Union européenne

Bibliography

Économie, emploi - Institutions

Document de réflexion sur l’avenir des finances de l’UE

Document de réflexion sur l’avenir des finances de l’UE

Dans le cadre d’un processus initié au lendemain du vote du Brexit, la Commission européenne a publié une série de « documents de réflexion » pour illustrer une approche générale sur le futur de l’Europe [1]. Ces documents de réflexion abordent des points a priori essentiels pour l’avenir du continent, et de l’Union en particulier : dimension sociale (avril 2017), maîtrise de la mondialisation (mai), approfondissement de l’Union économique et monétaire (mai), défense (juin). Face à des dossiers ...

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Tribune européenne

Institutions

Toward the Return of Federalism?

Sixty years after the European Union (EU) was formed with the signing of the Treaty of Rome, its governing bodies initiated a process of reflection on the future of Europe. We reflected this discussion in our July/August issue (419) with Gabriel Arnoux’s article on the various scenarios for the sharing of competences between the Union and its member states. Jean-François Drevet continues that examination of the EU’s possible futures here by looking into the institutional dimension and the prospects for a move in the direction of federalism. There are so many sticking points and member states are so attached to their sovereignty that this debate, recurrent since the creation of the EU, between the advocates of intergovernmental operation and the proponents of federalism has for many years seen the former group in the ascendant. Nevertheless, times are changing and, both at the socioeconomic and geopolitical levels, the limitations of that intergovernmental operation are beginning to show. The time has perhaps come, as this column suggests, to look more objectively at the advantages a shift to federalism would bring — and to prepare European citizens for it.

Bibliography

Géopolitique

The Future of EU-ASEAN Relations

The Future of EU-ASEAN Relations

Cette étude a été réalisée à la demande de la Commission des affaires étrangères du Parlement européen à l’occasion du 40e anniversaire des relations officielles entre l’Union européenne (UE) et l’Association des nations de l’Asie du Sud-Est (ASEAN). Fondée le 8 août 1967, suite à la déclaration de Bangkok, l’ASEAN est une organisation régionale qui compte aujourd’hui 10 États membres : l’Indonésie, la Malaisie, les Philippines, Singapour, la Thaïlande, Brunei, le Viêt-nam, le Laos ...

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Économie, emploi - Géopolitique - Institutions

La Double Démocratie. Une Europe politique pour la croissance

La Double Démocratie. Une Europe politique pour la croissance

Après une période de recueillement, quand les éditeurs refusaient les ouvrages sur l’Europe, le marché semble s’être redressé et les titres fleurissent. Bien que le sien soit mystérieux, LaDouble Démocratie mérite une lecture attentive, au moins pour les compétences de ses auteurs et la qualité de l’analyse. La table des matières est claire, les tableaux et les graphiques bien présentés, la bibliographie abondante. Les deux premiers chapitres retiendront surtout l’attention des spécialistes. Leur dénonciation de ...

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Revue

Institutions - Territoires, réseaux

The Territorial Question: Spain at the Crossroads

The way the member states of the European Union choose to structure their territories, both politically and administratively, represents an often overlooked but very real difficulty for European integration, complicating the Union’s actions politically, institutionally, etc. To cast light on this, Futuribles has opened a dossier on territorial organization in Europe. After Germany and the UK, it is the turn here of Spain.

Éric Dufeil outlines the territorial issues facing this highly decentralized country, structured — with its “autonomous communities” — almost on federalist lines. He sets out the organization established after the disappearance of the Franco regime which, despite broad decision-making autonomy granted to communities, has not been able totally and effectively to curb Basque and Catalan nationalist demands. After reviewing the independence issue, Dufeil shows how it gained renewed vigour in the context of the 2008 economic crisis, which hit the Spanish economy hard and fed into a significant political crisis at the national level. He also explains the current reform of the financing of the autonomous regions and various scenarios for how Spanish territorial organization may develop (retention of the status quo, a unilateral break with the present order, an unlikely third way or — and why not? — federalism). Beyond the serious tensions that persist in Spain, particularly in Catalonia in recent times, the revitalization of Spanish civic life and democracy gives hope that a consensual solution will emerge from the dialogue between state and communities.

