Policy Paper on the European Neighbourhood Policy and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Treaty Model European Union Sofia is a simulation of the Decision-Making process in the European Union. It consists of an amendment of two legislative documents â€“ the proposal for a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the European Neighbourhood Policy Instrument. In the aftermath of the simulation the participants will be engaged in a challenging policymaking seminar, where they will have to come up with specific recommendations in view of certain dimensions and the problematic they have identified during the simulation.
Model European Union Sofia 2014 Internet Site: meu-sofia.org Mail Address: firstname.lastname@example.org 1/22/2015
Table of Contents Executive Summary ....................................................................................................................................... 3 Chapter I: Introduction ................................................................................................................................. 4 What this paper strives for? ......................................................................................................................... 4 Methodology................................................................................................................................................. 5 Chapter II: The Results of the Think-Tank ..................................................................................................... 6 Democratization............................................................................................................................................ 6 Security ......................................................................................................................................................... 7 Migration ...................................................................................................................................................... 7 Transparency of Lobbyism ............................................................................................................................ 8 Protection of Local Production ..................................................................................................................... 9 Environment ............................................................................................................................................... 10 Chapter III: Other Contributions ................................................................................................................. 11 The Debate on the European Neighbourhood Instrument at the Council of MEU Sofia ........................... 11 The Debate on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Parternship at the Council ................................. 13 Introduction ............................................................................................................................................ 13 The Course of the Debates. The Amendments. ...................................................................................... 14 Conclusion ............................................................................................................................................... 15 The Debate on the ENI at the European Parliament of MEU Sofia 2014 ................................................... 16 Understanding the dynamics of the EU legislative process in ENPI ....................................................... 16 Respect for Rules of Procedure (RoP) in the European Parliament........................................................ 16 Assessment of the discussion on the ENI ............................................................................................... 17 The discussion on amendments and passed amendments .................................................................... 18 Simulation outcome and possible improvements .................................................................................. 19 The Debates on TTIP at the European Parliament of Model EU Sofia 2014 ............................................... 20 EUâ€™s response to the refugee crisis in the Middle East............................................................................... 21
Conclusion and Policy Recommendations .................................................................................................. 23
In chapter One the reader can find information on the idea behind Model European Union Sofia, its policy-oriented execution, as well as the methodology it used. Chapter Two reveals the outcomes of the policy creation exercise, implemented during the latter phase of the project. Chapter Three gives an overview of the discussions during the Model itself, as seen from the chairs of the simulated institutions, as well as a guest contribution from a panelist. Finally, the conclusion gives practicalities for the reform of the discussed legislative and topical material.
Chapter I: Introduction Authored by: Teodor Kalpakchiev, Director General
What this paper strives for? The idea of Model European Union Sofia was to bring young people, who are on the verge of their transition to professional life, closer to the reality of carrying a mandate for decision making and all the responsibilities surrounding such a deed. In short it followed the socio-entrepreneurial franchise established by the B.E.T.A. e.V. – the organization responsible for the emulation of the European Union ecosystem within the confines of the European Parliament in Strasbourg and complemented it with an innovative element of policy generation through content generation methods, which was named a think-tank. Generally think-tanks are institutions involved in research of issues related to domestic and foreign policy challenges, which propose and advocate a certain line of action in attempt to facilitate the delivery of public good corresponding to certain principles they confess. At the same time a major factor that defines their area of activity is funding and in our case, due to the lavish financing by the Erasmus+ program, we attempted to generate proposals for certain policies that are meant to address the problematic stemming from the discussed legislative material. The Model European Union Sofia provided substantial knowledge inputs for its participants in the form of a preparation guide and panels with experts from academia, think-tanks and activists, whilst for the participants to walk into the shoes of the decision-makers they had a visit to the Bulgarian Parliament. Furthermore, they received expert advice by representatives of the Institute for Market Economics, who took up the roles of commissioners, guidance by three Members of the European Parliament – Mariya Gabriel, Svetoslav Malinov, presentations the nature of policing and its cycle and moderation of their efforts by representatives of academia, the state administration in Bulgaria, the civil society and the organizers themselves.
Model European Union Sofia acknowledged the importance of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the European Neighbourhood Policy in numerous ways. They are the best examples of how the European Union is repositioning itself as a global actor trough a redefinition of its instruments. While in the past the Enlargement represented the quintessential impersonation of the integration vehicle, it has now reemerged as an expansion of its legal order that is driven by neoliberal sentiments. However, in many cases the trade component is being faced with state apparatus disinclination towards the losing its jurisdiction over the normative order and international private entities’ growing importance. It is enhanced by the notion of deregulation and the falling denominator of requirements towards the establishment of a free trade regime, which in the end forego underlying societal flaws, whose externalities are hard to predict.
The conference would not have been possible lavish support from the EU’s new Erasmus Plus programme and this paper is the end result of the conference. We should also honour the valuable support of the Information Bureau of the European Parliament in Bulgaria, the Instute for Market Economics, B.E.T.A. e.V., the IRRSA, the European Federalists, the National Youth Forum, Erasmus Students Network, the Students Club for Political Science for their contributions to the implementation.
From a wider prism these two foreign trade and foreign policy initiatives are strengthening the Union’s belonging to the classical West as an antipode to the rest of the world. The side effects of the trade and normative expansion guided by (quasi-)federal entities was namely its replication on the Eurasian continent, which will only add up to collaborations that are exempt of spatial relevance. Namely the countries which have not succeeded in institutionalizing a viable architecture of their cooperation remained in a geopolitical surge, while their inability and unwillingness to correspond to the needs of the wider population have resulted in a popular upsurge that aims to materialize the lack of legitimate authority into change. This process is calling for a strengthening of the policy responses towards the Neighbourhood and a strengthened transatlantic cooperation that goes beyond the economic rationale. Since namely the active citizenry of the European Union constitutes the next generation of leaders, who will deal with these challenges, we believe that such a grassroots initiative could provide legitimate inputs for decision-makers and completely endorse any prospective use of the material in this policy paper.
After a networking break the participants had to define the set of problems standing on the way of the desired future development and think of factors behind tem such as cultural misunderstanding, to earthly forces and natural disasters, stagflation, low trust in public institutions, media and political distortions of facts, etc. Finally, the participants had to come up with realistic, feasible, workable and accomplishable policy recommendations that could range from creating a specific sectoral redistribution of assets or liquidity, to creating checks and balances, reaching out for specific groups or actors, increasing spending, opening certain centers to creating funds / institutions etc. In order for the policy cycle to be completed or to repeat itself, the participants brought forth benchmarks with a measurement indicator in terms of cost, time, quality that were intended to quantitatively and metrically evaluate all the important aspects of the proffered policy recommendations. They should serve as a reality check to whether the very same indeed can act as solutions. Ideally the participants had to distribute and position their proposals on a timeline divided into short, medium and long-term, whose timely interpretation remained in their own hands.
