Dr Ebermann:欧盟大使北大演讲

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进入专题: 欧盟  

主讲人:Dr   Ebermann  

时间:2002年10月23日 14:40 p.m.


Students and colleagues, it is our great honor and pleasure to welcome Dr.Ebermann, ambassador of European Union to China, to visit Peking University, and to give us a speech on EU-China relationships today. Dr.Ebermann received his university education in law and economics at Berlin, Lüneberg and Hamburg in Germany, and had his doctor training in law at London, Paris and Hamburg. He has been working in Europe Union since 1974 and has taken various important positions in European Commission. He has taken the position of the ambassador of European Commission to China since 7,2001. Peking University has a long tradition of teaching and researching in European studies. In Jan 1997, Peking University established the center for European studies, which strengthens teaching and researches on contemporary European studies, particularly studies on European integration. The main functions of the center for European studies are: first to develop teaching courses and MA, PhD teaching programs on contemporary European studies; secondly to organize research projects; and thirdly to promote and coordinate Peking University exchanges and cooperation with European high education institutions. All efforts in developing European studies have received supports from various programs of European Union, the EU-China high education cooperation program and EU-China legal cooperation program. We have also received the support from delegation of European Commission to China, from Ambassador. Today, as Ambassador Dr.Ebermann’s first formal visit to Peking University, I hope this visit is just a beginning of his association with our university. The topic is of Ambassador Dr.Ebermann’s speech today is “EU-China relationship”. Ambassador’s native language is Dutch; he could speak in English, French, and Spanish. Dr.Ebermann will speak in English today. So now, let us warmly welcome Ambassador Ebermann’s speech.

Dear students, colleagues, friends, I did not realize Europe is so popular in Peking University. I guess I said before, in my old days of 60’s we would just sit down at the floor and we didn’t have a carpet. So if your legs ache after half an hour, why don’t you sit and lie down? But don’t fall asleep, as I’m watching you.

This may be my first formal visit here. I have been here before, but I’d like to mke many more informal visits. So I would see this as the beginning of the more regular contact, which I find very stimulating because as you can imagine the life as ambassador in Beijing is very hard. What I would like to talk about today is reform in Europe. Everybody speaks about reform in China, and there is enormous movement under way. But let us focus, from now on, on reform in Europe. Because there is quite a lot going on in Europe without people always being aware of it even in Europe itself.

There are three things I would like to address today. I have not yet apologized speaking in that strange language. My Chinese is “马马虎虎”. And my present experience so far is whenever I dare to speak a little bit, I get answers that I don’t understand. So I’d better in one of my languages. But what I want to suggest is that if I speak too fast, you just give me a sign then I slow down.

OK, I would like to address two issues, the shape of Europe, the functioning of Europe, the policies of Europe, and the functioning and impact of that on EU-China relations.

First, let us talk about the shape of Europe. As you know, we’re getting to the hot end of a long process of negotiation about enlargement. We have 15 member states in Europe right now, in the European Union. Two weeks ago, European Commission came out with its analysis recommending adding 10 more member states to the European Union. These 10 more new member states are accentually located in the central Europe, some of them were even part of the Soviet Union at the time, and it stretches down to the Balchas. This week has been important because Ireland voted in favor of the Nice Treaty aiming at the improving the functioning of the running of the European Union with the large membership, ratified by all the presidents of 14 member states except Ireland. Under the mixture of things, there is a lot of analysis why the Irish people voted against it the first time. Still the second round was OK, quite surprisingly good actually, about 2/3 of the vote was in favor. And we have the second important meeting this week, which is a formal meeting of the European heads of state government in Brussels, staring tomorrow. There they start the end game of the enlargement negotiations because we have negotiations now, with these 10 member states for a long period of time. But as it happens a lot upon the money, at the end people want to know how much it costs, how much we have to pay, and how much do I get less out of the community budget.

When the European Commission came out with its recommendation to the leaders to let in 10 more member states, this was done on the basis of a scrupulous analysis of the Copenhagon Criteria. Because as early as 1993, European has a firm state of government defined once for all the conditions under which membership of European states should be guaranteed. Three criteria are very important to us because they describe what the European Union is about. You might be surprised to hear that becoming member of European Union is much more complex, dangerous than that for NATO for example. NATO is easy. European Union is very complicated. Now the three criteria are :one, political criterion, the stability of institutions, guaranteed democracy, the rule of law, human rights, and the protection of minorities. If you look at the map of Europe, you find many states which were much different hundred years ago. We have many minorities in Europe, and many of the applicant countries, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Poland, for example, have very many minorities, where they are protected as equal, as we want them to be under the rules of European Union.

