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The refugee crisis goes on; eastern European countries, especially Poland and Hungary (but they are not alone) persist in not taking their share. This leaves Italy, with its weak economy, and Greece, emaciated by EU politics on their own to find a solution for the inhuman situation. Meanwhile the Commission is powerless, and the Council divided.

A difficult year ahead for the EU

2018 will see more self-interest by EU member states than ever before. Politico calls it even ‘more naked self-interest’

It seems that the Brits have largely ignored the intimidation and doomsday predictions of the top EU negotiators Juncker, Barnier and Verhofstadt; which have been blindly echoed by the mostly Europhile press corps in Brussels.

Britons looking positively to their future

Most Britons believe that their job will be safe in 2018 and house prices will rise

The energy ministers also ignored calls by the European Parliament to raise the EU’s 2030 target for renewable energy. Projections show that the current target is too low to meet the EU’s commitments under the Paris climate agreement. The EU uproar at Trump’s stance on the agreement and its declaration of world leadership in the wake seems somewhat hypocritical in these circumstances.

EU Energy ministers give Europeans coal for Christmas and ditch the Paris Climate Agreement

The EU Energy Ministers have backed coal and other fossil fuels over renewable energy, in the ongoing reform of the EU’s energy laws

The European Commission concluded from an evaluation of the ECB’s banking supervision in October that the European Court of Auditors had less power to audit the ECB than many eurozone audit institutions had to audit their national public supervisors. The national public supervisor is usually the central bank; in the Netherlands it is De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB). The European Commission therefore insisted that the European Court of Auditors and the ECB should reach an agreement on the exchange of information. The five supreme audit institutions consider this to be a ’first step’. ’But ultimately the European Court of Auditors’ mandate in this area needs to be extended.’ They suggest that the European Court of Auditors’ powers should be equal to the mandates that the eurozone audit institutions, such as the Algemene Rekenkamer in the Netherlands and the Bundesrechnungshof in Germany, had to audit their national supervisors before 2014.

Eurozone banking supervision shows a growing audit gap

The supreme audit institutions of five European countries (Germany, Cyprus, Finland, Austria and the Netherlands) conclude in a joint report that there is a growing audit gap in the public supervision of banks in the eurozone

The perspectives look positive, but the price is high, very high. Comparing the Greece of today with the country of eight years ago is shocking. For instance, the unacceptable high unemployment rates especially among young people; many pensions are nowadays on an inhumanly low level; the quality of health care for all is not consistently optimal; many teacher jobs have been cut. It is all the result of the austerity programmes the EU has forced down the throat of Greece.  The German Finance Minister Schäuble and his Dutch colleague Dijsselbloem, President of the so called Eurogroup, were particular culprits.

Greece is recovering, ’slowly but steadily’

Greece is recovering 'slowly but steadily' after eight years of crisis and recession. That was the message Prime Minister Tsipras brought to the members of the American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce in Athens on December 5


A week without winners in Berlin…

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, November 27, 2017

Is the end of the Merkel era within sight?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, November 21, 2017

To hold off Wilders, the new Dutch government embraces some of his rightist ideas

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Brexit negotiations: the EU stays persistent

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, October 23, 2017

In a ‘constructive’ Brexit spirit May repeats: ‘better no deal than a bad deal’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, September 26, 2017

An ominous sign: Verhofstadt applauded Juncker’s State of the Union

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, September 14, 2017

Brexit negotiations make EU elite nervous

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, September 04, 2017

Lies, cheating and German carmakers

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, July 31, 2017

High Representative / VP Federica Mogherini also Commander-in-Chief of the EU Army

By: N. Peter Kramer | Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Macron had taken the wind out of his sails in his first EU Summit

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, June 26, 2017

US Senate decision: cold war or export promotion?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, June 19, 2017

‘For the UK, no deal is better than a bad deal’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, May 22, 2017

UK Prime Minister announces general election for June 8th

By: N. Peter Kramer | Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Viktor Orban, EPP’s tolerated maverick…

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, April 03, 2017

Did Wilders really lose?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, March 20, 2017

Scotland: part of EFTA instead of EU membership?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Timmermans will lose his battle with Poland

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, February 28, 2017

No apocalypse after Brexit vote

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, February 02, 2017

Draghi between Scylla and Charybdis

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, January 16, 2017

Commission’s Christmas Carol for Poland

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, December 23, 2016

The blinkers of EU leaders

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, December 09, 2016

Who is afraid of the Commission?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, November 21, 2016

Brexit, Trump, what’s next?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, November 14, 2016

European Commission: Insult and be promoted!

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, November 01, 2016

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Editor’s Column

It is clear: voters in the EU are moving more and more to the (far-)right

By: N. Peter Kramer

In Italy voters turned their back on the mainstream parties. They felt abandoned by the rest of the EU, as its coastal areas bore the brunt of the influx of migrants crossing the Mediterranean


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