The Search for Europe has reached the European Parliament with the help of Francisco González (Group Executive Chairman of BBVA), Alberto Alesina (Professor of Political Economy at Harvard University) and Martin Raiser (Director of the World Bank for Brazil). The three are authors of the latest book published by the OpenMind series, The Search for Europe: Contrasting Approaches, where 23 worldwide experts try to respond to different aspects related to the future of the European project, which are today defined by uncertainty.
Members of the European Parliament Sylvie Goulard, Pablo Zalba and Jonás Fernández accompanied the three authors during the presentation, in which the difficulties the EU is facing to restore economic growth and the opportunities the digital economy offers to do so were analyzed.
“The U.K.’s Brexit decision marks a turning point for the European Union. And the only way out of these problems is to continue to press forward,” said Francisco González. In his opinion, “maintaining the status quo will only exasperate problems. And moving backwards is unthinkable. It would lead the member countries to a deep, lasting recession and condemn Europe to irrelevance in a complex and conflictive global context.”
Martin Raiser attributed the eurozone crisis to the lack of real convergence, poor management of Greece’s problems and European leaders’ failure to sever governments and banks. He is optimistic regarding the effectiveness of the European economic model, insisting that it should be improved, not discarded.
Alberto Alesina focused on the level of confidence among citizens – a fundamental aspect that favors economic and financial transactions. Without it, we need regulation to avoid uncooperative behavior, fraud and breach of contracts. Without confidence, courts are overwhelmed and public policy becomes unviable, says Alesina.