The European-American Dream

If Europe wants to maintain its welfare states, it must generate economic growth in order to pay for them, which means raising productivity and strengthening competitiveness – and asserting its place in the world. Europeans have a new reason for hope as they seek to achieve these goals: a transatlantic free-trade agreement with the US.

MADRID – Today, three European countries are among the world’s seven largest economies. Ten years from now, only two will remain. By 2030, only Germany will still be on the list, and by 2050, none will remain. Indeed, by then, the United States will be the only representative of the West in the top seven.

What this means is that the European states are too small to compete separately in the world of the twenty-first century. It’s as simple as that. By 2030, according to the World Bank, there will be two billion more people, mainly Asians, in the middle class. The pressure on the planet’s resources, commodities, water, and food will be huge, making a global rebalancing practically inevitable. And in a world marked by interdependence and constant change, Europe will find that unity is strength.

Indeed, unless Europeans work toward integration, they may find themselves surpassed by emerging countries in terms of technological development, job creation, production costs, talent, and creativity.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

http://prosyn.org/i8Ic5mG;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.