The creative space at the House of Europe was organized into six topically organized tables. They had to choose one of the two pairs of topics – one for the Neighbourhood Policy and one for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Treaty. Each of the six groups had to elect a person, who would be responsible for pinning down the ideas, arranging and visualizing them on the flipcharts. The session began with a brainstorming aiming to define the current state of affairs, which will help them in determining a specific problem and illustrating it with a problem statement. After having these foundations the participants moved on to the next step with a new chart, which is the identification of all the reasons behind the emergence of this issue. The logical correlations with other thematic components within our think tank were positioned in a spider-web and relevant private, state, non-state, international, regional actors were identified as stakeholders. From here onwards the participants had to chance to elect a scout, who could go on a mission and observe the situation on other tables. Then the participants discussed on possible future developments of the current state of affairs and created a conditional “if” statement, which was intended to follow the formula of “if x does not do y, then z will happen”.
Chapter II: The Results of the Think-Tank Authored by: The participants in the MEU Sofia Think-Tank Compiled by: Teodor Kalpakchiev, Director General
Democratization The lack of established democratic fundaments in the neighbouring countries has been interpreted as the inexistence of efficient cooperation among them and the European Union. Reasons can be found inter alia in the historical background of the countries, the inefficient and corrupt judicial systems, lack of rule of law, the plummeting economy, increased risks of impoverishment, the lack of respect for fundamental human rights. There is also a cause-effect relation due to the different values created by different religions as a system of principles, norm and beliefs and consequently a different structure of the legal order in the neighbouring countries leading to corruption, frequent violations of human rights, low government transparency (election rigging) and ultimately widely spread poverty. The policy actions should first of all, focus on the improvement of the educational standards through provision of additional funding as a step towards the creation of a generation of critically aware individuals. For that to happen, their values system should be enriched with the instigation of European values, created through a reform of the educational system, catered for through external expertise. Subsequently, the individuals should be presented with an appropriate degree of information pluralism through a deregulation of the media, increased financial support to independent media, protection of independent journalistsâ€™ networks, organization of information campaigns on topics that are not covered by traditional media, as well as civic empowerment by means of trainings on important interpretative, entrepreneurial and analytical skills. Thirdly, investment in human capital through bilateral and multilateral exchange and research and advisory missions of consultants that provide know-how, expertise and distribute best practices should take place. Thus the EU will be able to provide for the creation of a rule of law based system, a better functioning of the judiciary and prosecution and the organization of democratic elections.
Within the cost-benefit analysis the negative trends of lack of social support, no guarantee for reform adoption, unsafe working environment for the experts and societal costs of the proposed actions have been identified. On the beneficial side of the analysis stands a probability for an increase of cooperation, know-how, establishment of direct contacts with the decision-makers, improvement of critical civic thinking and the development of active social groups.
The prospective actors identified in the policy creation and implementation are to be financed by the new ENI, the European Endowment for Democracy and other funds and include NGOs, mass media, local governments and the civil society.
Security The issue of security has been addressed following the numerous security challenges the neighbourhood countries are currently facing, including human security, personal security, economic security, etc. The issue has become especially relevant deeming the polarization of antagonistic sentiments in Ukraine and Syria. The main problem is to be defined as the ineffectiveness of the European Security measures towards the Neighbourhood. The identified causes are the lack of coherence and coordination, as well as the member statesâ€™ unwillingness to lose part of their national sovereignty by creating an European Army or obliging all member states to participate in CFSP missions. The focus groups reviewed the following dimensions of security during their talks - Health Security, Personal Security, Economic Security, Political Security and Cultural Security. Specific instances of problems within these areas such as drugs smuggling, food quality, disease prevention, medicines quality, illegal migration, human trafficking, minimum living standards, equal market access, terrorism, uncooperative border control, smuggling of cultural goods, illegal trade of antiques,the existence of an illegal market of organs were identified. Furthermore the participants differentiated different types of smuggling such as weapons, drugs and cultural goods, while as types of human trafficking they identified organs trade, prostitution and slaving. The solutions proposed by the focus groups are the organization of public consultations between NGOs, experts and the civil society, assessed through the degree of public support they receive as well as (if any) the increase of the level of political participation. The EU should send more civilian and military peacekeeping missions, as well as post-conflict operations to ensure stability, democracy and rule of law. Governments should be advised to instigate minimum income policies, a non-discriminatory market entry, intergovernmental cooperation and exchange of good practices / know-how, food standards for imports and exports, healthcare standards, more education funding, common border monitoring. With its diplomatic instruments the EU should aim the disarmament of the region, the improvement of the the coordination of FRONTEX and border control units and the creation of stronger guarantees for the respect of the fundamental human rights. The strengthening of the border control infrastructure has been seen as vital measure towards the non-proliferation of insecurity within the confines of EU. The measurements for these solutions can be the number of promulgated laws, the instances of conviction of unlawful practices, improvements of literacy rates, lower number of cases of human rights disrespect and the public awareness of EUâ€™s missions on the ground.
The reasons for the increased influx of emigrants have been identified as instability in the countries as result of the ongoing civil wars, the economic downturn and the changing of regime. Already on the
The migration working group decided to address the problematic in a chronological manner in terms of prevention, control on the border and integration.
border the individuals driven by lack of economic stability in the emigrant country face lack of appropriate control due to corruption. Already in the EU the problems that migrants are facing are the bureaucratic weight, instances of racism, as well as lack of integration incentives with appropriate focus. Structured in another way, the reasons for the increased migration flows can be distributed into economic ones, such as poverty, underdevelopment, instability, inappropriate allocation of funds; social ones, such as violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms, low standard of living and inappropriate public services, as well as political ones, such as lack of democracy, instances of conflicts, violence, abuse of power, corruption and geopolitical interests in the region. Among the possible solutions prevention was viewed as a first step towards a better treatment of migrants. It should begin with the creation of flexible ad-hoc observation groups that can move when the situation at a certain geographical point deteriorates, strengthening of border control and political pressure on unstable regimes. The following proposals for resolving problems on the border have been put forward – refugee camps on the borders, special financing for border regions and a regulation on the conditions upon which one receives a certain status. Already in the EU the situation of the migrants can be increased through education incentives (e.g. soft labour market skills and languages), the adoption of an EU-wide legal framework for migration, as well as definitions for those, who intend to stay in the host country. Ultimately, specific initiatives, such as media campaigns should strengthen the capability of the host country to show solidarity towards the victims of displacement. In a more general sense measures should include the adaption and coherent implementation of the “more for more” principle, sharing of “know-how” and balance between security and democracy, improvement of developments, standards of living and public services through allocation of funds and provision of expertise. Appropriate measures for assessing these could be sociological surveys of the host country population and the immigrants themselves checking on the level of integration, as well as drilling for new focuses of the integration initiatives, the number of instances of migrants crossing the borders versus compared to those who have registered themselves and those who have been successfully integrated, as well as those who have decided to come back.
