European Views | A foreign policy instrument explicitly designed to counter the BRI, the GG diametrically opposed to China’s investment approach by seeking to “create links and not dependencies”, in the words of European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen. The GG’s launch comes at a time when the EU is feeling the adverse effects of BRI-induced encroachment within its own borders and wider neighbourhood. Several EU countries, such as Italy, Greece and Bulgaria, have controversially signed up to the project.
European Views | The way the EU appears on the world stage, where it all too often seems weak, uncoordinated and overly moralising in its approach to world affairs. Germany’s long-time chancellor Merkel has played a key role in this. Throughout 16 years, Berlin has helped transform the EU into an ineffective paper tiger that styles itself as a superpower, yet that is frequently proving unable to deal effectively with hard geopolitical questions – from securing its borders to dealing with China. What is really needed is a new approach to EU foreign policy, especially at a time when German voters’ interest in foreign policy and EU affairs is at its lowest in years.
Almost at the same time as the Catalan separatists tried to get the European Union on the side of its cause, the European authorities have had to deal with insurgency in Poland. The latter’s judicial reform put at the risk the division of powers and the judicial independence of a country in the region. While Spain had to implement article 155 of its Constitution in order to contain the crisis of authority which the secessionist attempt implied, the EU has had to press its own “nuclear button”, article 7 of the Treaty, to restrain Polish government.
What’s happening in Catalonia? The narrative put together by those in favour of independence is quite incredible: how is that so many Catalans feel so badly treated in a democracy like Spain’s? The crisis in Catalonia threatens the stability of Spain and even the European project.
Nick Ottens via Atlantic Sentinel |A transition deal might be good for Britain, but there are many reasons to doubt the EU would agree to it.
There were two problems in Italy’s banking system which needed to be addressed, that of Banca Popolare di Vicenza and Veneto Banca. Finally, the situation has been resolved with the start of their liquidation process and the acquisition of “healthy” assets by Intesa San Paolo.
All European Union members except the UK are meeting today in Rome to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the so considered seed of their club: The treaty of Rome. An event with a bittersweet taste however since the participants will start designing a common strategy on Brexit, the first exit of a member state.
By end March, the UK will trigger the nuclear button splitting it from the European Union. A landmark decision which will determine both parties’ future, irrespective of the side of the English Channel they find themselves on.