In European foreign policy, we are permanently confronted with conflicts in our neighbourhood, growing competition between rival powers, challenges to the multilateral system and our values, disputes over the terms of trade and who sets the rules on technologies, and the global effects of climate change – to name just a few issues we deal with every day.
The post of EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy / Vice-President of the Commission (HR/VP) offers a wide-open window on the world. As any observer, I am influenced by my own perspective. I do not agree with the relativism of 19th-century Spanish philosopher de Campoamor claiming in a famous poem that nothing is true or false and that everything depends on “the colour of your glasses”. Some things are definitely true and others false, but we have to deal with different positions on almost all subjects. We live in a permanent ‘battle of narratives’ about the issues that determine our future. We have to understand these different positions if we want to look for a common ground. In particular common ground among Europeans, which is the duty of the HR/VP.
With this blog, I intend to take a step back and contribute to building a European common strategic culture. The responsibilities of the HR/VP do not always allow me to speak out as clearly as I would like. But I will try to present here my personal views, looking through the glasses of a convinced European, on the main issues at stake for Europe and its global role. Thank you for giving these thoughts your time and attention. I hope this blog can help create better understanding of the issues on which we are engaged.
In addition to my blog posts, you will also find here a repository of interviews, speeches, opinion pieces and videos.
Staying on course in troubled waters, EU foreign policy in 2021
HR/VP Josep Borrell Fontelles
The book “Staying on Course in Troubled Waters” brings together HR/VP Josep Borell’s blog posts and op-eds, speeches and articles on key global developments and EU foreign and security policy in 2021. It is a way to make the EU’s voice heard in the global battle of narratives and to give an account to the citizens of the Union.
To download this book click here for a PDF file.
Staying on course in troubled waters - EU foreign policy in 2021
The year 2021 was dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic and marked by various geopolitical crises. In this book, which contains a collection of articles, blog posts, opeds and speeches, HR/VP Josep Borrell addresses the main questions facing the EU's foreign and security policy. How can the EU become a more credible global security actor and deal with a more competitive strategic environment? How should the EU act in the face of ‘new empires‘ that try to destabilise our neighbourhood? And in what concrete ways can we reinforce the transatlantic partnership and strengthen our engagement with Africa, the Indo-Pacifc and Latin America? What can the EU do to revitalise multilateralism and help build global rules that are ft for purpose in the 21st century? What policies are needed to tackle climate change and increase the EU’s strategic autonomy?
EUROPEAN FOREIGN POLICY IN TIMES OF COVID-19
The book tells the story of the main events of 2020 and how the EU has responded. It traces the main stages of the pandemic and the EU’s actions: from the ‘battle of narratives’ and the work on repatriation, to the development of ‘Team Europe’ and the deal on the recovery fund.