When, back in 2021, as the Foreign Minister of Spain, I approached NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg about Spain hosting the 2022 Summit, I could not anticipate the very specific circumstances that the alliance faces today. I could not have imagined how decisive the Madrid summit would be for peace and stability in Europe.
When Vladimir Putin first invaded Ukraine in 2014, Europeans had a simple choice: increase or decrease their energy dependence on Russian fossil fuels. Europeans chose to increase. National governments like Spain and France could have freed themselves from Russian gas just by implementing their own national building renovation plans. But they chose not to.
Last March, Spain and Portugal reached a historic agreement: for the first time ever, two European countries could set a price cap on gas for power generation, for a period of twelve months. A period to seek agreements was opened in both countries, which ended on 9 June, when the European Commission gave the final approval to the mechanism. This undoubtedly proves that the current European Union is very different to the European Union we were living in during the financial crisis of the last decade.
Tackling gender-based violence, on which an EU directive proposal is being published today on the occasion of International Women’s Day, is key to restoring momentum to the feminist cause. On this day, it is also opportune to recall the origins of this celebration, which date back to more than a hundred years ago, when it […]
Exploited and marginalised: obstacles to integration and inclusion for migrant workers in care and agriculture
The pandemic has reminded the public that the EU relies on migrants to fill so-called ‘low-skilled’ but essential jobs and services in healthcare, food production, childcare, elderly care, and critical utilities. Migrants make up, on average, 13 per cent of the EU’s key workers. This share is almost zero in Romania, Bulgaria and Poland, but […]
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 […]