Wolfgang Schäuble, Federal Minister of Finance, Germany
Moderated by John Lipsky, Peterson Distinguished Scholar at the Henry A. Kissinger Center for Global Affairs and Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Institute
April 20, 2017
With euroscepticism and anti-globalism on the rise, His Excellency Wolfgang Schäuble met with students, faculty, alumni, and guests to discuss the way forward to a stronger future for the European project.
Schäuble began with context on the European political developments and argued that the challenges of globalization make unilateral regulations obsolete—cooperation is critical. He contended that despite its complexity, the EU is by far the most advanced model for global governance and it deserves further enhancement.
He acknowledged the role that social media has played in contributing to people's defensive reactions to the changing demographics around them and their increased demand for national identity. However, he emphasized the need for nations to work together to solve complex issues of migration, security, economics, and monetary policy, noting the current refugee situation is merely a harbinger of the problems to come, unless stability can be brought to the Middle East region. For the security of Europe, a uniformed regime for external borders is crucial, he said.
Schäuble concluded with the necessity of reforms to enhance productivity and global competitiveness for European nations, noting that implementing such reforms may not be pleasant in the short-term. He was optimistic that tighter cooperation within Europe and with America can be achieved.