How can the EU take measures to avoid becoming a ‘two-tier Union’?

The British relationship with Europe has been fraught ever since the formation of the EEC in 1957, with Britain choosing to opt out because it felt the benefits of its own markets with the Commonwealth and USA outweighed those of a European trading bloc. Current challenges with the EU have become more political but the centuries-old idea of British exceptionalism remains a powerful motive for … [Read more...]

Where does the equilibrium lie between national and European infrastructure investment?

Transport is one of the most important factors in a successful society and economy and it is widely accepted that new forms of transport and innovations in fuel technology are a requirement for a functioning European Union. It is inconceivable to take steps backwards in continental mobility and as a result the European Commission constructed a document called the White Paper on transport in 2011, … [Read more...]

Has the time now come to re-examine EU-NATO relations?

Reassessing EU-NATO relations in the aftermath of the crises in Syria and Libya is far from a straightforward task. For the past years, these countries have been embroiled in waves of unspeakable violence stemming from oppressive regimes; those of President Assad in the former and Colonel Gadaffi in the latter. Despite decades of co-operation between NATO and the EU (previously the WEU) having … [Read more...]

How can the EU best encourage regional development in secondary-focused member states toward a more tertiary level of economy?

Each nation’s economy can be loosely broken down into three sectors. The primary sector is concerned with making direct use of natural resources (agriculture, fishing, mining and the harvesting fuel all feature in this sector, for instance). The secondary sector focuses on production and construction, often utilising the output of the primary sector to create goods for export and consumption. By … [Read more...]

Should accession criteria be adapted to take into account states that may break away from current members?

The map of Europe might change tremendously in the next few years as secessionist movements are active all across the continent. Catalonia, Scotland, South Tyrol, Flanders and Corsicans in France are just a few examples of the “Regional Breakaway” movements that could result in new-states. If they break apart from the nations, as we know them today, the European Union (EU) will be faced with many … [Read more...]