ESADEgeo Daily Digest, 14/12/2017

Jerusalem, The Dormition Church, Omar Mosque

The New York Times—Carlota Gall / Muslim leaders declare East Jerusalem the Palestinian capital

  • Leaders and officials of Muslim nations declared East Jerusalem the Palestinian capital on Wednesday at a summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul.
  • The meeting condemned in a communiqué President Trump’s “unilateral” and “dangerous declaration” as an effort to change the status of Jerusalem. It said that it considered the action a violation of United Nations resolutions and legally null and void.
  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan criticized some Arab states for what he called their weak response to President Trump’s decision, suggesting they were intimidated by the United States.
  • Erdogan urged nations of the world to recognize the state of Palestine, and declared Jerusalem as its occupied capital.

Politico—Janosch Delcker / Europe faces defense spending challenge

  • “The lack of security has become one of the primary concerns of Europeans again,” said Nathalie Tocci, a special adviser to EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini. “What used to be the most contentious, the hardest and as a consequence the most immobile area of European integration has become the most promising.”
  • After two decades in which defense spending in Europe was often cut or stagnant, budgets have been ticking up in recent years. In 2016, military spending in Western Europe rose by 2.6 percent on the previous year — its second successive increase.
  • In a study published in February this year, McKinsey argued that Europe could save almost a third of what it spends on military equipment if governments club together to coordinate investment and use fewer arms suppliers.
  • “People said the same thing 20 or 30 years ago,” said Moritz Weiß, a procurement expert. “But when things get serious, the French want to procure French equipment and the Germans want to procure German equipment.”
  • The EU has come up with procurement rules to try to prevent such protectionism. But countries have found ways round them, such as tenders tailored to the profile of domestic arms manufacturers.

Bruegel—Maria Demertzis & André Sapir / Brexit, phase two (and beyond): The future of the EU-UK relationship

  • A possible timeline of the next steps in the EU-UK relationship is the following:
  1. A one-year period of negotiations that will take us up to October/November of 2018, at the latest. This allows for the minimum time required for the new agreement to be ratified by the EU by March 2019 – the cut-off date for the UK to leave the EU.
  2. After March 2019, a two-year period is envisaged in which the UK would most likely remain a full member of the EU single market and customs union, but without any voting rights. During this period, the UK would also remain bound by decisions of the European Court of Justice and continue to pay its full share in the EU budget. This should ensure a smooth transition from EU membership to the new EU-UK framework.
  3. By March 2021, the new negotiated trade agreement between the EU and the UK will come into effect.
  • The EU is willing to offer the UK a trade deal that looks either like the CETA arrangement with Canada, or the EEA agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
  • A CETA-type trade deal would fall much short of what the UK is looking for, while the UK is not willing to accept the free movement of labour that the EU says would come with an EEA-type deal. In other words, the UK is looking for a “CETA-plus” or an “EEA-minus”. The first option looks more feasible.
  • After the UK has left the EU and after the transition, the EU and the UK should sit down again at the table of negotiations to try to reach a more ambitious agreement than the trade deal.

The selected pieces do not necessarily reflect the views of Javier Solana and ESADEgeo. 

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