Hard love, actually. Polish-German relations in future Europe

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Solving the current European crisis requires both stronger mutual cooperation within the Union and constructive bilateral relations between the capital cities, including Berlin and Warsaw.

Constructive Polish-German cooperation on European issues is today in the mutual interest of both Poland and Germany. Poland needs it to obviate the risk of becoming stuck at the economic and political outer circle of Europe, with all the security risks attached. Germany needs it for the smooth functioning of its continental leadership and to avoid the adverse economic consequences of a multi-speed Europe.

Over the next months, Polish-German relations will mostly be tested in three EU areas: the Eurozone integration; the EU’s foreign policy towards Eastern Europe and Russia; and the EU’s asylum policy. In this text, Adam Balcer and Paweł Zerka from WiseEuropa describe the state of play in the three areas, outlining the expected convergences as well as divergences. The final section discusses the importance of upcoming federal elections in Germany for each of these areas and for the Polish-German cooperation at large.

This paper is inspired by the discussions held during the 1st Polish-German European Roundtable (Warsaw, 9-10 February 2017), a joint initiative of WiseEuropa and the Heinrich Böll Foundation in Warsaw.

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