16 June, 2014
Resolution on Relaunching Europe's Foreign & Defence Policy
Adopted by the UEF Federal Committee, Brussels, 14 June 2014

The Federal Committee of the Union of European Federalists
in reference:
-    to the resolution on defence adopted at its meeting in Brussels on 14 April 2013,
-    to the resolution on foreign and defence policy,
-    and to the resolution on a common European energy policy, the two latter adopted at the XXIIIth Congress of UEF on 27 March 2011;

having regard to:
-    the Future of Europe Group report of September 2012;
-    the European Parliament Resolution on EU’s military structures of September 2013;
-    the European Parliament Report on the Annual Report from the Council to the European Parliament on the Common Foreign and Security Policy of October 2013 that stressed “that the EU needs to establish a new and credible foreign policy in response to the current challenges in the world”;
-    the High Representative Report on the Common Security and Defence Policy of October 2013;
-    the European Parliament Report on the implementation of the Common Security and Defence Policy of October 2013;
-    the Conclusions of the Council of November 25, 2013 on the Common Security and Defence Policy
-    the conclusions of the European Council of December 2013 on the Common Security and Defence Policy of December 2013;
-    the proposals made by the Spinelli Group in the Fundamental Law on the issues of CFSP and CSDP;
whereas
-    the foundation of the EU and its main goal is the preservation and promotion of peace
-    the EU’s foreign policy should be anchored on and driven by its fundamental values of peace, democracy, the rule of law and human rights,
-    the eurozone crisis has substantially reduced attention on the EU foreign policy and its role in the world,
-    over the last years there was a substantial lack of political will among both national and European decision makers in this field which hindered EU ability to act on the many crisis particularly at the borders of Europe, the Mediterranean and the Middle-East;
-    several provisions of the current EU Treaty, e.g on the permanent structured cooperation, have yet to be implemented;
-    therefore the role of foreign policy in the European Union needs to be addressed as a priority for the Union;

Considers that the European Union’s response to the different crises in its Southern and Eastern Neighbourhood and beyond was in many cases inadequate and did not allow  the European Union to play a pivotal role in international affairs,

Emphasises that the shortcomings of the European Union’s foreign policy are also due to the fact that Member States have refused so far to empower the EU institutions to assume a leading role and calls upon the Member States to continue the process initiated with the December Council but also to move more decisively toward a strengthening of the CFSP and CSDP;

Considers that an effective European foreign policy should be based on the comprehensive approach and ensure the coherent use of all tools in the fields of diplomacy, enlargement, security, defence, development, humanitarian assistance, trade, energy and home affairs.
Concrete steps toward a genuine European Foreign Policy
Calls for the appointment of a high-profile, heavyweight personality as High Representative/Vice-President of the European Commission (HR/VP) with the role to coordinate the other commissioners who have portfolios that deal with external relations (trade, enlargement, the neighbourhood, development and humanitarian assistance), in order to strengthen the EU’s effectiveness in foreign policy, and call him/her to present his/her views prior to the confirmation of his/her appointment in form of a new global strategy that sets up priorities and highlights values and interests to guide the EU’ action in the world;

Stresses the need that the HR/VP is given all the necessary means to conduct an effective foreign policy;

Underlines the importance of establishing deputies for the functions of the High Representative with a political mandate;

Stresses that enlargement policy should not be affected by internal political situation of current EU member states, but exclusively based on the Treaties and basic principles of the Union;

Believes that the European Parliament, as the democratically elected institution of the European Union, should be involved at the same level as the European Council in shaping the strategic level decisions of the EU in the field of foreign affairs;

Suggests strengthening the joint representation of the European Union in international organisations, including by giving the EU a permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council, replacing the ones by France and the UK;
Concrete steps toward a more integrated European Defence
Notes that the pooling of military capabilities at the EU level would allow to both increase the efficiency of European Defence and bring about savings to the national budgets by exploiting the effects of economy of scale;

Invites the Member States willing to take a qualitative step forward to begin establishing a permanent structured cooperation (Article 46 TEU and Protocol 10) that should include at least:
-    the establishment of a permanent EU Operational Headquarters,
-    the establishment of a rapid reaction force with a common funding that constitutes the nucleus of a European army,

Suggests the creation of a European security investment fund, by pooling resources of the national defence budgets;

Reiterates the need for a more integrated European defence industry that could enhance the EU’s strategic autonomy;

Believes that the strengthening of European military capabilities can only benefit NATO and the EU’s relations with its partners.

Towards to a single European Foreign, Security and Defence Policy

Notes that European Foreign, Security and Defence Policy can only make limited progress as long as its remains essentially intergovernmental and depending on the political will, funds and availability to act of a growing number of member states with different interests;

Believes that the EU (subject to opt-outs for any country not willing to join) should move to a progressively Europeanisation of Foreign, Security and Defence Policy such that eventually European policies, initiatives and actions can be decided autonomously by the European institutions, implemented through European capabilities and funded through an adequate European budget;
Considers therefore that member states and EU institutions should develop a plan, similar to the plan that led the EU from economic integration to a single currency, to progressively pool foreign, security and defense means and capabilities, including military capabilities (and the relative funding) to the European level;

Invites to address such issues in the context of the next reform of the EU Treaties.

Concluding remarks
Undertakes to develop a policy on the matter of Energy Policy and an Energy Union to be adopted at the next Federal Committee meeting, which should be an important element of EU foreign policy.


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