Key points for policymakers
2018 was dominated by deep divisions among the EU member states despite the great expectations set by the European Commission’s February 2018 strategy paper. A major effort will now be required to restore credibility to the EU’s enlargement agenda and ensure a genuine re-engagement with the Western Balkans. It will be up to the new Commission to regain a leadership role and give the integration of the region into the EU the priority it deserves.
In the aftermath of the 2007-09 global financial crisis, regulators in all major jurisdictions introduced significant new requirements for financial firms. Certainly justified in purpose, these regulations have increased market barriers, both directly through specific obligations, and indirectly through the sheer magnitude and complexity they involve. Regulators primarily focused on bolstering financial stability and consumer protection, while frequently disregarding their objective of promoting financial innovation. Ten years after the crisis, we believe that it is time to reconsider the appropriate balance between those objectives.
Wolf-Georg Ringe is Professor of Law and Director of the Institute of Law & Economics at the University of Hamburg as well as a Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford. Christopher Ruof is Research Associate at the University of Hamburg.
One motive for founding the euro was to create a European unit that might provide an alternative to the dollar as an international and reserve currency. The Werner Report, the first full-throated argument for a single European currency, was issued in a period of angst about the Bretton Woods System and the dollar (Zimmermann, 2002). The Delors Report, which provided a detailed roadmap in 1989, was not unrelated to the preceding decade of wild dollar fluctuations.