The EU27 is faced with a series of long-term challenges which, combined with Brexit, are causing “a lot of friction beneath the surface”, experts from Stratfor warned. And one of the geopolitcal firm’s specialists claimed the only way Brussels would realise its dream of a United States of Europe would be if the bloc “removed three-quarters of its members”.
Speaking during a rundown of the “top geopolitical risks for 2018”, expert Rodger Baker said the EU was moving towards “disintegration”, despite hopes from some of its key figures for closer cooperation between members. Asked by Express.co.uk if the rise of Eurosceptic and anti-establishment parties in countries such as Italy, Poland, Austria and the Czech Republic could destabilise the bloc, Mr Baker said the tension would not result in “the collapse of the EU”. GETTY
Delivering his vision for the future of the bloc in September, Mr Juncker revealed ambitious plans more cooperation over finance, the creation of a fund to bail out struggling economies and a European defence force. But Reva Goujon, Stratfor’s vice president of global analysis, said East-West tensions within the bloc, as well as differences between Germany
and France, would only serve to hinder these plans. And she said the rise of anti-establishment parties across Central and Eastern European nations would result in more conflict with Brussels. However, Ms Goujon added many of those nations were so reliant on EU funds for development, it would be extremely unlikely for them to leave.