Transparency of Lobbyism The issue of transparency and lobbying has been addressed following the numerous doubts over corporate influencing the EU agenda. Negotiations for concluding the TTIP have been influenced also as a crisis response method for showing strength over the Eurasian Union project complementary to the international sanctions mechanisms.
The causes have been inter alia the lack of political will to regulate the international corporate interests, lack of necessary regulation arrangements or theirs being incomplete, such as the non-mandatory lobbyist register. Moreover, information about the different interests, intentions and capital positions has been not available to wider public, especially when we speak of the transparency of meetings between lobbyists and parliamentarians / bureaucrats. Lobbyists continue to have strategic positions when we speak of formulation of documents, positions and mandates.
The main problem lies within the Non-transparent lobbying technique during the negotiations process, no lobbying regulations and consequently lack of trust in EU institutions.
Possible solutions for overcoming this situation are the creation of a mandatory register for lobbyists, the expulsion of false feeders, widely accessible recordings of meetings with lobbyists, transparency of negotiators’ elections and ultimately monitoring by the Court of the EU. In case lobbyists are exerting their activity without being enlisted in the mandatory register they should become judicially liable for their actions. In order to increase the public understanding of the agreement awareness campaigns and public discussions with interested stakeholders should be organized. They can take the form of round tables, press conferences or social media discussions and polls. The actors involved in the negotiations are seen as the negotiators themselves, national, European and international NGOs, the lobbyists, media, civil society, etc. The cost-benefit analysis has seen as negative sides the existence of a “grey” sector of lobbying, the untraceable expenses of lobbyists actions’, the existence of myth campaigns, while on the beneficial side it saw the improvement of transparency of and trust in public institutions, awareness of the ongoing processes stemming from the EU institutions, increased public involvement in EU affairs.
Protection of Local Production The participants have identified the existing trends, which are expected to become more tangible. Among the positive ones can be read an increased competence over market dynamics, better conditions for consumers and better protection for small producers. However, they come at the expense of failures for small businesses, more competition and monopolization of the market. As possible solutions and policy proposals they have proposed the training and education of local producers, governmental cooperation with local producers for protection of their interests, promotion of the increase of the revenue reinvestments in the hosting country, greater transparency of financial flows, negotiations and cooperation between local producers and local investors, the establishment of economic balance through attracting investments to underdeveloped sectors. The actors within these processes have been identified as local producers, NGOs, domestic companies (investing in other countries), labour unions, foreign companies (investors), as well as other organizations (such as governmental agencies etc.) The cost-benefit analysis of the situation names as costs the creation of cartels and consequently oligopoly, lower product quality, less revenues to the country of origin, higher cost of transparency, production becoming more time consuming, whilst as benefits the high rates of success of risky undertakings in case of informed choice, increased protection of the local producers’ rights, capital flowing into developing countries with plummeting economies, the taking of more informed decisions, increase of public support towards a better distribution of production means, the higher quality of end products and a more balanced economy.
The assessment of the proposed actions should happen through standard macroeconomic indicators such as unemployment rates, higher consumption and GDP growth, but also through diversification of the standard products basket, targeted market surveys and independent product comparisons.
Environment The negotiations involving the formulation of new standards for mutually enhanced protection of the environment can be viewed through the prism of three tendencies - EU to regulate and maximize environmental protection, of US to liberalize markets and as the rise of public concern in both parties due to the misconception of the TTIP’s scope and mandate. The problem lies in the discrepancy between EU’s and US’s environmental (and consumer) standards concerning the use of GMO, shale gas extraction, toxic products, the different structure of their markets, the lack of a common legal framework, different commitments to international standards, as well as the public ignorance towards certain issue complemented by disproportionate information. The policy alternatives would be either the downshifting of EU’s standards, the increase of US’s standards or the finding of a common regulatory denominator. To this end two potential outcomes can be foreseen – harmonization, with its main advantage being the increase of health and environmental protection and its main disadvantage the lowering of consumer protecting, whilst if minimal standards are set the effects would be respectively simplified negotiations, but inequality of outcome.
The policy proposal is to therefore differentiate among criteria for each individual sector as a most plausible policy action, which would be assessed through an evaluation report by an unbiased expertise committee.
Chapter III: Other Contributions The Debate on the European Neighbourhood Instrument at the Council of MEU Sofia Authored by: Marilena Zidianaki, Chair of the Council
On the first day of the Council’s simulation on ENI, Ministers were quite hesitant to kick off the debates. The opening statements were general and very quickly revealed which Ministers would take the lead of the debates. As soon as the debate began, it focused on the inclusion of Russia and Western Balkans in the ENI. On that note, halfway the Chair clarified that the EU has concluded a separate agreement with Russia and Western Balkans have a differentiated status in the EU sphere, namely the pre-accession status. While some Ministers were already aware of the aforementioned distinct and parallel relations of the EU with other countries in or beyond Europe, some others seemed a bit confused as regards the geographical scope of ENI. The debates that followed were fruitful and led to 14 submitted amendments, and the Ministers did not encounter any particular issues with the Rules of Procedure. One of the controversial amendments as proposed by Ireland was to remove gender-equality as an objective of the actions undertaken under the ENI Regulation. The rationale behind this amendment was to avoid westernization of such countries against their will. Ireland deemed the promotion of gender-equality as exportation of western values not genuinely endorsed by the countries of ENI. According to an off-record analysis by the Minister of Ireland, during an unmoderated discussion, for gender equality to get implemented in these countries, it has to be initiated from within the country, not from outside. Nevertheless, this concept was not welcomed by the Council, thus Ireland proposed a softer alternative measure in Article 18, an educational programme that would promote the basic EU values to local students in these countries. That was the only amendment that passed, as it gained the support of the majority of Ministers.
For the sake of coherence with other areas of the Union external action as well as other relevant Union policies, Denmark proposed that “the EU shall merge all the European instruments that finance or help the development of the neighbouring countries in the spirit of transparency and effective administration”, as an amendment in Article 5, but it did not attract other Ministers’ attention.
A big alliance of Member States (France, Italy, Austria, Spain, Malta, Czech Republic) supported the creation of a fund dedicated to dealing with migration issues, especially from the North Africa region. But again, the discussion did not focus there. The debate rather focused on Article 4 which stipulates that “each partner country shall be differentiated in form and amounts according to the partner country’s commitment to reforms and its progress in implementing these reforms”. The Ministers showed certain worries on how the funds will be distributed and upheld the establishment of regional units/ bodies that would distribute the funds to the countries, as the European Parliament had proposed previously. The debate focused on whether the representatives in these bodies would have equal votes and supervisory role, and whether the bodies will be one or more.
