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EU Reforms for Tomorrow’s Europe

Author

Listed:
  • Baldwin, Richard
  • Berglöf, Erik
  • Giavazzi, Francesco
  • Widgrén, Mika

Abstract

This Paper contributes ideas and analysis to the ongoing EU reform debate. It consists of three distinct parts: voting in the Council of Ministers, restructuring the ECB's Governing Council, and the setting of enlargement “examination” dates. The IGC currently focuses on Council voting, Commission composition, closer co-operation and the range of issues to be covered by qualified majority voting. Part 1 of our paper evaluates Council voting reform proposals with quantitative tools from voting game theory. We find that only the ‘dual simple majority’ plan maintains decision-making efficiency and democratic legitimacy in an EU 27. We believe, however, that the impact of enlargement on the ECB's Governing Council merits also discussion in Nice. We demonstrate that an expanded Governing Council with its current structure would be unwieldy and plagued by decision-making difficulties that would prevent it from making hard choices at the right time. Financial markets could react negatively to the possibility of a dysfunctional ECB; the Nice summit should request the ECB to propose some solutions. Finally, we argue that undertaking these reforms before enlargement should be a priority, not a precondition. Specifically, the EU should now commit to firm accession “exam” dates and signing dates (for those who pass); this should be done both for the earliest enlargement and for subsequent waves since this would stimulate incumbents and candidates to undertake the necessary reforms while ensuring that the first enlargement does not delay the second.

Suggested Citation

  • Baldwin, Richard & Berglöf, Erik & Giavazzi, Francesco & Widgrén, Mika, 2000. "EU Reforms for Tomorrow’s Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 2623, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2623
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ricahrd E. Baldwin & Joseph F. Francois & Richard Portes, 1997. "The costs and benefits of eastern enlargement: the impact on the EU and central Europe," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 12(24), pages 125-176, April.
    2. Rudi Dornbusch & Carlo Favero & Francesco Giavazzi, 1998. "Immediate challenges for the European Central Bank," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 13(26), pages 15-64, April.
    3. Widgren, Mika, 1994. "Voting power in the EC decision making and the consequences of two different enlargements," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 1153-1170, May.
    4. Rudiger Dornbusch & Carlo A. Favero & Francesco Giavazzi, 1998. "The Immediate Challenges for the European Central Bank," NBER Working Papers 6369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Laruelle, Annick & Widgren, Mika, 1998. "Is the Allocation of Voting Power among EU States Fair?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 94(3-4), pages 317-339, March.
    6. repec:cup:apsrev:v:48:y:1954:i:03:p:787-792_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. von Hagen, Jurgen & Suppel, Ralph, 1994. "Central bank constitutions for federal monetary unions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 774-782, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Accession; ECB; EMU; Enlargement; European Union; IGC; Institutional Reform; Political Economy; Qualified Majority Voting;

    JEL classification:

    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration

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