Friday, December 28, 2012

Solana: Transatlantic Free Trade!

(globalize part 2: with his Barcelona Process in 1995 Solana's aim was to create a free trade zone between Europe and North-Afria/Middle East until he aims for a US-EU free trade zone!)
"MADRID – This month, the United States National Intelligence Council released a sobering report entitled Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds. Most important, according to the authors, if current trends continue, Asia could soon surpass North America and Europe in global power. It will have a higher GDP, larger population, higher military spending, and more technological investment. In this geopolitical context, Europe and the US need each other more than ever, making greater transatlantic cooperation crucial.

This illustration is by Tim Brinton and comes from <a href=""></a>, and is the property of the NewsArt organization and of its artist. Reproducing this image is a violation of copyright law.
Illustration by Tim Brinton

This seems to be the approach that inspired outgoing US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent speech at the Brookings Institution on US-European relations. Given the shift in global power and the prospect of US energy self-sufficiency as domestic hydrocarbon output booms, America is trying to adapt its foreign policy to the new multi-polar international order. And, although Asia is now America’s strategic priority, Europe is still the partner with which Americans have the most in common. “I want to be clear,” Clinton noted. “Our reorientation toward Asia is not a withdrawal from Europe.”
The US, according to Clinton, hopes that Europe will follow suit, so that Asia is seen not only as a market, but also as a focus of common strategic action. But, beyond that, as the US and Europe seek to ensure their global roles, cooperation between them is more important than ever. So now is the time for a bold initiative: the launch of a US-European Union free-trade agreement.
Clinton has already hinted at America’s readiness for this, mentioning the possibility of negotiating a complete agreement that would increase trade and stimulate growth on both sides of the Atlantic. The journalist David Ignatius even dared to give it a name in a recent article in The Washington Post: TAFTA (Transatlantic Free-Trade Agreement). Edward Luce, writing in the Financial Times, preferred “Transatlantic Partnership.”
The US and the EU (taken as a whole) are not only the world’s two largest economies and typically the largest commercial partners for other major economies; they also maintain the world’s largest bilateral trade relationship. American investment in Europe is three times higher than it is in Asia. European investment in the US is eight times larger than its investments in China and India combined. So transatlantic trade is crucial for both economies, particularly for job creation. Indeed, it is estimated that one-third of all bilateral US-EU trade consists of internal transfers by companies that operate in both markets.
Although US and EU tariffs on each other’s marketed manufactured goods are already low (below 3%, on average), a free-trade agreement would be enormously beneficial in promoting further investment, thereby boosting economic growth and creating more jobs. Such an agreement could include trade in goods, services, financial instruments, and agriculture, and would necessitate greater compatibility of European and American regulations and legal norms, implying substantial savings.
Moreover, the effects of such an agreement would be felt far beyond the US and Europe. For example, both have already signed free-trade treaties with various Latin American countries, implying the creation of a geographically enormous free-trade area, which should boost economic resilience in the face of global crisis.
Indeed, regional free-trade agreements are gaining momentum worldwide. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, a free-trade agreement spearheaded by the US, is set to be a game-changer in the Asia-Pacific region, with decisive advances this year putting it on course to be concluded in 2015. Potential signatories include the US, Australia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, New Zealand, Chile, Peru, Brunei, Canada, Mexico, and perhaps Japan and South Korea. The result will be trade liberalization in an area that produces 40% of global GDP.
Isn’t it time to consider something similar for Europe and the US? The EU, now confronting a wave of populism and Euro-skepticism, could revive its sense of purpose by committing itself to closer transatlantic cooperation and coordination on trade, to be carried out by the European Commission. Such a project has worked before in bringing Europe together; it can do so again. The most precious asset today is confidence, and the mere fact of launching negotiations would generate it in abundance.
Protectionism is no solution to the crisis, whereas a transatlantic free-trade agreement would favor multilateralism and openness. In this sense, it is important to stress the work of the World Trade Organization, the best multilateral forum that the world has for resolving trade disputes. Signing a transatlantic trade treaty would be irrefutable proof that the political case for open trade can be made – and won.
The only way to achieve this is through the clear commitment of political leaders on both sides of the Atlantic, together with private-sector involvement, which is fundamental to sustaining urgently needed economic growth. But let’s not wait: faced with predictions of the West’s relative decline, the US and the EU must commit themselves to more union, more cooperation, and more prosperity. Today, that means a transatlantic free-trade agreement."

