Publications in: Economic Policy

New Beginnings: Energy

Ursula von der Leyen has chosen to make the ‘European Green Deal’ her number one priority. This crosscutting issue should federate all the services of the European Commission, and start by accelerating the transition to a clean energy future. To do so, von der Leyen needs to build a broad coalition of EU governments, Members of Parliament and citizens. We therefore argue that the European Commission should structure the ‘European Green Deal’ around three complementary policy priorities: climate ambition to set the direction, innovation-based competitiveness to help EU companies develop the clean energy solutions for Europe and the world, and social justice to ensure an inclusive transition that improves the living conditions of all Europeans. more

New Beginnings: Eurozone Reform

The new Commission should shift gears. Rather than spending ever more political capital on ever smaller technical reform steps, it should focus on fostering a political consensus on the future direction of Eurozone reform. In parallel, it should ensure that the Eurozone is prepared for the next crisis, which might just be around the corner. This means first to bring the current reform package including a mini-Eurozone budget over the finish line; second to make Banking Union work properly; and third to prepare a playbook for a joint fiscal response in a future recession. more

New Beginnings: Trade

While the geopolitical dimension of trade policy is growing in importance and multilateralism is threatened, consensus in public opinion for global trade has shrunk and value chains are shortening. In this changing context of globalisation and with the surge in support for the Greens in the new European Parliament, the new Commission, which holds an exclusive competence in trade policy, must make it more ecological and inclusive, also reinforcing the compliance of imports with European standards. This shift in EU trade policy requires a whole set of greening and social measures as well as key initiatives to strengthen multilateralism. more

New Beginnings: Employment and social policy

Commission President-elect Ursula von der Leyen has called for a “fairer and more equal Europe”. This political priority is justified not only for normative or functional reasons, but also for political ones. In a context of rising Euroscepticism, the EU must live up to citizens’ expectations and improve their living and working conditions. To that purpose, the new Commission should adopt a Social Action Plan for the next five years to turn into concrete initiatives the 20 principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights proclaimed two years ago. more