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France ready to set up an 'avant-garde' for the Eurozone

In the wake of the Franco-German agreement on Greece, François Hollande wants to push the advantage by taking over the initiative on the governance of the Euro Zone (A. Merkel and Fr. Hollande during the July 12/13 summit on Greece - credit: CUE)
In the wake of the Franco-German agreement on Greece, François Hollande wants to push the advantage by resuming the initiative on the governance of the Euro Zone (A. Merkel and Fr. Hollande during the summit of July 12/13 on Greece – credit: CUE)

(B2) In a 'letter to Jacques Delors', published by the Sunday newspaper (JDD), this Sunday (July 19), the French President, François Hollande, calls for a deepening of the Euro Zone. " What threatens us is not the excess of Europe but its insufficiency » explains the French president. He proposes a vanguard, to provide the Euro Zone with a budget and a parliament. A necessity, according to him, for Europe both internally and externally.

An avant-garde for the Euro

« Sharing a currency is much more than wanting convergence. It is a choice that 19 countries made because it was in their interest. No government has taken responsibility for overcoming this for fifteen years. This choice calls for a strengthened organization and, with the countries that decide, a vanguard. France is ready for it ».

Accelerate the tempo, deepen Europe

The enlargement of Europe could not be achieved without having “ deepening with differentiated integrations », said Jacques Delors. This deepening has not really taken place since Europe went from 15 to 28.

“With Jacques Delors, Europe has expanded, but he warned us by proposing a deepening with differentiated integrations. Let's listen to it. Circumstances lead us to accelerate. This week, the euro zone was able to reaffirm its cohesion with Greece. »

A budget and a parliament for the Euro Zone

“The quality of the Franco-German relationship had a lot to do with it. The European spirit prevailed. But we cannot stop there. I proposed taking up Jacques Delors' idea of ​​the eurozone government and adding a specific budget as well as a Parliament to ensure democratic control. »

Inside, a dynamic of conviction of the people

This deepening of the Euro Zone follows an internal necessity. The Greek affair shows that we are at the end of a system which has proven itself for years (European governance by an advanced elite) but must be transformed today to convince the people.”

« The Union cannot be reduced to rules, mechanisms or disciplines. It must convince the people that, if it was capable of preserving peace, it is today the best invention to protect the values ​​and principles which found our common culture, what we call our way of life and which is also our social model. »

Europe expected externally

This European response is necessary because Europe is expected outside. And it must transform itself into a power capable of acting.

“Faced with globalization and emerging powers, as well as the risks linked to instabilities at our borders, to coups, wars, terrorism, climatic disasters and what they cause with population movements (…) Europe is expected to bring the technologies of tomorrow, promote an industrial model, succeed in the energy and ecological transition, invest in knowledge, reduce territorial disparities, ensure solidarity internally through investments and externally through development actions. In short, being capable of being a power serving the balance of the world. »

Comment: we thus find the French fundamentals of a “power” Europe, with an economic government of the Euro Zone. But apart from a few big ideas, nothing very specific. However, a Euro Zone government, with a budget and a parliament, is a pre-federal system, which can come into conflict with the desire of several countries to maintain control over all important matters. We can thus see the emergence - if it is achieved - of a confrontation on a European scale, between certain countries - such as the United Kingdom - which want to negotiate a reduction of their obligations and others which want to strengthen the heart of the 'Europe. Will this confrontation be the prelude to a big European 'deal' (a little less Europe for some, a little more for others)?

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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