Read more at 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

the Brasilian message from Solana: globalize

26/12/2012 at 07:57 - updated on 26/12/2012 at 07:57

"Crisis should result in a lost generation in Spain

The European crisis can produce a lost generation in Spain: "There is a huge risk that current events would prevent an entire generation to realize their potential." The diagnosis is Javier Solana, former Spanish Foreign Minister and European Union.

After Solana, who has also been secretary general of NATO, European leaders must urgently adopt policies that promote economic growth.

Solana was in São Paulo in late November to attend a conference on the importance of large metropolitan regions for global trade, sponsored by the Brookings Institution and JP Morgan.

Read key excerpts from his interview (currently President of the ESADE Center for Global Economy and Geopolitics) to Folha.

Sheet * - Since the global crisis governments have become more realistic, more interested in solving their problems than to pursue a global agenda. How to change it?

Javier Solana - The economic crisis and the consequent awareness of the degree of interdependence have inspired a resurgence of nationalism around the world. But we hide inside our shells or introduce protectionist measures will not solve the current problems.

Instead, I am convinced that the solution lies in the opportunities offered by more open to the global market. The risks inherent in these actions can be mitigated in forums such as the WTO.

Despite recent agreements for Greece, it seems that the crisis is far from resolved. As Mr.. evaluates the action of European leaders?

Let's be clear: the crisis has been a real jerk to everyone. No country was fully prepared for the changes and dramatic situations in recent years.

But considering the extreme difficulty of the situation, I think that European leaders responded as well as they could.

The current challenge for the EU is to incorporate the causes and repercussions of the events in extraordinary economic development and political actionThis will require courageous and visionary moves by European leaders, and I hope that these actions materialize.

Spain is facing very high unemployment rates. How long this situation can be maintained without slipping into social upheavals?

My country, Spain, is actually feeling the heavy weight of the crisis. But it is also a very strong and developed country, which is supported by a dense network of social ties. This robust network ensures that basic needs are met, especially in this dramatic situation of unemployment exorbitant.

The biggest problem is a swamp impending generational: there is a huge risk that current events would prevent an entire generation realize their potential.

And although it seems a problem at an individual level, in fact its effect will be felt on a national scale. It is imperative that actions be taken to avoid a lost generation.

Spain is in the correct direction out of the crisis?

Since Spain is a full member of the European Union, I believe that the solution to their exit from the crisis has to be a European solution. The big question, however, is how to migrate from austerity policies to policies that will stimulate growth.

While austerity is an essential ingredient, it alone can not get us out of the crisis. Only economic growth can make us move up and forward. It is vital that we engage to find programs and policies that promote growth.

The crisis made the G20 had a prominent role in the economy. As Mr.. evaluates the performance of this group?

I agree that the G20 had an important role in this crisis. In the early stages, the forum members reacted quickly and determined to avoid a global recession. But after the initial meetings, some of that momentum was unfortunately lost. The group found it difficult to coordinate growth policies, which is a shame.

But I still believe in the promise of the G20. The strong role played by emerging countries this forum corresponds to its place in the global economy.

Sir, do you believe that the West should arm the rebels or promote any Syrian intervention in the country?

The situation in Syria is dramatic and deplorable. Every day it becomes clearer that the conflict can not continue forever. Sooner or later, President (Bashar) Assad must recognize that it can no longer govern the country and the sooner he admits it, the better.

In the meantime, however, it is very regrettable that the international community has not been able to take care of this situation. It has proved impossible to construct a basis of legitimacy for international action. The impasse in the UN Security Council is revealing: underscores the huge and sometimes seemingly insurmountable difficulties of governing a world increasingly multipolar.

As Mr.. evaluates the strategy in the Afghanistan war? NATO can leave the country without creating a security vacuum?

