Wednesday, 16 November 2011

German CDU defends European values, benefits and euro currency

The Christian Democratic Union CDU party conference adopted a resolution equating a strong Europe with the good fortunes of Germany: Starkes Europa – Gute Zukunft für Deutschland (23 pages).

What does the leading government party of the largest member state of the European Union (proportionately even bigger in the eurozone) say, when the financial, debt and growth crises in the eurozone have worsened into a crisis of the euro itself?

European values

Europe is a community of values, says the resolution, referring to the founding values of the European Union (as in Article 2 TEU) and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights (enshrined in Article 6 TEU).

The CDU still rejects a unitary European state, but the EU works according to federal principles in areas of conferred powers. The European idea has brought people unprecedented peace, freedom, prosperity and social justice.

Benefits of Europe

The political and economic benefits of EU membership surpass the costs for Germany by a wide margin.

In order to master the challenges of the 21st century, the CDU wants to complete the economic and monetary union (EMU) and mould the EU into a strong political union.

In the globalised world of the 21st century, Europe needs to promote universal human rights, international law and freedom for all.

A strong Europe can shape international rules to counter climate change and protect biodiversity, as well as regulate energy and trade issues, but this requires European unity.

Despite the rise of China and the other BRICS, the 500 million people of the European Union remain the largest internal market in the world and offer the opportunity to promote democracy and the social market economy globally.

Defending the euro

The CDU wants all the 17 eurozone states to defend the common currency. The euro has brought Germany jobs - 9 million depend on the internal market – and growth (€50 billion extra in the last two years).

The euro is the safeguard of low inflation and high purchase power. The euro brings predictability to international trade and global currency policy. The euro also brings political stability.

The euro is a great community project, necessary for the good fortunes of Europe.

The CDU wants to strengthen Europe and widen the scope of action by turning the monetary union into an enduring stability union, as intended from the start. For the common euro currency to succeed, we need to stick to firm rules (stability and growth pact SGP).

The CDU is prepared to learn the lessons from the current crisis and to prepare Europe for the future challenges.

The CDU congratulates itself for having brought back financial stability and budget disciplin to Germany, and the party wants a stronger Europe to emerge from the debt crisis.


European values, benefits from European integration and the will to improve the euro project lay the foundation for the CDU (and Germany) in European politics.

The foundation gives the analysis focus and shapes the remedies proposed.

Ralf Grahn