EU REFORM: Juncker's integration plot in tatters as flexibility ‘only way’ ...

eu news jean claude junckerGETTYThink tank boss Charles Grant says the bloc must adapt or face more unrest

Disagreements between EU chief Jean-Claude Juncker and French president Emmanuel Macron on how the 27-member group should move forward have revealed major divisions about its future - and Mr Macron’s vision is the most likely outcome.

The French president has called for a more flexible EU, as opposed to Mr Juncker’s vision of an increasingly integrated bloc, and think tank director Charles Grant, of the Centre for European Reform, agrees with the French leader.

Writing for Politico, Mr Grant says: “If the EU wants to survive its (inevitable) future crises, the answer is easy. 

“The only real option is to get behind Macron’s vision: Leave reluctant countries behind and allow others to move ahead on key policies.

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“The French president has found a powerful partner in German Chancellor Angela Merkel, with whom he is preparing new initiatives on eurozone governance. 

“These are likely to help further integrate the monetary union and create new eurozone institutions, including its own budget and system of parliamentary scrutiny.”

Mr Grant also believes Brexit is forcing EU leaders to learn a difficult lesson about listening to the concerns of individual members.

The only real option is to get behind Macron’s vision: Leave reluctant countries behind and allow others to move ahead on key policies

Charles Grant

The priorities and objectives of EU members differ vastly and some of the more powerful members, such as , are aware that it is unrealistic to expect every country to sign up to the same policies.

The single currency, policing, defence priorities and the Schengen zone are all policy areas where current EU members are allowed to opt out, and Mr Grant believes “that logic should be extended

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