Revue

Institutions - Territoires, réseaux

Decentralization and Regional Development

Quite apart from its economic and commercial consequences, the 2016 decision by the United Kingdom to leave the European Union (EU) has also shown up the role the EU has played in keeping a lid on certain territorial disputes and demands for independence. Without second-guessing the details of Brexit implementation that will emerge from the current negotiations between the two parties, Futuribles has decided to examine these questions of territorial organization by way of a dossier covering not only the United Kingdom (where Brexit could change the rules of the game), but also two largely decentralized states, Spain and Germany.

In this dossier, Jean-François Drevet examines the specific situation of the UK. After recalling how the country has recently decentralized power (devolution) to Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, he highlights the particular case of England, which is struggling to find its place in this decentralized arrangement, and the dilemmas this produces where some decision-making is concerned. Most importantly, he recalls why this regional organization was adopted — mainly to respond to the economic crisis that was hitting some regions more severely than others — and the limits (particularly budgetary) it is running up against. Regional development remains very unequal in the country and socio-economic disparities between the London region and areas of high unemployment persist. These regional disparities also had a hand in the Brexit vote (with the EU playing its now classic role as scapegoat). Unfortunately, the implementation of Brexit will probably not have the positive consequences the citizens are hoping for, because of the loss of some European funding and a possible strengthening of dependence on the Treasury, if not indeed a potential revival of aspirations to independence in Northern Ireland or Scotland.

Revue

Institutions - Territoires, réseaux

Germany: The Future of Federalism

The way the member states of the European Union choose to structure their territories, both politically and administratively, represents an often overlooked but very real difficulty for European integration, complicating the Union’s actions politically, institutionally, etc. To cast light on this, Futuribles has decided to examine the question of territorial organization in Europe by publishing a dossier covering three countries: Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Éric Dufeil sets out the particular case of Germany, where the federal structure laid down in the aftermath of the Second World War has become a central pillar of political organization, further consolidated by reunification. After reminding the readers how this federalism operates, he highlights the generally balanced character of the country, while stressing the developmental inequalities that persist, particularly between East and West. Dufeil also writes of the recent reforms which, among other things, recentralize the management of economic equalization between territories and could lead in the medium term to a revision of the number and geography of the Länder. Lastly, he stresses, on the one hand, the demographic challenges the country faces, which might also lead to some territorial reforms and, on the other, the interesting status of the “metropolitan regions” within the country. However, given how rooted Germany is in it federal structure and the population’s attachment to that structure, adjustments, if they are made, will be carried out within the framework of the Federation.

Editorial

Entreprises, travail - Société, modes de vie - Territoires, réseaux

Autonomie et servitudes

La session extraordinaire du Parlement français convoquée en juillet a, entre autres, adopté le projet de loi d’habilitation du gouvernement à prendre par ordonnances « les mesures pour le renforcement du dialogue social ». Et le gouvernement entendait avoir, d’ici la fin du mois d’août, procédé aux principaux arbitrages concernant la réforme du droit du travail. Heureuse initiative s’il en est quoique, au moment où nos bouclons ce numéro, la teneur des réformes reste floue. Et il est ...

(857 more words)

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Économie, emploi - Institutions

Euro. Par ici la sortie ?

Euro. Par ici la sortie ?

Il arrive que les éditeurs imposent aux auteurs des titres très accrocheurs qui ne reflètent ni leur pensée ni même le contenu de leur ouvrage. Ce pourrait être le cas de celui-ci, la lecture de la table des matières n’étant pas exempte de raccourcis, comme par exemple « La grande illusion du marché unique » ou « Le poison du dogmatisme ». Heureusement, le point d’interrogation qui figure à la fin du titre indique que tout n’est peut-être pas consommé pour ...

(507 more words)

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Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

The Silk Road Economic Belt : Considering Security Implications and EU-China Cooperation Prospects

The Silk Road Economic Belt: Considering Security Implications and EU-China Cooperation Prospects

Publié par le SIPRI, ce rapport s’inscrit dans le cadre d’un projet de recherche financé par la fondation allemande Friedrich Ebert. Divisé en trois parties, il analyse les enjeux stratégiques du projet chinois de Ceinture économique de la route de la soie (la Ceinture) pour l’Union européenne (UE). La première partie décrit le projet chinois et ses motivations. La Ceinture constitue un modèle de coopération économique internationale souple et évolutif qui vise à combler un important déficit ...

