28 minutes | Mar 23, 2023
Economic jitters, French upheaval, arms for Ukraine — what’s occupying EU leaders
Coming to you from this week’s European Council summit in Brussels, competitiveness and the economy are high on the agenda, alongside a historic EU agreement for joint arms procurement. We also discuss French President Emanuel Macron’s plummeting popularity ratings at home, and Franco-German wrangling over nuclear energy and e-fuels. Taking us through all this and more is host Suzanne Lynch, along with POLITICO’s Jacopo Barigazzi, Clea Caulcutt and Barbara Moens. We then hear from the CEO of the American Chamber of Commerce to the EU, Susan Danger, on European competitiveness, and get her take on America’s much-debated Inflation Reduction Act. Finally, we decode Brussels-speak. The podcast crew unpacks this week’s EU jargon: EUCO. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
33 minutes | Mar 16, 2023
Das Auto debate — Activist Bill Browder on Russia's political prisoners
We debate Germany's last-minute effort to derail EU plans to end the sale of combustion engines by 2035. And our special guest is author and activist Bill Browder, discussing how the EU can take a stronger stance on punishing human rights violators. The EU wants to ban the sale of new combustion-engine vehicles by 2035, but the policy isn't going down well with German lawmakers keen to protect the country's behemoth car industry. Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by POLITICO's Joshua Posaner and Hans von der Burchard to unpack the latest row stirring debate about the future of Das Auto. Then, Suzanne sits down with Bill Browder in the European Parliament in Strasbourg to discuss his efforts to draw EU attention to political prisoners in Russia and Georgia. Finally, Josh and Hans return for our final segment decoding Brussels-speak. This week, the team explains what a "trilogue" is in EU policymaking. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30 minutes | Mar 9, 2023
Viktor Orbán's political director — Sponsored flight flap — VDL meets Biden
This week, we debate a controversy over travel rules for top EU officials and unpack what the European Commission president is hoping to achieve during her visit to North America. Our special guest is Balázs Orbán, political director to the Hungarian prime minister (no relation to his boss). Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by POLITICO's Mari Eccles and Karl Mathiesen to discuss a big story dominating the Brussels bubble involving paid travel by a top EU bureaucrat to Qatar while negotiating a critical aviation deal with the Gulf state. We dive into why this conflict-of-interest flap matters for EU politics — and to European citizens. Also, we reveal what European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen hopes to get out of visits this week to Canada and with U.S. President Joe Biden in Washington. And POLITICO's Lili Bayer speaks to Balázs Orbán, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s political director, who plays a key role in Budapest's international efforts to build relationships with conservative communities around the globe. They also talk about rule-of-law concerns and decode Hungary's rhetoric surrounding Russia's war in Ukraine. Finally, Mari helps our listeners better understand what it means when people in Brussels talk about a "DG." Remember, if you have ideas for our segment on decoding Brussels-speak, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30 minutes | Mar 2, 2023
New EU-UK chapter — VDL meets the king — Decoding Brussels-speak
This week, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen met King Charles III at Windsor Castle after a deal was sealed on a long-awaited solution to the post-Brexit trade row over Northern Ireland. Host Suzanne Lynch in Brussels is joined by Ailbhe Rea, co-host of our sister podcast Westminster Insider, and a special guest — the EU's final British Commissioner, Julian King — to discuss this latest chapter in the Brexit saga and where the EU-U.K. relationship goes from here. We also hear from Barry Andrews, an Irish member of the European Parliament. Then, POLITICO's Jacopo Barigazzi kicks off a brand new feature of EU Confidential — decoding "Brussels-speak." We're helping our listeners better understand the jargon and acronyms that dominate EU policy-making. This week's phrase is "Perm Rep." If you'd like to suggest an example of Brussels jargon you'd like us to decode, you can always get in touch by emailing email@example.com. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
33 minutes | Feb 23, 2023
Russia's war in Ukraine, one year on: How Europe has changed
