Press

Business needs a transition period with the EU

19 February 2020
The Telegraph
From the EU’s perspective, there is a political argument to be made that Brexit should be seen to hurt.

What if Trump wins? Europeans fear a more permanent shift against them

18 February 2020
The New York Times
European leadership remains weak and divided, noted Sophia Besch, an analyst in the Berlin office of the Centre for European Reform. “We talk a lot about US leadership but not enough about European leadership,” she said.

The EU is in trouble and Ursula Von der Leyen is the wrong person to rescue it

18 February 2020
The Spectator
Charles Grant of the Centre for European Reform warns that France and Germany are increasingly operating unilaterally, each pursuing its national interest. “Germany,” he points out, “did not consult its EU partners over its support for the Nord Stream 2 Russian gas pipeline, although it will increase the EU’s dependency on Russian energy and cause tensions with the US.”

Bloomberg Westminster: Wales under water

17 February 2020
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price joins us from flood-hit Pontypridd where he says many of those affected are still in a state of shock. He calls for hardship support for the large number of people who have lost everything and are uninsured. Plus, Charles Grant director of the Centre for...

Sustaina Babble: #166: Chlorine Chicken

17 February 2020
Sam Lowe from the Centre for European Reform joins us to defend his fascination with one of the nerdiest subjects in the world and patiently explain why it’s actually quite important.

How Hungary's sledging hill with no snow may reshape EU budgets

16 February 2020
The Telegraph
Agata Gostyńska-Jakubowska, the EU policy special at the Centre for European Reform in Brussels says that the Commission’s ‘conditionality’ proposal will survive in some form - but it is not yet clear exactly what will remain, once the haggling over the budget heats up.“The risk is that ‘rule of law’ conditionality will become a bargaining chip in the negotiating end-game, traded away for other concessions rather than being treated on its merits,” she warned in a discussion paper last month.

Talk Radio: Post-Brexit trade deals

16 February 2020
The Centre for European Reform's Sam Lowe discusses post-Brexit trade deals: "Everything we buy from the EU will be more expensive than it was before, even if tariffs are zero, because there will be new customs procedures and new bureaucracy."

Brexit boost: How Boris Johnson could sign US trade deal ‘promise’ before November

16 February 2020
The Express
Charles Grant from the Centre for European Reform said: “I think the chances of a real proper free trade agreement between the UK and the US in the next year or two are absolutely minimal.”He continued: “I’m very sceptical that you could move quickly.

'Global Britain' goes missing at Munich security summit

16 February 2020
The Financial Times
Sophia Besch, a defence and security specialist at the Centre for European Reform think-tank, said Britain was still trying to figure out what global Britain meant. “Maybe the thinking was that there wasn’t a new high level message,” she said. “But in the debates on China and technology, a high-level UK voice would have been valuable.”

CER podcast: Europe and Libya

12 February 2020
The conflict in Libya is spiralling out of control despite the recent Berlin conference. Beth Oppenheim and Luigi Scazzieri discuss why Europe has struggled to influence Libya, and how the conflict may evolve.

British services have played second fiddle in the Brexit debate

11 February 2020
The UK in a Changing Europe
In 2018, services accounted for 46 per cent of UK exports, or £297 billion. The EU received 40 per cent of British services exports, and was the origin of 48 per cent of British services imports, the highest proportion of any UK trading partner.

Why traditional freeports won’t work in the UK

11 February 2020
Financial Times
Sam Lowe, at the Centre for European Reform, says the case for establishing freeports is often much clearer in developing countries, where the environment for doing business may be more difficult, with higher tariffs and bigger bureaucratic obstacles. “You can see value in countries that have real rule of law and governance issues, an unwieldy business system, lots of patronage . . . You can make a much better argument for them in a developing context.”

Merkel succession crisis in Germany leaves Europe leaderless, too

11 February 2020
The New York Times
“We’ve been living off our past glories and achievements for a while, and slow to adapt to digitalization and AI and even the ‘Green Deal,’” said Sophia Besch, of the Berlin office of the Centre for European Reform.

Merkel succession crisis in Germany leaves Europe leaderless, too

11 February 2020
The New York Times
Nor has Germany been prepared “to suffer economic pain for political and foreign-policy gains," said Christian Odendahl, a German economist with the Centre for European Reform in Berlin. “And this is now a Germany feeling economically insecure about its future.”

The EU's response to Trump's peace plan has been pitiful – it is time for the bloc to speak up

10 February 2020
The Independent
The 27 have a crucial role to play in containing the American president's destructive impulses – a role it is entirely reneging.

Freeports plan for ‘left-behind’ regions divides opinion

10 February 2020
Financial Times
“It could pull in industry from elsewhere [in the world] — but more likely from elsewhere in the UK,” said Sam Lowe, senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform, adding: “You can argue it’s good for rebalancing, but only if you assume it comes from London rather than areas that are struggling to get by.”

Boris Johnson's Brexit deal can be done, but at what cost?

10 February 2020
Sky News
Sam Lowe, a research fellow at the Centre for European Reform think tank, thinks the two sides will manage to agree a deal this year, but thinks it will, as with the divorce talks, go down to the wire.
"One of the constant threads throughout Brexit was everyone saying "we are happy with severe disruption", but no one really wants it when it approaches," he says.
"In the third quarter the UK will concede in certain areas and the EU will budge a little bit and then Boris Johnson will package it up as a win."
 

EU mulls carbon tariffs in climate trade war warning shot to Brexit Britain

08 February 2020
The Telegraph
“This is another example of the UK needing to take a decision on whether it continues to take an EU approach or not in the knowledge that if it doesn’t there is the possibility of facing trade penalties,” said Sam Lowe, a trade expert at the Centre for European Reform think tank.

La UE y EE UU deben trabajar unidos para acabar con el sitio de Trípoli

07 February 2020
ESglobal
El conflicto libio continúa intensificándose a pesar de la reciente conferencia de Berlín. La Unión Europea debe trabajar con Estados Unidos y presionar a las potencias regionales para que dejen de alimentar la lucha. 

We have until July to ask Europe for more time. How firm is that deadline?

07 February 2020
Prospect
Charles Grant, director of the Centre for European Reform, said: “My guess: there will not be a formal extension of the transition à la the withdrawal agreement. But there will be a de facto extension of large parts of the transition because in areas like security, research, education, services, investment, aviation etc there won’t be enough time to do deals this year.” We would have to continue paying into the EU budget over any lengthened transition period but perhaps something can be done.

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