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The State of the Union – the two sides of a speech

The qualitative leap which was introduced in the European project in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis has brought higher levels of solidarity and cohesion. But there is still a long way to go. The speech of the president of the European Commission has outlined a few further steps, but many more need to be […]

A great window of opportunity for a progressive agenda in Europe

The 2019 European elections finally saw the turnout going slightly up. In parallel, Social Democrats noted an unanticipated positive result. Almost two years into the legislative period, despite the pandemic, the polls consistently show two tendencies. First, Europeans tend to be positive about the EU in numbers comparable to before the 2008 crash. Second, progressives […]

Portugal’s presidency: to heal Europe

If you hated Covid-19 in 2020, you will hate it more in 2021, under the Portuguese presidency of the EU Council. The mundane reason for this is that the period of presidency in the EU is not simply a time of pushing dossiers, dialogues and trilogues, but also one of visiting the country that holds […]

EU and the Western Balkans: more than goodwill to speed up enlargement

The Communication on EU-enlargement policy presented by the European Commission on 6 October is encouraging for the countries of the Western Balkans. Together with the EC’s Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans and the Covid-19 recovery plan, it shows a great deal of goodwill. The country reports consist of concrete analyses based on […]

The rule of law stalemate

The seven-year financial framework and the recovery budget of the European Union have been taken hostage by a bitter dispute over the rule of law. The European Parliament (EP) asserts itself as a guardian of EU values, imposing its requirements at last on the spending machinery of the Union. The declaration by the four leaders […]

A too Teutonic talk

As we learned from the great British historian Eric Hobsbawm, tradition is something that is invented. The tradition of State of the Union (SOTEU) speeches by the European Commission president was invented in 2010, in the wake of the great financial crisis. It has always provided a panorama of EU policies, sending out open or […]