Editorial, European Union,

Multi-speed Europe: Up-cycling in action

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The European Union is soon to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome on March 25, despite a troubled setting for the Union. The triggering of Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon which will formally consents to Brexit has been voted by the British Parliament, the migrant crisis is still affecting a Europe hit by populism while Donald Trump multiplies declarations, which often call into question the cooperation and partnership of the United States with the European Union.

Multi-speed Europe is an idea that conceals the absence of a strategic vision in a Europe thats is at a standstill, out of touch with the aspirations of public opinion.

In this context, the Franco-German engine, whose leaders are seemingly out of breathe arguing this, no longer players its part. The discourse on multi-speed Europe that recently emerged to allegedly renew the vision of Europe, is warmed up and not a strong enough idea to unite the EU around a common course. Multi-speed Europe already exists through the Euro or the Schengen area. Also, the concept of enhanced cooperation adopted with the Treaty of Amsterdam in 1997, which allows certain states to go further in some areas already impacts the application of the law on divorces and the tax on financial transactions for example. Multi-speed Europe is therefore an idea that conceals from the absence of a strategic vision in a Europe that is at a standstill, out of line with the aspirations of public opinion.

The relaunch of Europe through the increased integration of economic policies seems the only issue at stake in this period of doubt to restore the place of Europe in the world.

Furthermore, debates should focus on economic governance. How can the EU be given the tools to boost growth in Europe and strengthen its competitiveness? The current inability of the EU to govern itself stems from its original sin – we created the monetary union without creating political union. Lack of a European budget, no political counterweight to the ECB and deficit of coordination in economic policies for example. The relaunch of Europe through the increased integration of economic policies seems the only issue at stake in this period of doubt to restore the place of Europe in the world. That said, it is highly unlikely that the EU will adopt a new ambitious position before the German federal elections in September. Meanwhile, happy Birthday the EU!

François Gouilliard co-founds Leyton Group in 1997 and leads to its development by strengthening the group position on the French market and focusing on international development. He becomes Leyton Chairman again in 2013 and has a 20 year-experience in the consultancy sector.

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