France, Italy and Estonia, however managed to draw the attention of Council’s Ministers to the inclusion of Western Balkan countries in the cross-border cooperation at land and maritime borders, by making two relevant amendments in Article 8. As for the programming and allocation of funds in the cross-border cooperation, Ministers were positive towards the amendment of the Parliament that “the indicative multi-annual allocations to each joint operational programme shall be of three-year duration and serve as an indicator for the evaluation of the programme conducting quality, and provide feedback for the further funding allocation, coordinated by the units mentioned in article 4.4.” An interesting debate unfolded regarding the educational aspects of ENI. The Parliament had previously amended Article10 titled “Joint Operational Programmes” in order to include multicultural programmes for educational cohesion for the enlargement of the Erasmus programme towards all the countries involved in the ENI, and provide better chances for students` mobility. This amendment was further amended by the coalition of Estonia, France, Netherlands, Croatia, Ireland, UK, Sweden, Hungary, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Denmark, and Italy, which pushed towards including Russia in these programmes, However, some Ministers debated that the inclusion was redundant because Russia already has in place educational agreements with the EU.. As a result, this amendment was down-voted in the end. There was also a second point in the aforementioned article that attracted big support and it referred to the elimination of visa requirements to enter the EU, for the students involved in the Erasmus + programme that originate from partner countries, including Russia. This amendment was supported by Estonia, France, Netherlands, Croatia, Ireland, UK, Sweden, Hungary, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Denmark, and Italy. But it did not pass either. Italy and Denmark considered necessary to submit an additional clause, which clarified that “the political goal of the ENP shall not be the accession to the EU. Accession shall be a matter of separate negotiations.” However, the rest of the Council did not seem to share their concern. Last but not least, Ireland proposed the removal of the Republic of Moldova from the Annex and geographical scope, but it did not pass. To sum up, in the opinion of the author, the amendments did not fully reflect the essence of the proposal. The choice of the topic was rather tough for an undergraduate student without any previous or substantial knowledge in EU affairs. Furthermore, it was taken for granted by Ministers that the proposal was very elaborate and so well-constructed that new amendments would not add much to its substance. The Ministers did not wish to derail much from the basic Commission Proposal. Consequently, the amendments were not particularly brave or ground-breaking. A more extensive informative session in advance of the debates could have prevented that.
The debates paved the way for the think-tank. Since all participants, Ministers and Parliamentarians had to brainstorm ideas and build strategies from scratch in order to solve the given problems, the think-tank enabled them to unleash their creative minds, use all knowledge they gained during the debates, and go one step beyond.
Admittedly, however, Ministers engaged heavily in making alliances and coalitions, and strove to gain the support of their fellow-Ministers during unmediated discussions and coffee-breaks. No matter the diplomacy used, absent roles such as Poland and Romania caused the downfall of several amendments that were otherwise supported enthusiastically by a huge portion of the Council during the debates. As a matter of fact, the absence of Ministers who would represent countries with several votes was partly the reason why only one out of fourteen amendments passed at the end of this proposal’s simulation.
The Debate on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Parternship at the Council Authored by: Rajka Lozo, Secretary of the Council
Introduction The simulation of the legislative processes in the Council began with the discussion on the TTIP, which was on the floor on the first day of the Councilâ€™s sessions. The debate itself was preceded by the opening speech given by the Commissioner who tried to explain to the Ministers the implications and the main points of contention of the aforementioned agreement. Even at this point, it was apparent from the questions they raised, that some of the delegates were not adequately prepared for the simulation, as they were unfamiliar with the scope and some of the basic principles enshrined in this potential agreement. Regardless of this, the Commissioner made efforts to elaborate his stands and clarify their concerns.
This stage was followed by the opening statements where the Ministers had the first chance to express their opinions. Although the majority of the Ministers said their countries would support the negotiations and the implementation of the agreement, almost every one of them announced at same time some of the issues they find controversial and potentially unacceptable for them. For instance, the Minister of France declared how vigilant and persistent France shall be when it comes to the exclusion of the cultural sector from the agreement. Ministers of Slovakia and Estonia brought up the question of protection of small and medium domestic enterprises, which they considered their key priority. The Minister of the Kingdom of Denmark stressed that the secrecy of the mandate and negotiations is one of their primary concerns while the Minister of Croatia emphasized the importance of the agricultural and environmental aspects of the TTIP. Most of them highlighted many interesting issues and some of them even threatened with the withdrawal of their support in case their demands would not be met. Nevertheless, it could be said that the common tendencies were directed towards the liberalisation of the trade markets and the easier access to them for both of the parties involved while simultaneously European countries showed their wish for the protection of some aspects of the status quo.
The Course of the Debates. The Amendments. However, even though from the introductory part one might have got the impression that the debate would be diverse and heated, later on the Ministers proved to be rather reluctant to make further steps to protect their stands and perhaps shape their claims in the form of amendments. As it showed, despite their initial eagerness, during the debates the Ministers entertained many ideas in general but very few of them in particular. The debates mainly focused on the questions of ISDS mechanism and GMOs, which practically were not even mentioned in the opening statements. The only one who spotted the paramount importance of the ISDS at that stage was the Minister of Sweden who, unfortunately, failed to lobby more for his standpoints during the discussions. In line with these arguments, it could be said that some substantial matters were not covered with the proposed amendments and some others, less significant, were needlessly advocated. Eleven amendments were proposed in total and each of them shall be referred to further in the paper. The document in front of the delegates was the TTIP Directive and the first of the proposed changes was the deletion of the following sentence from the Article 8 of the Objectives:“The Agreement should recognise that the Parties will not encourage trade or foreign direct investment by lowering domestic environmental, labour or occupational health and safety legislation and standards, or by relaxing core labour standards or policies and legislation aimed at protection and promoting cultural diversity.” The proposal was sponsored by Italy and Estonia and the voting on it resulted in its rejection. The next three amendments aimed at making changes in the chapter named Trade in Services and Investment. In this regards, Belgium, France, Portugal, Sweden and Austria wanted to replace the provision concerning the standards of protection of the investors and investments, contained within the Article 19, point (e) of its Scope. They suggested the Council adopts its revised version which reads as follows:“assuring an adequate standard of protection and security of investors and investments, decided and shared by the Parties.” This amendment was passed by the great majority of the votes. The same countries further expressed their ambition to exclude the point (f), as well. Nonetheless, other members of the Council were of a different point of view, obviously wanted to keep the “umbrella clause” within the document. Consequently, the amendment was downvoted. Another amendment having to do with the Article 19 was submitted by the coalition made of Germany, France, Italy, Latvia, Sweden and Belgium, proposing to remove completely the paragraph related to the enforcement of the Article at issue. Specifically, the following sentences were to be deleted from the text:”Enforcement: the Agreement should aim to... (...) Consideration should be given to the possibility of creating an appellate mechanism applicable to investor to state dispute settlement under the Agreement.” The members of the Council found this petition well substantiated and considered it necessary. Therefore, they adopted the amendment.
