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‘I thought to myself that now that the new legislation has come into force in Hungary, the governments and the Commission will call a spade a spade’.

Is the ‘Hungarian question’ fuelling the EU east-west division?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Is the ‘Hungarian question’ fuelling the EU’s East-West division? According to former European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker it is

"Sir Keir Starmer wants a real opposition, even in the current difficult times where the Brits have to live in along with the rest of the world."

Labour on the way back to a credible opposition with Keir Starmer?

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, April 7, 2020

With a landslide win, last Saturday Sir Keir Starmer was elected as Labour’s new leader

To the Council Von der Leyen said that the Commission will develop a coordinated ‘exit strategy’ for lifting the lockdown in countries across the EU. ‘We need to coordinate our decisions when, at a certain time, we want to go back to normal’.

‘This is the hour of the memberstates, not so much of the EU’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, March 30, 2020

Commission President Von der Leyen slammed the egoism of the EU member states; failing to coordinate their initial responses to the pandemic

The dramatic situation is revealing the fragility of global supply chains. It is hard to believe that developed nations will continue to accept a situation in which they have to import most of their vital medical supplies.

In times of emergency people look to their national government

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, March 26, 2020

It is clear, in times of emergency people look to their national government, which has financial, organisational and emotional strengths that supra-national organisations and institutions are lacking

EU finance ministers have in the meantime agreed to exempt public spending including stimulus measures related to dealing with coronavirus from the strict EU governments spending rules.

The not so united EU in the time of Corona

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, March 19, 2020

The pandemic has hit Italy the hardest in the EU. The country should be able to rely on other member states for help; isn’t solidarity, after all, what the EU preaches?

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen described climate neutrality as ‘European destiny’.

Commission climate law proposal: insufficient and a power grab

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, March 12, 2020

The European Commission’s climate law proposal, designed to ensure net zero emissions in the EU by 2050, has had an inauspicious unveiling

The British negotiation document ‘The Future Relationship with the EU’ is clear, it says, that the U.K. will maintain high standards and wants full control over the future direction of its regulations.

Brexit negotiations started, with knifes drawn

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, March 5, 2020

On Monday March 2 the bell rang for the start of the trade negotiations between the UK and the EU: Boris Johnson’s negotiator David Frost versus Michel Barnier

‘Now we have a smaller union, we simply have to cut our coat according to our cloth’

‘EU doesn’t need UK to show its own lack of unity’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, February 25, 2020

‘The EU doesn’t need the UK to show its own lack of unity’, or words to that effect

‘ We must consider that the UK, a large contributor to the EU budget, has left the bloc. Now that we have a smaller union of 27 member states, we simply have to cut our coat according to our cloth. The responsible approach in this situation is to prioritise, in the interest of our taxpayers’.

‘Success of European project is measured by delivering on political ambitions not by the size of the budget’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, February 18, 2020

At the end of this week, 20 and 21 February, the 27 EU leaders are invited by their president, Charles Michel, for an EU Council summit in Brussels, to discuss the EU’s next long-term budget

After years of negotiations between the British government and the EU, UK lawmakers repeatedly defeated attempts by Johnson’s predecessor Theresa May to finalise departure terms.

EU delay Brexit trade talks until March

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, January 24, 2020

The Queen has given Royal Assent to the legislation for Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal, paving the way for the UK to leave the EU at the end of January

‘the Power of Siberia’. It is the largest gas project in history and symbolic of Moscow’s diplomatic pivot towards Beijing at a time of worsening relations with the EU for both countries.

‘The Times They Are a-changin’

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, December 6, 2019

With apologies to Bob Dylan for using his already so often (mis)used words: ‘The Times They Are a- changin’

The continued funding of projects like gas pipelines until 2021, and the modernisation of existing fossil fuel infrastructure beyond 2021 threatens the EU’s climate commitments.

New EIB funding policy threatens EU climate commitments

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, November 15, 2019

The European Investment Bank’s new policy will limit funding for new fossil fuels projects starting at the end of 2021

The EU write the rules for the Brexit negotiations. Although many observers have the impression that the word ‘negotiations’ is a straight euphemism.