NATO is in Afghanistan for over ten years, very dedicated to his mission in a country extremely challenging.This area is known for its exceptionally difficult geography and its neighbors very complex. I think it is crucial that the focus on Afghanistan put its internal problems. After years of international help in many ways, the country and its leaders need to understand that help is not an eternal source."

Thursday, December 20, 2012

JS has a blog

Spain has a new governmental website, where they try to push the brand "SPAIN".
Among others here Javier Solana received a blog, soon to be available also in English:

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Great Spanish Crash

BBC Film: The Great Spanish Crash. from 2012.12.18 Need some spell?
At Minute 18 (6+6+6) Javier Solana says three times "the European Union".
stay tuned!

Solanas to Brussels

"Scotland, Wales, Flanders, Catalonia and the Basque Country are outstanding 
examples of claims of stateless nations advancing in function of the weakening of the nation state, still trapped by the old ideas of sovereignty and independence. "
writes Michael Keating on the nationalities question, in La Vanguardia Dossier, extraordinary and ever present issue on what will become of Europe?. adds, 
Keating, Scottish professor at the University of Edinburgh: 
"It is unlikely that proliferate new states in Europe, but aspirations of stateless nations
 in wanting to sit with their own voice in the decision table. " Excellent explanation to understand what is happening to us is these days. Felipe González, copilot in Brussels
 Jacques Delors, a few days ago announced the installation of the European peoples,
 rather than states, more in line with the union seeking to European citizens. 
curious paradoxes that exist between highly rated Spanish continental scale, much 
less at home. Javier Solana is another case : a former Minister of Foreign imperativethat managed to restore dialogue between Moscow and Washington and 
then the approximation of the two systems of collective defense between East and West. Zapatero has yet to explain why not vote wretched reason Solana's reelection as vice president Commission in Brussels with other European social partners, opposing his candidacy for mayor of Madrid. Afraid to make him so illustrious shadow partner?..."

Leer más: 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

running Solana on the way EU integration should happen

Among other "Brookings-Scholars" Javier Solana had been asked on different areas of the European integration and its progress. His answers give a good clue on the steps that should follow each other in that progress towards a total union. Interestingly enough he changes the steps of the query (From 1,2,3 to 3,2,1), not caring about questions 4-6. Where the other scholars give long, expansive answers, Dr. Solana does not really reflect on the questions given, but rather fastly recommends his programm (as if having no time for such analysis, must have a lot to do these days, I thought a retired gentleman would have more time available, but no the GENTLEMAN IS RUNNING!!):

-on banking union (Question 3)
Question to scholar: In order to make the Eurozone a viable currency union in the long term, 
European leaders need to make progress towards a banking union. The four features such a 
banking union should include, according to most analysts, are Eurozone-wide: regulation, 
supervision, deposit guarantee fund, and bank resolution mechanism.  On a scale from 0 to 
100%, how far along do you estimate the Eurozone to be in building a banking union?

Solana"It is a three step project. The correct order is banking union in the first place, fiscal union in the second, and finally the political union. "

-on fiscal union: (Question 2)

Question to scholar: In order to make the Eurozone a viable currency union in the long term, 
European leaders need to make progress towards fiscal union, an objective that includes fiscal 
convergence among national budgets, a regime of centralized surveillance and enforcement of 
budget rules, It could include, as well, two even more controversial features: mutualization of 
debt and fiscal transfers in the form of a common budget. On a scale from 0 to 100%, how far 
along do you estimate the Eurozone to be in achieving the desirable level of fiscal union?

Solana: "This is the main debate these days. The right percentage remains unclear."

-on political union: (Question 1)

Question to scholar: In order to make the Eurozone a viable currency union in the long term, 
European leaders need to make progress towards political union, both to strengthen its 
governance and remedy its executive deficit, and to ensure democratic accountability. On a 
scale from 0 to 100%, how far along do you estimate the Eurozone to be in achieving the 
necessary level of political union to be consistent with a very resilient Eurozone? 

Solana: "The final step."

stay tuned!

Friday, December 14, 2012

bits falling into place...

"Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has resigned after prosecutors decided to charge him with breach of trust.
Mr Lieberman has also resigned as deputy prime minister, and said he would fight to clear his name of the charges.
The case against him relates to a financial scandal dating back more than a decade.
...Seen as to the right of Mr Netanyahu, Mr Lieberman has been a harsh critic of the Palestinian Authority and its leader Mahmoud Abbas. He lives in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank...." LINK

Interesting enough just 2 days ago we hear: (from Jerome M. Segal, who directs the Peace Consultancy Project at the University of Maryland. He is president of The Jewish Peace Lobby.):

"There is, however, another alternative, one recently proposed in the New York Times by Former Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami, Former EU High Commissioner Javier Solana, Nobel Prize winner Thomas C. Schelling, and me: The United Nations, if necessary, the U.N. General Assembly, should appoint a special peace commission, headed by a distinguished American, such as Bill Clinton. This commission would go to the region and directly engage, not the governments, but the two peoples. It would collect new ideas, hold hearings, and study public opinion. Its first mission would be to answer the fundamental question: Is there a way to address the core issues of the conflict, including Jerusalem and refugees, which the majorities of both populations would support?
If the commission concludes that there are solutions that could win majority support on both sides, it would proceed to formulate a draft treaty document. This would then be presented to the PLO and the Israeli government as the starting point for the resumption of bilateral negotiations. Assuming that the commission has identified a plan supported by both populations, if either government agrees to use the proposal as the point of reference, the other side will be under enormous pressure from its own public to follow suit..."

I have reported about this peace plan in June.

FROM ANOTHER SOURCE, also 12.12.12:
"Would you agree that Bill Clinton is, again, mediator between Palestine and Israel?
A Bill Clinton is heard not because it was the U.S. president. A Bill is heard because it is the husband of Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton , and because he's backed by PresidentBarack Obama . " LINK
...and he was the one who wanted JS as NATO Boss back in 1995...
stay tuned!

Friday, December 07, 2012

"And out of one of them came forth a little horn, 
which waxed exceeding great, toward the south
and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land."

 "Charles Onana: "The European Union censorship Rwanda's involvement in the Congolese crisis"5. December | By  
In an exclusive interview to JamboNews Friday, 30 November in Brussels, Charles Onana, investigative journalist Franco-Cameroonian, answered our questions about his new book dedicated to the DRC. He mentioned in particular the role of Rwanda in the Congo crisis and the silence of the European Union in light of all the tragic events observed in the Democratic Republic of Congo since the beginning of hostilities in 1996.
Making the point about the recent publication of his book "Europe, Censorship and Crimes in Congo," Charles told the Onana sleuths of Jambonews motivations that led him to write this book makes much attention since its output on the book market. By his own admission, his book from a simple observation that the EU speaks less of Rwanda's involvement in armed conflict that shook the Congo. Most recently, following reports of UN experts accusing Rwanda of supporting rebellions in the DRC, said Charles Onana have found that the discourse of the European Union spared much Kigali and spared a direct question about his role in the destabilization of the DRC.  "This is why I investigated the decision-making process within the European Union. Who influences whom and for what purpose? "  he has declared.
In the course of its investigations, Charles Onana told us he obtained several documents kept secret from European institutions, documents sometimes from the reports of the Special Envoys of the European Union in the Great Lakes region. Probably exhibits. In fact, these documents were not to be made ​​public. With these documents, I was able to reconstruct missing parts of the puzzle. In addition, the testimony of diplomats helped me " , said Charles Onana. It also revealed that the exchange took place in 2003 between President Joseph Kabila and Javier Solana, High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union.
According to Charles Onana, Joseph Kabila wrote to Javier Solana to develop an integrated policy to ensure the security of the electoral process in the DRC. Onana regrets that this initiative was hardly in the interests of the Congolese people. Also decrying the inaction and incompetence of Joseph Kabila, Charles Onana said that Congolese President is an offshoot of the AFDL and Rwanda.
"  The Rwanda Kagame became counsel for the recolonisation of Africa  "
Charles Onana has not had tender words to the regime of Paul Kagame. "Kagame leads an economic war in the Congo. Today, we demonstrate this assertion. Historically, people have underestimated the role of Rwanda as a subcontractor multinationals. Rwanda, Kagame became counsel recolonisation of Africa " , said Charles Onana.
Charles Onana argues that Rwanda agents and very active in lobbying EU institutions including the equally influential Louis Michel, founder of the group "Friends of Rwanda" in the European Parliament, to tell you the work done backstage.
Without going into depth on the concept of stability, Onana justifies the continued support of the European Union in Rwanda by the warranty it offers on the stability of their interests in this region. Why according to him, the EU continues to turn a blind eye on the situation in the Great Lakes region. Despite the violations of human rights in Rwanda, the European Union continues to provide support to the dictatorial regime. Having regard to the foregoing, the EU does not respect its own principles, said Charles Onana."
Interview by Mathy Mati and Charis Basoko

