Europe Inc. in crisis - the EU's alliance with big business is a dead-end

(19 April 2012) 15 years ago Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) was established (1997). Its mission was to explore if and how corporate interests are capturing the Commission. It published a report {Europe, Inc.: Dangerous Liaisons between EU Institutions and Industry}. That report exposed the influence of industry lobbying on the new EU treaty being signed at that time. The powerful role of lobby groups such as the European Roundtable of Industrialists (ERT) was exposed in promoting and shaping an EU-wide free trade area (the single market), a single currency (the euro), and numerous other major EU projects and policies at the time. The report warned that the far-reaching influence of corporate lobbies over EU decision-making came at the expense of democracy and of social and environmental concerns. Now fifteen years later a new report argues that the situation is worse. The report says that the corporate capture of EU policies has played a central role in sparking the deepest economic crisis for generations and contributed to the EU's flawed response to the crisis, based on harsh austerity policies that are currently causing social havoc across Europe. The effects of these policies on public service workers have been [researched by EPSU->rub447] and the very recent case of Commission support for [Repsol->art8623] reveals how ingrained the corporate bias has become Read more on [www.corporateeurope.org->http://www.corporateeurope.org/EU-in-crisis-conf/essays/europe-inc-crisis-eus-alliance-big-business-dead-end]