Shane Fitzgerald

A portfolio of writing on politics and policy in Europe and Asia

Month: August, 2011

Single Market Act Update

Though the bulk of recent European policy commentary has been understandably focused on the need to grips with what remains an existential crisis of the euro, it is important to also reflect on those medium and longer term EU policies which will play an important role in shaping the European economies in the years ahead.

Prime among these is the Single Market Act, which we covered in some detail upon its launch earlier this year. The Act comprises twelve levers designed to boost growth and strengthen confidence in the EU’s common market, which are being launched over the course of the next year or so by the European Commission with the support of the European Parliament and national governments.

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Eurobonds a Non-Starter for Now

The establishment of a system of Eurobonds, whereby bonds are issued on behalf of the Eurozone as a whole, has been proposed by many commentators as a way of ending the European sovereign debt crisis. Political proponents include Jean Claude Juncker, Giulio Tremonti, Guy Verhofstadt and even George Osborne. Opponents include Otmar IssingJan Kees De Jager and, crucially, Angela Merkel.

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Euro Crisis will Sideline UK in Europe

Europe’s financial, sovereign debt and political crisis shows no sign of abating and could yet trigger a fresh global catastrophe. The range of endgame options runs from a costly and contentious closer union among members of the Eurozone to its chaotic fragmentation. There are no good solutions, and no agreement on what might be the least-worst one.

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