Baroness Ashton faces first big international test with Middle East trip

15 March 2010
The Times
"She will not solve the peace process on her first flying visit," said Hugo Brady, of the Centre for European Reform. "The full glare of the international media is on her now to see if she will make any mistakes but she simply has to show that she is an engaged player and not create a vacuum for criticism to flow into. The EU has yet to realise its full potential for influence in that part of the world and it should have some extra weight for all the money it is pouring in."

An interview with Nick Clegg

11 March 2010
The Economist
It has gone really surprisingly well, for the simple reason that it is so relentlessly targeted on this perennial problem that has bedevilled British education for so long for generations, which is the link between social deprivation and educational underperformance, a link which is pretty well stronger than almost anywhere else in Europe. I would like to think people also recognise this is not something I have just alighted on out of nowhere; I first wrote or co-authored a pamphlet about this for the Centre for European Reform. … some nine years ago.

EU prepares in case Greek woes spread to Spain

11 March 2010
"Unless we see more focus on growth and a less obsessive focus on stability, I think there will be trouble. You are not going to have stability without growth," said Simon Tilford of the London-based Centre for European Reform think tank. "It will be hard to get Spanish people to acquiesce to austerity measures. It's going to be a tough sell."

Greece seeks US help regulating speculators

09 March 2010
The Washington Post
"The concern over speculation is obscuring the underlying issue that Greece and other nations have very precarious fiscal positions," said Simon Tilford, chief economist at the Centre for European Reform.

Europe's superpower hopes dim

08 March 2010
The simple truth is that the Lisbon Treaty can't re-create the EU as a superpower. Says Hugo Brady of the Centre for European Reform, a London-based think tank: "It is not personality that denotes power: it is money, guns, political will, and diplomatic influence. When the EU can deploy those efficiently, then other countries will sit up and listen."

EU-ECB lock horns over IMF-style rescue fund

08 March 2010
"If the fund marks the start of recognition that there needs to be further political integration, then great. If it doesn't, all it will be is sticking plaster", said Simon Tilford, an analyst at the London-based Centre for European Reform.

IMF help for Greece is a risky prospect

04 March 2010
The New York Times
"It would be damaging for the eurozone going forward because it would sow seeds of doubt about whether this is really a currency union, or just a group of countries that share a currency," said Simon Tilford, the chief economist of the Centre for European Reform in London.

Striking a better tone for a long-running debate

04 March 2010
European Voice
One point is that weakening EU competition policy to support national champions is a non-starter given that the US, Japan and, increasingly, China itself are taking a cross-border view of antitrust enforcement. Then there is the economic downside. "Diluting either anti-trust policy or relaxing state-aid rules would undermine Europe's long-term economic prospects, not bolster them," says Simon Tilford, chief economist at the Centre for European Reform, a London-based think-tank.

Saab looks to new horizons

Clara Marina O'Donnell
01 March 2010
Defense News
The global defence market could become tougher for Europe in the future, said Clara O'Donnell, an analyst at the Centre for European Reform, a London think tank. O'Donnell said she believes it will become more difficult for EU countries to compete for sales of high-end technology products, given the 7-to-1 ratio in research and development spending between the United States and the European Union. She said Europe and European companies should focus on innovative solutions that are not so high-tech.

The seven sins of Stockholm

01 March 2010
Last December, EU countries unveiled a new strategy for how its justice and home affairs policy should develop by 2015. The plan – negotiated by the Swedish presidency – outlined what the member states intend to do to tackle serious crime, manage migration and extend law-abiding citizens' freedom to travel and work.

European Union moves towards a bailout of Greece

28 February 2010
International Herald Tribune
Simon Tilford, chief economist at the Centre for European Reform, said that France and Germany recognised that some form of bailout was inevitable. But, he said, for a bailout to be sold to a skeptical German public, the Greeks first "have to be seen to be suffering."

The incredible shrinking Europe

26 February 2010
"The EU offers an attractive social, economic and political model," Charles Grant, director of the London-based think-tank the Centre for European Reform, argued last year. "It is more stable, safe, green and culturally diverse than most parts of the world, which is why neighbors want to join and many migrants aim for Europe."

Germany should remember what it's got from the euro

26 February 2010
The Wall Street Journal
At a weekend conference discussing the lessons from the economic crisis, as much time was devoted to the prospect of Germany leaving the euro zone as there was to the "peripheral" countries of Greece, Portugal or Spain abandoning it. The conference of prominent economists, current and former officials and others was held at Ditchley Park, a stately home in the English countryside. To be sure, nobody was predicting any such exit is likely, certainly not in the short term.

Greek debt crisis affects Europe, world economy

26 February 2010
Voice of America
Simon Tilford, chief economist at the Centre for European Reform in London, says the Greek crisis reflects a larger economic problem in Europe. EU members like the Netherlands and Germany have spent too little and their economies are driven by exports. Meanwhile, southern economies like Greece and Portugal have spent too much and amassed debts as a result. "So in order to find a lasting solution, we need change on both sides.

Europe's bear problem: The trouble with the EU's attempts to woo Russia

Katinka Barysch
25 February 2010
The Economist
The "underlying assumption", writes Katinka Barysch in a new paper for the Centre for European Reform, a London-based think-tank, is that EU capital, technology and training might make Russia "more Western-oriented, open and easier to deal with."

Police clash with strikers as EU seeks more cuts in budget crisis

25 February 2010
The Times
"The majority of Greek people support the Government in its effort to introduce reforms because there is a feeling that enough is enough and politicians should get to grips with reform and end corruption," said Charles Grant, the director of the Centre for European Reform. "I fear that by the summer, people will stop feeling as they do now that reform is necessary."

Five NATO states to urge removal of US nuclear arms in Europe

George Robertson
23 February 2010
The Guardian
"Denied the protection of NATO's nuclear weapons in Europe, Turkey would have additional reasons to worry about Iran's nuclear programme – and perhaps to develop nuclear weapons of its own. Newer NATO members in central Europe, who see in the nuclear weapons a symbol of US commitment to defend them, would be left feeling vulnerable," George Robertson, a former defence secretary and NATO secretary general, argued in an article he co-authored this month for the Centre for European Reform.

Eyeing Israel, EU condemns identity theft in Dubai assassination

Clara Marina O'Donnell
22 February 2010
Christian Science Monitor
"I think that this is going to be an easy one for EU states to address when it comes to speaking with one voice," says Clara Marina O'Donnell, an analyst at the Centre for European Reform think-tank in London. "The big member states still tend to have more strength and if you have a consensus you won't see the European states trying to split it. But more to the point, nation states are all quite sensitive when it comes to the idea of their passports’ integrity."

Lisbon pact failing to lift the EU on global stage

22 February 2010
New York Times
Supporters of the treaty argue that it was never going to deliver instant results. "It is difficult," said Charles Grant, director of the Centre for European Reform, "to write off what has not been built," referring the new European diplomatic corps. "Turf wars are a characteristic of bureaucracies since 10,000 years BC," he said. "Bureaucracies fight other bureaucracies. Everyone knew this would happen."

Conspiracy and the euro

16 February 2010
BBC News
As Charles Grant of the Centre for European Reform points out, "people take bets on currencies - if they overreach themselves they go bust". ...Charles Grant says, however, he is certain that in the end Germany would act to prevent Greece defaulting. After all, it has signed up to a statement to "defend the stability of the euro". He says it is "understandable" at this stage that Germany wouldn't want to be too "explicit" about its plans, but who exactly will do the bail-out remains unclear.