POLITICO's EU Confidential
NATO summit — Swedish, Norwegian and Estonian PMs — G7 flop
Coming to you from the NATO summit in Madrid, our POLITICO team analyzes a packed week in international diplomacy and what it means for Europe and its security. We also hear from the prime ministers of Sweden, Norway and Estonia.Sarah Wheaton hosts this week's episode, which kicks off with a discussion with our team at the NATO summit in Madrid — Lili Bayer, David M. Herszenhorn, Paul McLeary and Hans von der Burchard. They analyze what was behind the main decisions and point to some of the uncertainties that remain. They also discuss the missed opportunities at the G7 summit in Germany earlier in the week, and how German Chancellor Olaf Scholz performed as host of his first major international gathering.Our special guests in this episode include Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson on her country's path to joining NATO and Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre on changes to his region's security situation. We also talk to Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, who shares her view on the summit's outcomes.
Ukraine on EU membership path — Balkan backlash — Albanian PM
Coming to you from the EU leaders' summit in the heart of Brussels, we discuss Ukraine's candidacy to join the club and the lack of progress for EU-hopefuls in the Western Balkans. We hear from Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Florence Gaub, foresight adviser to the Council of the European Union.This week's episode, hosted by POLITICO's David M. Herszenhorn, comes to you from the European Council where the EU's 27 heads of state and government decided to designate Ukraine and Moldova as candidates for EU membership.POLITICO's Lili Bayer, Giorgio Leali and Hans von der Burchard join David to unpack how the decision was made and where the discussion on EU accession goes from here. Giorgio also explains how French President Emmanuel Macron's gravitas around the Council table may have been diminished by his centrist alliance's disappointing showing in parliamentary elections last weekend. We also discuss how the French president's idea for a "European political community" is being received.Then, you'll hear from Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama. He spoke to POLITICO's Louise Guillot in Tirana last week — sharing his downbeat view on why Albania's prospects for starting EU membership talks have stalled.After the break, we feature NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. He sat down with Lili Bayer on Wednesday for a POLITICO Live event, which you can watch here.And POLITICO's Matt Karnitschnig brings us a discussion with Florence Gaub, foresight adviser to the Council of the European Union. They discuss the war in Ukraine, how long it could last and what we can expect from NATO's historic meeting next week in Madrid.
Ukraine impact — Panel-speak, decoded — Poets' guide to economics
We explore more repercussions of the war in Ukraine, explain the latest dust-up between the U.K. and the EU and unpack the patois of political panel discussions. Our special guest is retired British diplomat and author John Ramsden, who talks poets, politics and economics.POLITICO's Andrew Gray is joined by Matthew Karnitschnig, who tells us about his recent trip to a remote strip of land along the border between Lithuania and Poland that's the focus of renewed attention due to Russia's war on Ukraine.POLITICO's Eddy Wax catches us up on the food crisis triggered by the war, while Suzanne Lynch explains the latest tussle between the U.K. and the EU over Northern Ireland.For some light relief on Andrew's last show as host, the podcast crew goes meta by holding a panel discussion on panel discussions — a big feature of Brussels and other political bubbles. Why are they so popular, what do people get out of them and what are the pitfalls? We play a game of "duo-panelo" to reveal the true meaning of classic panel phrases.Our special guest John Ramsden, a former British ambassador, tells us about his new book, "The Poets' Guide to Economics," which explores the impact of poets on economic debate down the centuries.The podcast will be back next Thursday as usual, kicking off a summer season of episodes featuring different members of the POLITICO newsroom in the host's chair.
Merkel's return — Poland pushback — US NATO ambassador
We break down the controversy over a plan to unlock billions of euros in EU funds for Poland and debate Angela Merkel's return to the public arena. Our special guest is Julianne Smith, the U.S. ambassador to NATO.POLITICO's Andrew Gray and Lili Bayer unpack Ursula von der Leyen's plan to give Poland a path to coronavirus recovery funds as the European Commission president faces criticism — some of it from senior members of her own team — that she's letting Warsaw off the hook on rule-of-law standards.And Matthew Karnitschnig joins the panel to debate Angela Merkel's decision to return to the stage — literally — after six months of silence since stepping down as German chancellor. In an extensive interview in front of an audience in a Berlin theater, Merkel addressed whether her own policies played a role in emboldening Russia to attack Ukraine.Lili interviews our special guest Julianne Smith, the U.S. ambassador to NATO. Smith discusses how the alliance may reinforce its eastern flank in light of the war in Ukraine, Turkey's objections to Sweden and Finland's membership bids, and how NATO will likely view both Russia and China in its forthcoming strategic blueprint.
Russian oil ban — Hungarian hold-up — EU 'ghostwriters'
We unpack EU leaders' deal to ban Russian oil imports — with some notable exceptions after Hungary played hardball. And author Tommaso Pavone tells the story of the lawyers who turned "ghostwriters" to make the EU a legal reality.POLITICO's Andrew Gray, Matthew Karnitschnig, Lili Bayer and DavidM.Herszenhorn assess this week's EU summit, where leaders struck a late-night agreement to ban Russian oil — but only after making more concessions to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. The crew also discusses what's next for the EU in terms of sanctions after the bruising battle over this package.You'll hear what Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, French President Emmanuel Macron and Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas told POLITICO about the summit — and about whether the EU’s sanctions are having an impact on Vladimir Putin.Our special guest is Tommaso Pavone, assistant professor of law and politics at the University of Arizona and visiting researcher at the ARENA Center for European Studies at the University of Oslo. His new book, "The Ghostwriters: Lawyers and the Politics Behind the Judicial Construction of Europe," tells the fascinating story of the "Euro-lawyers" across the Continent who sought out cases and pushed them up the European legal pyramid over decades to make the EU a legal reality.
