Europe and the EU
In this third session in the 'Future of Europe' Breakfast series, the organisers were honoured to welcome Kati Piri, Member of the European Parliament for PvdA-S&D, and Sinan Ülgen, chairman of the Center for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies (EDAM), an Istanbul-based think tank, and visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe in Brussels, who shared their views on the main topic of discussion 'Can Turkey and the EU revive their relationship?'.
Many commentators agree that the European Union and Turkey are going through a rough patch; especially following the 2016 failed coup attempt and Turkey’s constitutional referendum. Accession talks have ground to a halt, and discussions to update the Turkey-EU customs union agreement are moving at a snail’s pace. Turkey’s involvement in the conflict in Syria raises eyebrows, and there are fears that Turkey and NATO might be growing apart. Meanwhile, regional issues, such as a stand-off in the Eastern Mediterranean over gas exploration, could scupper any potential for improvement.
But despite these difficulties, Turkey remains one of the EU’s indispensable partners: trade ties are deep, cooperation on migration is close and energy and security links are of strategic importance. In the run-up to the Varna summit on March 26, it is the right time to discuss the current state and the outlook of the EU-Turkey relationship.
The session was moderated by Rem Korteweg. All 'Future of Europe' Breakfast sessions are held under Chatham House Rule.