The latest on FPC research, publications and events
The Foreign Policy Centre's April Update
For more information see www.fpc.org.uk
LAST MONTH'S EVENTS
UK government releases CAP payment details after FPC campaign
The UK government has released farm-by-farm details of how much British businesses receive in public subsidies under the EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), following a request from the Foreign Policy Centre under the new Freedom of Information Act. The FPC has been calling for greater European transparency and disclosure of individual CAP payments since 2002, as part of its work in setting out fair and politically achievable proposals for reforming international trade.
Read the FPC press release: http://fpc.org.uk/fsblob/419.pdf
Jack Straw presses the case for Britain in Europe
At a Foreign Policy Centre event on Thursday 31 March, the Foreign Secretary, Rt Hon Jack Straw, called for Britain to be more actively engaged in Europe to improve accountability and secure British interests. In his speech, Jack Straw called for a 'more honest' debate about the political choice ahead on Europe, stating that the Conservative policy of renegotiation of Britain's membership was not a viable option.
The event formed part of the FPC's new programme of work which analyses the implications of the European Constitution and the prospects for the national referendums being held across the EU.
Read Jack Straw's speech: http://fpc.org.uk/fsblob/429.pdf
Five years of President Putin: an assessment
On 31 March 2005 the FPC brought together prominent Russian experts at a one-day international conference at University College London to assess the implications of President Vladimir Putin's five years in power for Russia and its foreign policy. Speakers included Carsten Sondergaard, the Danish State Secretary for Foreign and Security Policy, Dr Alex Pravda, University of Oxford, Bridget Kendall MBE, BBC Diplomatic Correspondent, Dr Vadim Malkin, Russian Axis, Paul Melling, Baker and McKenzie, Moscow, Dr Gabor Beszterczey, New Eurasia Foundation and Dr Thomas Gomart, head of the Russia/CIS programme at IFRI.
Read the conference report: http://fpc.org.uk/fsblob/441.pdf
HOT OFF THE PRESS: FPC PUBLICATIONS
For details of how to order our publications or to read online, please see www.fpc.org.uk/publications
Improving UK Parliamentary Scrutiny of EU legislation
By Sir Digby Jones (preface by Dr Denis MacShane)
In this new FPC pamphlet, Sir Digby Jones, director-general of the CBI, sets out how to reform the scurity EU legislation to make the process more democratic and ensure UK business interests are represented. He argues that MPs and Select Committees must involve themselves at a much earlier stage in policy proposals from Brussels and open their hearings to the public. In a preface, Dr Denis MacShane MP, Minister for Europe, seconds the call for greater representation by MPs and MEPs of business and other groups in their constituencies in European capitals. But he adds that companies, trade unions and NGOs must also increase their engagement with the EU.
The report was launched at a lively FPC event on 4 April 2005 that included interventions from an MP, an MEP and a peer giving their unique perspectives on the issue.
European Civic and Inclusion Index
British Council Brussels, Foreign Policy Centre and Migration Policy Group
The British Council Brussels, Foreign Policy Centre and Migration Policy Group have published the first ever attempt to assess the EU's policies on civic citizenship and inclusion in a quantifiable and comparable format. The European Civic Citizenship and Inclusion Index examines over 100 separate policy indicators to measure the performance of the EU-15 on labour market inclusion, residence, family reunion, naturalization and anti-discrimination for legal migrants and their families.
The report was launched in Brussels on 21 March 2005. It approach has received the support of senior European figures including Mary Robinson, Martti Ahtisaari and Rita Süssmuth. Updated versions of the Index will appear regularly in future. The next edition will include all 25 EU Member States.
Putin's 'Party of Power' and the Declining Power of Parties in Russia
By Andrei Kunov, Mikhail Myagkov, Alexei Sitnikov and Dmitry Shakin
The 2003 Duma elections saw an overwhelming victory for President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party and drastic defeat for other political parties. Opposition calls for a recount went nowhere and many puzzles about voting trends in Russia went unanswered. This pamphlet presents the results of ground-breaking research from the Open Economy Institute in Moscow, using a new statistical method for understanding the flow of votes and electorate support between political parties. The authors find that the Russian electorate was far less predictable in the last cycle than in the first decade of modern Russian democracy; and argue that the prospects for an effective multi-party system are now bleak.
