Ireland must help shape EU's future
The European Commission last March presented a White Paper on the Future of Europe which also set out the main achievements of the EU, among them a peace spanning seven decades and an enlarged union of 500 million citizens living in freedom in one of the world's most prosperous economies.
The Commission now plans to host a series of 'Future of Europe Debates' in the coming months to discuss a desired way forward and intends to further contribute to the process with a series of papers on developing the social dimension of Europe, deepening the Economic and Monetary Union, harnessing globalisation, and on the future of Europe's defence and the future of EU finances.
It is long since past time for the Government to publish a comprehensive statement on Ireland's future European policy. The debate is well under way throughout Europe, with some reports suggesting that the negotiations may even have started on the shape of Europe in five and 10 years' time. Those who argue that Ireland must join this debate and that it must develop a strategy for influencing it are entirely correct.