Finally, when it came to the one of the most controversial points of the agreement that were broadly discussed in the Council – the GMOs, the group of countries led by Denmark proposed the removal of the Section Genetically Modified Organisms, Food Safety and Consumer Protection from the Article 23. This amendment was adopted almost unanimously. Another amendment in respect to the issue of GMOs was proposed by Luxembourg, Netherlands, Italy and Portugal which countries suggested the addition in the Article 23 of the following sentence:”The Parties shall agree on stricter labeling
Further on, France proposed the deletion of the entire Section regarding Cultural and Audio visual Services, i.e. Article 22 but the amendment was rejected. France was also the sponsor of the sixth amendment, which was co-sponsored by Bulgaria and Cyprus. These countries wanted to remove the word “labour” from the Article 23. This idea was also refused by the majority.
provisions, greater monitoring and control upon GMO products.” However, the opposition prevailed and the amendment was rejected. The ninth amendment was proposed by the coalition of the countries led by Bulgaria and Cyprus and it aimed at adding the following provision at the of the Section Sectoral provisions under Article 23:”Negotiations should aim at ensuring an open, transparent and predictable business environment in energy matters and at ensuring a sustainable access to raw materials, monitored by the European Commission.” This amendment was widely approved and hence adopted. Furthermore, Minister of Malta proposed the addition of the Section Customs control for the transatlantic sea trade at the end of the Article 23. However, his efforts did not attract the attention of the other countries which then downvoted the amendment. The last amendment was sponsored by Germany, Italy, Latvia and Luxembourg. This group of countries also proposed the addition of a new Section at the end of the Article 23 which would be named Removal of visas and would read as follows:”The Parties shall negotiate on removal of the visas for all the EU member states as an unnecessary obstacle to trade and free movement.” The members of the Council were very receptive towards this amendment and had it passed by the clear majority.
Conclusion It is the opinion of the author of this text that, even though the participants put a lot of effort in making alliances and tried hard to make changes to the proposal they had to work on, they failed to notice that the compromises are what makes these procedures successful and that the main goal is to reach balanced and reasonable agreement. It is obvious that their amendments were affected by such a lack of understanding, as they were rather unrealistic, not taking into consideration the interests of the other party to the agreement. If some of the proposed amendments were adopted in a real-life situation, the US might completely lose their interest in participating in such a partnership. This is why it would be far more suitable if they formed their amendments in a different manner. Instead of making slight or moderate changes to the text, they simply suggested the deletion of the entire sections of the document, thus making the process unreal.
On top of that, the participants did not comprehend the scope of the TTIP correctly and that made them overestimate the effects of the instrument in question. It is important to bear in mind the fact that most of the participants do not have legal background and were not well acquainted with the subject matter. It is beyond doubt that panel discussions held on the first day of the Conference were not elaborated enough to bring closer to the participants the implications of the topics. Many of the uncertainties they had were eliminated only during the think-tank. Therefore, the outcome of the thinktank would have been more useful to the participants if they had it before the sessions in the Council. With the knowledge they acquired during think-tank activities, they would have been able to contribute more to the discussions. Therefore, it may be concluded that if these activities had been done in a reversed order, it could have made a significant difference in regards to the successfulness of the whole simulation.
The Debate on the ENI at the European Parliament of MEU Sofia 2014 Authored by: Tomislav Leko, Chair of the Parliament „Article 8 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) provides for the European Union (EU) to develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, with the aim of establishing an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness at the EU’s borders. The European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) was developed in 2004 and covers 16 partners to the East and South of the EU’s borders, namely Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Egypt, Georgia, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, the Republic of Moldova, Morocco, the occupied Palestinian territory, Syria, Tunisia and Ukraine. Under the ENP the EU offers its neighbours a privileged relationship, building upon a mutual commitment to values and principles such as democracy and human rights, the rule of law, good governance, market economy principles and sustainable development, including climate action. The policy also provides for political association and deeper economic integration, increased mobility and enhanced people-to-people contacts. The ENP is funded by a dedicated Instrument, the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI), which covers the 16 above-mentioned partner countries and Russia.“ General Context, pg 1 in: Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing a European Neighbourhood Instrument.
Understanding the dynamics of the EU legislative process in ENPI The MEU Sofia, for the topic of ENPI, simulated the EU legislative procedure called the ordinary legislative procedure, which means the joint adoption of a legally binding document (regulation) by the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament. In the hierachy of the legal acts adopted by the European Union, the regulation is binding from the moment it is adopted by both EU legislating institution. Other type of a legal document also adopted under the ordinary legislative procedure is a directive – a legal act binding only in its final result and gives countries a certain number of years to implement the whole Directive. In this regard, I would also mention a resolution which is a form of a certain political statement delivered by the European Parliament in areas in which the Parliament has either a consent or consultation role, or does not have the competence to legislate at all. Interestingly to note for the introductive part to the ENPI proposal debate, the European Parliament had the equal standing and say in the legislative procedure. Unlike with the second topic - Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership where MEU Sofia implemented the version of a special legislative procedure in which the European Parliament just gives the consent at the end of the legislative process, the European Parliament had an important role in the adoption of the final binding regulation. Needless to say, ENPI was the first topic to be discussed at the conference in the European Parliament and this fact is important as we had quiet a few people who did not have much experience with debating and simulations. Thus, the discussion about the ENPI was in the beginning slow with less speakers' on the speakers' list, however, later the chairs' encouraged others to take the floor too.
One of the elements of the learning experience during the simulation in the European Parliament was the acquiring the knowledge on the structured debate on the side of participants, as well as the controlling of a higher number of participants (33) by the chairpersons. The important aspect of the MEU concept is the persuasion of a structured debate with a certain agenda, speaking time and the predefined legislative procedure during which the participants learn how to channel their own thoughts
Respect for Rules of Procedure (RoP) in the European Parliament
in short speeches in a rules-based discussion. This way of debating teaches the participants how to participate in well-argumented discussions where they are not afraid to speak up or to contribute with their own opinion. As the number of participants was slightly higher than in the Council of the European Union, as well as because of the division between political fractions in the EP, the discipline was harder to maintain in the beginning of the simulation. Due to our strong moderation I believe the participants learned the deeper meaning of the debating rules, and learned to respect the rules of procedure, a crucial expression of the realistic outcome.
Assessment of the discussion on the ENI During the debatte on the ENI, the chairpersons followed closely the debate and directed it in case the participants' were not dealing with real matters as the time of the simulation is limited. The discussion had numerous ideas and raised valid points as it happened when the real proposal was drafted and adopted. Although the ENI instrument was already adopted, the discussion was concerned with real issues arising from the adoption of the ENI, especially in time of the ongoing Ukraine-Russia conflict over Crimea and the Eastern Ukraine. General observations which we could follow on the sample of 6 countries present at the simulation included the motives for the relations with ENP countries (solidarity or pure economic gains motives), the position of the Russian Federation within the proposal (whether to include it in the wording of operative clauses of the Regulation), the posibility of widening the scope of ERASMUS+ programme to ENP countries and better connections in education systems, as well as the enhanced mobility which would help the deepening of trade and political relations with the ENP countries. The next paragraphs will deal with certain issues raised during the debate. One of the main discussions was that the European Union needs to create „two regional units for the Eastern Partnership and the Mediterranean through which the EU would be able to differentiate its policy by adopting it according to the needs of a certain country“. MEP Karcheva also added that the emphasis when planning the ENP policy should not be on the state level, but at citizens' level. This would greatly foster the cooperation between the European Union and other countries in the future.
