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Author: Bruegel

Brexit, phase two (and beyond): The future of the EU-UK relationship

The European Commission has recommended to the Council that sufficient progress has been made in phase one of the EU-UK negotiations. With the Council expected to endorse the recommendation this week, phase-two discussions on the future relationship can start (possibly in March). A possible timeline of the next steps in the EU-UK relationship is shown in the diagram below: a one-year period of negotiations that will take us up to October/November of 2018, at the latest. This allows for the minimum time required for the new agreement to be ratified by the EU by March 2019 – the cut-off...

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Support for intra-EU mobility of people is on the rise

Immigration tops the list of challenges of greatest concern to European Union citizens and Europeans are more negative about immigration than people on other continents, as we analyse in a report to be launched on Wednesday. But beyond these generally disapproving views on overall immigration, Europeans’ enthusiasm for intra-EU mobility of people is relatively high and is on the rise (Figure 1) – a development which has not featured much in policy discussion. In May 2015, the first time the Eurobarometer survey included a related question, 51% of respondents were very or fairly positive about immigration from other EU...

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The eurozone medley: a collection of recent papers on the future of euro-area governance

What are the missing pieces of the euro-area architecture? How to go beyond the Junker and Schäuble visions of euro-area governance? How should the new European Monetary Fund work, in order to break the sovereign-bank link? Read the work of our authors on the future of the European institutional architecture: The missing pieces of the euro architecture By Grégory Claeys The time is right for a European Monetary Fund By André Sapir and Dirk Schoenmaker Beyond the Juncker and Schäuble visions of euro-area governance By Guntram B. Wolff  ...

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Brexit: When the banks leave

This opinion piece was also published in Prospect Magazine UK “Just left Frankfurt. Great meetings, great weather, really enjoyed it. Good, because I’ll be spending a lot more time there. #Brexit.” Thus tweeted Lloyd Blankfein, chief executive of Goldman Sachs, on October 19. It was the first time a major US financial services firm had signalled a shift of its European operations away from London in this way: not as a decision conditional on future developments, but as an established fact of business life. It was the first, but presumably not the last. Just left Frankfurt. Great meetings, great...

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Beyond the Juncker and Schäuble visions of euro-area governance

The issue Two diametrically opposed visions of the euro-area architecture have been put forward. European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker favours a model that puts the Commission at the centre of fiscal policy decision-making. The former German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble argues that fiscal surveillance should be centred on a reformed European Stability Mechanism. Juncker’s proposal would over-emphasise the Commission when fiscal policy making is national and would unduly mix the roles of Commission and Council. Schäuble, by contrast, neglects the fact that national fiscal policy matters for the euro area not only for sustainability reasons but also because of...

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Rethinking Franco-German relations: a historical perspective

Franco-German relations as the ‘engine’ of European integration are widely perceived to have stalled in recent years. German economic and political strength, coupled with relative French economic and political weakness, help to explain this situation. The re-election of Angela Merkel and the election of Emmanuel Macron in 2017 created a new potential basis for a strong, like-minded Franco-German alliance that would be able to agree on substantial policy issues. It is therefore a good time to assess what the Franco-German relationship can achieve, what its shortcomings are, and what it means for the wider governance of the euro area...

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Euro-area enlargement: a new opening?

In his State of the Union speech on 13 September, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker raised the prospect of further enlargement of the euro area. He noted that all EU countries – apart from Denmark and the United Kingdom, which have opt-outs – are “required and entitled to join the euro once they fulfil all conditions”. He even proposed the idea of a “Euro-accession Instrument” that would offer “technical and even financial assistance” to the current non-euro countries. Juncker provided no detail about the possible Euro-accession Instrument. But his comments were a reminder that the process of euro-area enlargement...

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The time is right for a European Monetary Fund

The issue The creation of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) and the banking union were instrumental in stemming the euro-area sovereign crisis. However, both remain incomplete. While the ESM reduces the risk of sovereign debt crises, it still lacks an instrument to deal in an orderly way with insolvency crises. This makes the no-bailout clause of the Maastricht Treaty toothless. Two of the banking union’s pillars – common European supervision by the European Central Bank and common European resolution by the Single Resolution Fund – are up and running. But the third, common European deposit insurance, is still missing....

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