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Revue

Géopolitique - Institutions

The European Union’s Areas of Competency: Perceptions and Realities

The recent French presidential elections have confirmed a lack of understanding and disapproval on the part of many citizens of policies that go back several decades, and also of the leaders who carried out those policies. They have also reminded us of how these same citizens distrust — or even reject — the European Union, which is often quick to figure as a scapegoat for national problems. Yet, as this article by Gabriel Arnoux shows, this rejection of Europe is based on a misunderstanding — very often maintained by national governments — of the EU’s actual areas of competency.

There is, in fact, a real difference between the perception many European citizens have of the role of the Union in shaping and determining national policies and the reality of that role. The exclusive areas of competency of the European Union are actually rather limited (relating mainly to compliance with competition rules, currency, and customs and trade policy). In most areas, the EU intervenes only to support member states or in collaboration with them. This clarification of the EU’s real areas of competency is vital, since the Commission has just begun a process of reflection on the future of Europe, based on five scenarios aimed at determining how the Union might develop and what its proper areas of competency should be. It is also essential because the vagueness around the actual responsibilities and legal competencies of European and national institutions is an indicator of a more general malaise regarding the way public policies are presented and evaluated, which also plays a considerable role in the citizenry’s general disaffection with politics.

Bibliography

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

Où va le monde ? Le marché ou la force ?

Où va le monde ? Le marché ou la force ?

Voilà un livre qui, par les temps qui courent, s’avère très engagé. Les deux auteurs, dont les expériences professionnelles sont différentes, sont connus pour leurs analyses stratégiques à propos de l’état du monde et ont beaucoup publié par le passé. Mais cet ouvrage proposé ensemble constitue une première et l’exercice est assurément réussi, sur le fond comme sur la forme. Il faut saluer les auteurs capables de formuler, dans des essais relativement courts, un argumentaire suffisamment vaste ...

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Tribune européenne

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

Towards the End of Free Trade?

The growing success of populist — and, very often, sovereignist — rhetoric, both on Left and Right, the triggering of Brexit and the accession to the US presidency of a Donald Trump who is intent on putting the interests of his country above all others, have rightly given cause for anxiety over some months now. There is particular concern with regard to trade, where existing agreements are being cast into doubt, protectionist measures initiated and trade deals currently under negotiation rejected. Above and beyond the media commotion over these developments, are we actually facing a genuine risk to multilateralism and the regulation of international trade?

Jean-François Drevet examines this question through a presentation of the arrangements that currently apply with respect to free trade, particularly from the standpoint of the EU and its member states. He warns of the dangers inherent in any waning of trade multilateralism or return to protectionism, while stressing the technical difficulties of reversing developments in the field. Though it is more than necessary to establish fair competition rules and measures that respect citizens, democracy, the environment etc., those regulations should be achieved within the framework of the international free-trade agreements constructed since 1945, not by states turning their backs on them.

Bibliography

Géopolitique - Ressources naturelles, énergie, environnement - Société, modes de vie

Global Trendometer : Essays on Medium- and Long-term Global Trends

Global Trendometer: Essays on Medium- and Long-term Global Trends

Cette étude constitue la première du genre publiée par le service de recherche du Parlement européen. Elle vise à offrir aux responsables politiques européens, et en particulier aux membres du Parlement européen, un aperçu des grandes tendances globales de moyen et long termes, tout en soulignant la complexité et la transversalité des principaux défis auxquels l’Europe devra apporter des réponses à l’horizon 2030 ou 2040. Sans présenter de recommandations ni délivrer de projet politique, le Global Trendometer a ...

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Tribune européenne

Géopolitique - Institutions

The Geopolitics of Brexit: The Risks of Isolation

On 23 June 2016, 51.9 % of votes cast in the British referendum were for Brexit or, in other words, for the UK’s departure from the European Union. Since then, new Prime Minister Theresa May has been making preparations to negotiate the terms of that exit which, apart from its economic consequences, will also have a significant geopolitical impact for the country.

