Latest Council data: EU clustering at new high post-Brexit

©European Union

The latest Franco-German proposal to substantially increase the amount of money that will be managed by the EU brought a (much needed) boost of enthusiasm. However, the details of the new process of collecting and allocating the funds, as well as the EU’s broader crisis-management and economic recovery strategy, are what will eventually make things easier or harder for Europeans. Continue Reading

How COVID-19 reshapes the EU budget battleground

As Chancellor Merkel and others put it, this is the most challenging moment for Europe (and probably the rest of the world) since WWII. As during WWII and its aftermath, this will also be a time when the patterns of international influence will be redefined by those that will cope the best with the challenges ahead of us, ie. the health crisis and its economic consequences.

Severe disruptions in the commercial routes in general and those of medical equipment and agri-food in particular, combined with the repatriation of expat workers already reveal both the strengths and the vulnerabilities of the social and economic basis of each of the Member States (as well as any country worldwide). Continue Reading

How ‘COVID-19’ changes the balance of power: Winners and losers of emergency politics

Trougnouf (Benoit Brummer) / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

The latest developments show that, despite the severe disruptions, the EU policy-making machinery is looking for new ways to cope with the emergency. However, stark divergences on how to deal with the economic fallout of the crisis were already laid bare over a tense Council summit last week. Continue Reading

EU Climate agenda: key MEP to watch

© European Union 2019 – Source : EP / ERIC VIDAL

This report is the second instance of our new series on individual MEPs: Getting to know the decision-makers. We launched this series last week when we looked at the track record of the rapporteur on the Just Transition Fund. In these reports, we look beyond mere statements and learn the actual directions in which the politicians work to influence EU legislation. Continue Reading

Just Transition Fund: key MEP to watch

© European Union 2017 – Source : EP / Eric VIDAL

This report is the first instance of our new series on individual MEPs: Getting to know the decision-makers. In these reports we look beyond mere statements and learn the actual directions in which the politicians work to influence EU decisions. Over the past 11 years since we launched VoteWatch Europe, we have witnessed many situations in which stakeholders and citizens know very little or are even led into thinking the opposite of who influences and how the EU decision-making. Continue Reading

The US Democratic Primaries: Where do the candidates stand on EU-US relations?

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at Desert Pines High School in Las Vegas, Nevada. – Gage Skidmore: https://flickr.com/photos/gageskidmore/49540584737/

It is no news that the relationship between the EU and the US went through a rocky three years, following Donald Trump’s victory in 2016. Since then, top EU policymakers have hardly concealed their frustration with Trump’s muscular approach to international relations and trade. Continue Reading

EU budget battleground: here are the coalitions

The stakes can hardly be higher, as EU leaders are meeting today to kick off a negotiating marathon to decide on the next Multiannual Financial Framework of the EU. Finding an agreement will be more difficult than ever, as the increasing political fragmentation and polarization of political systems across the EU decrease the room for maneuver of the different national leaders.  Continue Reading