How will Europe evolve following the pandemic?

Europe has been on the way of political and economic integration since its inception as a common market for coal and steel more than 60 years ago. After many decades of expansion, 2009 financial crisis and the current pandemic driven crises, the union is now challenged more than ever.

Unfortunately the pandemic is pushing governments to close their boundaries, literally and symbolically. Member countries are more and more drifting apart with the way of handling the crisis and how they help each other out.

The last blow to its unity came when the constitutional court of Germany passed a decision to question European Court of Justice ruling that European Central Bank can backstop Euro by buying govenrment bonds. A Polish court also is now questioning if EU law should precede its legislation.

There is currently a deep divide between the northern and southern countries in which north is constantly pushing the south to be saving more regardless of their economic conditions and the pandemic did not help south to take control of their exploding public debt. In EU the countries do get financing through Euro, but they need to create savings locally. EU will define their budget in the coming months after 7 years, and south is asking for more grants and not loans, which is not supported by countries like the Netherlands.

EU must be saved and strengthened through increased unity around finance and common vision instead of certain countries are pushed towards anti EU sentiment, like in Italy, building on the pandemic.

As the pandemic is pushing boundaries to close, supply chains revisited in the name of resilience, trade is coming under significant pressure due to minimized economic activity and collapsed demand as well as supply, EU more than ever should be able to find a way to increase common vision under the rule of law.

In the new world where US and China are unable to take the lead and show the way to the rest of the world, EU has the chance to come together and build on the vision of early founders.


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