COMING SOON: New FPC Reports
CHINA GOES GLOBAL
by Yongjin Zhang
Barely three years after joining the WTO, China has become the third largest global trader and a significant global investor. China's unusual identity as a rising economic power, a non-democratic state and the largest emerging market combined makes its inclusion a compelling and complex challenge for global economic governance. In this pamphlet, Yongjin Zhang, head of Asian studies at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, examines the implications – and argues that the challenges to the international economic system are no less daunting than those acknowledged in the power-oriented debate about China.
ENERGY AND POWER IN CHINA: Domestic Regulation and Foreign Policy by Angie Austin
Much has been made of China's growing energy consumption and its potential repercussions for world energy supply and security. Australian economist Angie Austin argues that changing internal patterns in energy efficiency and domestic regulation will prove more significant than external supply policies.
GLOBAL EUROPE REPORT 3: Rescuing the State: Europe's Next Challenge
British Council Brussels and the Foreign Policy Centre
by Malcolm Chalmers (ed.), Michael von der Schulenburg, Julian Braithwaite
Europe today has primary responsibility for the reconstruction of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and has contributed to the foundation of a Palestinian state and to governance projects worldwide. Yet many challenges remain. In this pamphlet from the Foreign Policy Centre and the British Council, leading practitioners set out a framework for a new generation of European state-building operations, more sensitive to the societies in which they are conducted and more sustainable over the longer term.
THE FPC WRITES…
Kofi Annan and the Need for Real UN Reform
By Greg Austin and Ken Berry
The Globalist, 31 March 2005
Investing in India: Is the UK doing enough?
By Shairi Mathur
India News in Europe, 31 March 2005
Papadopoulous stalls EU aid for Northern Cyprus
By Dick Leonard
European Voice, 18 March 2005
THE FPC IN THE NEWS
EU to dominate post-election foreign agenda
Reuters, 14 April 2005
EU farm money lands on U.K. gentry
International Herald Tribune, 12 April 2005
Minister proposes new EU envoy
BBC News Online, 3 April 2005
Rich land owners scoop up crock of gold from EU,
The Guardian, 23 March 2005
Scrutiny of EU laws is failing, says CBI
The Daily Telegraph, 4 April 2005
FPC MEDIA EXPERTS
In the run-up to the UK elections, FPC research staff are available to provide expert comment on breaking international news and foreign policy issues. They are experienced media commentators, making frequent TV and radio appearances.
To arrange briefings and interviews with FPC staff, please contact Lucy Ahad on 020 7388 6662 or 07950 550 426.
Areas of FPC expertise:
Keith Didcock, FPC Deputy Director
Business and Globalisation
Global economic and political trends
Dr Greg Austin, FPC Research Director
East Asian security, the EU arms ban to China and Sino-Japanese tensions
Russian foreign policy and security
UN reform, conflict prevention and Darfur
Richard Gowan, Europe Programme Director
Transatlantic relations; European foreign and defence policy
The European Constitution and referendums
European immigration and inclusion policies
Seema Desai, Rising Powers Programme Director
Global economic trends
Economic and political implications of the rise of China and India
Andrew Small, Researcher
Chinese foreign policy; political and economic trends
Jennifer Moll, Russia Programme Officer:
Political trends in Russia; EU-Russian relations
Shairi Mathur, Project Officer for India
Indian domestic politics and foreign policy
Rouzbeh Pirouz, Chairman, Civility Programme for Middle East reform at the FPC
Democracy in the Middle East; Western strategies for reform
Iran: internal politics and external relations
Jack Thurston, Senior Research Associate
CAP reform and agriculture; trade justice.