Posts Tagged ‘Angela Merkel’

Do you agree with Merkel that it will take years to solve the Euro crisis?

Sunday, December 4th, 2011

German Chancellor Angela Merkel wants to implement “a Fiscal Union with strict rules” to address the root causes of the widening financial crisis in Europe. Devote 3 minutes to learn more about her views on sorting out the problems in the Eurozone:

It will, according to her, take years to sort out the problems but  EU treaty changes are  needed to introduce greater European powers. She dismissed criticism that Germany wants to dominate Europe as misleading.

Merkel told the Bundestag that the creation of Eurobonds will not contribute to overcoming the crisis and warned that saving the Euro will take years and that Europeans face a marathon to restore lost credibility.

Flawed from the beginning

Many of us knew that the Euro mechanism was flawed from the beginning and it’s now obvious just how flawed it is. How can you have one central bank for economies as diverse as Greece and Germany? A currency without a “state” unfortunately complicates the concept of a single currency. Even Jaques Delors now admits it was “a fault in execution”. That Europe face an economic downturn is now not just a maybe but a definite. Just a quesion of for how long and which is the best way forward to make Europe grow again.

Some experts believe austerity is the wrong way to solve the crisis and instead advocate increased spending. Or maybe Russia joining the Euro? Vladimir Putin expressed an interest of joining a year ago and adding a well performing economy like Russia would make economic sense. But unfortunately it’s not as simple as that.  Maybe Russia will join in the future?

There is also speculation that  Euro member states with healthy economies will leave the single currency. Many believe Finland could be the first one to opt out.

Do you agree with Angela Merkel that it will take years to sort out the Eurozone’s troubles? Are her views on how to work out the problems with the single currency correct? Or do you believe that increased spending would be a better, and faster, way forward? Or maybe Russia joining would do the trick? Is the Euro actually worth saving? Maybe it would be better to dissolve it and face the hardship it entails now, instead of in the future? Will countries with well performing economies leave the Euro? If so, do you believe Finland will be the first one out? Do you believe the Euro will survive long term or will member states go back to their old currencies again?

video: RussiaToday

New EU branding – instantly forgettable?

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009

Shouldn’t the EU brand convey the message that Europe is one of the most powerful players in the world? If so, I simply cannot understand the choice of Herman Van Rompuy and Catherine Ashton for the two top jobs? Bland and unknown leaders like that far from give the image of a leading power. No matter how competent they are they simply fail to convey the right impression. They actually make the EU look irrelevant and I seriously doubt that other world leaders will choose to meet with them instead of key European leaders such as Angela Merkel, and Nicholas Sarkozy.

If so, the idea of the EU to finally speak with one voice globally falls flat since the new EU President and Foreign Affairs Supremo will make no difference whatsoever. They will not, as intended, make the EU as a union more powerful and accessible to world leaders.

The EU needed to elect a president who is a well known and flamboyant leader to attract attention and get its message across. It’s actually hard to see President Herman Van Rompoy becoming headline news for anything short of Europe declaring war on someone.

For years it was talked about Tony Blair becoming president of the EU. And whatever you think of him, you have to admit that he fits the profile of a high powered leader that would make EU policies headline news. Someone like that would be an asset to the brand by forwarding its interests.

But oh no, he didn’t appeal to left wing members in Brussels who consider him too conservative. The EU really managed to live up to its bureaucratic reputation when the wrangling between different blocks resulted in a choice of bland people that will, at best, have a neutral impact on the European Union brand. Simply cannot understand why Europe doesn’t want someone competent with star quality to represent them on a global scale? Someone high powered that leaders in other parts of the world would pay attention to. The kind of horse trading that resulted in the choice of Mr Van Rompuy and Lady Ashton is the EU at its worse. Not only Tony Blair, but all flamboyant candidates were actually rejected.

Imagine that Europe waited six years for the Lisbon Treaty to be ratified and a EU president only to get one that is so grey it makes our part of the world look ridiculous. Shouldn’t the EU compete on the global market place and get the best possible deals for its members? How is that going to be possible for an organisation that doesn’t even understand the need to have a flamboyant president that people are interested in and hence listen to? Is the EU going to be just one big bureaucracy that the rest of the world ignores it and keeps on dealing directly with the leaders of the different member states instead? That would be a pity since all the small EU states will loose out big. Not least the socialist ones that seem to have been a main reason faceless people were elected for the top jobs since nobody feels threatened by them. Seems the EU choose to forget that it’s the flamboyant visionary bosses that change the world. Instead leaders in Brussels opted for the image of keeping its head down. Doesn’t bode good for the future of the European Union.

(Photo: Flickr Foreign and Commonwealth Office/se.2009/eu)