The second criterion, equally important, is economic, the existence of functioning market economy, as well as the capacity to cope with competitive pressure with the market forces within the Union. You can see that the Europe Union of economic, from its level of playing field, where economic conditions, standards, rules, licenses are identical through the European Union. If you throw economies, which aren’t equipped yet in terms of legislation into this level playing field, you will suffer, you will be overwhelmed. We had a bit of that in Germany when the German Democratic Public ceased to exist and when my poor countrymen from the east Germany evaded by insurance companies and all kinds of people they had never seen before. They wanted to sell them everything and they went used to working on credit for example. It’s really something you have to be aware of and we have had a long period of preparation in these candidate countries over 10 years. To catch up with situations, and to create market conditions, which allows them to swim, even to benefit, not to drown and sink.

Third and last criterion is the ability to take on the obligations of membership, including the aims, political, economic and monitory Union. The European Union has such, does not just see itself and define itself as a common marketing, but the angle is much beyond, I mean there is the common currency now for the 11 countries. There is the underlining stability packed for economic and fiscal policies, which make a lot of headlines these days. Our new members know that perfectly well and know that they must subscribe to it. The 300 chapters were negotiated with each candidate country. It is a moving target because European Union keeps on developing. The target moves on. We have had the Euro, the European currency with us already for quite some time as a book currency for international transactions for the banks. It is a process, and likewise for common foreign security policy, likewise for migration policy, likewise for anti-terrorism policy at European scale. So in these enlargement negotiations, which absolved very much of the political attention in Europe these days. All these states play very important role. The next step is the end game of the negotiation with 10 of them. Shall I name them; I hope I don’t forget anybody.

Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Czech, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Cyprus,Malta. These are the ten where I think basically the negotiations can be concluded by the end of this year, on the 300 chapters. The European Union is also the mechanism of solidarity where rich helps poor. We have the experience of the previous enlargements. I have witnessed the beginning of United Kingdom and Ireland joining. In many of these countries, some were notoriously poor, such as Ireland, Spain. The European Union had a tremendous effort in terms of their economic growth, their prosperity, but also for the rest European economy. So that was a win-win situation. That will be very much to save now with the new enlargement. It is machinery where rich helps poor. Over a third of the European Union budget is on regional policy. There are more of them obviously in the context of new enlargement. The line we want to draw is at the European Council Meeting in Copenhagon, in Dec, that all goes well and the leaders will decide that the ten countries should join. As from then, they will informally already be on board for large number of ongoing issues. A number of them will have referendums to go to their people and ask, “Do you think it a good thing to join the party”. Then we will expect ratification. That is a very painful process. All these should be done by early in 2004. Because we want 10 new members to be on board in time for the next elections to European department. I have spoken about the 10 new members states. There is also negotiation already for a couple of years now with Bulgaria and Romania. They have caught up a lot, but they are way behind the others in terms of their economic development and their readiness to subscribe to the disciplines of membership. They know that perfectly well, so here we propose to fix the time when we expect them to be ready to join, probably 2007, far from the first ten. It cannot go faster, we have started two groups of candidate countries and the second group caught up enormously with the first group, so that they can be changed. It still leaves one out in the range, and that is Turkey. We have Turkey as an associate partner, actually the longest standing associate partner we have in the European Union, with the promise of membership. We believe in application of the criteria that while Turkey has made some very courageous steps, in terms of political reform in particular. The implementation of these reforms still has to be seen. On the present stage, Turkey forms part of the process of the enlargement, which is very important, and for the first time in history actually. All of the candidate countries during this process get substantial founding from the European Union, to be ready. It has already transformed a lot of Turkish economy, and also help to create institutions in Turkey. But there is still some way to go. Turkey will remain in the enlargement process, but at this stage, it doesn’t seem that it need us to give a date when actual negotiations are going to start. So, the enlargement issue will be with us for still quite a long time. That’s the end of the story.

