Trump, ‘Brexit’: Uncertain future for Europe

[Previously published in Spanish in  La Rioja]

That morning, we woke up early with the news reporting that the next President of the United States would be Donald Trump. Some months earlier, Brexit was one of the first words we listened with disbelief very early in the morning too, and nobody could really imagine which consequences would this decision entails. That day, the former prime minister David Cameron only thought on a victory of his position in the referendum, i.e. the UK staying in the EU, following a negotiation with Brussels, which was, according to Cameron, “successful”. Many Brits relied on the “Bremain”… and the results are well known. Yesterday’s Cameron is today’s Hillary Clinton. As surveys put Hillary on the lead, many supporters of Bernie Sanders abstained and did not give their vote for her. Unexpectedly, however, Trump won, to their amazement. Continue reading

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Is the EU making steps towards a ‘digital union’?

[Previously published in Spanish in CC/ Europa]

The digital Europe does not exist yet. However, the digital age is already a reality and is increasingly being perceived in our daily lives. We are usually content with the milestones of the European Union during the 20th century, rather than thinking how to improve and adapt the current EU to the present and to the future. We often mention the single market, the freedom of goods, people, services and capitals, or the absence of interior borders within the Schengen area (although the States are able to temporary close the borders…). Summing up, we cannot deny that, along the last century, important steps have been done concerning the European integration process. But in the 20th century, I insist on this. And this century already belongs to history books. Continue reading

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Estonia embraces the digital world

Tallin.jpg

Tallinn (Estonia)

Estonia is ready for the digital future. This country, in 25 years, has gone from living under the Soviet Union, where less than the half of Estonian citizens had a telephone line, to become one of the most advanced countries in the digital world. Estonia has considered technology as part of its cultural independence. Continue reading

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Refugees: responsibility and challenge for Europe

It seems obvious to say that the problems affecting all Europeans have to be faced by a joint response by all States of the European Union. But it is not so easy to put it into practice. The current refugee crisis and its consequences show the cost for Europe of the lack of a European response. The vast majority of European leaders accept and wish a common solution. Others are reluctant to assume that role. We are of course facing a complex situation. Therefore, our response must be clear and should set a precedent for the future. Continue reading

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New Europe, new narrators

[Previously published in Spanish in Europa Press]

Europe needs engines. Reality changes faster than ever and this continent is full of young talent. We are millions of people willing to speed up a machine that already belongs to our reality. Therefore it is necessary to consider whether citizens, particularly young people, are successfully fulfilling our role. Continue reading

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Towards a digital single market in the European Union

Growth and employment are two of the main pillars which underlying the priorities of the new Juncker Commission. To optimize the opportunities, the Commission wants to take advantage of new technologies creating a digital single market where consumers and businesses will benefit. Continue reading

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Reinforcing the transatlantic link: TTIP

Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) / © European Union, 1995-2013

Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) / © European Union, 1995-2013

“A reasonable and balanced trade agreement with the United States”. With these words, the president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, describes how this treaty must be shaped, which represents one of the priorities of the new Commission. If an agreement is reached, the future Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) would create the biggest free trade area of the world between two economies that accounted together for around 60% of world’s GDP and an annual value of transatlantic trade of 960 billion Euros. Continue reading

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Spain: looking to the United Nations Security Council for 2015-2016

The General Assembly of the United Nations will vote on 16 October to choose the non-permanent members of the UN Security Council for the two-year period 2015-2016. This UN organ is a key institution for maintaining international peace and security. Spain is one of the candidates, which will have Turkey and New Zealand as adversaries, and will need a majority of two thirds of the Assembly to be elected. Why does Spain deserve one of the non-permanent seats in the UN Security Council? Continue reading

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Europe before and after the elections

European Parliament in Brussels / European Union 2013 EP

European Parliament in Brussels / European Union 2013 EP

2014 started with several developments in the European Union. However, the European Parliament elections in May did not end up with the institutional changes, which will continue after the summer. Moreover, the EU will need to face important challenges regarding its future as well. Continue reading

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The European public opinion after the 2014 European Elections

Already some months before the European elections from 22 to 25 May 2014, the sentence “these European elections will be different” were heard everywhere. And indeed the elections were different for several reasons, mainly because the vote of citizens counts more than ever, and every citizen could choose not only our representatives in the European Parliament, but also, indirectly, our candidate for the presidency of the European Commission. Continue reading

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