from FP Passport by Uri Friedman
from FP Passport by Joshua Keating
European leaders divided as summit begins
by Open Europe blog team
The EU summit has officially kicked off in Brussels, and talks are expected to drag on until late night. So far, little seems to be moving, and live blogs covering the summit are languishing a bit. However, courtesy ofEurActiv France, we have got hold of the updated version of the draft conclusions of the meeting. The following new bits have caught our attention:
from FT.com – World, Europe
Deal reached in the early hours at the EU summit represents a ‘major change’ in European policy which Ireland had been advocating for a long time
Meeting at the EU summit, the Eurozone heads of state and government reached an agreement early on Friday morning on bank supervision and easier access to the bailout fund for crisis states. In return, Spain and Italy lifted their blockade against the European Growth Pact. Europe is limping from one summit to the next, commentators write, criticising the reluctance to form a political union.
by Open Europe blog team
People have once again been getting rather excited over a media report today. This time it is an interview which German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble gave to the WSJ in which he said:
A day before the EU crisis summit that began this Thursday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel once again rejected proposals for debt mutualisation without central control over national budgets. Only if the nation states are willing to give up sovereignty can the euro be saved, commentators write, fearing that the summit will fail above all owing to the differences of opinion between Berlin and Paris.
from Ideas on Europe by Ronny Patz
In the penultimate vote, ACTA has been rejected 19 to 12 votes in the leading International Trade (INTA) committee of the European Parliament.
from EFF.org Updates by Maira Sutton
On Thursday, the fifth and final European Union Parliamentary committee voted to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). This signifies a major blow to ACTA, but its standing in the EU still comes down to the European Parliament vote scheduled during the first week of July. After this final vote decides the agreement’s adoption in Europe, however, the future of ACTA for the rest of the signatory countries unfortunately remains cloudy.
European Council President Herman Van Rompuy on Tuesday presented a plan for the construction of a fiscal union, according to which the euro countries would assume joint liability for their debts and transfer more competences to the EU. Some commentators describe the proposal as a silent putsch against the nation states that Berlin will not go along with. Others welcome the planned reforms as a minor revolution.
from open Democracy News Analysis – by Krzysztof Rybinski
Europe’s financial-existential crisis has been intensified at every stage by the incomprehension and misjudgment of European authorities, says Krzysztof Rybinski.
from Centre for European Reform by Centre for European Reform
by Charles Grant
Like many other EU summits over the past two years, the European Council meeting in Brussels on June 28th and 29th has been billed as a ‘last chance’ to save the euro. With the situation in Greece, Spain and Italy causing alarm, EU leaders should present a credible plan to convince financial markets that they are serious about saving the euro. They are unlikely to do so. Although there will probably be other last chances, time is starting to run out. Unless France and Germany can soon agree on a grand bargain, disaster may loom.
The Cyprus EU presidency in the second half of 2012 will provide political leadership to the Union but “not in the traditional way”, officials say. Rather, it will be a “Brussels-based presidency”, with most of the country’s officials operating from the European capital and focusing on EU affairs. Meanwhile, the island’s long-standing reunification talks with Turkey will be dealt with on a separate track.