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  • Author: Eric Philippart
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: In December 2000, the Heads of State or Government reckoned that once the institutional changes proposed in the Treaty of Nice were ratified, the Union would be ready for the accession of new member states. Acknowledging that the post-Nice design was certainly not optimal, they also agreed in a Declaration annexed to the Treaty to convene an Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) in 2004. It stipulated that Treaty changes would only be decided after two intermediary phases aimed at deepening and widening the debate on the future of the European Union: an 'open reflection' phase encouraging wide-ranging exchanges of views in multiple national and European fora, to be followed by a phase of 'structured reflection' scheduled for 2002-3. The format of the second phase was to be defined during the European Council bringing the Belgian Presidency to a close. On 15 December 2001, the Laeken 'Declaration on the Future of the European Union' was indeed adopted. No less than 56 substantive questions were proposed as a starting point for the debate to be conducted by an ad hoc structure made of a Convention flanked by a Forum. The Declaration not only defined the mandate and the institutional contours of the new structure, it also provided a number of indications on how it should proceed in terms of deliberation, drafting and decision-making.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Joanna Apap
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The judgment in the case of Conka v. Belgium of 5 February 2002 by the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg whereby Belgium was founded guilty of infringing the European Convention on Human Rights, has much wider implications than one might think on a first reading.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Belgium
  • Author: Guido Tabellini
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: How should tasks be divided between the EU and its member states? And what institutional reforms are needed to insure that these tasks (but only these tasks) are efficiently performed by the EU? This is the main problem to be addressed at the upcoming European Convention. This paper argues that EU tasks in the first pillar should not be expanded further, though some changes in the direction of both more and less intervention are desirable. The single market remains to be better enforced, and this might require further centralization of tasks. On the other hand, EU meddling with redistribution should be scaled back; this would imply reforming and reducing EU intervention in agricultural policy, structural funds and the social charter. In other words, EU intervention in the first pillar should mainly aim at making sure that the single market works as effectively as possible, and at fostering competition between EU member states. Redistribution should remain a national prerogative. EU tasks should instead be expanded outside of the first pillar, namely in foreign and defense policies, in internal security and immigration. The paper ends with a discussion of what institutional reforms might be needed to accompany this allocation of tasks and increase accountability of EU decisions. Appropriate reforms should keep in mind the distinction between "bureaucratic accountability" (i.e. the control of appointed bureaucrats with a narrowly defined mission) and "democratic accountability" (i.e., the control of elected politicians with an open mandate). The former type of accountability is the most relevant in Europe today, given the lack of a true and complete European polity, and this has relevant implications for task allocation and institutional reforms.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Michael Emerson, Joanna Apap, Nicholas Whyte, Marius Vahl, Jakub Boratynski, Grzegorz Gromadzki
  • Publication Date: 11-2001
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: One often hears the term 'Europe' being used interchangeably with 'European Union', giving the impression that those countries that are not destined to become members of the EU in the near future are not part of the same continent. Even after the forthcoming accession by 13 new countries, a significant part of Europe will remain outside the 'EU club'.
  • Topic: Security, NATO
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East
  • Author: Nathalie Tocci
  • Publication Date: 10-2001
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Today's southeast Turkey has historically been the homeland of a large number of diverse ethnic groups. Nowadays, in many town and villages of the region the largest ethnic group is Kurdish. Turkish officials under Turgut Özal in the 1990s for the first time admitted there may be around 10 million Kurds living in Turkey. Other estimates indicate a Kurdish population of around 15 million. Adding to this figure the additional 10 million or so Kurds living in Iran, Iraq, Syria and the former Soviet Union, the Kurdish people represent the largest ethnic group in the world without a state of their own.
  • Topic: Security, NATO
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Europe, Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Daniel Gros, Michael Emerson
  • Publication Date: 09-2001
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Ten days now after 11 September, the policy agenda becomes a huge set of interlocking issues – political, strategic, economic. The present note makes a first survey of these issues, and expresses opinions on some of them. However the main purpose is to establish a template or framework to help monitor and evaluate the evolution of the world's response to this massive event. It will be updated and revised in further CEPS Policy Briefs as the story unfolds.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Nathalie Tocci, Marc Houben
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Can Turkey's demands for equal treatment with EU member states be reconciled with the EU's demand for autonomous decision capacity? This commentary analyses the Turkish position and assesses the theoretical and practical possibilities for accommodating Turkey's demands in the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP).
  • Topic: NATO
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Daniel Gros
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: In terms of meeting the fiscal Maastricht criteria, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland are better placed today than were some of the current euro area members from the “Club Med” (Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain) at a comparable point in time leading up to their joining EMU. The CEE-3 should thus be able to qualify for full membership by early 2006, following a decision by the EU as early as 2005.
  • Topic: International Relations
  • Political Geography: Europe, Greece, Poland, Hungary, Spain, Italy, Portugal
  • Author: Daniel Gros
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Health, and not wealth, should be the decisive criterion when considering the prospects of the Central and Eastern European candidates for EU membership and the capacity of the EU to enlarge. Viewed from this perspective, the outlook is promising. The CEECs are still very poor, compared to most of the existing EU members, but they are also much more dynamic. Their growth rates are generally expected to remain around 4-5% for the foreseeable future, compared to about 2-3% for the EU. This still implies that full catch-up in terms of GDP per capita will take decades, rather than years, but full catch-up is not the relevant goal if one is concerned about enlargement. Experience in the EU has shown that problems are much more likely to arise from established rich member countries with stagnant economies (Belgium in the 1980s and part of the 1990s) than poor, but more dynamic states (e.g. Portugal and Ireland today). The fact that most of the so-called 'periphery' is now experiencing stronger growth than the 'core' confirms that EU integration benefits poorer countries even more.
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: Europe, Belgium, Portugal, Ireland
  • Author: Christian Egenhofer, Jan Cornillie
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: With the cancellation of the Oslo ministerial mini-summit, the prospects for an early entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol are rapidly fading. Even if the US agrees to an outcome at a resumed COPbis in July, continued Congressional opposition and unresolved questions concerning the developing countries' commitments make US ratification highly implausible.
  • Topic: Environment, International Law, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States