15th Aug 2022

Jacques Delors: EU in state of latent crisis

In an interview with the Times, the former President of the European Commission, Jacques Delors, has said that the EU is now in "a state of latent crisis" due to weak leadership.

Mr Delors said, "The men who took Europe forward had three qualities: vision, heart and a strategic realism. Today these are in short supply".

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The 78 year-old Frenchman also swipes at his fellow countryman Jacques Chirac, criticising him for attacks on Poland and other future EU Member States.

\"Passionate contempt for Europe\"

In another bold statement, Mr Delors - recognised as one of the main architects of the euro - says that he can understand the UK's decision to stay out of the single currency.

"Since we have not succeeded in maximising the economic advantages of the euro, one can understand the British ... saying: 'Things are just fine as they are. Staying out of the euro hasn't stopped us prospering'.", he says.

And he adds that Britain's reluctance to join the euro is shaped by the Chancellor Gordon Brown "who is really passionate about his contempt for Europe".

The UK, Denmark and Sweden have opted to remain outside the 12 member euro zone, but euro members will soon be in the minority for a short period when the EU enlarges to 25.

Almost two-thirds of Europe in danger of drought

Data released by the European Drought Observatory show 60 percent of Europe and the United Kingdom is currently in a state of drought, with farming, homes and industry being affected. Drought conditions have also led to an increase in wildfires.

Droughts prompt calls to cut water use amid harvest fears

With the prolonged lack of rain and high temperatures, fears have emerged over water shortages and droughts decreasing crop yields — prompting calls to use less water and reuse urban wastewater for agricultural irrigation.

Brazil pitches itself as answer to Ukraine war food shortages

Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro is pitching his Latin American country as the answer to the world food crisis following the war in Ukraine. The traditional wheat importer has now exported three million tonnes of the grain so far in 2022.

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