say

‘Reaffirm the sanctity’ of religious sites, says Guterres, launching new plan to ‘counter hate and violence’

4 key steps towards a circular economy

Cameron postpones speech in Holland

How to help companies become global defenders of LGBTI rights

How COVID-19 could open the door for driverless deliveries

Migration crisis update: What are the chances of a fair deal at this EU Summit?

Boosting adult learning essential to help people adapt to future of work

Here’s how to make ‘value-based healthcare’ a reality

Action needed to end deadly clashes between African herders and farmers: UN chief

The IMF overstates the risks for Eurozone and downgrades the threats for the US economy

UN working with both sides, after hidden tunnels confirmed along Lebanon-Israel ‘Blue Line’

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s