What future for Europe?
13/05/2016
Past Events
What are Europe’s economic prospects, and what can be done to improve them? An international conference on 27th May in Budapest.
 
 
 
What future for Europe? 
 
The issues as highlighted before the conference
 
 
The future of the European project is arguably more uncertain than at any time since its inception with the creation of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) in 1951, and the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1958.
 
In the wake of financial, currency and debt crises, and wrenching budget and spending cuts, has come the crisis caused by mass immigration. 
 
In a few weeks’ time, Britain, the fifth largest economy in the world and the second biggest net contributor to the EU budget, will vote on whether to remain a member of the European Union; at the present moment, opinion surveys suggest a slight lead for those wishing to leave.   Polling data also show a sudden increase in support for similar referenda in other EU countries, and it is already evident that euroscepticism is feeding support for extreme parties on both left and right.
 
Dissatisfaction with the EU throughout Europe reflects concerns about its lack of democratic legitimacy, and its failure to achieve growth and jobs. Far from contributing to achieving the declared goal of making Europe the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-driven economy in the world, the single currency has produced conditions which have led to sluggish or negative growth and historically high levels of unemployment in several Eurozone countries, and conditions of economic desperation in some. 
 
Political opinion is divided between those who believe that the answer to Europe’s problems lies in further economic and political integration, and those who believe that it is the drive to ever closer union that is primarily responsible for the present crises, and that radical reform is therefore required. There are also sharp divergences of opinion between those who believe that the EU has contributed to European security, and those who attribute the peace and stability enjoyed by Europe to the existence of NATO.
 
What are Europe’s economic prospects, and what can be done to improve them? Can the EU be reformed in a way that produces greater democratic accountability as well conditions for economic growth? Has the EU helped the peace in Europe?  If Britain votes to leave, will this force leaders to set a new course that respects the sovereignty of nation states, or, having rid itself of a country which was always ambivalent about the European project and perpetually dragged its feet, will the EU embark on a more rapid and smoother process of integration?
 
A distinguished speakers’ panel, including former economic and foreign ministers, policy analysts, and commentators discussed these and related issues at an international conference organized by the Danube Institute on 27th May 2016 at the House of Hungarians (Magyarság Háza).
 
The conference was chaired by former Hungarian Foreign Minister János Martonyi, and the former British Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont.
 
Venue:  Magyarság Háza, 1014 Budapest, Szentháromság tér 6. 
 
Date: 09:30 – 17:30, 27th May 2016
 
 
***
 
Programme
 
 
Whither Europe?
 
 
A one-day conference on the future of the European Union on 27th May 2016 
at the House of Hungarians,  Szentháromság tér 6, 1014 Budapest 
 
09:00 – 09:30 Registration 
09:30 – 09:40 Introduction and welcome: John O’Sullivan 
 
Brexit: What it would mean for the UK, and what it would mean for Europe 
09:40 – 09:45 Chairman: János Martonyi 
09:45 – 10:05 Norman Lamont 
10:05 – 10:25 John O’Sullivan  
10:25 – 10:45 Jacek Rostowski 
 
11:00 – 11:20 Coffee
 
Economic Prospects 
11:20 – 11:40 Péter Ákos Bod   
11:40 – 12:00 Tim Congdon 
12:00 – 12:20 Andrew Lilico 
 
12:45 – 13:45 Lunch 
13:45 – 13:50 Chairman: Norman Lamont 
 
EU: left/right perspectives 
13:50 – 14:10 David Goodhart 
14:10 – 14:30 Michael Mosbacher 
14:30 – 14:45 Q & A
 
EU-Central European relations 
14:45 – 15:05 Géza Jeszenszky 
15:05 – 15:25 Norman Stone 
15:25 – 15:45 Q & A
 
15:45 – 16:00 Coffee
 
The European project in crisis; can it be reformed?  
16:00 – 16:20 János Martonyi 
16:20 – 16:40 João  Espada  
16:40 – 17:00 Q & A
 
Concluding Comments 
17:00 – 17:20 Norman Lamont and János Martonyi 
 
17:20 – 18:30 Reception 
 
 
***
 
 
List of Speakers
 
 
Lord Lamont of Lerwick is a British politicians former Chancellor of the Exchequer
 
János Martonyi is a Hungarian politician, university professor, international trade lawyer who served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1998 to 2002 and from 2010 to 2014.
 
John O’Sullivan, journalist and author is the President of the Danube Institutive, a fomer senior aide to Margaret Thatcher, and former Editorial Director of RF/RL
 
Dr Andrew Lilico is Executive Director and Principal of Europe Economics, a Fellow of the Institute of Economic Affairs and Chairman of the IEA/Sunday Times Monetary Policy Committee.
 
Jacek Rostowski is a Polish and British economist, conservative politician, academic and the former Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland.
 
David Goodhart is a British journalist, commentator, author and director of the "think tank" Demos. He is the founder and former editor of Prospect magazine
 
Michael Mosbacher, is managing editor of Standpoiont magazine and Director of the Social Affairs Unit in London.
 
Professor Tim Congdon Chairman of the Institute of International Monetary Research, at the University of Buckingham, and Chief Executive of International Monetary Research Ltd.
 
Péter Ákos Bod is head of the economics department at Corvinus University and former governor of the Hungarian National Bank
 
Géza Jeszenszky is a Hungarian politician and associate professor, former Minister of Foreign Affairs and a former ambassador to the United States.
 
Norman Stone, a senior fellow at the Danube Institute, is former Professor of History at the University of Bilkent and former Professor of Modern History at Oxford.
 
João Carlos Espada is the director and founder of the Institute for Political Studies at the Catholic University of Portugal, where he is University professor of Political Studies.

 

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