Thursday

17th Oct 2019

France wants post-EU presidency financial summit

  • Mr Sarkozy - known for having a high-octane personality, is to chair another major international meeting (Photo: The Council of the European Union)

France has unveiled plans for a post-French EU presidency financial summit, despite the Czech Republic's sensitivity over its upcoming chairmanship of the EU.

The Elysee Palace on Tuesday (18 November) formally announced an "international summit" to be held in Paris on 8 January, entitled "New World: Values, Development and Regulation," continuing France's ambition to create a "new model" for capitalism in the wake of the global financial crisis.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

The meeting is to bring together international leaders as well as intellectuals such as economist Joseph Stiglitz and philosopher Francis Fukuyama and will be co-chaired by French President Nicolas Sarkozy and former British PM Tony Blair.

The move comes after a G20 summit in Washington last weekend fell short of EU hopes to tighten global financial regulation.

The new Paris meeting is the latest in a long line of high-powered events organised by France since it took over the EU helm in July. An EU presidency normally hosts two EU summits, but Mr Sarkozy has already added one extraordinary Georgia war summit, one special financial crisis summit, a eurozone summit and a G4 financial summit.

French officials in October proposed that the eurozone should form an "economic government" led by Mr Sarkozy after the French EU presidency expires in December in order to maintain the "impetus, the energy" of the Elysee Palace's efforts.

Mr Sarkozy and Mr Blair have also been floated as candidates for the Lisbon treaty-envisaged job of permanent EU president.

But the Czech Republic has resented any suggestions that a small, new EU state cannot lead the bloc in times of crisis.

Prague has also rejected MEPs' accusations that it will be a lame duck presidency because it is split over ratification of the Lisbon treaty and because the ruling ODS party suffered defeats in local elections last month.

"Nobody can take the presidency away from the Czech Republic," Czech deputy prime minister Alexandr Vondra said in October on the eurozone government idea.

Prague also plans to hold two extraordinary summits during its EU chairmanship, one on the Eastern Partnership of deeper integration with the EU's post-Soviet neighbours and one to greet new US President Barack Obama.

French public policies minister Eric Besson toned down the language of the French president's original statement on the 8 January event when talking to the Associated Press on Tuesday.

The meeting will be a "conference" not a summit, he said. "It's not an operational and decision-making colloquium."

EU leaders to warn von der Leyen over 'giving in' to MEPs

The new commission president-elect Ursula von der Leyen will meet for the first time with EU leaders who nominated her for the job. She will be asked to lay out her plans for getting her commission through parliament.

Nine Catalan separatist leaders given long jail terms

Spain's Supreme Court sentenced nine Catalan leaders to between nine and 13 years in prison for sedition and misuse of public funds over their role in Catalonia's 2017 bid for independence. The possible legal immunity of some MEPs remains unanswered.

Hungarian opposition wins Budapest in blow to Orban

Budapest joins Istanbul and Warsaw by having an opposition mayor to a strongman illiberal leader, after a united opposition serves a shock blow across several towns in local elections in Hungary.

Commission takes Poland to court on eve of election

As Poland's combative Law and Justice party faces elections this Sunday, the commission once again sends a case on its domestic judiciary reforms to the European Court of Justice for breaking EU rules.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersBrussels welcomes Nordic culture
  2. UNESDAUNESDA appoints Nicholas Hodac as Director General
  3. UNESDASoft drinks industry co-signs Circular Plastics Alliance Declaration
  4. FEANIEngineers Europe Advisory Group: Building the engineers of the future
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNew programme studies infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance
  6. UNESDAUNESDA reduces added sugars 11.9% between 2015-2017
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsEU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue: EU to raise key fundamental rights issues
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNo evidence that social media are harmful to young people
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersCanada to host the joint Nordic cultural initiative 2021
  10. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work
  12. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us