The ‘yellow vests’ undermined Macron in France and the EU

Paris was a blockaded city this weekend. The government was forced to close down all the main tourist sites in the French capital. The Eiffel Tower, the Opera of Paris, the Louvre museum and tens of other sites which may attract the fury of the ‘yellow vest’ movement are closed and heavily guarded. Galerie Lafayette […]

Continue reforms to make growth work for all in Spain

This article is brought to you in association with OECD. Spain has made a successful economic recovery, underpinned by strong employment growth, gains in competitiveness and favourable external and financial conditions. The current economic expansion offers an opportunity to speed up efforts to increase the resilience of public finances, enhance job creation and ensure a more […]

German egotistic inward turn to badly hurt Europe after Merkel’s exit

Angela Merkel’s era in Germany definitely comes to an end. It coincides, not necessarily in a causal manner, with the extreme right and xenophobic rising tendencies in the country’s political and social structures. These developments will put not only Germany to a political limbo but they will also freeze the progress of the European Union […]

Migration crisis update: mutual actions and solidarity needed as anti-migrant policies thrive

An EU summit is taking place today in Salzburg, Austria where the EU leaders will discuss about the immigration crisis in the region and Brexit deal negotiations. The Parliament’s request to the member states regarding Hungary’s breach of the EU founding values is creating turbulences to the unity and solidarity of the Old Continent. The […]

Commission hardens its stance against carmakers ensuring emissions reductions targets

The car industry will be under tighter surveillance by the European Commission after 2020 when the next phase of the EU’s emission regulation will take place. All car manufacturers who do not meet the 2021 fleet CO2 emissions compliance for new passenger vehicles sold in the Old Continent will face fines of more than €14 […]

Can a Bavarian Oktoberfest beer indulger bring down the Berlin government?

In the late hours of last Monday, Horst Seehofer the Bavarian, a right wing politician and standard Oktoberfest beer indulger, who has lately discovered the attractions of anti-immigration rhetoric, finally backed off from his threats to bring down Angela Merkel’s Federal government. He is the President of the right wing Christian Social Union party present […]

EU migration crisis again accentuates lack of unity and solidarity among member states

Almost nothing was achieved between the EU member states at the mini migration summit which was convened in Brussels last Sunday. Despite the German efforts, there was no common ground among EU leaders. The latter was mainly due to the fact that Italy’s new anti-migrant government is against the “first country responsibility” rule which obliges […]

Budget MEPs approve €104.2 m in EU aid to Greece, Spain, France and Portugal

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament 16-05-18 Budget MEPs approved on Wednesday EUSF aid worth €104.2 million to support reconstruction in Greece, Spain, France and Portugal, hit by natural disasters in 2017. The aid from the EU Solidarity Fund (EUSF) includes €50.6 million for reconstruction in the Centro region in Portugal […]

What will Germany look like after the next election?

Last Thursday this newspaper came out with a lead story about European countries having problems producing viable governments. The article was entitled “Minority governments ‘à la mode’ in Europe but can they last long?” It seems conformist Germany answers this question in the negative. According to an opinion poll published this week and reported by […]

Minority governments ‘à la mode’ in Europe but can they last long?

With the Italian elections set for 4 March and anticipated to produce a hang parliament, four out of the five bigger European countries will be in political limbo for a good part, if not for the entire new year 2018. France is the only exception in this Euro-plague of political uncertainty. In some cases the […]

Draghi keeps the euro cheap, helps debt refinancing, recapitalization of banks and growth

Last Thursday, the European Central Bank decided to keep flooding the Eurozone with hundreds of billions, despite strong objections coming from the frugal German-Dutch duo. Mario Draghi was adamant about that. It’s interesting to follow his response to a journalist’s remark, who reminded him that the “Dutch Central Bank President Klaas Knot said in a […]

Do the giant banks ‘tell’ Britain to choose a good soft Brexit and ‘remain’ or else…?

It may be true that the world is tired watching Britain being completely confused about choosing the way to exit from the European Union. Yet, the almost schizo division plaguing the Brits and their political elites alike still paralyzes to this date the divorce negotiations. Countries to be most affected by Brexit like Holland are […]

Catalonia secessionist leader takes Flemish ‘cover’; Spain risks more jingoist violence

The Catalonia crisis and the aftermaths after its diffusion can offer valuable lessons for the nature of jingoist politics and the motives, goals and the character of its main actors, on both sides of the fence. The Catalan secessionists led by Carles Puigdemont proved experts in setting the fire, but were incapable of making anything […]

Czech Babis, Austrian Kurz and others threaten Europe with nationalist populism

Andrej Babis, a media magnate and second wealthier Czech leading his anti-immigration, nationalist and populist ANO party, won last Sunday’s election, with around 30% of the vote. He is to become the next Prime Minister of the Czech Republic. Babis did that on an anti-systemic Trump-like ticket. He was recently implicated in a tax fraud […]

