Category 'GENERAL'

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Between The Numbers

GENERAL
2021-2027 EU budget

The EU has so far managed to avoid answering some of the fundamental questions that have been troubling the block for years: How will Brexit affect the remaining countries? Whose responsibility is the migration crisis...

The EU has so far managed to avoid answering some of the fundamental questions that have been troubling the block for years: How will Brexit affect the remaining countries? Whose responsibility is the migration crisis and how can Member States better tackle terrorism? Can Member States refuse to abide to European values (e.g. the principle of solidarity in the refugee crisis) and still benefit from the EU funds? … But the discussion on the new EU budget is bringing all the chickens home to roost and will force the EU and its Member States to find a middle ground on many of these thorny issues.

On 2 May, the EU published the proposal for the next seven-year budget, which covers the amount of money the organisation will be able to spend, invest and award to players and projects in the EU for the period 2021-2027. Though it may seem boring and uneventful on the surface, the adoption of the EU budget will be the one thing that will force Member States to discuss and hopefully agree on a shared vision for the future of the EU.

To start, this will be the first budget to be agreed without the UK, and Member States will have to increase contributions to the EU in order to cover at least part of the estimated annual €12 billion gap created by the UK’s departure. It remains to be seen whether the proposed €1,279 billion budget, an increase of 15% over the previous period, will be agreed, as detractors complain that a Union of 27 shouldn’t be more expensive than one including 28 Member States.

The increased budget, however, is justified by many by the increased number of priorities of the EU, including security and migration. While the proposal foresees significant cuts to major programs dedicated to the agricultural sector (-5%) and regional development (-7%) – two areas that have been the cornerstone of EU spending since the early days – it introduces new priorities such as defence (€13 billion) and digital transformation (up to €9.5 billion). Winners of this proposal are, without doubt, the research and innovation fund, which received a 30% increase compared to the previous budget, and border control, migration and asylum policies which saw their allocation more than doubled in this proposal…

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2021-2027 EU budget

Gurpreet Brar, General Manager, Brussels

2021-2027 EU budget

Federica Boledi, PA Practices, Brussels

Australian Citizenship Status Undermining Turnball Government

GENERAL, GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS

The Turnbull government is facing minority status and a difficult by-election after Australia’s High Court found the entire leadership of the National Party — Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce and Nationals deputy leader Fiona Nash —...

The Turnbull government is facing minority status and a difficult by-election after Australia’s High Court found the entire leadership of the National Party — Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce and Nationals deputy leader Fiona Nash — ineligible to stand at the 2016 election, due to their citizenship status under section 44 of the Australian constitution.

Mr Joyce will now face a by-election in the seat of New England, likely to be called on the 2 December, with a writ issued by the Speaker of the House today. Joyce is one of five federal MPs to be unanimously knocked out by the Court. It also found former Greens senators Scott Ludlam and Larissa Waters were not validly elected, along with One Nation’s controversial Senator Malcolm Roberts and the National Party’s Fiona Nash.  Nick Xenophon and Matt Canavan have been ruled eligible, though Nick Xenophon will leave Federal politics to pursue a career in State politics in his home state of South Australia.

In terms of the immediate fall out, Matt Canavan will return to Northern Australia and Resources Minister; Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will take on Agriculture and Water Resources, and Mitch Fifield will take on Regional Communications from Fiona Nash – Darren Chester will take on her other portfolios.

The issue of citizenship was raised in July this year following the resignation of Greens Senator Scott Ludlam who resigned from the Senate after it was brought to his attention he held dual Australian and New Zealand citizenship, rendering him ineligible to hold elected office in the Federal Parliament under section 44 of the Australian Constitution.

He became the first casualty of the 2017 Australian constitutional crisis. Ludlam’s resignation led to a number of MPs and Senators publicly clarifying their citizenship status, and also led to fellow Greens Senator and Deputy Leader Larissa Waters’s resignation four days later, after discovering she held Canadian citizenship.  A swathe of allegations regarding eligibility followed, which resulted in the establishment of the Citizenship Seven – referred to the High Court for assessment.

These rulings have plunged the government into disarray.  As a minority government, Turnbull’s slim grip on power will be tested in the result of the forthcoming New England by-election.   If the seat is not won by a Liberal or National candidate, the current government will cease to maintain its one seat majority, forcing a Federal election early next year.

Joyce’s dismissal also leaves open to challenge every ministerial decision he has made, as well as those made by Ms Nash, since October 20 last year.