It is these geopolitical consequences Jean-François Drevet considers in his column, arguing that if the British believe they are taking back control of their international affairs, they might well be disappointed. So far as the Commonwealth is concerned, the UK is no longer the major partner it was in the 1970s, the USA and China having both overtaken it in terms of trade. And some Commonwealth members even fear the consequences of Brexit for their own economies. When it comes to the United States under a Trump administration, it isn’t at all clear that it sees its political or economic interests as lying in a UK withdrawal from the EU. As for the prospect, hinted at by the UK government, of turning the country into a European offshore tax haven, that idea has not as yet been sufficient to reassure British financial circles. And lastly, internal discord generated by the Brexit decision (in Scotland and Northern Ireland) isn’t likely to make the government’s task any easier. As Jean-François Drevet rightly concludes, Europe is scarcely any easier to dismantle than it has been to build!

Forum

Géopolitique - Institutions

Is Brexit Inevitable?

As a pendant to the current European column on the possible geopolitical consequences of Brexit, Futuribles is also publishing this analysis of Brexit seen, as it were, from the inside, asking how the UK government and political parties see exit from the EU and how the outcome of the negotiations is regarded – or might be regarded – by British citizens? Derek Martin reminds us, first of all, of the Brexit referendum’s failings in terms of democratic representativeness and the doubts to which that gives rise regarding the real will of the British people to leave the Union. After presenting the two possible routes argued for by the Brexiteers (“hard” v. “soft” Brexit), and their prospects of success in the negotiations with the EU, Martin shows what disillusionments might arise for the “soft” Brexiteers within the various British political formations. A situation which, as he sees it, might make it possible to reshuffle the deck and open the door to a reversal of the Brexit decision in one of a range of possible ways that he outlines.

Bibliography

Économie, emploi - Territoires, réseaux

China’s Belt and Road Initiative : Can Europe Expect Trade Gains ?

China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Can Europe Expect Trade Gains?

L’initiative des Nouvelles routes de la soie, (officiellement dénommée One Belt, One Road (une ceinture, une route) ou OBOR, est une priorité de la diplomatie chinoise. Elle a notamment pour objectif l’intensification des flux commerciaux grâce au développement des infrastructures de transport qui permettront de faciliter l’acheminement des marchandises et de l’énergie le long de plusieurs corridors terrestres et routes maritimes interconnectant l’Asie, l’Europe et l’Afrique. Le plan, évolutif, inclut au moins 63 ...

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Tribune européenne

Économie, emploi - Entreprises, travail

The European Tax Regimes Conundrum: Apple and Ireland as a Prime Example

In this column, Jean-François Drevet analyses the lessons to be learnt from the European Commission’s decision of late August 2016 on Apple’s taxation arrangements in Ireland, which required the multinational to pay a fine of 13 billion euros to the Dublin government. On the one hand, he shows that the size of the fine is far from abnormal in terms of fiscal practice in Europe and the USA and, on the other, that the (hostile) reaction of Ireland to the decision says much about the economic and social issues underlying the fiscal practices of EU member states towards major companies. In a context of competition and one-upmanship around “fiscal attractiveness”, we are getting into situations with regard to tax that are so unequal between European households and companies — and indeed between companies — that they cast doubt on the will of governments to prioritize the common good. In order to tackle these practices and ensure companies that make profits on European soil pay normal taxes proportionate to those profits, the EU must imperatively commit itself to sorting out taxation across Europe.

Bibliography

Géopolitique - Institutions

L’Identité de l’Europe. Vers une refondation

L’Identité de l’Europe. Vers une refondation

Voici un nouvel ouvrage de Philippe Herzog, cette fois concentré sur les questions d’identité, à partir d’une vaste fresque historique. Au carrefour de plusieurs groupes de pensée et résolument indépendant dans ses opinions, l’auteur nous offre beaucoup de réflexions personnelles, ce qui rend la critique difficile : on ne peut pas facilement en faire une synthèse mais seulement donner quelques exemples pour encourager sa lecture. À ses yeux, l’existence d’une identité européenne ne fait pas de ...

