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EU budgetary process
The EU budget is a contentious issue that has, on occasion, been the cause of considerable debate and conflict among the member states. Because of the controversies of the early 1980s, it was agreed at the 1988 Brussels Summit that it would be better if there was agreement between the institutions on the overall size and structure of the Union’s income and expenditure for a period of five or seven years ahead. In the Interinstitutional Agreement on Budgetary Discipline and Improvement of the Budgetary Procedure, it was accepted that there should be a financial framework for the immediate years ahead. This became known as the financial perspective (FP) and it covered the period 1988-1992 (Delors I). Subsequently, the other financial perspectives have been fixed for 1993-1999 (Delors II), 2000-2006, 2007-2013 and 2014-2018.
Welfare to Work
Replacing or supplementing labor market incomes?
Social policy evens out the distribution of income. It prevents social unrest, it satisfies the taxpayers’ sense of justice and it insures against random variations in people’s lifetime careers. Ideally, it insures risks that are not privately insurable, either because risk markets suffer from adverse selection or because private insurance comes too late in a person’s life, when the veil of ignorance has already been lifted.
Why and how have the EU and its Member states developed a Mediterranean dimension of JHA? What were the motivations to ‘go external’ in the field of JHA? Was it the result of ‘unintended consequences’, or did actors willingly bypass institutional constraints because of rational calculations (both domestic and supranational)? What were the actors’ incentives to develop a Mediterranean dimension of JHA? Was it purely motivated by security concerns? To what extent have legacies influenced the development of a JHA external dimension? Did the Mediterranean partners influence the development of a JHA Euromed agenda? Which institutions were really important in developing an external dimension of JHA? Did the pillar structure and its related institutional set-up, across which the JHA policies extend, constrain actors? All these questions lie at the heart of the thoughts and are approached from a new institutionalist angle. While the case studies selected reflect developments that took place during the 2005-2009 period, I also take into account the changes introduced by the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty on 1 December 2009.
In September 2010, Qaddafi was threatening the European Union (EU) that Europe would become a ‘black continent’ if it did not pay him 5 billion Euros per year to stop migrants from Africa coming to Europe. This anecdote, which can now be seen from the perspective of the war in Libya, is actually sadly symptomatic of the contradictions of EU policies towards the region over the last couple of years. The initial positive spirit of the Barcelona Process was overtaken by realpolitik concerns that led Europeans to be less forceful about the promotion of normative principles such as democratization. Instead it seems that EU internal security concerns of migration, border control, security and energy took precedence over the promotion of the rule of law and democratization.