Let’s come to the next part, we have to redefine our neighborhood policy. We have very strong pre-membership relation established with the states of Balcas. We feel it a very strong sense of responsibility for what has happen. So there is a very strong cooperation network with these countries. We also have to see how to redefine our neighborhood after enlargement with Russia. Yes, China and Europe, we have a neighbor to share, whose name is called Russia. So we would have a lot of homework to do in the enlargement. Ok, first part concluded. Enlargement keeps us busy quite some time. It will be a totally different European Union as you can imagine. It started as six member states, and then we had 9, then 10, 12, and now we have 15, and then we are going to have 25 member states by 2004, which is a difficult ride. We’re not the kind of united nations of Europe, and we’re not a state, because there is no prospect, in our willingness, to have the united nations of Europe. We have very proud nation states, and we are very fund of our diversity. We have something half way in between. There is much sovereignty in London, Luxemburg, Brussels, or even in Berlin, to make policies at international scale. We create binding law of European level. We decide on the basis of majority basically. So this is a very strange anima. But my point is that the anima is moving, and will be enlarged by 10 more member states. This is obviously the consequence of the functioning of the European Union. Because we are working not intergovernmentally, and we have meeting at all levels, among all the ministry. All the ministers sit and so do their officials, not just to talk or exchange information, but also to decide. So that is a very heavy machinery. As I said, we started at six, we have now 15 for ministry meeting if you give each of the 15 ministers of the European Commission, and half of the day is gone. So we have to do something about it.

In Nice, where they set the basis for the better functioning of the European Union by changes to all treaties, we put into place what we called “convention”. The convention is yet another strange anima. The membership includes members of national parliaments, members of European Parliament, members of the national governments. It is not a negotiation forum, but a kind of a sounding board, a open decision shaping process, which is entering into very important phase now. Each member state actually has websites, explaining what its national position is. All kinds of paper came out, and speeches were made. It is very often that when I find rather artificial presentation of federalists versus confederalists. Only certain functions are taken care of at central government level. And we have more functions are being taken care of at more regional level. We have very strong regions in Europe and we think it is a good thing in our situation. Now the convention has created to fill the headlines. The convention has now started to produce papers themselves, to digest what they heard. They will have to come forward, for the early next year, with proposals. How these go we don’t know yet. I think all these talk about federalists and confederalists is a question for lawyers, institutionalists. I think it makes plain common sense with its two fold. One, Europe has become far too complicated to be explained. And we have lost to large extent touch with our population. Decisions are taken in such long decent way. You don’t know exactly who has decided because you have the mixture of situations. Because there is share of responsibility in European Commission between the councilor of ministers, which presents the interests of the member states, and the European Parliament elected through Europe. And in the end nobody knows who has decided what. So I think one of the aims of the convention would have to be to come up with something much simpler, much more comfortable, and much easier for the people to understand and to catch their hearts again. Because things that presented are in a rather straightforward and easy way. So that is one thing. And the second thing is the operating to make the machinery work. The bottom line is what should be done at European level and decisions should be taken as close to the citizen as possible. The situation is the transfer of the national sovereignty from national parliaments to the European institutions has gone already the very long way.

Once the convention has done its job, it will be proper intergovernmental conference to change our treaties. We have one president to this, which was actually in everybody’s mind in Nice, from the European Summit. That was the work chaired by another convention by Roman Herzog, the former German President, which tries to establish a list of fundamental rights, not human rights in classical sense, but in large degree of fundamental rights, the right to work, social rights, and also the human right, as a basis for all European member states. This is proved to be very successful because the gain is sounding board, and they came up with some very convincing texts which were favored at Nice. Once they have delivered it, this will be transferred into legal language and then we have a new basis. This is not for tomorrow. It will take turn. The gain is the second reason for Europe to be busy. The time is moving fast, and the convention has made some good progress recently. So the first point is ENLARGEMENT from 15 to 25. And the second is how to make operation work more smoothly, simpler, how to regain people’s hearts.

The third point is the change of policies. Our policies, which are open-ended, gain intensity. So a lot of work is now undertaken at European level, which traditionally forms the hard core of national competency. I mean this is a very painful process for ministry and capitals in Europe to lose some of its competency. We have also, in foreign policy, development of record diplomatic force, which is now set up in parallel. We have redefined our relationship with NATO. We have reviewed systematically our policy to the Mediterranean countries, also to Russia.

