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  • Author: Toby Archer
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Stockholm Programme sets the agenda for the European Union's actions for the next five years in the area of Justice and Home Affairs (JHA). It is the next step towards the goal of making the EU into an Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (AFSJ). Justice and Home Affairs became the third pillar of the EU after the Maastricht Treaty came into force in 1993. Originally, it was firmly intergovernmental area of policy-making but some parts were transferred to the supranational first pillar when the treaty of Amsterdam came in to force 1999. In the same year the EU decided it need a focused plan for cooperation in this field for the next five years; and the Tampere Programme was produced. This was followed in 2004 by the Hague Programme that ends this year, and the Stockholm Programme will lay out the next five years of JHA cooperation. Producing the programme has been complicated due to both the sensitive nature of many of the issues covered and by doubt until recently over whether the Lisbon Treaty would be ratified. The ratification of Lisbon changes the power balance between the European Commission, Council and Parliament and this has ramifications for the JHA area. With the success of the EU single market and the end of border controls within the EU, to stop crime within the EU, to guarantee the rights of citizens who are moving between EU member states, and to manage people from third countries who are seeking to come into the EU, requires cooperation across the Union. The Stockholm Programme seeks to lay out what path this should take. Migration policy is an important and difficult part of the programme. How Europeanised dealing with irregular migrants and asylum seeker should be has been one of the politically difficult areas within the programme.
  • Topic: Security, Civil Society, Law
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Yury E. Fedorov
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In November 2009, the 'Law on Amendments to the “Law on Defence”' proposed by President Medvedev entered into force. It allows the Kremlin to dispatch troops outside Russia for four purposes: to counter armed attacks against Russian armed forces, other troops and bodies deployed beyond its borders; to counter or prevent an armed attack against another country if this country has requested Russia to do so; to protect Russian citizens abroad from an armed attack; and to combat piracy and guarantee the safety of shipping. The law is an attempt to close the gap between Moscow's strategic goals, primarily the establishment of its geopolitical dominance over the former Soviet republics, and Russia's legislation, which restricted its ability to deploy armed forces beyond national borders. In effect, the amended legislation enables the Kremlin to deploy its armed forces abroad in a wide range of situations, precisely because of a lack of clear criteria. The wording of 'Medvedev's amendments' sheds light on some plans and scenarios that may be taking shape in Moscow. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that Russia may plan to ignite large-scale disturbances and ethnic clashes in Sevastopol or in Latvia and Estonia, which may be used as a pretext for Russian military intervention. A Russo-Ukrainian conflict in Crimea would pose not so much a military as a political challenge for Europe and the West. Even though Ukraine does not belong to these organizations, if NATO and the EU failed to respond to Russian intervention in Crimea with strong political and economic measures, their strategic relevance would be seriously undermined. If NATO did not defend its member states in the Baltic, the strategic role of the Alliance would be reduced to zero. The aforementioned scenarios fall into the worst-case category, yet there are numerous precedents in Russia's history which demonstrate that worst-case scenarios can become reality. European dependence on Russian energy supplies and interest in Russia's support in resolving the Iranian nuclear problem and the conflict in Afghanistan, as well as the Obama administration's interest in Russia's partnership in nuclear issues, constrain Western ability to respond. However, the West could and should make it quite clear that new Russia's military interventions will result in the country's political ostracization. Furthermore, the West could propose and develop an internationally recognised mechanism regulating the most important aspects of humanitarian intervention. In particular, it should minimise the ability of individual states to make unilateral decisions to intervene militarily if the UN Security Council were unable to make firm decisions. Such mechanisms could be discussed and developed in the frameworks of the UN, the OSCE, the so-called Corfu process and similar international forums.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Law
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Piotr Maciej Kaczyński, Peadar ó Broin
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The first permanent European Council President and second High Representative for EU foreign policy have been chosen. After weeks of speculation, the question of who will occupy the roles has now been answered: Herman Van Rompuy will take office as European Council President on 1 January 2010; and Catherine Ashton will be appointed the EU's foreign affairs chief on 1 December 2009. The presidency of the European Council has until now been performed by the head of State or government of the member state holding the rotating presidency, but the Lisbon Treaty clearly stipulates that from its entry into force, the President of the European Council may not hold national office. The position of a High Representative had previously existed, but the function has been significantly re-written by the Lisbon Treaty. So, in addition to new faces, there are also new unknowns. The question of precisely what powers the President and High Representative will exercise remains largely unknown, as it is not yet clear how they will perform as individuals and in tandem. Nevertheless, the Treaties give at least a general indication of the powers these two leaders will wield.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Nicu Popescu
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Recent political changes in Moldova offer a window of opportunity for both EU-Moldova relations and for the Eastern Partnership. In the next few months, the EU should move quickly to consolidate the reform process in Moldova. In particular, the EU should send a group of high-level EU policy advisors to the country for the purpose of promoting reform of law-enforcement agencies. Leaders from the EU and its member states should also undertake a series of high-profile visits to Moldova to demonstrate support for reforms and European integration. Finally, the EU should support visible projects that have a quick policy impact, and will have broader relevance for Moldova's modernisation. Such projects could include equipping the entire country with free wireless internet access, the liberalisation of air travel between the EU and Moldova, replacing the corrupt traffic police with speed cameras and traffic patrols and moving forward on liberalising visas for Moldovans.