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Géopolitique - Institutions

La Fin de l’Europe ? L’Union au défi du Brexit

La Fin de l’Europe ? L’Union au défi du Brexit

Publié peu de temps après le vote britannique, le livre n’y consacre qu’une attention limitée. Son objectif est plus global : il veut montrer à quel point le projet européen est menacé, ce qui est fort utile pour faire prendre conscience à l’opinion de la situation très risquée dans laquelle nous sommes placés en matière de construction européenne, à cause non pas du Brexit, mais des fragilités qui se sont accentuées au cours des dernières années, tant dans ...

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Tribune européenne

Géopolitique

EU-Turkey Relations at a Turning Point

After the events in Turkey this summer (an attempted coup followed by an enormous wave of repression on the part of the powers that be), the question of how that country fits in with the European Union can no longer be posed in the same terms. The prospect of Ankara joining the EU was already very slim, but in this context and in light of the foreign policy pursued by Turkey’s leaders, it has virtually disappeared. It remains to be decided how the Union will manage its relations with Turkey, a pivotal country between Europe and the East, and an Atlantic Alliance member governed by an islamic-conservative party.

Jean-François Drevet looks to cast light on this question by assessing Turkey’s external relations and foreign policy stance over the last few years. He stresses the difficulties the EU has in conducting discussions with leaders who are untrustworthy and opportunistic and who look increasingly toward Asia, while the security of the European continent has long depended on its Turkish bastion in the East. But if this changed situation is rather disturbing, it also represents a real opportunity for the Union to take stock of its priorities and stand up resolutely for them, without any additional concessions to a country that is becoming less and less of an ally.

Note de veille

Économie, emploi - Entreprises, travail

La Chine, économie de marché : enjeux pour l’Europe

Le 15 décembre 2016 marquera le 15e anniversaire de l’entrée de la Chine à l’OMC (Organisation mondiale du commerce), offrant la possibilité à Pékin d’obtenir automatiquement, à cette occasion, le statut d’économie de marché. Les États-Unis refusent pour l’heure que la Chine puisse acquérir ce statut et l’Union européenne (UE) doit annoncer très prochainement sa position en la matière. S’il ne fait guère de doute que la Chine n’est pas une économie ...

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Tribune européenne

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

Brexit: Is it Done and Dusted?

On 23 June, 51.9 % of British voters opted for “Brexit”, the UK’s exit from the European Union. Following that vote, Prime Minister David Cameron handed over the premiership to Theresa May, which means that she will be responsible for negotiating the conditions of that exit with her future European ex-partners. It is a negotiation that appears tricky since, as Jean-François Drevet shows in this column, the consequences of Brexit hardly seem likely to turn out very positive for the UK, either economically or in terms of social and regional cohesion. As far as the EU is concerned, the fact of going back down to 27 members and no longer being faced with recurrent obstruction from Britain may offer an opportunity to push for further integration. However, in the current economic context and given current levels of migration, the European institutions have to fully exercise their skills to obtain meaningful results in order to restore trust among Europe’s citizens. The gamble is far from being won…

Bibliography

Ressources naturelles, énergie, environnement

Nucléaire : l’heure des choix

Nucléaire : l’heure des choix

L’Institut Montaigne consacre un long rapport à la filière nucléaire française qui est confrontée à de sérieuses difficultés. Il part d’un constat (la première des quatre parties) : en France, le nucléaire (77 % de la production d’électricité) fait débat et il est confronté à des défis menaçant son avenir. L’inquiétude vis-à-vis de sa sûreté, notamment après la catastrophe de Fukushima au Japon, explique sans doute que l’opinion soit moins favorable au nucléaire, à un moment où ...

(863 more words)

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Géopolitique - Institutions

Rapport Schuman sur l’Europe, l’état de l’Union 2016

Rapport Schuman sur l’Europe, l’état de l’Union 2016

Contrairement à l’Allemagne, les fondations ne sont pas très nombreuses en France. Dans une Europe désormais dominée par les think-tanks anglophones, on souhaite donc un plein succès à la Fondation Schuman et à ses publications. La rédaction d’un rapport sur l’Europe (ou sur l’état de l’Union, il faudrait clarifier) est aussi une référence précieuse, afin d’aider le lecteur cultivé à se retrouver dans les politiques et les innombrables publications des institutions européennes. Il est ...

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