WASHINGTON – Czech President Vaslav Klaus said the economic crisis in Europe shows that the European Union is not working and is not going to work. The only thing that would help to rehabilitate the EU is changes,which are now unattainable,the president said in a speech Monday at the Heritage Foundation.
“This change at least means two things – the potential transformation of the European social and the government system and the restructuring of the European institutional political arrangement,” Klaus said.
The integration of the European countries should be stopped,he said.
The EU’s policy on harmonization of laws to achieve uniformity in laws of all the members states should be discontinued,as well as the process of creating a common standard for regulation in Europe,Klaus said.
The Czech Republic is a member of the EU,but does not use the euro. Klaus,president of the country since 2003 is a longtime EU critic.
Klaus said there is a widely accepted idea that European integration is a progressive,politically correct project and that any disagreement with this way of thinking,or Euro-scepticism,is rejected in Europe.
“Europe’s constituting elements,the states,have been consistently, systematically and,to my great regret,successfully undermined,” Klaus said. “It was forgotten that the state is the only institution where real democracy is possible.”
The president reminded his audience that the idea of European integration appeared for the first time in the 1950s with the goal of removing all kinds of barriers at the borders of the individual countries.
European countries ratified important treaties in the 1990s,and the euro became the sole currency in 12 EU countries in 2002.
But the result of the project was different from what it was supposed to be,Klaus said.
Instead of the European countries working together and sharing with each other,he said,they were merged into a one big organization. The initiatives of individual countries’ governments became minor,while the Council of the European Union and European Parliament received the power of decision making.
Finally,he said,the EU became a false democracy.
The most visible problem of the European monetary union shows how the attempt to create the integrated countries’ currency failed.
Klaus is an opponent of the centrally implemented economic policy of the EU and the euro as a common currency of the Eurozone countries. The president said that,after the establishment of the Eurozone,the economic growth of its member states slowed compared to the previous decade.
The EU includes 27 countries,17 of which use the euro.
“The idea of the European single currency is a wrong one. It would lead to huge economic problems,and it would inevitably lead to the undemocratic centralization of the European continent,” Klaus said.
Another big problem of the EU is green ideology,the president said.
“We should stop the greens from taking over much of our economy under the banner of such flawed ideas as global warming,” Klaus said.
Still,the estimate of the president is that the Eurozone will not collapse because a huge amount of political capital has been invested in its existence.
“It will continue to exist but at very high price,” Klaus said.
Klaus started a working visit of several days to the United States on Monday. On Wednesday he was to take a part in the United Nations General Assembly session in New York. On Thursday,the president will visit the University of Guelph in Ontario,Canada,and then return to the Czech Republic.
Reach reporter Lyudmila Tsubiks at [email protected] or 202-326-9867. SHFWire stories are free to any news organization that gives the reporter a byline and credits the SHFWire.