  • Political Geography: Europe, Moldova
  • Author: Jos Boonstra
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Central Asia faces a broad range of security challenges. Due to the region's position at the crossroads between Russia, China, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and the Caspian Sea it is confronted with a range of trans-national issues such as drug trafficking, human trafficking, organised crime and terrorism. Central Asia also encounters specific regional threats including scarcity of water resources for generating power and irrigation purposes, which is currently causing tension. On a national level the five Central Asian republics face the threat of instability due to bad governance and the harsh impact of the economic crisis.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, China, Europe, Iran, Central Asia
  • Author: Jacques Pelkmans, Ineke Gubbels-van Hal
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Little is heard these days about REACH, the new EU Regulation on the Registration, E valuation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemical substances. For the general public and non-specialised EU observers, the ongoing implementation of what is perhaps the biggest EU regulation ever undertaken appears to be proceeding in serene tranquillity. What a contrast with the turmoil and hectic debates that raged between mid-2003 and December 2006, when this new EU chemicals regulation (of some 850 pages) was finally enacted.
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Ivo Slosarcik
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: In October 2009, the lion's share of media and political attention given to the ratification process of the Lisbon Treaty in the Czech Republic has been devoted to the antics of the President, Václav Klaus. However, it is important to point out that the process is being delayed not only by the President's reservations and requests for a Czech (quasi)opt-out from the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, but also by the pending review of the Treaty by the Czech Constitutional Court (CCC), which is set to give a second ruling on the Lisbon Treaty on November 3 rd, having delivered its first decision in autumn 2008.
  • Topic: Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Europe, Czech Republic
  • Author: Sergio Carrera, Elspeth Guild
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The European Union needs a new five-year strategy for the development of the next phase of the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (AFSJ). The existing plan, designed in The Hague Programme of 2004, expires at the end of this year. The Justice and Home Affairs research unit of CEPS has already set out, in several contributions, the big issues and provided policy recommendations for the next five-year plan – The Stockholm Programme – which will be adopted under the Swedish Presidency in December. In June 2009, the European Commission published its perspective towards the Stockholm process in its Communication: “An area of Freedom, Security and Justice serving the citizen: Wider freedom in a safer environment”.3 In this Policy Brief, we take a closer look at the Commission's Communication and highlight the strengths and weaknesses of the approaches adopted for each of the different policy domains falling under the AFSJ rubric. The Communication assesses the AFSJ under three main headings: 1. successes, 2. ambivalent areas and 3. challenges. We will also follow these headings and comment accordingly. Our commentary on the three areas also provides answers to some of the thorny questions raised in the priorities for the Stockholm Programme. We spell these out in the conclusions and put forth a set of policy recommendations.
  • Topic: Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: John H. Makin
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: China's economic statistics have become the envy of the world. On July 15, China reported a 7.9 percent growth rate for the second quarter of 2009 compared to the same period a year earlier. Meanwhile, China's stock markets are on fire, and its property markets are heating up fast as well. Shanghai's two stock markets are up 75 percent and 95 percent respectively so far this year. The more widely traded Hong Kong Index is up 27 percent, a stellar performance compared to largely flat stock markets in the United States, Europe, and Japan. In even stronger contrast, Russia, which is one of China's emerging-market peers, has seen its economy drop by 10.1 percent during the first half of this year, while its stock market has struggled as well.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Japan, China, Europe, Hong Kong
  • Author: Paola Subacchi, Eric Helleiner
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: From many perspectives, the London Summit of the G20 leaders at the beginning of April 2009 was a success – and a hard act to follow. The discussion was framed around crisis resolution and the strengthening of the international financial architecture. Beyond any concrete achievement, the success of the London Summit is that it morphed into an ongoing process with a rolling agenda, rather than remaining a one-off event. Undoubtedly the Italian Presidency of the G8 has a hard task, being caught between the success of London and the decreasing relevance of the G8. But there is also scope for building a meaningful bridge between London and the G8 meeting in L'Aquila in July 2009, and continuing and strengthening the economic governance reform process. There is an urgent need to continue to push for progress on a number of key items that were not adequately addressed at the London Summit and where progress can be made in L'Aquila – fostering clarity for the G20 agenda for the next meeting in Pittsburgh in September 2009. With regard, in particular, to the reform of the International Monetary Fund, the Italian Presidency should use its G8 chair to initiate a dialogue on reform of the European representation, taking advantage of having all the key players gathered together in L'Aquila.
  • Topic: Economics, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Treaties and Agreements, International Monetary Fund
  • Political Geography: Europe, London, Italy