Saturday

21st Oct 2017

Slovakia's Fico warns of referendum 'adventures'

  • Referendums in the UK and Italy have created uncertainty, Fico argues (Photo: Aleksandra Eriksson)

Slovak prime minister Rober Fico has urged EU leaders to avoid referendum "adventures" on domestic issues because they are putting the EU and the euro at risk.

Fico, whose country held the EU rotating presidency until the end of last year and which is a member of the eurozone, warned of implications for the single currency.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

"I am asking EU leaders to stop with adventures like the British and Italian referendums ... on domestic issues which pose a threat to the EU," he told reporters on Monday (2 January).

The UK voted to to leave the bloc last June, while Italy's former prime minister, Matteo Renzi, called a referendum on constitutional reforms, which he lost, in December, forcing him to resign and creating political uncertainty in the eurozone's third biggest economy.

France's far-right leader Marine Le Pen has vowed to hold a referendum on the country's EU and euro membership if she wins May's presidential elections.

Austria's far-right party, the FPO, whose candidate came second in presidential elections last year has also toyed with the idea of a referendum on EU membership.

"Britain is not a eurozone country, Italy has a huge impact on the banking sector, the euro," Fico warned.

"What will we do if ... there is a referendum in Italy on the euro and Italian citizens decide they don't want the euro?”, Fico was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Slovakia's own anti-immigrant party, Our Slovakia, wants out of the EU and has also been gathering signatures to trigger a referendum on the issue.

Referendums left a mark on the Slovak presidency, which took over the rotating presidency a few days after the Brexit vote.

Hungary also held a referendum in October on rejecting an EU policy on migration quotas, something that Slovakia likewise opposes.

The Netherlands held a non-binding plebiscite on the EU-Ukraine association agreement in April, which it rejected, forcing EU leaders at the December summit to give fresh assurances to Dutch PM Marc Rutte that Ukraine was not in line to join the bloc to enable him to ratify the agreement.

Magazine

EU legitimacy in question

From lost referendums to growing contention of the EU's role in policies, people's commitment to the European project has diminished further this year.

Italy referendum spooks eurozone

Prime minister Matteo Renzi's resignation, followed by a crushing rejection of his reforms, has sent the euro plunging against the dollar and put the country's fragile banking system at risk.

Orban spins migrant vote result, as EU celebrates

Hungarians have rejected xenophobia with their resounding no-show to Viktor Orban's referendum on Sunday, according to European politicians. But the prime minister claims the vote has validated his battle with Brussels.

Investigation

The mysterious German behind Orban's Russian deals

Klaus Mangold, a German businessman with good connections in Russia, and who provided a jet for Commission vice-president Guenther Oettinger, played a crucial role in Hungary's controversial Paks nuclear deal with Russia, Direkt36's investigation has found.

Focus

Health MEPs want to phase out glyphosate by 2020

A committee resolution said the proposal to renew the glyphosate permit for a decade "fails to ensure a high level of protection of both human and animal health and the environment".

News in Brief

  1. Rajoy to trigger Article 155 on Saturday in Catalan crisis
  2. EU conducts unannounced inspection of German car firm
  3. Lithuania calls for new EU energy laws
  4. EU leaders aim for December for defence cooperation
  5. Juncker says hands tied on Russia pipeline
  6. Czechs set to elect billionaire Andrej Babis
  7. Italian regions hold referendums on more autonomy
  8. EU leaders refuse to mediate Catalonia conflict

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Mission of China to the EUPresident Xi Jinping Proposes Stronger Global Security Governance at Interpol Assembly
  2. European Friends of ArmeniaEU Engagement Could Contribute to Lasting Peace in Nagorno-Karabakh
  3. UNICEFViolence in Myanmar Driving 12,000 Rohingya Refugee Children Into Bangladesh Every Week
  4. European Jewish CongressBulgaria Applauded for Adopting the Working Definition of Antisemitism
  5. EU2017EENorth Korea Leaves Europe No Choice, Says Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser
  6. Mission of China to the EUZhang Ming Appointed New Ambassador of the Mission of China to the EU
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  8. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  9. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  10. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  11. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  12. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!

Latest News

  1. The mysterious German behind Orban's Russian deals
  2. Mogherini urged to do more on Russian propaganda
  3. Turkey funding cuts signal EU mood shift
  4. Posted workers top EU agenda This Week
  5. Leaders lobby to host EU agencies at summit's margins
  6. Legal tweak could extend EU control on Russia pipeline
  7. Ukraine language law does not harm minorities
  8. EU begins preparations for Brexit trade talks