Thirdly, the discussion on the future of ENP led to the issue raised by the participant on the outcome of EU's conditionality within the ENP; without giving the states the option of becoming a member state of the EU. In this regard, the issue of the supervision of the performance of ENP countries was raised. To this end, already mentioned establishment of regional units for the Eastern Partnership and the Mediterranean proposed by MEP Karcheva; was seconded by the Radov's opinion that the European Commission should follow closely the conditions imposed on ENP countries prior to the cooperation.
Other issue raised, that took the EP a lot of time to finish, was the Russian role in the ENPI and whether the operative clauses within the document should mention Russia to be eligible for funding from ENPI. Here, the participants were instructed that they cannot change the preamble clauses of the original proposal (where Russia was mentioned), but can amend the operative clauses of the regulation. The crucial contribution to this topic was made by the MEP Radov who said that keeping Russia close is important because the EU wants to grow economically through the cooperation with partners. He also added that „the EU can make Russia more democratic if we keep Russia close to us“. After a few following comments, the discussion on Russia was terminated and did not arise in the debate on amendments.
According to the MEP Altergot, the EU needs to be cautious when making the demands on the ENP countries, but reassures that the EU needs to have certain requirements for those countries. Fourthly, the mobility of students from the countries within the ENP to the EU was a highly debated issue. The core of the proposal was made by MEP Dekavallas who stated that the ERASMUS programme needs to be widened and needs to include the ENP countries. This would help the enhancement of the cross-cultural exchange. This was later adopted as the amendment to the original proposal of the Commission. Lastly, the discussion between those advocating for solidarity-based approach towards ENP on the one side of the spectrum, seconded by the ones prioritizing the economic gains for the Union; and on the other side the ones who were strict on the assessment of the performance of ENP countries.
The discussion on amendments and passed amendments The above mentioned issues were formulated in the amendments that were submitted during the plenary session in the European Parliament. The participants were explained that their goal is to amend the Commission's proposal (the original proposal submitted to the European Parliament) according to their interest. Their interest can be ensured through the drafting of the amendments that are supported by either their factions or other sponsors within the European Parliament. The final goal is to ensure that your own opinion is within the final document, and if this option is not possible; then the goal is the omission of a certain issues from the final document. The debate and voting on amendments was indeed successful and the original document was changed with six amendments. The amendments included the addition of either a new paragraph or a sentence or wording in a certain article. The most successful amendment was proposed by the EPP group, in which the faction managed to ensure the support to add two new paragraphs under the Article 4. in which the regulation ensured the „creation of two Expertise regional Units, responsible for the better assessment of the needs of the beneficiary state“(Art. 4 (4)) and which would „supervise the gradual process of reaching the set objectives with regard to the capacity of each concerned state, based on developments in: civil society, economic growth and juridical efficiency“ (Art. 4 (5)). Above in the text we can mark that the discussion on the supervision of the countries' performance in certain areas was ensured through these two amendments. Importantly to note regarding this amendment, the considerations the MEP needs to have is the possibility of passing the certain amendment in the Council of the European Union which is inherently the intergovernmental institution where the members of the governments sit. The feasibility of this amendment is questionable, however, the lack of negotiations was the also the reason for the rejected amendment by the Council of the European Union.
MEPs also amended the original proposal by adding to the Article 9(d) the period of three years for the allocations to each joint operational programme, as well as for the qualitative evaluation of the same programme after three years in order to decide upon further funding allocations. This amendment would act as a corrective and the mechanism of adaptation to changed circumstances within the country and I find it useful for the proposal.
The amendment proposed also dealt with the differentiation in the approach towards certain ENP countries. The addition was the inclusion of NGOs in the process (Art 7(5)). Obviously, the MEPs were concerned with the transparency of the process of the allocation of money, but it is however undefined which NGOs should participate.
The discussion on the performance of certain ENP country went further from the supervision aspect and included the changing of criteria for the allocation of funds. The amendment of Art. 9(4) which previously stated that „the indicative allocation of funds to the joint operational programmes shall be based primarily on the population“, was added the wording „(…) and the current situation of each partner country“. The MEPs did not define what is indeed the criteria for the „current situation“and this amendment looks somehow broad and undefined as the criteria. One last change was the addition of the paragraph 15 to Article 10 of the original proposal which stated that „multicultural programmes for educational cohesion shall be implemented for the enlargement of the Erasmus programme towards all the countries involved in the ENP and provide better chances for students' mobility“ (Article 10(15)). If we recall the claims by MEP Dekavallas and other S&D MEPs, the enlargement of the Erasmus programme and better chances for mobility would be a majorities' proposal to the Council of the European Union. Therefore, to sum up, the amendments: 1. on the establishment of the supervisory body for the performance of individual ENP beneficiary states; 2. the differentiation in the approach towards individual countries; 3. the inclusion of more non state actors, particularly NGOs in the allocation of money; 4. three-year allocation programmes and evaluation period for programmes; 5. the current situation in the ENP state as the criteria for the allocation of money; 6. the establishment of multicultural programmes for educational cohesion as well as the enlargement of the Erasmus programme to ENP countries The above mentioned amendments could have been the amendments in the real European Parliament, however the negotiations would need to last longer as certain aspects need to be further specified.
Simulation outcome and possible improvements
The only recommendation I can give is to have a public speaking expert, not only during the preparatory seminars, but also during the simulation itself, who could counsel individually and give them certain instructions how to improve their performance. The chairs' position was also the one of a facilitator and we managed to lead the discussion on ENPI the best we could. My co-chair and I tried to talk to the most of the participants during the informal discussions in order to give them advice on their performance or the argument they wished to pursue.
Taking into account the lack of experience of the majority of participants' in the European Parliament at the simulation; the participants needed a certain time for adjustments to the RoPs and the discussion. Some of the participants managed to follow the RoPs and improved their public speaking skills towards the end of the conference. Although I can say that the most of the participants participated during the debates, some people remained reluctant to speak. However, I can state that this is not a rule and we are happy that two participants who were awarded in the European parliament for the best performance were for the first time attending the simulation in their life. Thus, the outcome of the simulation depends on the engagement each participant pursues and the concept is a framework for the improvement of various skills.