As we approach the one year mark of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the EU Confidential crew chronicles the historic policy shifts in the EU and European capitals with the help of Bulgarian political scientist, Ivan Krastev. Host Suzanne Lynch discusses the seismic changes in Europe over the past year with Ivan Krastev, chairman of the Center for Liberal Strategies in Sofia and a permanent fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna. Then POLITICO's Veronika Melkozerova in Kyiv describes the mood there after U.S. President Joe Biden's visit earlier this week — and how Ukrainians are trying to re-build and stay positive, as the one-year mark of war looms. Finally, Suzanne speaks to curators at a museum in Kyiv who are gathering evidence of war crimes in an attempt to hold Russia to account. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31 minutes | Feb 16, 2023
VDL's texts — MEPs arrested — Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe
This week, we unpack some of the transparency issues plaguing the EU's top institutions, and our special guest is Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe on Europe's economic outlook. Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by POLITICO's European Parliament reporter Eddy Wax in Strasbourg, to discuss the ongoing Qatargate scandal — including the arrest in the past few days of two more MEPs in connection with the police probe. POLITICO's Sarah Wheaton in Brussels also weighs in on the proposal to create an EU-wide independent ethics body to address transparency concerns. Meanwhile, MEPs are resisting efforts to clean up the chamber, as Sarah reports in this recent article. The podcast crew also debates the news that the European Commission is being sued for failing to release text messages between its president Ursula von der Leyen and Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla when the Commission was negotiating with the drug company on coronavirus vaccine procurement. And Suzanne sits down with Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe to discuss Europe's economic outlook, how the bloc is coping with high inflation and the impact of the war in Ukraine. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25 minutes | Feb 9, 2023
Zelenskyy in Brussels: the worst-kept secret in town — EU leaders on migration
Coming to you during Thursday's meeting of EU leaders, we discuss Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's (not so) surprise visit to Brussels, as well as other topics on the agenda: migration and Europe's response to the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act. On the sidelines of the European Council in Brussels, host Suzanne Lynch sits down with POLITICO's Clea Caulcutt, Barbara Moens and Jacopo Barigazzi to analyze the impact of Zelenskyy's visit to Brussels, which became the source of controversy after the news of his trip was leaked earlier in the week. The group also discusses the EU's attempts to make progress on its migration policy, as well as the bloc’s plan to make Europe more competitive. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28 minutes | Feb 2, 2023
EU-Ukraine summit — Fighter jets? — Moldovan President Maia Sandu
All eyes are on Ukraine as the EU's top officials visit Kyiv for a historic summit — the first to be held in an active war zone. And Moldovan President Maia Sandu is our special guest. Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by POLITICO's Veronika Melkozerova in Kyiv and Matthew Karnitschnig in Berlin to discuss what we can expect from the visit by EU leaders to the Ukrainian capital — including whether sending Ukraine fighter jets is now part of the discussion and if Ukraine's prospects for joining the EU have advanced. Also looking to join the EU eventually is Moldova. Suzanne sat down with President Maia Sandu as her country prepares to host the next meeting of the European Political Community in June. They discuss what we can expect from that meeting, as well as her country's EU prospects, the impact of the war in Ukraine and her own political journey. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27 minutes | Jan 26, 2023
Scholz's tanks for your assistance — EU finance chief Mairead McGuinness: Crypto is like 'a religion'
Our POLITICO team has the inside scoop on German Chancellor Olaf Scholz's long-awaited decision to send Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine and how it's landing internationally. Also, our special guest is Mairead McGuinness, the EU's financial services commissioner. POLITICO's Suzanne Lynch is joined by Chief Europe Correspondent Matthew Karnitschnig and Hans von der Burchard, our senior politics reporter covering the German chancellery. They break down Scholz's decision to send tanks to Ukraine (along with the U.S. and others) and debate the reaction to it domestically and among international partners. The German chancellor stuck to his position that he would not move until Washington also agreed to send the heavy military kit, but what was the cost of the delay? Then, the EU's Financial Services Commissioner Mairead McGuinness joins Suzanne to talk through the EU's approach to enforcing Russian sanctions and how the bloc is leading the charge when it comes to regulating cryptocurrencies. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24 minutes | Jan 19, 2023