Scholz on Ukraine — COVID update — Food waste solution
This special edition of EU Confidential from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland drills into the question of whether the EU is really ready for a forceful response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It’s the last of our special episodes from the prestigious — or, some would say, notorious — gathering of power players in this Alpine resort town.POLITICO’s Sarah Wheaton, Jamil Anderlini and Suzanne Lynch analyze German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s speech on the forum’s closing day. They also reflect on how the discussion in Davos will extend beyond this conference — and recap some less-than-classy moments at exclusive parties featuring acts like the Black Eyed Peas and The Chainsmokers.Paul Grod, president of the Ukrainian World Congress, speaks to Sarah about how the Ukrainian diaspora is keeping up the pressure on Europe.Then we catch up with Wellcome Trust Director Jeremy Farrar for a quick check-in on the coronavirus pandemic.Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad joins us for a conversation about her advocacy for victims of sexual violence in war and what the EU can do to support such efforts.Finally, POLITICO's Ryan Health speaks to James Rogers, founder of Apeel, which makes edible coatings for foods, about food sustainability as we look ahead to a growing food crisis and the challenges of expanding his company's innovative solutions into Europe.
Death of globalization? — EU expansion — Women in Davos
This bumper edition of Davos Confidential includes a debate on the death of globalization, the prospects of more countries joining the European Union and an insider's take on the role of women at the World Economic Forum.POLITICO's Sarah Wheaton, Jamil Anderlini, Ryan Heath and Suzanne Lynch debate an issue they and others have been grappling with all week: is globalization dead? Historian and professor Adam Tooze also shares his thoughts on the subject.Roberta Metsola, president of the European Parliament, speaks to Suzanne about the EU's role on the global stage, Russian sanctions and the prospects of Ukraine joining the bloc. Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița also wants her country of Moldova to join the EU and shares her thoughts on the issue. Meanwhile, Ireland's Taoiseach Micheál Martin says he's open to changing the EU treaties to potentially pave the way for other countries to join without facing some of the existing hurdles.Journalist Anya Schiffrin, a professor at Colombia University in New York and a long-time attendee of the WEF, shares her views on the role of women in Davos and how that's changed over the years.And Swiss Federal Chancellor Walter Thurnherr has some eye-opening observations about this year's WEF.
Russian oil sanctions — Stagflation fears — Crypto not dead
We hear exclusively from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on the chance of clinching a sixth package of EU sanctions, and from experts on Russia and the latest trends in the financial world.POLITICO's Sarah Wheaton is joined by Editor in Chief Jamil Anderlini, Playbook author Suzanne Lynch and Ryan Heath, editorial director of global growth. The team discusses the Tuesday's big speeches by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and von der Leyen, who spoke to Suzanne about after the chances of EU leaders agreeing on the latest package of proposed Russian sanctions during next week's summit in Brussels.With Russia's war in Ukraine top of mind, former Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb shares his views on the wider impact of the conflict and the prospect of Finland joining NATO. Jamil also sat down with Bill Browder to discuss his new book, "Freezing Order: A True Story of Money Laundering, Murder, and Surviving Vladimir Putin's Wrath."There's also an interview with Karen Karniol-Tambour, co-chief investment officer for sustainability at Bridgewater Associates, about the challenges of tackling rising inflation and slowing economic growth.And billionaire David Rubenstein, Carlyle Group co-founder and co-chairman, tells Jamil that the big topic of the moment is whether the United States is heading into a recession and shares his views on cryptocurrencies.For more of our coverage of the World Economic Forum, check out our daily Davos Playbook.
Zelenskyy chides global elite — Trust troubles — Billionaire bonanza
This episode comes to you from the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland — featuring participants from business, government and the non-profit sectors.POLITICO's Sarah Wheaton is joined by Jamil Anderlini, Suzanne Lynch and Ryan Heath to explain what the WEF seeks to accomplish at a time of tremendous political and economic instability. They discuss Monday's much-anticipated speech by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and question why so few G20 leaders have shown up at this year's unusual spring-edition of the forum (the WEF is historically held in January when ski jackets and crampons are a must).Jamil brings us a conversation with Mykhailo Fedorov, vice prime minister of Ukraine and minister of digital transformation, about how technology is aiding his country's battle against Russia. And Julien Vaulpré, founding partner of PR firm Taddeo and ex-advisor to former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, shares his impressions of what the WEF is really all about.We then hear from Richard Edelman, CEO of global communications firm Edelman, about his company's new Trust Barometer, which measures trust levels in government, businesses and the media throughout the world.Our final guest is Oxfam International Executive Director Gabriela Bucher. She unpacks a brand new analysis on the growth of billionaires during the pandemic and the alarming trends in growing economic inequality.