Europe Inc. in crisis – the EU’s alliance with big business is a dead-end | Corporate Europe Observatory

It is now 15 years since four friends in Amsterdam set up Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) and published the report Europe, Inc.: Dangerous Liaisons between EU Institutions and Industry.1 Launched at the civil society “Summit from Below” which happened alongside the EU Summit in Amsterdam in June 1997, the report exposed the influence of industry lobbying on the new EU treaty being signed at the summit. This first CEO report uncovered the powerful role of lobby groups such as the European Roundtable of Industrialists (ERT), in promoting and shaping an EU-wide free trade area (the single market), a single currency (the euro), and numerous other major EU projects and policies at the time. The report warned that the far-reaching influence of corporate lobbies over EU decision-making came at the expense of democracy and of social and environmental concerns.

Fifteen years later, those very same problems have not gone away. In fact, the situation is worse than ever before. The corporate capture of EU policies has played a central role in sparking the deepest economic crisis for generations and contributed to the EU’s flawed response to the crisis, based on harsh austerity policies that are currently causing social havoc across Europe. Continue reading…

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Filed under Corporatism, Corruption, Democracy, Economism and neoliberalism

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