European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso delivered a major speech on Thursday in Berlin on the occasion of Europe day, laying out his legacy and priorities for the future of the EU.
2 weeks before Europe holds elections, Barroso warned that European integration may be at risk.
“A lack of support in the European institutions may become a threat to European integration”, Barroso said.
“We have worked to preserve Europe’s unity, to keep it open and to make it stronger. Stronger because the economies of Member States are becoming more competitive to face global competition. And stronger because at the European level, our economic and financial governance has been spectacularly reinforced.” he added.
While speaking about European integration, Barroso referred to the UK as ‘a special case ‘ but said that both Europe and the UK are stronger together.
“I passionately believe that Europe is stronger with the UK as its member, and that the UK is stronger as a member of the European Union than on its own. But I do acknowledge that for historical, geopolitical and economic reasons the case of the UK may be seen as a special one. Precisely because of this, it would be a mistake to transform an exception for the UK into a rule for everybody else.”, Barroso said.
Barroso has spent ten years leading the European Commission. His second term in office ends in November.