From Davos: Tanks to Ukraine — Irish PM Leo Varadkar — EU-US trade fight
The EU Confidential crew takes you inside this week's World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland where the world's rich and powerful are gathered. POLITICO's Suzanne Lynch, Ryan Heath, Erin Banco and Alex Ward unpack the big speeches on Wednesday by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The team discusses the latest on international efforts to send tanks to Ukraine, and we hear from Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis on this issue. Looking ahead to the reconstruction of Ukraine, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development President Odile Renaud-Basso shares her perspective on what we could expect. We also continue our reporting on the transatlantic tensions being hashed out on the sidelines of the WEF main stage — in particular, the green tech subsidy spat between the EU and U.S. Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar weighs in on this issue. If you haven't done so already, listen to our bonus episode from earlier in the week, which dove into this topic in great detail. And Agnès Callamard, the Secretary General of Amnesty International, shares her thoughts on whether countries with concerning human rights track records should be given a platform at the event. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24 minutes | Jan 19, 2023
Director Oliver Stone talks nuclear power — EU economy chief Paolo Gentiloni
It's Thursday morning and today we bring you bumper editions from Davos with our final episode of the week landing later this evening. In this episode, POLITICO Europe's Editor-in-Chief Jamil Anderlini sits down with Academy Award-winning film director Oliver Stone to discuss his new documentary, "Nuclear." Jamil and Oliver are joined by Joshua Goldstein, author of the book which inspired the film, "A Bright Future." The live conversation took place at the Blockchain Hub, at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Then, we hear from the European Commissioner for the Economy Paolo Gentiloni. He explains to POLITICO's Jakob Hanke Vela that the EU needs to loosen the bloc's state aid rules to compete with American subsidies and make sure poorer EU countries aren't left behind in the green transition. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28 minutes | Jan 18, 2023
EU-US subsidy spat — Senator Joe Manchin — Diane von Furstenberg on Equality
It's Wednesday, and we're back with another episode from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. POLITICO's Suzanne Lynch, Alex Ward and Jakob Hanke Vela reveal the on-the-ground EU-U.S. subsidy spat playing out here in Davos. We analyze European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen's speech at the WEF, where she announced the EU's policy response to compete with Washington's subsidy spree. And Alex speaks to U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, who played an instrumental role in passing America's Inflation Reduction Act, which Europeans see as creating competition for their own industries. Then POLITICO's Ryan Heath sits down with Gary Cohn, former director of America's National Economic Council and now vice chairman of IBM, to discuss the protectionism tensions between Europe and the United States and hear his surprising economic outlook for the coming year. Finally, Ryan heads over to the Female Quotient's Equality Lounge® to speak with its founder, Shelley Zalis. She's been helping to bring VIPs into the conversation outside the main WEF stage — even while speaking to this podcast, bringing fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg and Alyse Nelson of the Vital Voices Global Partnership into her chat with Ryan. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25 minutes | Jan 17, 2023
Pessimistic CEOs — WEF after Klaus Schwab — Crypto trust deficit