The Debates on TTIP at the European Parliament of Model EU Sofia 2014 Authored by: Christopher Zafeiris, Co-Chair at the European Parliament The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Protection Agreement is a bilateral agreement between the EU and the US, which will promote free trade and implement the rules of free market and free economy in the relationship of the two countries. It is considered to be one of the most important, if not the most important, bilateral agreement between two parties. Consequently, there has been a heated debate and many discussions on what the impacts of this Agreement could be. The Commissioner was the first to take the floor to briefly clarify few points: “Firstly, the rules of origin of the products are mutually respected. Also, labour rights shall continue to exist (safety, pension, security etc). Nevertheless, economic benefits will be mostly for the most competitive countries and less for the countries in the middle of the supply chain. Investment protection is one of the main topics and it is applied for cases that the initial environment that the company/business started and was agreed, discriminatory changes. Furthermore, there is no need to worry on GMOs, as the EU's market already has modified products, and the discussion is related to trade of products, and not growing of modified products all over the EU. We cannot ensure the estimates on the benefits or losses – each evaluation may lead to different results, according to the perspective. After the conclusion of the TTIP, the national parliaments will have the opportunity to make it a part of their own policy.” After the Commissioner's input, the Members of the European Parliament discussed for hours some issues that were the main concern of the Parliament. The debate was vivid and the results were very productive. The main issues that were discussed were:
1. ISDS → Vivid debate on the mechanism. Most of the MEPs are against it as they consider it could be manipulative and result to negative situations in the EU. It provides too much power to the business and the multinational companies. However, few people think it is a mechanism that will attract investors, due to a feeling of safety and security of their capital. Some middle ground could be reached in case that the mechanism operates in very specific circumstances, but still everything is regulated, such as who will judge, for which cases exactly etc.
3. Different Taxation → The difference in taxation between US and EU may lead companies to move their central operation offices. The idea of common taxation is practically impossible as the federalization of EU is not complete, let alone US and EU. However, there should be some common standards, so no one would take advantage of certain taxation differences.
2. Regulation over GMOs → The GMOs should be excluded by the TTIP's negotiation process. Concerns if the labeling is effective, as cheaper prices are attractive and people will buy GMO if they are more affordable. However, most agree that information of GMO and/or ingredients shall be included in the products, in case there are GMOs or partially modified products in the EU's market. The TTIP has no scope to change the GMOs regulation in the EU.
4. VISA's regime → The Council proposed the removal of VISA for European citizens in their traveling to USA. However, it is clear that the US will not accept the removal of VISA for every country of the European Union. Nevertheless, the future discussion and reformation of the provisions of VISA shall be one of the top priorities, as a means to simplify investments from Europe in the US.
5. Common Agricultural Policy → The Agreement will heavily damage one of the main priorities of the European policy. Agricultural development is not equally respected in both parties and many problems will occur under the Agreement. On the other hand, European farms will be benefited, as they will have a new market to sell their products. It could be viewed as beneficial in case the US accepts to raise its standards. After thorough discussions, the European Parliament drafted and accepted with 19 votes out of 36 the final resolution. Firstly, it proposed the removal of the ISDS from the negotiations and non-inclusion in any other stage of the process. Secondly, it suggested that the VISA regime shall be simplified for people who wish to invest in the other party. Also, it supported the representation of SMEs in the negotiation's process. Regarding environmental and agricultural issues, it proposed that no conflict is accepted between the TTIP and CAP, roots of origin of each product shall be included in the label and that tax-barriers should be considered in cases of eco-unfriendly products. Last but not least, there shall be commonly-accepted minimum limits on the taxation of the countries, as a means to ensure fair competition between the members of the EU. Unfortunately, some issues, that were raised and discussed, were too controversial and the European Parliament did not succeed in reaching a common ground. For instance, GMOs was one of the main discussions, but any clause, regarding that issue, failed with one 18 votes out of 36.
EU’s response to the refugee crisis in the Middle East Authored by: Ruslan Trad, Centre for Arab Culture Translated and adapted by: Teodor Kalpakchiev
According to UN by December 2014 the victims has outgrown 200 000.
With the outbreak of the Syrian Crisis and its turning into a civil war the influx of migrants was further intensified. From 2012 onwards we are evidencing growing military tensions in Syria 1 as a result of the struggle for dominance within separate fractions – the government, the Free Syrian Army and the Islamic groups, as well as the growing strength of the Islamic State. At the moment the total number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon, Iraq, Turkey and Jordan is more than 3 000 000. It is deemed that the actual amount is closer to 3 400 000, with more than 50% of them being women and children. As a result of
The implosion of mass protests in several Arab States in the end of 2010 and the beginning of the 2011 quickly grew into riots against the statusquo and consequently revolutions (Lybia, Tunisia), while in Egypt the military took over. They caused a massive influx of immigrants, which reached the shores of Italy, Malta and Greece. The EU’s rushed response marked the limitations of its instruments for dealing with migration and the need for greater solidarity among member states.
the military activity the number of internally displaced people in Iraq and Syria has surpassed 13 000 000. Part of these masses is fleeing towards Egypt and Jordan, whilst other prefers to use Turkey as a pass way towards Greece and Bulgaria. The most optimistic prognoses are that there will be 2 000 000 new asylum seekers in 2015 and Lebanon has already abolished its visa-free regime for Syrian citizens. In order to face up to the growing needs of the refugees the EU member states signed the Dublin I and Dublin II agreements. Although the document addresses the questions relating to asylum in the hosting countries, it faces a number of critiques, as the reality is far from its stipulations. According to the European Council for Refugees and Asylum Seekers and ВКБООН the current system is failing to secure effective judicial protection of the rights of the asylum seekers, including the right of a fair treatment of their applications and the problems with their ineffective distribution. The last critique towards the Dublin system is that it increases the pressure on the border regions of the EU – Italy, Malta, Greece and Bulgaria, which have a disproportionate amount of refugees vs. available funding. This is why the dialogue on mandatory solidarity should be instigated. The pressure on the abovementioned countries should be relieved and balanced with that of other member states, since some signatories of the Dublin agreements have not taken even a minimal part of the Syrian refugees. The lack of an ineffective migration policy has many side effects, such as the risk of joining the criminal contingents. There are no more than two possibilities – either building new walls and submerging boats or perceiving the immigrants as social capital. Oftentimes, the question of religion and especially Islam turns into an important factor and sometimes turns into social capital for power wielders, as happened in France in 2006. On the other hand countries like Germany successfully deal with issues as the emergence of ghettos and thus relieve the social pressure on migrants. Great Britain on the other hand failed to address the issue, as while France and Italy were transferring their burden to each other, it denied access to migrants from northern Africa, which led to the death of 61 people. In 2014 more than 3000 refugees perished into the Mediterranean waters due to inappropriate measures on behalf of Italian and Greek border control.
∝ The EU needs to reach consensus on its foreign policy towards the Middle East and Ukraine, as issues with direct effects on the EU. Certain member states are trying already to face up to these challenges, but the lack of desire for unification of the positions is detracting from the outcome. ∝ The EU needs to acknowledge the policy for mandatory solidarity among member states, when refugee crises are evident. It is illogical for the periphery to carry the burden of the conflicts alongside the borders. ∝ The practices for reintegration need further reassessment and review. Oftentimes it is expected that the immigrants and the refugees will successfully integrate themselves without external help from institutions. ∝ The emergence of ghettoes should be combated with adequate responses on state level. ∝ The governments should also cater for the subduing of nationalistic populism and hate speech, especially prior to elections. ∝ States should support the non-state actors dealing with integration and intercultural dialogue, such as NGOs. Volunteering should be encouraged and fostered with separate measures in a number of member states.
