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Persson, Mats

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3 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

The Daily Telegraph - United Kingdom | 07/01/2015

Germany can't afford a Brexit

German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed in her meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron in London on Wednesday that she considers the free movement of persons sacrosanct. Nevertheless she'll have to make concessions regarding Cameron's call for reforms, the conservative paper The Daily Telegraph believes: "Without the UK, the EU will, on aggregate, be far more hostile to free trade, and Germany will have lost its key political counterweight to the southern protectionist bloc. ... This does not mean Germany will agree to whatever Mr Cameron demands. ... What it does mean, however, is that in a Europe struggling with sluggish growth, weak governments and rising populists, an Anglo-German bargain for sweeping EU reform is no longer only desirable. It is absolutely necessary."

The Daily Telegraph - United Kingdom | 03/11/2014

Brexit not an option for Berlin

In the end the government in Berlin will be willing to reform the EU's migration regulations simply because it can't afford and doesn't want a Brexit, the conservative Daily Telegraph believes: "A spokesperson for Merkel this morning reiterated that Germany will defend 'the general principle of free movement'. However, within that there's a lot of scope for change and plenty of EU reforms that could fly in Berlin. ... Merkel is not talking about a red line but, ironically, Germany may now be more nervous than ever about losing the UK, not least since its frustration with France - and its weak president - is growing by the day. Let's get back when we know what Downing Street actually is proposing. This game is only getting started."

The Daily Telegraph - United Kingdom | 01/11/2012

The vulnerability of the EU budget

Even if Cameron sticks to his plan and only pushes for the EU budget to be frozen at the 2011 level rather than for it to be slashed, this will still present major challenges at the EU budget summit on November 22 and 23, writes the director of the think tank Open Europe, Mats Persson, in the conservative Daily Telegraph's blog: "Cameron is running short of allies in Europe for his real terms freeze - the Swedes and the Dutch are still with him. Cameron looks unlikely to back down, however, and it may come to him vetoing it. So what happens if Cameron vetoes the EU budget? The spin from some is that the talks move to QMV, and Cameron is toast anyway. It's a bit more complicated than this, however. If there's no agreement by the end of 2013, there are two, broad possible outcomes: Carry over the current EU budget. ... Tear up the budget completely and create a new proposal. ... Ultimately, this episode shows just how politically and economically unsustainable the EU budget is. It needs to be one of the first items up for re-negotiation as the UK seeks new EU membership terms."

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