As the World Economic Forum gets underway, we dive into the stories everyone is talking about on the Magic Mountain. POLITICO's Jakob Hanke Vela sits down with PwC Global Chairman Bob Moritz to discuss the findings from their global CEO survey — most CEOs are more pessimistic than they've been in over a decade about the economic growth outlook in the next year. Then host Suzanne Lynch discusses the future of the World Economic Forum with POLITICO's Ryan Heath. He has spoken to dozens of people about the elusive plans for what happens when WEF Chairman Klaus Schwab, nearly 85 years young, is no longer in charge. Finally, we turn our focus to cryptocurrencies. POLITICO's Erin Banco speaks to Anthony Scaramucci about the crypto industry's efforts to build back trust. And we hear from Dante Disparte, chief strategy officer and head of global policy for Circle, about how companies like his view regulation of the industry. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25 minutes | Jan 16, 2023
POLITICO's World Economic Forum guide — Richard Edelman on trust
From Davos, Switzerland, the POLITICO crew unpacks the big global issues facing businesses, governments and international organizations as top leaders gather for this year's World Economic Forum. Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by Ryan Heath, Erin Banco and Alex Ward to debate which issues are likely to dominate over the coming days — everything from recession concerns to climate and crypto. The veterans on our crew also reveal their top tips for surviving the dizzying week atop the magic mountain. Then Ryan speaks to Richard Edelman, CEO of global public relations firm Edelman, about the latest findings from his company's annual Trust Barometer. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
32 minutes | Jan 12, 2023
From Stockholm: Sweden shifts right on crime and migration — EU Council captaincy
This week, the EU Confidential crew travels to Stockholm to examine Sweden's domestic political challenges such as migration, crime and climate — and we dive into the country's priorities as it takes on the presidency of the Council of the EU. Host Suzanne Lynch meets POLITICO's Stockholm Correspondent Charlie Duxbury in the Swedish Parliament to discuss the country's latest election. It resulted in a conservative coalition government that relies, controversially, on support from the far-right Sweden Democrats to push through its policies. We dive into Sweden's challenges with migration, sitting down with Migration Minister Maria Malmer Stenergard as well as a leading voice in the opposition on this issue, Annika Hirvonen of the Green Party. And we hear from Tobias Lohse, CEO of Refugees Welcome Sweden, about the practicalities of integrating migrants into society. Charlie then takes us to a neighborhood that is struggling to address violent crime, to discuss how this issue is shaping political debate domestically. You can read more of Charlie's coverage of gang violence in Sweden here. Finally, we unpack Sweden’s priorities as it begins its presidency of the Council of the EU — charged with steering EU policies over the next six months. And we hear from Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson and Minister for Foreign Affairs Tobias Billström. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
45 minutes | Jan 5, 2023
2023 crystal ball — Qatargate update — Slovenian PM Robert Golob
It's a bumper edition to start the new year as we look ahead to the big stories likely to dominate the EU's agenda in 2023. POLITICO's top policy reporters Barbara Moens, Mark Scott, Charlie Cooper and Karl Mathiesen join host Suzanne Lynch to break down the EU's biggest challenges this year when it comes to climate, technology, energy and trade. Then our Editor at Large Nick Vinocur explores the broader geopolitical outlook as Russia's war in Ukraine continues. At home, he predicts a heated political season leading up to the European Parliament elections in 2024. POLITICO's Chief Policy Correspondent Sarah Wheaton brings us up to speed on the latest developments in the Qatargate story, which continues to rock the European institutions. For more background, listen to this episode of EU Confidential from December. Finally, we introduce you to Slovenian Prime Minister Robert Golob. The energy executive-turned-politician sat down with POLITICO's Lili Bayer and Victor Jack after the last European Council in December to discuss a range of issues including energy, Qatargate and his own career. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
45 minutes | Dec 15, 2022
EU rocked by Qatar corruption scandal — 2022 highlights
