Michel: “Now an agreement on Eurobonds to finance the investments that the EU needs is very difficult” | Economy | EUROtoday

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The European legislature solely has just a few weeks left, however all of the EU establishments are working to find out the place the following path ought to go. And, the reality is, there’s fairly a consensus: put together the Union for the following main enlargement, with the nice problem of absorbing Ukraine; strengthen in Security and Defense; and stimulate the competitiveness of the EU in order that it doesn’t lose step within the double transition (inexperienced and digital) in comparison with China and the United States. The subsequent European Council is devoted to this final subject and its president, the Belgian Charles Michel, arrives with the “intention of proposing a New Deal for Europe on competitiveness,” he broadcasts to a gaggle of journalists from totally different media within the Union, together with THE COUNTRY.

Michel, like so many others, wields this historic idea created virtually 100 years in the past by American President Franklin D. Roosevelt to fight the Great Depression. But when he explains what his proposal is, he begins to distance himself from the United States. He doesn’t consider that the Union can resurrect Alexander Hamilton, the primary Secretary of the Treasury in Washington and who pooled the money owed of the primary 13 North American colonies after their struggle of independence to plant what’s now the United States: “I am very Belgian. That means I'm very pragmatic. I know that in the very short term it is very difficult to reach an agreement on Eurobonds because there are some countries absolutely reluctant to that idea.” He talks about Germany, the Netherlands, Austria and other countries of the so-called fiscal hawks, who sharpen their claws when the idea arises.

It will not be the only time that he responds this way to journalists, who ask him several times and in different ways about the possibility of financing with joint debt the enormous amount of money that Europe needs to finance the double transition without losing competitiveness. “This doesn't mean we'll never talk about it, but in the short term, it's hard to imagine we can make a decision on Eurobonds.”

The former Belgian Prime Minister seeks a more pragmatic alternative and defends it with enthusiasm. This involves deepening the single market, a Brussels classic. And it proposes moving towards the Capital Market Union, that is, that there really is a common market for debt issues that allows savings to be captured or greater stock market integration. For this he has commissioned a report from former Italian head of Government Enrico Letta that the latter will present to EU leaders at the summit.

The Capital Union was launched 10 years ago by former president of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker. “We have lost a lot of time,” admits Michel. Why will it be different now? “I think there has been a qualitative leap in the matter.” […]. “We have made a lot of progress politically with the Heads of State and Government on this issue.” These steps forward, at least his very general ideas, can be read in the draft conclusions that he is preparing for this Council, which closely coincide with those approved in March by the Finance Ministers.

The President of the Council thinks that in this way the EU can mobilize part of the hundreds of billions of euros that it needs to decarbonize its economy without prices skyrocketing and that European companies can obtain the capital they need to invest and thus compete, at least, on equal terms with the rest of the world. “There is [con esta unión] a method, primarily based on frequent sense, to mobilize some huge cash to feed the European financial system. Making it simpler for firms to mobilize trillions of euros of financial savings [de los europeos]”.

Although he appears satisfied that that is the best way – and he solutions it many times – he is aware of that this activity falls to those that can be on the helm within the close to future. “In the next cycle, the institutions, the next Commission, the next Presidency of the Commission, will have to mobilize a lot on economic and financial issues.”

Along with deepening the only market, Michel additionally reveals a variety of religion within the European Investment Bank (EIB). “It could be a bazooka [financiero]. “We need a bazooka.” And with this objective he’s satisfied that “sooner or later” the Member States should contribute extra capital to the establishment now chaired by the Spanish Nadia Calviño. “I have no doubts about this.”

His Belgian pragmatism permeates virtually all of the concepts he launches, additionally people who concern commerce agreements and the paths that the EU should discover to make sure the provision of key uncooked supplies for the ecological transition. For commerce agreements, he asks the Commission for extra transparency throughout negotiations to have the ability to contain the affected events. But it’s above all in provide chains the place the Belgian spirit emerges. “At the international level, we want to promote our democratic values. And there are reasons to promote them. On the other hand, we have to defend our interests. “Maybe it’s not nice to hear.” In these phrases, he’s saying that if some ideas (democratic, environmental or gender) are put above all else, it will likely be troublesome to “work and associate” with States which can be removed from these values, which, alternatively, are wealthy in uncooked supplies and minerals. .

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