Legal advice obtained by the ALP confirms that under section 64 of the constitution a person can only act as a minister for three months without being a member of Parliament. Mr Joyce is now invalid as an MP from the time of last year’s election on July 2, and the only decisions which are valid are those which he made in the first three months as minister after he was sworn in on July 19.

Ultimately, the impression that the Turnbull government is notable only for its chaos and instability has been reinforced.  If a Federal election is triggered by the result of the New England by-election, we could be facing yet another leadership change and an inevitable impact on business and consumer confidence.

European Trust Summit 2017: Edelman partners with Public Affairs Council

GENERAL, NEWS
European Trust Summit 2017

Edelman will partner with the Public Affairs Council for the European Trust Summit 2017 – Corporate Governance and Public Affairs in a Low-Trust World on 31 May 2017. The one-day program will explore business governance, ethics,...

Edelman will partner with the Public Affairs Council for the European Trust Summit 2017 – Corporate Governance and Public Affairs in a Low-Trust World on 31 May 2017.

The one-day program will explore business governance, ethics, transparency policies, and communications and engagement strategies designed to restore faith in major institutions. Topics will include:

  • Corporate governance and ethics
  • Politics, media and public affairs
  • Transparency and trust
  • (Dis)trusting evidence
  • Improving trust internally and externally

For more information and to register: http://pac.org/trust-summit

GURPREET BRAR PROMOTED TO GENERAL MANAGER BRUSSELS

GENERAL, NEWS
gurpreet brar

Edelman has announced the promotion of Gurpreet Brar who is moving into the role of General Manager, Brussels. Gurpreet has been with Edelman as the Managing Director of the UK Public Affairs team since 2014....

Edelman has announced the promotion of Gurpreet Brar who is moving into the role of General Manager, Brussels.

Gurpreet has been with Edelman as the Managing Director of the UK Public Affairs team since 2014. In this time, he has proven himself to be a first-rate leader, restructuring the UK team, building out offers for purpose advocacy, government affairs and campaigning.

Prior to joining Edelman, Gurpreet was a Partner at Bell Pottinger following three years as Chief of Staff to Lord Turner, then Chairman of the UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA), between 2010 and 2013.

Michael Stewart, President & CEO Edelman Europe & CIS, said of Gurpreet’s promotion: “As the home of the European political agenda, Brussels is a high priority market for the region, and Gurpreet brings a raft of experience leading and executing pan-European strategic communications and integrated Public Affairs campaigns across multiple sectors and markets. His deep sector knowledge and expertise, as well as his innovative approach to public policy engagement for organisations such as Unilever, Tata Steel and Pfizer will ensure Edelman is at the forefront of helping clients navigate the ever-evolving Brussels legislative agenda”.

Gurpreet said: “I am delighted to be taking up the role as General Manager of a key office in the Edelman network at this challenging time for the future of our continent. I’ve had a fantastic two and a half years restructuring the UK Public Affairs team and I look forward to growing a fully integrated communications agency in the heart of Europe’s political landscape.”

WHAT TO EXPECT DOWN THE HOMESTRETCH

GENERAL, GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS, NEWS, TRENDS & INSIGHT

Political expert and senior Edelman U.S. counselor Steve Schmidt visited Brussels on his European tour. During a lunch debate he shared his perspectives on the state of the US Presidential Election campaign and provided a...

Political expert and senior Edelman U.S. counselor Steve Schmidt visited Brussels on his European tour. During a lunch debate he shared his perspectives on the state of the US Presidential Election campaign and provided a unique insider’s take on the election. Schmidt said the entire race was only explicable through the collapse of trust in every institution except the military, but he also reiterated that what we are seeing in the United States is what we are seeing across Europe too, with for example the rise of populism. He believes that Hillary Clinton will become the next President of the United States as Donald Trump has proven that he “lacks the mental, moral and intellectual virtues necessary to be President.” It is extraordinary that after 25 years at the absolute centre of political life, Clinton still has a great chance to win the presidency – no other person in American political history can claim that longevity, said Schmidt. We’ll know more on 8 November… Meanwhile, please stay tuned for more US Presidential Election blogs

CONGRATULATIONS ESTHER BUSSCHER

EU AFFAIRS, GENERAL, NEWS

Congratulations to our General Manager Esther Busscher who - together with other female CEOs and Chairs of large communications agencies in Brussels - is ranked #1 by Politico's Ryan Heath on the influencers who are...

Congratulations to our General Manager Esther Busscher who – together with other female CEOs and Chairs of large communications agencies in Brussels – is ranked #1 by Politico’s Ryan Heath on the influencers who are shifting the EU’s gender balance.
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