Conclusion and Policy Recommendations Authored by: Teodor Kalpakchiev The EU is currently facing a challenge where it needs to flex its economic machinery in order to expand its area of influence. The Neighbourhood relations grew dramatically in influence in the last year due to the emergence of significant security challenges threatening to shake off the very foundation of this meta-state. While the new leadership in the EU brought new innovations in banking and finance, egovernance and started off with a focus on dialogue with the citizens and development aid, its foreign policy instrument is still based on a neoliberal paradigm. The lack of alternative of the Enlargement, but even more he falling absorption capacity for new members brought gradually the member states in the East into a power vacuum and concessions in terms of Association Agreements were to be signed. The following Russian aggression triggered Germanyâ€™s readiness to forego its temporary economic growth in order to sustain the sanctions instrument. It revealed the power of the economic rationale, but also led to the disruption of the EU-Russia dialogue and an economic cool-off, which is expected to be reinvigorated with the TTIP.
In the South the Neighbourhood relations are much more fragmented and marked by insecurity on a wider scale. There the EU should very carefully assess the possibilities for sidelining with the traditional state actors, as they are becoming increasingly unpopular and are marked by divisionism and fragmentation of their security forces, as in Libya and Yemen. The democratization efforts should indeed be centered around non-state actors, but those with best outreach and free of interventions on behalf of power wielders. While traditionally education is perceived as a best mean for civic empowerment, the matter of job creation and mobility is becoming especially important in Egypt, Lebanon and other countries stricken by instability. The EU should potentially increase its cooperation with OSCE / EDIHR in election observations and strengthen the mandates of its border assistance missions in Palestine. Vis-Ă -
However, Ukraine remained a country in flux with a need of major reform towards good governance, effectuation of the international anti-corruption benchmark legislation and the formalization of the financial sector and the taxation as an only possible mean to fuel up the economy. The shadow economy has been detracting both from the ability of the Ukrainian government to empower its reforms without external funding or to increase its lending capacity without impoverishing future generations. The divorcement of the EU-Russia relations due the commonality in the perception of imminent treat has brought destruction and destabilization to the Ukrainian territorial periphery. Currently the cities of Odessa and Sevastopol have turned into major hubs for smuggling and illicit trade and with the AAs they menace the stability of the countries sharing the shared Black Sea locality. At the same time the Black Sea Synergy did not complement, but supplemented a policy, fueled by the Enlargement, but without clear medium term prospects of such. At this time, to turn the security vacuum and the reform leeway into a window of opportunity the EU needs to undermine the isolationism of Russia through concessions, as this could also subdue the secessionist sentiments in the frozen conflicts space. While strengthening the rule of law and the reform of the police and national security forces through its advisory mission, the EU should temporary abandon the rhetoric of the unlawfulness of Crimean takeover and re-engage with the Eurasian Union, where it could use the chance to instigate dialogue based on the same rationales, logic and instrumentarium.
vis ISIS EU should be very careful when siding with the existing counter-terrorism rhetoric of the United States and complement it with political measures and intelligence. EU should be cautious in its commitments for support of regimes that threaten to change the Shi’a vs. Sunni balance such as Maliki’s in Iran. While the deployment 1500-strong Battle Groups is a potential option, the EU should rather utilize the possibility to side with Saudi and Yemen in the battle against terror. The EU’s strategic aim should remain the closure of the black oil markets in southern Turkey, directly financing the Islamic insurgency. Instead of speaking of TTIP solely as the biggest free trade agreement, one should think of the adverse effects of trade liberalization as it concerns those who are unable to stand up to the expectations of the global market. Small and medium producers and enterprises are especially vulnerable to such adjustments, as their existence is largely an effect of monetary redistributions, as seen from the prism of the Common Agricultural Policy, but also of investment into the tiny reactors of the economy through the European and national budgets. Whilst the TTIP in that sense will provide a significant exposure to capital to the European Market the EC’s innovative SME investment facility might still result in adverse effects for the entrepreneurs in the periphery, who are unable to confront the long-standing tradition in EU’s core. Furthermore, the deal is creating a wide gap between the citizens’ understanding of the fastpaced alteration of their comparative advantages and the logic of the European institutional public order. The growth-based paradigm continues to be decisive for the implementation of this agreement, as it results in net gains on a personal level in most cases, when the educational and professional census is satisfactory. Potentially, the common economic space can lead to wealth concentration in the West and increase in the peripheral distortions and subsequently their further segregation within the Union. The shift towards the further West, in terms of the Anglo-Saxon World would certainly lead to intense labour mobility in that direction and deepening of the problems with reintegration seen alongside the EU Member States.
The EU’s ability for self-reflection and criticism goes beyond the current state of affairs and since this paper is with a view towards the future, we cannot help recommending the acquis of the development as a next possibility for simulating the EU’s institutional ecosystem. Had it not been the most lavish donator of development aid, it would have been difficult to conclude that this is not a strategic attempt at gaining influence. But more importantly, it is an expression of responsibility towards human beings as such. The truth is that while economic growth is inextricably connected with the extraction of resources
Therefore, the Council and the Commission should uncover the comparative competitive advantages of each Member State, as to create well-working machinery out of the puzzle. Strengthening ethnocultural, historical and economic ties and cross regionalization could only play a good role in the prospective arrangement. Had the TTIP been concluded as planned, the EU would have to review the role of its security architecture and either specialize in conflict prevention and stabilization and strengthen its border and advisory missions through strengthening of their mandate or include them within NATO. The second option remains hardly desirable, especially deeming the dossier of the US and the many side effects of its hard-line foreign policy in the Middle East and South East Asia. Whilst the EU is losing ground to the ethically bereft Chinese economic expansion in terms of visibility due to its own restraints, it still provides a more sustainable alternative due to the ability to reflect from a longer-term vision perspective. For the EU it should remain crucial to collect inputs from the wider population through different forums, dialogues with citizens and research projects and communicate all the effects of dissolution of the transatlantic trade barriers.
and unequal use of human capital, there would be an unsustainable balance between the growth of the population and the economic boom. While the focus of development should be towards providing choices on how to satisfy the needs of the population, its growth could be controlled only by satisfying basic needs, which will enable the people to think beyond the need for self-reproduction as a mean for survival. Therefore, the vigorous interpretations of trade as a pathway towards welfare should be equally complemented with initiatives for creating non-traditional sources of energy. Solidarity â€“ EUâ€™s most powerful driving force - should gradually turn into a global humanitarian instrument for provision of equal footings for capacity development.
Result of the work of 78 participants from 10 countries, who simulated the decision-making ecosystem and participated in an ad-hoc think-tan...