The Brexit negotiations near to an end…

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, October 14, 2019

On Sunday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson told his cabinet that while he could see a ‘pathway’ to a deal, there was ‘still a significant amount of work’ needed to get there

Goulard’s rejection was a betrayal of Von der Leyen by her own European People’s Party (EPP). Its leader, Weber, was once EPP’s Spitzenkandidat for the Commission presidency, but he was blocked by the liberal and social democrat leaders in the European Council, notably by Macron.

The Von der Leyen Commission will not take office on November 1!

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, October 11, 2019

The European Parliament overwhelmingly rejected Sylvie Goulard, the French nominee to be commissioner for the EU’s internal market and industrial policy

Despite this escalating emergency, EU-wide commitments to cut emissions to net-zero are yet to materialise, while a far more urgent decision about ramping up short-term targets in line with science has been delayed.

The EU still fails a serious climate-policy

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, September 23, 2019

A United Nations climate summit in New York City exposes Europe’s lack of progress to tackle the climate emergency. World leaders are meeting after millions took to the streets in unprecedented global protests last weeks and months, demanding urgent political action. The aim of the summit is to bring political commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions in line with the Paris climate agreement

In her replies, Ms Lagarde agreed that it was time to review the ECB’s monetary framework to address new challenges such as non-bank lending, fintech, crypto currencies, and climate change. She also said that the ECB’s quantitative easing had led to negative effects.

The EP cacophony after Lagarde’s hearing

By: N. Peter Kramer | Thursday, September 5, 2019

On Wednesday Christine Lagarde had her ‘hearing’ in the EP’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs

In September, France will host a summit of Merkel, Putin and Ukraine’s president Zelenskiy. Pushing Russia further away from the EU would be a mistake in Macron’s view. He worries that Moscow will ally more closely with China, whom he regards as the real ‘enemy’ of the EU since he saw China and Russia coming closer together over summer than they have done in decades.

Macron the new leader of the EU but unpopular at home

By: N. Peter Kramer | Friday, August 30, 2019

Angela Merkel is no longer the undisputed leader of the EU 28. She looks old and tired, lacking energy to play her role as she did before

Prime-Minister May was the biggest loser, and with her the Conservatives recording their worst ever result in a national election because of May’s defending the WA. The big winner was Farage with his Brexit Party. This party topped the polls and won every region in England and Wales outside London. It was a crystal-clear demonstration of how strong and how widespread the view is that the UK must leave the EU by October 31.

Boris Johnson and his mandate to take the UK out of the EU

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, July 30, 2019

The ball has come out of the scrum and Boris Johnson has been able to claim it. Many people are asking now, what is he going to do with it

But how is Britain? Let me quote the columnist Simon Kuper of the Financial Times, an absolute quality paper but to put it mildly, not pro-Brexit. ‘There has been lots of talk lately about how unhappy the UK is. The vote for Brexit is often described as a cry of pain from suffering people’, he wrote. But he was stunned by research done by the independent Resolution Foundation think-tank. About 93 per cent of Britons now say they are ‘fairly’ or ‘very’ satisfied with their lives; a very marked upward turn since 2000.

Brits, Boris and Brexit

By: N. Peter Kramer | Tuesday, July 2, 2019

‘Brussels’ politicians, eurocrats and the unconditionally pro-EU media (almost all) are telling us, time after time, how bad Brexit is for the British people. Much, much worse than for those left behind

Merkel’s choice for the function of President of the European Commission remains Manfred Weber, the ‘Spitzenkandidat’ of the centre-right EPP.  But Macron, and many of the leaders with him, see Weber as a too light weight, with insufficient experience for this job. He has never achieved a more important function than leader of the EPP group in the European Parliament.

EU leaders struggle over EU top jobs

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, June 24, 2019

Last week, when the EU leaders left a summit without a decision about the EU top jobs for the second time, Dutch PM Mark Rutte said to reporters, ‘we got nowhere’. Therefore, next Sunday, the EU leaders must reconvene during a dinner

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EU Actually

EU – China Summit : Merkel – Von der Leyen – Michel vs Xi

N. Peter KramerBy: N. Peter Kramer

September 14. While the initial summit lost its official in-person character due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 3 EU leaders and the Chinese leader attended a virtual meeting via videoconference

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