brussels - EU President Donald Tusk has an urgent message to European government leaders: it's time to make important decisions quickly. Political 'self-interest' and bureaucratic laxity inhibit the progress of the EU. Key issues need to be tackled, such as asylum policy and monetary union reform.
In his invitation to EU leaders, including Prime Minister Mark Rutte, for their traditional autumn summit in Brussels, Tusk therefore proposes a faster and more efficient way of working. He will call the Heads of Government and Presidents more often to disguise some 'gordian knots' that hamper the development of the EU. The Polish former prime minister wants negotiations that last for years because Member States put their heels in the sand.
He plans to break the impasses by means of what he calls Decision Notes, decision-making pieces, which describes the core of a conflict between EU countries, writes Tusk. He then expects a solid discussion and then a solution. If it does not work, then some Member States can take the lead if the door remains open to the others. According to initiates, the new method is in taste in most countries.
The summit begins Thursday afternoon with talks about migration, the digitization of Europe and security and defense. According to a senior EU official, especially the specially funded Africa Fund will be discussed. It is Brussels's thorn that the Member States themselves do not contribute sufficiently. The money is intended for investments in African countries, to prevent migration from it.
Dinner is for the 'foreign': the nuclear threat from North Korea, Turkey and Iran's nuclear weapons program deal are on the menu. British Prime Minister Theresa May gives her view on the brexit negotiations. French President Emmanuel Macron argues that the Member States and national parliaments must become more involved in the negotiations on international free trade treaties. He also calls for protection of the European market.
Tuske's new ideas come on Friday during a working breakfast. After that, May expires and EU-brexit negotiator Michel Barnier talks 27. The premier of Estonia, who is temporarily chairman of this half-year, will tell EU leaders how the resettlement negotiations are about the brexit of two EU agencies in London. Netherlands aast at the European Medicines Agency EMA.