segunda-feira, abril 12, 2004
The Constitution Europe Needs
Last month, representatives from Eastern European nations -- primarily EU accession countries -- met in Bratislava to discuss economic growth issues. The conference on "Economic Reforms for Europe" was sponsored by Slovakia's Institute for Economic and Social Reforms and featured high-level government officials -- including six finance ministers -- as well as leaders from the private sector and nongovernmental organizations.
The conference covered issues such as tax policy and pension reform, areas where Eastern European nations have made impressive strides. But perhaps the most noteworthy feature was the mindset of the participants. Even though many of the accession countries are relatively poor, there was no clamoring for "structural adjustment funds" from Brussels or other special handouts. Instead, the Eastern Europeans merely wanted a chance to compete in the EU's internal market.
This refreshing attitude is confirmed by the issuance of a "Declaration on future economic reform in Europe." Signed by representatives of nongovernmental organizations in Eastern Europe, this Declaration outlines the views of the reform community and it focuses on principles rather than specific policy recommendations.
Unlike the current draft of the European Constitution, the two-page Bratislava Declaration is very straightforward. It lists key guidelines for a fair and prosperous society.
posted by Miguel Noronha 5:35 da tarde
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