And how does all these affect on relation to China falls to the last part. We have had a Europe-China Summit on 17th,Sep, just over a month ago. It was a very fruitful and very impressive event. It showed two things. One, Europe and China, now have very mature relationship, very stable relationship. We are far from a political union, but at least we are predictable and we’re never extreme now. Oppositions are always results of internal compromises. Compromises are difficult to sell, to explain to the population. On that basis, with the very high degree of attention paid by from Nice authorities to China-EU relation, I think we have very mature and stable relationship. Secondly, Europe and China are very close. China and Europe strive at a multipolar world in foreign affairs. We are very close in terms of economic and trade relations. We’re each other’s third and forth largest trade partners. Europe used to be no.1 investor in 2000. So basically, both at the political level and as the partner in the economic field, the relationship is very good. Let me add it that we also have large spectrum of cooperation activities education and university level, and cooperation program supporting economic and social reform in China. I think here is the basis for something else we can construct out.

China is uptight with the 16th Party Congress for the change of administration. You have to digest the impact of the WTO. And we believe you are firmly on track, and we walk together. As far as I am concerned, we have a very strong basis that people are becoming more and more aware. I firmly believe, sometime in the course of next year, when pressure all people have in the context of enlargement get less, fundamental change underway, then we have probably more space in our offices to have fresh EU-China relations. With that expectation, I would like to conclude my speech. We have gone a long way together, more and more people become aware of the strong basis that the mature relationship. But I think sometime next year may be a moment that we both push it further. Thank you very much for your patience.

Q1: As a student of biology, I’m now studying German and want to go to Germany for further study. As we all know, after the 9•11 attack in the U.S, it is harder to get a visa to the U.S.A. More and more students are going to Europe to seek for their further study. What do the European do about this? The second question is that these days we are more concerning about the Iraq question. Most of the European countries said they agreed with the U.S’ military action on Iraq. But we notice that Germany didn’t join in this group, they said that they disagree, especially Schröder. He said that Germany wouldn’t take part in this war. I think Europe is going to be more united, but there are indeed some differences between the member states. So would you please tell something about this?

A1: we’re going to negotiate with China before the end of the year to facilitate tourist traffic between China and Europe. This is a good thing, because one of basic element I find always useful to repeat whoever is “Come and see for yourself”. We try to be helpful. There is one program, which for reasons not easily understood has been dragging on for quite some time before, now it can get started. I think since you’re advanced in your study, you should not wait for the genuine European visa and migration policy. I think they need time.

As you know, I have no reasons to hide it, we have different position with the European Union. We do have a basic understanding in the European Union that is “there is no way to address the problem without U.N.”. It is not such common position. This is the discreet charm of European Union.

Q2: I have a quite personal question. You were talking repeatedly that you should do something at European level. If you happen to deal with something that has something to do with your own country, what will you choose if they contradict with each other? Who will you be on behalf of?

A2: If I do things, I do it on behalf of my own passion and interest and also on behalf of the European Union. You ought to see that people working for European Commission, just like myself, totally independent from our member states. When we talk about things should be taken at European level, such as water pollution, the climate change, it is a level beyond national level. Whether you are aware of it or not, you’re somehow a mirror of your society that you came from. With my Mediterranean colleagues, or colleagues from Sweden, I would be more German than I realized in my behavior, in my attitude. But we’re at least functioning independently.

Q3: I’m a student from the school of government. As a student from developing countries, I would like to call more attention on this area. As we know, the EU has provided a successful model of regional integration. We have to admit, behind the success, the similarity of culture, social structure and history background have contributed a lot. Bur we may not see the same case in other regions, such as Asia, where different countries demonstrate a diversity of national conditions. So would you please give some suggestions? Thank you.

A3: I’m the great champion of diversity so I could not completely agree if you say there is wide range of diversity among developing countries. We do expect that diversity. There are certain objectives we share, between developed countries and developing countries. For example, the WTO, where we have to ensure that developing countries without this strong body of institution, how to define themselves? Diversity, to my mind, does not exclude to apply common rules. We have the very particular role in this aspect. And this has nothing to do with diversities. We see in WTO for example, China more frequently now defend position, which traditionally are industrialized countries because you have to defend your own. China traditionally builds a bridge between industrialized countries and developing countries. This is very visible now since China is in WTO. The European Union has very committed policy of cooperation with developing countries. We are the largest source of cooperation fund in the world. The European Union sees itself as a bridge between industrialized countries and developing countries. Here we share the responsibility and this is actually what the visit in Beijing and Guangzhou of the European Commission about. The talk is centrally focused on how best to ensure that developing countries, despite of their diversity of interest, can fully participate in the process, not being assimilated by the western countries. So my short answer is diversity is a good thing, but there are certain things, which we require common disciplines, in order to help these developing countries better defend themselves.

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