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Euro Adoption: Chance and Challenge for Romania

Euro Adoption: Chance and Challenge for Romania

Like the other Central and Eastern European countries, Romania committed itself to adopting the euro as soon as it will meet the necessary conditions. The candidates have, however, a considerably large margin of manoeuvre in determining the moment when they will adopt the euro. Especially two accession criteria to the Monetary Union – harmonization of the legal framework with the Eurozone standards and the prior participation in the European Exchange Rate Mechanism II (ERM) – are entirely under the sovereign control of the states. On the other hand, the institutions of the Eurozone have an important role in the euro adoption process, notably when it comes to assessing the extent to which a certain country is ready to participate in the ERM II. More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


Horror Vacui: The Crisis of Meaning of the Globalized World, as Demonstrated by the EU. A Jungian Approach

Horror Vacui: The Crisis of Meaning of the Globalized World, as Demonstrated by the EU. A Jungian Approach

What does globalization mean? But actually, is there any meaning to it? If not, could one be edified? By whom, on what grounds, how and, after all, why would it matter? I will partly explore all these questions, with special regard to the European Union and, maybe surprisingly, on the grounds of Jungian analytical psychology (with some tints of phenomenology and hermeneutics).  More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


Can Prosperity Be a Catalyst for Integration?

Can Prosperity Be a Catalyst for Integration?

More and more, in every segment of society, it has become clearer that the dimensions of societal progress must be better understood. As growth and development proved to be less relevant to measure societal progress, experts and decision-makers consider that another concept could be more relevant, namely economic prosperity. In the equation of the new concept, in addition to the economic dimension of development, the social one becomes essential. Reducing discrepancies across member states has always been one of the objectives of integration, but the evolution of each economy made it more difficult for the European entity to reach this goal. Another assumption is that European citizens consider that the European project started to undergo certain changes, a “social deficit”, so it is imperative to define the elements of the new social dimension of the Economic and Monetary Union.  More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


Does the European Union Pursue a Neo-Protectionist Trade Policy?

Does the European Union Pursue a Neo-Protectionist Trade Policy?

With the advancement of the multilateral negotiations, which resulted in a significant reduction in the level of customs duties and other measures implemented at the border, traditional means of protection have become less important in the public policy equation adopted and implemented by the economic powers. These paradigm shifts have created a favourable framework for the proliferation of non-tariff measures, which have gained a significant influence on trade flows. The main analytical objective of this article is to analyse the trade policy of the EU, bringing to the fore the trend of restricting trade flows with third countries. There is some evidence that, in the 21st century, the trade policy of the EU continues to have a flavour of neo-protectionism, with the trend of restricting trade flows gradually increasing, calling into question the achievement of the desideratum of multilateral trade liberalization.  More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


The Worrisome EU Defense Union

The Worrisome EU Defense Union

In 2016, the EU put forward a new vision and a new plan for a “Defense Union”. The proposals are supported mainly by France and Germany – Europe’s most notable military powers. France and Germany are also the two major continental contributors to NATO’s defense system. Presently, both of these European states look for a more substantial “European defense” structure by and for Europeans, but certainly not excluding NATO. While the French loudly claim that the current EU proposal was initially a French one, the German side has more interest in its success. The team of France and Germany is mainly an alliance of common pragmatic interests rather than of a common political will. Germany’s defense industry is in a better situation, while the French one is hindered by the country’s stagnating economy (i.e., the French deficit issue due to EU’s macroeconomic governance requirements). More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


Fortress Europe under Siege: The Ongoing Refugee Crisis

Fortress Europe under Siege: The Ongoing Refugee Crisis

The term “Fortress Europe” was used during World War II to denote European territories occupied by Nazi forces, as well as military operations conducted by the British military against mainland targets in Germany. It was also used by Britain’s enemy, Nazi Germany, to refer to its goal of conquering the entirety of Europe so as to create an impenetrable powerbase. After the war ended, the term was used in the context of the European Union’s policies on immigration, border control and trade matters, with positive connotations for conservative factions opposing migration and negative for the more open factions.  More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


