On War, Peace and Europe
Hardly any other development in the last 15 years has shaped German and European foreign policy as much as the events in the Balkans. This article will discuss the central challenges presented by this region, outlining three possible scenarios for developments in the Balkans in the next 15 years and setting out plans of action for German and European policy. How these countries make their way into the European Union will depend not least on Germany‘s commitment as one of the strongest advocates for the countries of South-East Europe.
Its struggle for stabilization and equal status
China's rapid economic rise is being watched in Europe with a mixture of fascination and horror. China‘s advance to become one of the leading economic powers has already left its mark on the political landscape. China‘s changeover to a differentiated and more active foreign policy is being reflected in greater involvement in regional and global fora. The central problem remains the political, social and ecological structuring of the economic transformation process. From a German perspective, the most significant tasks in the coming years will be the development of economic relations, the continuation of the dialogue on the rule of law and the incorporation of China into multilateral agreements (above all in the area of climate policy).
Prospects for the future as a security and welfare union
Christos Katsioulis & Gero Maaß
The European Union as a unique constellation of supranational and
intergovernmental norms is currently facing huge challenges: The expansion to encompass 27
states has been completed, yet the institutional architecture is trailing far behind what is
required. After the rejection of the EU constitution by France and the Netherlands, reform of
the union has been placed on hold for the time being. On top of this, a deep gulf between the
individual states and the EU is becoming apparent.
This article sets out possible scenarios for the future development of the European Union against the backdrop of these challenges and identifies possible plans of action for Germany‘s European policy.
Challenges On The Road To Becoming A World Power
Peter Gey, Matthias Jobelius & Renate Tenbusch
India is getting ready to close the gap to the economic powers, due to high economic growth which reached 8 percent in each of the last four years. Experts from the media, investment banks and research institutes all agree: a second China is growing up, an economical and political power center which will surpass Germany and Japan in a few years. At the same time, India faces big challenges. Due to a decade-long orientation of the investments on the heavy industry, the neglect of the infrastructure and the educational system, rigid work laws and bureaucratic regulation, structural shiftings arose which are difficult to overcome.
A lot of democracy, not much state and even less social progress
Despite good economic growth and relatively stable, superficially democratic conditions, the Latin America countries are increasingly facing social problems. The gulf between rich and poor is becoming wider, while the ability of the state to exercise influence over internal social developments is waning and, in foreign policy terms too, the region is confronting conflicting interests. The development of Latin America – and thereby also cooperation with Germany and the EU – depends largely upon the extent to which the governments in the region are willing and able to set about implementing both social welfare reforms and reforms to bolster democracy, in addition to reducing numerous intraregional tensions. Through better multilateral integration of important nations on the continent, Latin America could become a key partner for Europe in international institutions.
The Middle East and North Africa
A Gridlocked Region at a Crossroads
The region of the Near and Middle East and North Africa is afflicted by the
curse of a serious road block in both democratic and developmental terms, attributable to a
crippling combination of substantial political conflict and the authoritarian structure of the
majority of the regimes found here. If the conflicts in this region and these structural
problems remain unsolved, then, from a German and a European perspective, this inevitably also
increases the dangers to Germany's and Europe's own security, stability and prosperity.
This article sets out possible future scenarios and offers possible plans of action for German and international policy. Only a concerted international effort with an integrated policy approach can defuse the crisis in the region. Due to its political and economic significance and its relations with the key actors, Germany can make an important contribution to this effort.
The European Union and the Post-Communist Sphere
Integration, European Neighbourhood Policy and Strategic Partnership
With the eastward expansion of the EU, the former Eastern Bloc, once perceived as a homogeneous whole, has been divided into two parts: the central European member states and the non-member states in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. While further transformation and integration is expected for the new member states, the EU's relationship with the non-members is coloured by uncertainty about the further development of these societies and the effects of this on the EU. The future of the EU's relations with the Eastern nations will depend on whether and to what extent the 'virtuous circle' being aimed at in Central Europe can be maintained and on whether the successful transformation process has a positive impact radiating out to the other countries. The EU should ensure that it does not allow its most effective political weapon, the offer of membership, to be snatched out of its hands and should direct step-by-step integration policies and neighbourhood policies towards this area.
