On Wednesday, September 17, the Transatlantic Relations program hosted an off-the-record discussion with UK Minister of State for Europe David Lidington. The conversation was moderated by Fran Burwell, vice president and director of transatlantic relations at the Council.
The discussion with members of the US policy-making and business community identified five key issues facing the new European Commission: the future of the Eurozone, the challenge of keeping Europe globally competitive, EU political reform, security challenges on Europe’s borders, and the tension between the UK and the EU. The conversation then moved to a deeper analysis of the EU and NATO’s relationship with Russia, their role in the Ukraine crisis, and the effectiveness of sanctions. The group discussed the economic and political reform necessary to address Europe’s economic problems while making EU decisions democratically accountable. Finally, the attendees weighed the potential impact of the Scottish independence referendum on European and British politics.