It is our pleasure to invite you to our latest Toolbox Talk:

Global Gateway: A Game Changer for the EU´s Geopolitical Ambitions or Another Billion Euro Bluff?

An online discussion with:

Reinhard Bütikofer: Member of European Parliament, Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance

Moritz Koch: Brussels Bureau Chief, Handelsblatt

David Ringrose: Service of Deputy Secretary General for economic and global issues, Global Agenda and Multilateral Relations, European External Action (GLOBAL.GI.2)

Alberto Rizzi: Visiting Fellow and Associate Researcher, European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR), Rome

Moderator: Stefani Weiss: Senior Expert, Bertelsmann Stiftung

Wednesday, September 20, 2023 

5:00 – 6:00 pm CET/11:00 – 12:00 pm EST

Register Here

This event continues our online event series EU Strategic Toolbox Talks. In our Toolbox Talks, we are focusing on existing and upcoming EU instruments aimed at managing critical dependencies and strengthening the EU’s sovereignty and external economic governance. These instruments form an important basis for fostering the EU’s capability to act in a global environment increasingly shaped by geopolitical tensions and systemic rivalries.

In the words of the EU Commission and the High Representative, Global Gateway is “a new European strategy to boost smart, clean and secure links in digital, energy and transport sectors and to strengthen health, education and research systems across the world.”

The strategy is poised to address the global investment gap in infrastructure projects, estimated by the EU at over €1,300 billion per year for the transition to a climate-neutral economy alone. It was launched on December 1, 2021, and a total of €300 billion has been made available so far in the EU budget 2021-2027, a good half of which is earmarked for projects in Africa.

As of March 2023, the Global Gateway has initiated more than 50 projects in Africa in the areas of digital, transportation, health, climate and energy, and education and research. In Latin America and the Caribbean, Global Gateway is involved in over 40 projects.

In the EU Neighborhood, seven projects are planned, which include the Eastern Mediterranean High Voltage Line between Europe and Africa running from Egypt to Greece (GREGY project), the Black Sea Connectivity submarine cable for exporting green electricity from the South Caucasus to the EU, and the Euro-Asia submarine cable for electricity interconnection between Greece, Cyprus and Israel.

The EU´s Global Gateway strategy is a reaction to the increasing political and economic influence that China has garnered through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), along with its expanding infrastructure investments, particularly in Africa.

With the strategy, the EU recognizes that, despite its substantial global trade, foreign direct investments, and development aid, which exceed those of China, it has neither achieved the aspired recognition as a global player, nor was it able to advance its interests, standards, and values to the desired extent.

To remedy this and give the EU more leverage and clout, the new strategy is being led under the “Team Europe” approach, which involves the EU, the EU member states, EU financial institutions and the private sector.

In this discussion, we will address the following questions and topics:  

  • Will the Global Gateway strategy empower the EU to elevate its status as a more influential global actor, leveraging its economic power to shape developments in line with its interests and values?
  • Can the EU realistically aspire to compete with the Belt and Road Initiative with its funding of €300 billion?
  • Doesn’t the EU run the risk of getting bogged down with the many flagship projects already in the pipeline?
  • Is the practical implementation of the Team Europe approach yielding results?
  • Is the EU able to attract the required private-sector investments?
  • How does Global Gateway fit into other ongoing EU programs, such as the Global Europe instrument?
  • And is it in line with the desired geostrategic perspective on global infrastructure connectivity if responsibility for this initiative lies with the Commissioner for Development Policy?

Register here.

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Before the G20 Summit in New Delhi: Can India Be an Economic Alternative to China? Yes and No.

Five Reasons Why the EU Needs a Strategic Trade Policy

Keeping Friends Closer: Why the EU Should Address New Geoeconomic Realities and Deepen Partnerships with its Neighbours