The European Union Is in a Limbo of Its Own Making

The European Union Is in a Limbo of Its Own Making

The current woes of the European Union are intentionally treated superficially or obtusely in public discourse, as it also emanates from the prestige media which generally co-opts European elites to its worldview, even when they nominally disagree with specific policy prescriptions. Beyond the crisis of the moment and the tendency to transform everything into a morality play involving good and noble Europeanists and regressive nationalists, there are specific factors of its own making which hinder the EU’s adaptive processes and make it increasingly likely that the project may founder. Whether it does so under the blows of an unknown or unremarked crisis or threat (as most empires do), or whether it will simply strain under the accumulated errors and stresses of a thousand bad policy compromises, one should dismiss the “illusion of inevitability” that accompanies public discourse on globalization in general and EU regionalism in particular.  More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


Three Unions in a (Life)Boat

Three Unions in a (Life)Boat

The unions of states, in their either federalist or inter-governmental setting, are portrayed in economics and political science literature, by certain scholars and pundits, as quasi-romantic stories and, by others, as purely-cynical undertakings: they are, for the first, expressions of common destinies, while for the second, mere cartels of political exploitation. Though, beyond charitable or circumspect translation of state gatherings, the undeniable facts are that the state, as an organization of humans, has a maximizing logic and that this logic is exercised as the monopoly of (legitimate?) violence with the privilege of (unconsented?) expropriation, by taxation, regulation and inflationary redistribution of purchasing power. The maximization logic of the state (apparatus) – rightly de-homogenized from the rest of society – leads to a triple choice: to increase domestic exploitation, to expand abroad, or both. More

No. 5-6, May.-Aug. 2017 2017


The Risks of the Belt and Road Initiative in the Construction of the Eurasian Economic Corridor

The Risks of the Belt and Road Initiative in the Construction of the Eurasian Economic Corridor

The EU/European market has always been fundamental to the development of economy and trade of China. The EU is the No. 1 trading partner of China. With regards to GDP, the EU is the largest economy in the world with the US and China ranking as the second and third largest economies respectively. Needless to say, the cooperation between the EU and China is of great significance to the economic development of China. For this reason, China has committed to pushing forward the construction of the Eurasian Economic Corridor, so as to facilitate the bilateral trade between the two sides. More

No. 4, Mar.-Apr. 2017 2017


Cooperation Rationale for China and the CEE Countries

Cooperation Rationale for China and the CEE Countries

When the BRI (Belt and Road Initiative) was first introduced to the world, it was both hailed and doubted. One common misunderstanding regarding the BRI is whether it can transcend individual infrastructure construction and realize true regional economic integration, which would surely help China manage its overcapacity problem and its structural economic transition. However, we should go further and ask another question – what are the infrastructures for? More

No. 4, Mar.-Apr. 2017 2017


The New Silk Road: Hope in Times of Imminent Danger

The New Silk Road: Hope in Times of Imminent Danger

Dark storm clouds are gathering on the horizon. The financial crisis is back, new tensions between the USA and Russia lie ahead – with heavy implications for Europe – as result of sanctions just established by the American Congress, not the President. On the other hand, we have an inkling of a new and more just world order in the making by China’s New Silk Road Initiative, formerly known as the One Belt, One Road and commonly named the Belt and Road Initiative. If mankind is to survive, we have to bury the old paradigm of geopolitics, that brought us two World Wars and threatens us today with the deadly prospect of a final one – the thermonuclear annihilation of civilization.  More

No. 4, Mar.-Apr. 2017 2017


The Other Side of the (Chinese) Wall

The Other Side of the (Chinese) Wall

For someone who has been born in the Western world it is quite a challenge to accept or at least to imagine that world is much more diverse, old and complex than the European civilization. Even today, in the age of globalization and Internet, very few Europeans know that Europe represents just about 17% of the world gross product and only a tiny 7% of the world population. More

No. 4, Mar.-Apr. 2017 2017


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OEconomica No. 1, 2016