• China's doing business splits EU ranks

      China's doing business splits EU ranks

      President of China Xi Jinping has spent a total of five days on European soil, visiting Rome, Monaco, Cote d'Azur and Paris. He signed Silk Road Memorandum with Italy and met the most influential EU leaders, wishing Europe to be strong and united at every meeting. Nevertheless, his visit brought to light something else - it exposed the vulnerabilities and frictions within the Union.

    • Kazachok with Novichok

      Kazachok with Novichok

      Do you know what Delyan Peevski has for breakfast every morning? I will let you peek in the kitchen, so to speak – it is little kids. You do not believe that? Well, just wait and it will probably not be long before tidbit of that sort pops up in some negligible website or on someone’s even less significant Facebook page. If you have the patience for it, you will see the news multiplied across newspapers, including foreign; TV networks; radio stations and all types of media outlets for indiscriminate dissemination of information.

    • Cybersecurity's weakest link: people

      Cybersecurity's weakest link: people

      Six months, 945 data breaches, 4.5 billion records exposed - that is how the beginning of 2018 looked like. Compared to the same period in 2017, these numbers represent a staggering increase of 133%, data from Gemalto's Breach Level Index shows. Things didn't go well in the second half of the year or in the beginning of 2019 either, with breaches and cyberattacks continuing to escalate, reaching an all-time high in database leaks.

    • Premonition of storm

      Premonition of storm

      Expectedly, the mass and radical protests in Europe somewhat died down ahead of the Christmas and New Year's Eve holidays. Naturally, this is not the end of it all but rather the quiet before the storm and a premonition of looming trouble, this time of the real variety. New radical protests are surely coming because the demands voiced during the previous ones were never met.

    • Christmas under siege

      Christmas under siege

      All signs point to us having yet another Christmas period shadowed by fear and increased security measures. This has become a tradition for Germany. Since the Berlin Christmas market terrorist attack of 2016, in which a truck was deliberately driven into a crowd, killing 12 people, these places have been enclosed by solid concrete blocks. Such fortifications are as much a feature of the landscape as Christmas decorations this time of the year.

    • Macron needs new clothes

      Macron needs new clothes

      The election of former investment banker Emmanuel Macron as President of France in 2017 resulted from the wish of the greater part of French society to see a real change in the country, a strive for higher morals in politics, a revival of economy and a safer life. But it was also the impact of fear that the far-right forces represented by their leader Marine Le Pen - who reached the runoff - might win, as well as of weakness and inadequacy of the traditional political parties. The economic press in Europe lauded him as talented reformer and a new face of the European liberalism.

    • Hypocrisy is Europe's weakness

      Hypocrisy is Europe's weakness

      The European Union is not inclined to impose an arms embargo on Saudi Arabia but sanctions may be imposed on specific Saudi citizens responsible for human rights violations. This sentiment was expressed by Belgium's Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders last Wednesday, as cited by local media. At present, Paris, Madrid and London are not willing to move towards an embargo, Reynders said after a meeting with his British counterpart Jeremy Hunt.

    • Multifaced populism challenges Brussels

      Multifaced populism challenges Brussels

      Last month the European Commission made an unprecedented move and rejected Italy's 2019 budget plan. Since it was endowed with this right in 2013, the Commission exercised it for the first time. In terms of economic development, Italy is the Eurozone's third power.

    • Implementation of the SDGs is a joint responsibility

      Implementation of the SDGs is a joint responsibility

      The UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were agreed in September 2015, providing the world with a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. My work programme as President of the EESC places great emphasis on sustainable development. The slogan of my Presidency is “rEUnaissance - Dare a sustainable Europe”, because I believe Sustainable Development should support all the transformations that will shape the Europe of tomorrow. Bottom-up initiatives involving citizens and civil society will have a key role to play in this agenda to achieve economic prosperity, which must go hand in hand with environmental sustainability and social inclusion.

    • Cohesion budget cuts would be a mistake

      Cohesion budget cuts would be a mistake

      The next multi-annual budget of the EU, covering the period till 2027, as proposed by the European Commission, envisages cutting down the Cohesion Policy funds. The Commission also proposes an option for freezing spending if Member States do not observe the economic management rules. However, the common thread for me, as MEP negotiating the framework of Cohesion Policy for 2021-2027, is the preservation of the current rates of European investments in the regions.