A Window on the World - Blog by HR/VP Josep Borrell
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.
THE YEAR THAT WAR RETURNED TO EUROPE. EU FOREIGN POLICY IN 2022
2022 has been the year of Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified war against Ukraine. The Russian aggression and its global consequences raise many questions for EU foreign and security policy.
How did the EU react, maintaining its unity and breaking many taboos? Are the sanctions against Russia working? How did the EU respond to the weaponisation of energy by Russia? How did the EU address the consequences of Russia’s aggression on the availability of food and fertilizers globally? What conclusions should the EU draw from this war for European security and defence? How can the EU, in this new geopolitical context, maintain international law and revitalise the multilateral framework to ensure cooperation on global issues like climate change? And how can the EU reinforce its engagement with Africa, the Indo-Pacific and Latin America, what some now call the “Global South”?
In this book, which brings together a collection of blog posts, op-eds and speeches, HR/VP Josep Borrell Fontelles addresses these questions and other issues that dominated EU foreign and security policy in 2022.
Download the PDF
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?
Download the PDF & EPub files here
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.
Download the PDF and EPub files here
HR/VP JOSEP BORRELL
A STRONGER EUROPE IN THE WORLD