Memo to the presidents of the European Commission, Council and Parliament. 'A strategic agenda for the new EU leadership' by Maria Demertzis, André Sapir and Guntram Wolff is the first of our 2019 Bruegel memos to the new presidents of the European Commission, Council and Parliament. Focusing on the most important economic questions at EU level, these Bruegel memos are intended to be a strategic to-do list, outlining the state of affairs that will greet the new Commission.
At this event, we launch the study, "Digitalisation and European welfare states", authored by Georgios Petropoulos, J. Scott Marcus, Nicolas Moës, and Enrico Bergamini.
How can increased access to finance benefit SMEs? What reforms are needed to encourage SME financial inclusion?
What is the current status of EU-China relations concerning innovation, and what might their future look like?
Bruegel's 2019 Annual Meetings will be held on 4-5 September and feature the launch of Bruegel's Memos to the New European Commission.
Germany is having a political debate on the adjustment of its budgetary plans due to revised forecasts, and an academic debate on the debt brake. Yet, since 2011, general government revenues and surpluses have been systematically and significantly higher than forecast. The German surplus reached 1.7% of GDP in 2018. This bias did not exist from 1999-2008 before the introduction of the debt brake. While the IMF also got its forecasts of German surpluses wrong, the extent of the bias is larger for the German government’s forecasts. These data suggest that the political debate should focus on the debt brake and its implementation rather than on how to close the budgetary ‘hole’.
Considering a world absent a multilateral trading system is not to promote such an outcome, but to encourage all to prepare for the worst and instil greater clarity in the mind of policymakers as to what happens if compromise fails.