In the Summer issue of the Romanian Journal of European Affairs, the contributors bring to our attention several topics such as: Romania – ten years of EU membership; the influence of holding the EU Council presidency on the national coordination mechanisms for European affairs; the associate statehood option for Scotland, after Brexit; the EU and US export control regimes for dual use goods; the future between geopolitics and technology and the implications for Romania; the EU as a potential democracy promoter in Turkey and the sensitive aspects of the possible future EU integration of Ukraine.
The latest issue of RJEA also includes changes regarding the Editorial board and the team of associated editors.
Guest article: Romania: Ten Years of EU Membership
By joining the European Union as of 1st of January 2007, Romania made use of a window of opportunity which may not have been open later. In the ten years that followed, advantages and challenges of the membership have in part been overshadowed by the impact of the global financial crisis. The country went through a boom-bust-boom economic cycle. The swing from overheating to depression and back again to overheating has been amplified by pro-cyclical economic policy. Romania has been a selective policy taker in the EU often delaying fiscal and legal actions resulting in lost benefits. By reviewing the current political uncertainties in Europe, the conclusion emerges that more effective governance and more active foreign policy is necessary under the current Europe-wide orientation loss. The country may need to develop a mobilising strategy and policy beyond the direct benefits provided by the EU, one that also contributes to the success of the European integration.
Keywords: EU integration, economic development of Romania, macro-economic policy, EU membership
The Influence of the EU Council Presidency on National Coordination Mechanisms for European Agenda
This article examines the degree to which holding the Presidency of the Council of the EU (Presidency) influences CEE countries’ national systems of European affairs coordination. It utilizes process tracing to map out the coordination mechanisms for individual countries along three dimensions: centralization, selectivity, and coordination tools (both technical and personnel-based). Making use of the critical junctures concept, which presumes disruption of fluent institutional development, the study explores whether the Presidency may indeed be one of these disruptive moments. It points out the significance of the Presidency not only at the European level, but particularly at the national level, as well. This national-level influence comes in varying degrees, depending both upon the dimensions involved and the individual states concerned. It confirms that personnel changes are the rule, and an influence on technical tools is also frequently exhibited. But it is more exceptional for centralization and selectivity to be affected, and this was confirmed for the Czech Republic (CR), partly for Poland and Lithuania.
Keywords: Presidency of the Council of the EU, coordination, centralization, comprehensiveness, tools, critical junctures, ECC countries
Associate Statehood for Scotland as the Way to Stay in both the United Kingdom and the European Union: the Liechtenstein Example
The Brexit Referendum in which the United Kingdom (UK) voted to leave the European Union (EU) without a nation-wide consensus upon this vote has resulted in a new constitutional crisis in Britain. As an outcome, Scotland, which strongly backed the Remain vote, is now searching for a constitutional option that enables it to stay in both the UK and the EU. As an interdisciplinary study which pays a particular attention to the confederal relationship between Liechtenstein and Switzerland, this article emphasises that associate statehood might be a constitutional option that would allow Scotland to stay in both of the unions.
Keywords: Brexit referendum, constitutional crisis, Scottish independence, associate statehood, European Union membership
EU and US Export Control Regimes for Dual Use Goods: an Overview of Existing Frameworks
Hamed Alavi, Tatsiana Khamichonak
The systems of EU and US export controls of dual-use items have periods of shared history, where the regulatory efforts were directed at a common adversary and with regard to a common array of critical goods and technologies. Despite certain similarities, the current export control regimes warrant awareness of the mutual policies and procedures for EU and US companies engaged in export and re-export of sensitive items. The differing approaches EU Member States take in implementing export controls and the overall complexity of the US system, now bearing the results of the Export Control Reform, make it difficult to navigate one’s way and not lose one’s sight of the forest for the trees. The article seeks to draw the changing export control frameworks in both jurisdictions and evaluate their interactions from a business perspective.
Keywords: EU export controls, US export controls, dual-use goods, EU Regulation 428/2009, US Export Control Reform (ECR), Commerce Control List, Export Administration Regulations.
The Race towards the Future: Geopolitics versus Technology. Implications for Romania
The paper identifies two broad and unrelated processes that take place in contemporary world economy, the historical process of redefinition of the balance of power and spheres of influence which is characterized by the geopolitical dimension and the process of profound technological change determined by the forth industrial revolution which is characterized by the technological dimension. The research identifies a race not between the two processes per se, but between the implications of their outcomes. Depending on which of the two processes will succeed in redefining the architecture and predominant type of relations in the world economy the reality of the period from 2020 to 2030 – 2050 might be very different. Based on the conclusions of this research, the final part of the paper analyses the implications of these possible outcomes for Romania, given its current characteristics which resulted after 27 years of transition.
Keywords: globalization, geopolitics, balance of power, 4th industrial revolution, return of the nation states/state entities
Can EU Act as a Democracy Promoter? Analysing the Democratization Demand and Supply in Turkey – EU Relations
The EU’s role to assist Turkey in its democratization efforts has been debated during Turkey’s candidacy. However, in the second decade of the 21st century, this role of the EU lost its visibility while Turkey seemed to lose its interest in reform movements. This paper, inspired by Pevehouse, defines the EU as a supplier of democratization mechanisms and Turkey as an actor in need. Although lack of enthusiasm and disengagement have come to characterize Turkey-EU relations, this study aims to demonstrate that there are differences between the governing and the opposition actors’ views on the EU and its role in the democratization of Turkey. Data collected from the speeches of opposition parties’ parliamentarians between 1 January 2011 and 31 August 2016 demonstrates the similarities observed in these parties’ concerns regarding democratic practices and the perception of the EU as an actor strengthening democracy, while indicating that the EU, as a supplier, overlooked their concerns during the process.
Keywords: Democratization, European Union, parliamentary debates, opposition parties
European Integration of Ukraine: Tool for Internal Reform, Source of Problems or Pass Ticket to EU Membership?
Oleh Poshedin, Maryna Chulaievska
Despite the signing of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, there would seem to be no alternative to the European choice for Ukraine, given the current Russian aggression; there are different views on the objectives and results of the European integration of Ukraine. This article examines three of the most common points of view related to this process: European integration as a tool for internal transformation in Ukraine; European integration as a pass ticket to the EU membership; European integration as a source of problems in Ukraine.
Keywords: Ukraine, European Union, European integration, Russia