integration 3/2020: Digital tax, Conference on the Future of Europe, Austro-German cooperation potential and the German Council Presidency
Great hopes lie on the German Council Presidency, which the German government took over in July 2020. Not only the fight against the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic challenges the European Union (EU), but also the negotiation of the multi-annual financial framework, a new pact on migration and asylum, climate protection and finding agreement on the EU’s future relations with the United Kingdom are on the agenda. In addition to the German Presidency, highly topical issues are examined in the current issue 3/2020 of the quarterly journal integration: a European digital tax, the Conference on the Future of Europe and the potential for Austrio-German cooperation at European level.
Daniel Klein, Christopher Ludwig and Christoph Spengel explain the Commission’s proposals for directives on the taxation of digital companies presented so far and describe the technical and political hurdles that are difficult to overcome on the way to a multilateral solution. In their contribution, Zekije Bajrami et al. analyze the extent to which an Austrio-German tandem has the potential to build bridges between increasingly forming intergovernmental blocs within the EU, taking into account European key policy issues. In a commented reprint of their contribution from integration 1/2007, Daniel Göler and Mathias Jopp compare the context and challenges of the current German Council Presidency with those of 2007 and note that although the issues and expectations were comparable at the time, the political environment has changed considerably and the general openness for integration has declined since. In the forum section, Julian Plottka outlines three conceivable interpretations for the design of the Conference on the Future of Europe and identifies central factors that will determine the success or failure of the project. Vittoria Meißner reports from the virtual edition of the German Pre-Presidency Conference organized by the Trans European Policy Studies Association and Institut für Europäische Politik on the topic of challenges for the German Council Presidency.