JEF-Hangout: German EU Council Presidency - A Truly European Perspective

, von  Florian Bauer

JEF-Hangout: German EU Council Presidency - A Truly European Perspective
The German „Bundeskanzleramt“. Pixabay / LoboStudioHamburg / Pixabay-Lizenz

The corona pandemic has put its mark on the German EU Council Presidency and raised the issue of European solidarity in an unprecedented way. Germany’s presidency deals with a packed agenda, including negotiations on the EU recovery fund, the European Green Deal and the Conference on the Future of Europe. In the hangout, organized by JEF Germany and treffpunkteuropa.de, young JEFers from different European countries come together on 30th of July, 8 pm CEST to discuss their expectations.


Do you want to join the discussion?

Click here to access the Zoom meeting! Alternatively, you can log in using 965 3612 5703 as a meeting ID.


Turbulent times mark the beginning of the German EU Council Presidency. The coronavirus pandemic and its far-ranging social and economic consequences dominate the agenda, but many other important topics also require attention. Germany promises to aim to make Europe “stronger, fairer and more sustainable” during its Presidency and many might consider the recent agreement in the European Council on the Multiannual Financial Framework and the Recovery Fund a step in this direction. But the idea of financial solidarity on such an unprecedented scale has also triggered considerable opposition in some member states and shown division between and within member states. At the same time, the longer-term vision of a green and sustainable Europe represented by the Green Deal will need to move forward and the Conference on the Future of Europe, which has been postponed, is supposed to give Europeans the chance to directly influence the Future of Europe. We want to discuss these pressing issues with you and hear your perspectives on them!

Our Discussion Themes

EU Recovery Fund: European solidarity at last?

After five days of negotiation European leaders finally managed to agree on a position regarding the Multiannual Financial Framework and the Recovery Fund. It will mobilize 390 billion Euro in grants and 360 billion Euro in loans to fight the economic and social consequences of the Coronavirus pandemic and might be considered as one major success of the German EU Council Presidency. By taking on common debt a new stage of European integration has been reached. But a lot of questions remain unsolved: The rule of law conditionality is practically nonexistent in the result and the negotiations with the European parliament could prove difficult. On top of that, national and even some regional parliaments will have to ratify a final agreement which will complicate the process.

In the Hangout we will focus on the different national perceptions of the Recovery Fund and try to evaluate it from a European federalist perspective: Is it the Hamiltonian moment of the EU?

European Green Deal: How do we ensure an equitable transformation?

The Coronavirus pandemic took center stage in the past months, but decisive action is also needed to fight the climate crisis. The Commission von der Leyen presented an ambitious work agenda, but so far progress has been limited. Especially the challenge of ensuring a Just Transition remains a big potential stumbling block since funding has been cut massively in the new MFF proposal. There is already substantial resistance by conservatives and populists against climate action which is likely to be grow larger if measures are not accompanied by investment in fair transition.

Therefore, in the Hangout we will examine the different national perspectives and discuss measures to balance ecological and social considerations.

Conference on the Future of Europe: Let citizens shape Europe’s future!

The Conference on the Future of Europe was meant to start on 9th May 2019, but has been delayed due to the Corona-crisis. With the aim of starting a truly European debate and engaging citizens in various formats, most importantly citizen assemblies, it was meant to initiate a reflection and possibly reform process of the EU. Particularly from a federalist perspective there remains a lot of work to do and the Conference could be a starting point for European Renewal.

In the Hangout, we want to discuss our speakers’ expectations regarding the Conference and how to enable genuine European debates and improve citizen participation in general.


Our Speakers

João Simões (President of JEF Portugal)

Maria Popczyk (Co-Editor of Kurier Europejski, JEF Poland)

Juuso Järviniemi (Member of JEF Europe Federal Committee)

Balázs Brandt (JEF Hungary)

Théo Boucart (Editor-in-chief of Le Taurillon, JEF-France)

Ana Skledar (JEF Slovenia)

Our Moderators

Marie Menke (editor-in-chief of treffpunkteuropa.de)

Malte Steuber (president of JEF Germany)

How to Participate

The event will be livestreamed and we will share the link on the social media accounts of JEF Germany and treffpunkteuropa.de. You will be able to ask questions to all our speakers by commenting on the livestream.

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