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The new Barroso Commission has wasted no time in grasping the GMO nettle, after years of delay and obfuscation. It is authorising the cultivation and use of Amflora, a new genetically modified potato for industrial use, while at the same time working on a policy which will allow individual member states to forbid the cultivation… » read more

Posted by Michael Berendt

Ironic that the European Commission’s positive report on Iceland’s application to join the EU, produced in just six months, should have coincided with the breakdown of talks over the €3.9 billion which the Netherlands and the UK are demanding from Iceland for the collapse of the Icesave bank. It is widely predicted that Icelanders will… » read more

Posted by Michael Berendt

It should be a time for celebration. The Lisbon Treaty has come into force, a new European Commission has been convincingly approved by the Parliament, the European Council has a permanent president and a European foreign policy structure has been created. Yet it feels as if Europe’s clock has been turned back ten years, to… » read more

Posted by Michael Berendt

We’ve heard a lot about banks that are “too big to fail”. Perhaps a more immediate question is whether the sovereign nation of Greece is too big to fail. The risk of default and the threat of Greece quitting the eurozone would have profound implications for Europe’s monetary union, for other European countries wrestling with… » read more

Posted by Michael Berendt

It seems that France has had a good presidency. It could hardly have been a more challenging one, but despite the occasional sniff of folie de grandeur, President Nicolas Sarkozy has proved to be the man of the hour, with the élan needed to make things happen. Foreign minister Bernard Kouchner and finance minister Christine… » read more

Posted by Michael Berendt