The Main Features of a German Strategy towards Russia
Germany is surrounded by a "circle of friends", all of whom belong to the EU
save Switzerland. It has an interest in the expansion of the EU institutions and wants to
strengthen common foreign and security policy. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia
underwent a process of progressive disintegration and is now returning to the world stage, on
which NATO and the EU have continually advanced closer to its national borders. Russia has not
quite formed a "circle of foes", yet its new friends in the Euro-Atlantic region are being
increasingly viewed as geopolitical rivals.
This article sets out possible scenarios for a future German 'Russia strategy' and advises Germany to adopt a strategy of partnership which – by way of growing interdependencies – will, in the worst case scenario, prevent relations taking divergent paths and, in the best case scenario, result in the integration of Russia into the Euro-Atlantic institutions.
The Rediscovery of a Continent
In sub-Saharan Africa, a change has been taking place over the last 15 years that at least shows another side to this crisis-ridden continent. The economies are growing steadily, while in many countries, formal parliamentary democracies are being established and Africa is organising itself into regional and subregional units and is now again gaining in strategic significance. Nevertheless, the countries of the region are still facing great challenges: Africa remains an impoverished continent with grave social and health problems, while the democracies are not consolidated as yet and violent conflicts continue to impede development in some regions of Africa. In order to support the positive developments taking place, the foremost issues from a German perspective will be those of crisis prevention, the development of strategies for adapting to climate change and the promotion of the integration of Africa into the world market.
The Future of German Foreign Relations
Sebsatian Bersick & Paul Pasch
A peaceful and economically thriving Asian region is an integral part of the newly emerging organization structures in Asia. It’s in the EU’s and Germany’s interests that the developing norms and codices for the behaviour of states in Asia make cooperative operation schemes imperative - instead of military schemes. Against this background, ASEAN is the most important contact organization of the EU and Germany for accompanying and supporting the cooperation and integration process in South-East-Asia. An intensified cooperation and a stronger institutional binding of the EU to ASEAN will enable the Europeans to continue to ensure and, in the future, augment their forming influence on the integration processes in South-East-Asia. ASEAN has a growing strategic potential where the re-structuring of the regional architecture of Asia is concerned. But the efficiency of the cooperation between the ASEAN states will in the end not depend on declarations and documents of ASEAN but on the actions and the politics of the individual ASEAN states.
Together the West is Exploring New Shores
In the transatlantic relations, mutual distrust is growing. The Iraq war has deepened the rift between the U.S. and Europe but the cracks in the West have already been apparent for some time. Less and less the governments on both sides of the Atlantic were able to develop common positions with regard to important international political issues. While the transatlantic economy - the most stable and strongest interconnected area of cooperation - was hardly affected by the controversy, it becomes apparent where the conflicts in the security partnership are concerned that the transatlantic relations need a new basis. A reversion to the familiar roles seems not to be possible; but without a constructive cooperation with the U.S. most of the foreign policy aims of Germany can only be fulfilled with difficulties or not at all. Through pragmatic and goal-oriented projects, e.g. in the range of climate politics, energy security or world trade, the groundwork of political relations could be re-established.
The Struggle for Power, Energy and Human Rights
The five central Asian republics are still, 15 years after independence, in a process of transition from the Soviet planned economy system to a type of market economy, from totalitarianism to controlled democracy. Future development in this region – between thaw and Ice Age – will show whether it will emphatically pursue the course of transformation to democracy or will set up a superficial type of democracy that claims to be taking account of the special idiosyncrasies of the region in terms of cultural approach and history. Germany is making an effort to secure lasting stability in Central Asia. In addition to the concerns regarding security and stability, economic and energy interests and the rule of law, top priorities could also be the promotion of regional cooperation, an initiative to improve education and training and the stepping up of political dialogue.