"As we mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome, it is time for a united Europe of 27 to shape a vision for its future" (Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, 1 March 2017)
The White paper presented by the European Commission on 1 March sets out possible paths for the future of Europe. We face a great many challenges, from globalisation, to the impact of new technologies on society and jobs, to security concerns and the rise of populism. We must ensure we are not overwhelmed but rather that we seize the opportunities that these trends present.
This is why the White paper offers five scenarios for how the Union could evolve, depending on the choices we will make.
The White paper marks the start, not the end, of this debate. On 25 March, the leaders of the European Union came together in Rome to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome, reflecting on past achievements and debating what our shared future could and should look like. A series of five reflection papers were subsequently published to open the discussion on the issues that will most affect our future.
Work continues in earnest so that we have a plan, a vision and a way forward to present to the people by the time we hold European Parliament elections in June 2019.
It is for all of us to have a say: we have Europe's future in our own hands.