Weekly Newsletter:May 26, 2017

May 26, 2017

This Week’s Highlights

Speaker: Mr. Serge Abou, Former EU Ambassador to China

Serge ABOU is the former European Union’s Ambassador to China and Professor at CESL and Sciences Po Paris.

The EU is back. Upon his return to Europe after his posting as EU Ambassador to China from 2005 to 2011, Abou felt embarrassed to speak positively about the European Union, as political and economic strife was obvious across the “Old Continent”. He was chastised as a former EU bureaucrat, who was “paid to be positive on the EU”. Now he feels the mood has shifted, the trendline is more positive. People should not forget the virtuous development of the EU, after two world wars the peace was kept for more than 70 years, and the economic integration led to prosperity. Abou told Rotarians not to forget that there were pockets of regions where people were still starving in the 1960s. The political parties of Europe, regardless if Christian Democrats, Socialists or Liberals, all supported the EU. The political system flourished due to this broad political support system. The Great Financial Crisis after 2008 changed all of that. Most political parties starting finger pointing at the EU, blaming Brussels for everything in order to find a culprit for economic misery. The Anti EU mood grew. It was heart warming that the only real supporter of the EU in the recent French elections, Macron, won and became president. Abou believes that Macron won because he stood for the EU . Abou is positive that the Euro will remain the regions currency, pointing out that even Le Pen flip flopped in the last weeks as she sensed that Anti European mood among her voters did not translate in equal measure in dislike of the Euro. “The EU is safe, and will remain so”.

*Above: Rotarians and guests toasting to Rotary.

       

*Left: P. Daniel exchanging banners with RC Nara East of Japan
*Right: Rotaractors Julia and Daniela joining the meeting

To download photos of this week’s meeting, please (click).

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Rotary Club of Beijing


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