Our final episode of 2022 is a bumper edition featuring the latest news and analysis of the Qatar corruption scandal centering around the European Parliament — and we look back on the incredible news year that was 2022. POLITICO's Suzanne Lynch is joined by Sarah Wheaton, Barbara Moens and Ali Walker to unpack the who, what, when, and where of the corruption scandal linked to Qatar. There have been arrests in Belgium and Italy over the past days — notably nabbing European Parliament Vice President Eva Kaili for alleged corruption and money laundering. The team gives their analysis of the saga and reveals the fallout of this scandal in Brussels and beyond. Follow our continuing coverage of Qatargate here. Then Suzanne speaks with European Ombudsman Emily O'Reilly, who calls for tougher standards for EU ethics rules. You can also read the story here. Finally, we look back on the stories which defined 2022 with our Editor-in-Chief Jamil Anderlini and Senior France Correspondent Clea Caulcutt. Here are the stories mentioned in the episode. Leaked: The Altrnativ world of cybersurveillance The Turkish connection: How Erdoğan’s confidant helped Iran finance terror Poland and Hungary: How a love affair turned toxic Putin’s useful German idiots The end of Macronism European Parliament plots backroom deal to appoint top bureaucrat POLITICO 28 — Class of 2023 Programming note: We are off for the holidays but back in your feed on January 5! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28 minutes | Dec 8, 2022
From Tirana: Western Balkan bid — Author Misha Glenny — City of spies
This week's episode comes to you from the Albanian capital of Tirana where EU leaders met with Western Balkan hopefuls. And we dive into the fascinating world of spies operating in Brussels. Host Suzanne Lynch brings us up to speed on the EU's latest efforts to woo Western Balkan countries that want to become members of the bloc at a first-of-its-kind summit in the region. EU officials are increasingly concerned about the influence of Russia and China in the countries on the bloc's doorstep. Then, British journalist and author Misha Glenny, who now serves as rector of the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna, weighs in with his analysis of why joining the EU remains challenging for countries in the region. Also, POLITICO's Barbara Moens shares insights into her recent reporting on the EU's spy problem. Despite Belgium upping its counterintelligence game, Brussels remains a spies' playground as the home of the EU institutions and NATO. Read the full story here. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26 minutes | Dec 1, 2022
Brewing EU-US trade war — Ukraine FM Dmytro Kuleba — Future of Europe
This week, we debate simmering industrial tensions in the EU over a new U.S. law. We also get an update on the situation in Ukraine, including from Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, and discuss Europe's future ahead of a big event in Brussels this Friday to consider citizen's suggestions for how to improve the EU. Host Suzanne Lynch is joined by Senior Trade Correspondent Barbara Moens and Editor at Large Nick Vinocur to debate rising EU concerns about a new U.S. law, the Inflation Reduction Act, which provides generous “Made in the U.S.A.” subsidies and threatens European competitiveness. Then, POLITICO's Lili Bayer traveled to Ukraine with a group of seven foreign ministers from the Baltic and Nordic regions. We hear from several of the ministers, as well as Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister Olha Stefanishyna and Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba about what Kyiv needs at this point in the war and how Europe can help. Finally, Suzanne sits down with Commission Vice-President Dubravka Šuica who explains how her institution has responded to suggestions put forth by citizens via the Conference on the Future of Europe. We also hear from Gabriele Bischoff, a German member of the European Parliament from the Progressive Alliance of Socialists & Democrats, about how she hopes the EU institutions will respond to citizen concerns. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
36 minutes | Nov 24, 2022
Brussels' Twitter headache — Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko — EU 'Superstate'
This week, we debate how Europe is grappling with Twitter since Elon Musk took the helm. We hear from Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko and discuss a new book about the EU's "Superstate" status. Sarah Wheaton, author of POLITICO's EU Influence newsletter, hosts this episode. She's joined by Technology and Competition Editor Aoife White and Editor at Large Nick Vinocur to chew over the Brussels bubble's reliance on Twitter — as questions swirl about the social media platform's future. They also discuss how EU officials are grappling with legal questions surrounding Musk's recent decisions on personnel and content. Then, Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko sits down with POLITICO's Jamie Dettmer to discuss how his city is preparing for the cold winter months ahead. Also, Sarah speaks with Alasdair Roberts, professor of public policy and author of a new book, "Superstates: Empires of the Twenty-First Century." He unpacks the challenges of governance faced by what he refers to as "Superstates" such as the European Union, as well as the United States, India and China. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.