The Brussels Economic Forum is the European Union’s premier platform for debate on economic issues. It is an opportunity to meet decision-makers, opinion leaders and other key players from government authorities, international organisations, European institutions, financial institutions, social partners, academia and the media. In 2011, the Forum was attended by more 1 000 people, including over 100 journalists from some 80 different media organisations.
The Forum was set up in 2000 in the wake of the euro’s launch the year before. Now an annual event, it plays a crucial role in fostering dialogue and discussion about issues that matter to everyone in Europe.
The Forum gets the people who make headlines and other opinion leaders all into the same room. It provides an open arena where a wider audience can follow and participate in the debates shaping Europe and the world.
Previous speakers at the Forum have included:
Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council
Sharon Bowles, MEP, Chair of the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, European Parliament
Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director, IMF and former Minister of Economy, Finance and Industry for France
Jean-Claude Trichet, President, European Central Bank
José Manuel Barroso, President, European Commission
Jean-Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg and President of the Eurogroup
Klaus Regling, Chief Executive Officer, European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF)
Current and former European Commissioners like Joaquín Almunia, Connie Hedegaard, Danuta Hübner, Olli Rehn, and Mario Monti
Current and former ministers of finance like Anders Borg (Sweden), Wouter Bos (The Netherlands), Didier Reynders (Belgium), Elena Salgado (Spain), Peer Steinbrück (Germany), Wolfgang Schäuble (Germany)
Current and former central bankers like Ewald Nowotny (Austria), András Simor (Hungary) and Stefan Ingves (Sweden)
Highly reputable economists like Tony Atkinson, Richard Baldwin, Dieter Helm, Jean Pisani-Ferry, Jeremy Rifkin, André Sapir, John Zysman and Alberto Alesina
Over the years, the topics under discussion have changed, too, always pointing towards the future challenges facing the EU, from the sustainability of public finances and the economic impact of ageing, to tackling global warming, exiting the financial and economic crisis, and returning to robust economic growth.