Obama utmanar EU2008-11-26

EU får se upp - med Barack Obama som USA:s president måste EU gå från ord till handling inom en rad områden....

Det skriver Chris Patten, tidigare EU:s utrikeskommissionär, i en intressant artikel i dagens FT som kan läsas här:


" Europe beware. Sometimes in life you get what you have asked for. The result is not always comfortable."

påpekar Patten och fortsätter:

" Since 2001, European politicians have bemoaned the lack of a Washington administration that believed in multilateralism. We Europeans have been able to define ourselves in opposition to President George W. Bush and his “my way or the highway” approach to international affairs. For Europe, the 43rd president was a sort of solution in the search for our own global vocation.

“If only we had a real multilateralist across the Atlantic we could do such things ... ” The sentence was not usually completed. Well, now we appear to have got the president of our dreams – Barack Obama, the man for whom 200,000 Berliners turned out to cheer. So what will we say when he comes calling and asks us to put our resolve, money, unity and soldiers where our mouths have been? Maybe we will look back with nostalgia to the days of Bush-Cheney. Having a unilateralist in Washington made it so easy to be multilateralists in Brussels.

Here are half a dozen things Europeans could do to show that our multilateralism is more than a vacuous slogan."

Chris Patten skriver om EU:s roll i världen och behovet av att gå från ord till handling i t ex Kongo, Mellanöstern - och i de internationella klimatförhandlingarna.

Om EU på allvar vill vara en ledande aktör i klimatpolitiken är det nu upp till bevis:

" the EU countries should make clear, at the heads of government meeting in December, that despite the recession they will keep their climate change commitments to cut carbon emissions by 20 per cent by 2020 on 1990 levels and to meet a 20 per cent renewables target by the same date. This undertaking should not be made conditional on what others do. It is right on it own terms. We should get on and do it."

Chris Patten tycker också att det är dags för Europas stormakter att släppa ifrån sig makten i Världsbanken och IMF:

" Finally, with Europe now in discussion about reforms of the global financial architecture (which seems to have attracted much of the blame for the consequences of bad national macro-economic policies) perhaps the most helpful first step towards more effective financial multilateralism would be to reduce Europe’s International Monetary Fund voting rights and World Bank status to something closer to our share of global gross domestic product. That would make room for the emerging economies, such as China and Brazil. In view of his long years as chairman of the IMF Ministerial Committee, it is surprising that Gordon Brown was not able to push this through long ago.

In a sensible world, there would be one European voice at the IMF and World Bank, and we would give up our seigneurial rights to nominate the head of the Fund. Britain, France and Germany would, of course, fight to the last pound and euro to prevent these changes.

Doubtless President Obama will have his own ideas about what Europe’s commitment to multilateralism might mean in practice. But these suggestions would set Europe off on the right footing with the new administration. After all, we do want to work with Washington, don’t we?"