The world's rich economies said they would take a tougher stance on fighting money laundering and tax evasion but promised little in the way of specific new action at the end of a two-day summit yesterday (18 June).
Lithuania, a country of 3.2 million which joined the EU in 2004, will assume its first presidency of the Council of the European Union on 1 July. Lithuania considers itself one of the most successful countries to overcome the economic and financial crisis and to return to sustained recovery and growth. It is the first Baltic country to take the EU stint.
Despite a high rate of approval for the European project, Lithuanians appear to have little interest in the country’s first stint at leading the rotating presidency of the EU, starting 1 July, Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius told EurActiv Germany in an exclusive interview.
Germany's geographic position at the heart of Europe forces Berlin to formulate a multifaceted foreign policy. It must balance its military alliance with the United States against its energy ties with Russia, Berlin's largest natural gas supplier. It is through this context that US President Barack Obama's 18-19 June visit to Germany must be viewed, writes Stratfor.