A jingoistic Spanish ‘war’ from the past

“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” Samuel Johnson wrote in the 18th century and unfortunately history keeps justifying this early political essayist. During the last few days, the Catalan separatists and the Iraqi Kurds held referendums to declare national independence, which were not at all needed. Both regions have as much self-governance as […]

The EU Commission vies to screen Chinese investment in Europe

Last week, Jean-Claude Juncker, the head of the powerful European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, announced a plan to screen foreign investments. The idea is to hold back or even effectively block business acquisitions or other investment plans financed by third country companies, in key sectors allegedly considered to be sensitive from […]

Refugee crisis update: EU still lacks solidarity as Hungary and Slovakia refuse to accept EU Court’s decision

It was last Wednesday when the Court of Justice of the European Union rejected a challenge by Hungary and Slovakia regarding their denial on relocating refugees from Greece and Italy. Both countries though do not intend to change their position on the issue. Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos mentioned that there has […]

EU and African leaders to jointly tackle the migration crisis across the Mediterranean

It was last week when the leaders of Italy, France, Germany and Spain met in Paris with the African leaders of Chad, Niger and Libya to discuss on how to manage the influx of migrants through Libya and across the Mediterranean. Emmanuel Macron, the French president, hosted the summit and mentioned that refugee crisis is […]

Has the EU economy truly revived from the financial crisis?

Last week the European Commission published a press release regarding EU’s recovery from the financial crisis where it is mentioned that the EU, after 10 years since that start of the crisis, is back to growth because of the EU influential actions. What is more, it was announced yesterday that Germany’s gross domestic product in […]

Refugee crisis: Commission proposes a new plan urging EU countries to help Italy

The EU interior ministers gathered last Thursday in Tallinn to discuss Italy’s problem to deal with migration crisis together with the new Action Plan proposed by the European Commission to support Italy and increase solidarity in the EU. The refugee crisis continues plaguing Europe in 2017 as 101.266 migrants have entered the bloc by sea […]

Germany caught with selfish double standards in euro area policy

Over the past three years the European Central Bank, guided by its President Mario Draghi, has been folowing a super relaxed monetary policy. It has been aiming at reviving uncertain economic growth and dying inflation, by handing out to banks, and through them to the economy, hundreds of billions of euro and at the same […]

The ECB again takes care of the bankers not the people

Last week the European Central Bank surprised everybody by letting it be known that interest rates will “remain at present or lower levels for an extended period of time, and well past the horizon of our net asset purchases”. To be noted, presently, the main refinancing operations interest rate is zero. Of course, the markets […]

Twenty days that may remold the future of Europe

The next few weeks may indelibly stain the future of Europe. There are three issues which can irreparably hurt the Old Continent. Starting from Britain in the extreme northwest, this week the country showed that she risks plummeting into a jingoistic abyss. A confrontation with Spain about the Gibraltar Rock has provoked a wave of […]

EU Summit: Why was Poland isolated in opposing Tusk and the ‘multi speed’ Europe

Until last week’s summit (Thursday and Friday) of the 27+1 European leaders in Brussels, the exit of Britain from the European club was the tougher test for the club’s unity, which everybody was more or less getting ready to face up to. However, the Polish Prime Minister, a stocky middle aged woman, reversed that and […]

The widely advertised hazards of the EU not that ominous; the sting is financial woes

Last Monday, Deutsche Bank’s management surprised everybody quite negatively by asking its shareholders for an €8 billion capital injection. Only hours before that, the London Stock Exchange had almost terminated the long negotiated merger procedure with the Deutsche Börse, the German bourse in Frankfurt. The LSE directors rejected the terms set by the European Commission […]

Europe led by Germany seems vulnerable to Trump’s threats

Trump’s America and Europe are obviously at odds. The question is how far this division will go? Unquestionably, it’s the new tenant of the White House who fuels this unseen before confrontation between the Atlantic allies, attached by a time cherished bonding that has politically and economically shaped the world as we know it so […]

A hot autumn after a cool summer for Europe

This autumn Europe has everything it…didn’t need. A frozen Spain, a hot Britain who says will stay in EU’s Foreign and Security Policy, a self-centered Ireland and a revolutionary France. In the most interesting development the British Foreign Secretary, the infamous for his gaffes and lies Boris Johnson, said that despite the impending Brexit, his […]

Deutsche Bank: the next financial crisis is here and the lenders need €150 billion from taxpayers

Last Monday David Folkerts-Landau, the chief economist of Deutsche Bank, the ailing largest lender of Germany, in an interview with the prestigious newspaper ‘Die Welt’ stated that European banks must be subsidized with €150 billion in rescue money to recapitalize. Obviously, it will be the taxpayers to once more provide the capital the euro area […]

EU revengefully shows no mercy to Cameron by demanding a fast and sloppy Brexit now

One of the most historicals EU summits is taking place today in Brussels with 27 instead of 28 member states attending the meeting, leaving Britain and David Cameron out due to the recent decision of the British people to vote in favor of leaving the European Union. The EU referendum has caused severe consequences not only to […]