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

The Catalan publishers bridge rewarding Javier Solana with Atlantis Prize

The Catalan publishers bridges rewarding Javier Solana
The industry gives the former Minister and former leader the Atlantis 2012 European

It was not explicitly sought, but the choice of politician Javier Solana
yesterday as Atlantis 2012 prize awarded by the Publishers' Association of Catalonia 
gave a tacit message both timely and bridging sectors, as well as to the Ebro as to the
Pyrenees. "His experience in the cultural world is endorsement enough,
but also as an international figure who has looked inward and outward in that
sense, it is appropriate," explained yesterday the president of the editors,
Xavier Mallafré, aware of the tensions generated sovereigntist debate in
Catalan society and in the world of books translated into statements of 
Metro Group President, Jose Manuel Lara, to take their business outside 
Catalonia in case of a hypothetical independence of Spain.
In the framework of the Edició Nit 27 (the Feast of Catalan publishers) that the crisis 
left yesterday afternoon snack in the Salo de Cent of the Barcelona City Council with 
about 150 people from the world of books and culture, is Mallafré commissioned 
to give the current brush, for example, also without mentarlo slipstream and the controversy that drives educational reform minister Wert, giving data on multilingualism in Catalonia
 (about 180 languages spoken):
"Language is the source of wealth and division of society ", dropped before the deputy 
director of El País, Lluís Bassets, took care of glossing figure Solana,
"the most internationally known Spanish, a great traveler and just off a plane 
he asks, 'What are you reading?'. Or asking an editor that makes you get a 
novelty before it's in bookstores. "
Solana's extensive curriculum (Madrid, 1946(??)), which led him to be Secretary General 
of  NATO, the Council High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy of the 
European Union and Commander of EUFOR, preferred to stress Bassets his six years as 
Minister of Culture (1982-1986), stage in which legendary editor appointed as CEO 
Jaime Salinas Book: "Never has had a policy of the book as it was then," summarized the journalist.
Solana, the unique personality of Castilian culture basically recognized the award in its 
history with Jose Manuel Blecua last year, was excited, "believe it or not," he said. It was 
true: he betrayed the evocation of his paternal grandfather Ezekiel, editor and creator of a 
Quixote for children, and the mother's side, which also featured an editorial on economic 
issues. "I was born with ink-stained fingers and knowing what is a Cicero [measure
to calculate interlineations]," he joked. But he also showed that he knew what was Europe
with its readings, starting with The Radetzky March, a book that showed how the Austro-Hungarian Empire collapsed. From Joseph Roth also cited The Capuchin Crypt, shared 
reading with his friend Juan Benet. The result of this book, Solana visited the imperial
 tomb in Vienna, where the Habsburgs are buried a modest basement of the church 
of the Capuchins, if after visiting El Escorial bags of many history lessons and 
the austerity and grandeur; but I will not decide ", he launched sly.
Citing Ariel Sharon, who walked two Jewish books: The world of yesterday, Zweig
"I rejected, he said, be an European writer" and another of Isaiah Berlin, who 
"always kept" - and inevitable Danube by Claudio Magris and a bridge over 
the Drina by Ivo Andric, came to an entry "not happy" of Elias Canetti's diaries
In them, there is a place on a site where Canetti centroeuropa detected in a conversation 
that sought distances between towns and people"I thought, after reading it, 
I decided to build my life nearby, to build", this despite being at a time when 
"we live longer but less accurate" and that "we travel more but rather 
bringing us memories than photographs".."