Interviews

Enlargement 26-11-2021

Burned by Bulgaria veto, North Macedonia to ‘act more carefully’ on EU integration narrative, justice minister says

Partially attributing his party’s crushing defeat in the recent municipal elections to the stalling EU accession negotiations, North Macedonia’s justice minister Bojan Marichikj told EURACTIV the government in Skopje would be more careful in the future. The stand-off between Bulgaria...
Energy 23-11-2021

Consumer group: ‘Middle class people are also very much affected by rising energy prices’

The energy crunch has highlighted the high share of taxes paid by consumers for their gas and electricity. With the energy transition expected to cause further volatility on fossil fuel markets, a shift in energy taxation is now becoming an urgent priority, according to rights group Euroconsumers.
Global Europe 19-11-2021

Analyst: EU must force Gazprom to supply gas to Russia-Ukraine border

In an exclusive interview, Ilian Vassilev, a former Bulgarian ambassador to Russia who became an entrepreneur and analyst, discussed the stakes around Nord Stream 2 pipeline and provided useful insights at a time when the European Commission should certify the controversial gas project.
Central Asia 17-11-2021

Trade Minister of Kazakhstan: As WTO chair, we will push for consensus on reform

In an exclusive interview, the Minister of Trade and Integration of Kazakhstan Bakhyt Sultanov discussed the upcoming WTO ministerial under the chairmanship of his country, EU-Kazakhstan economic relation, and carbon border tax.
Climate change 17-11-2021

Green MEP: ‘Climate adaptation and loss & damage will be the key fight at COP27’

Although the recent COP26 conference in Glasgow made progress on climate ambition, there is still a lot of work left to do to limit global warming to 1.5°C and prevent runaway climate change, according to Green MEP Bas Eickhout.
Digital & Media 16-11-2021

UK lawmaker: Child safety online should focus on outcomes, not technologies

As the European Commission is due to present a new proposal next month on how to fight child sexual abuse material (CSAM), Beeban Kidron strikes a more cautious tone, warning the terms of the ongoing policy debate in the EU are not the right ones.
Global Europe 15-11-2021

Foreign Minister: Uzbekistan is promoting ‘pragmatic relations’ with Afghanistan

In a wide-ranging interview, Uzbekistan's Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov discussed his country’s relations with the EU, the situation with "fraternal neighbour" Afghanistan, regional cooperation, and strategies for a 'Third Renaissance' of Uzbekistan.
Elections 12-11-2021

Bulgaria’s justice minister: ‘This chief prosecutor will bring us EU sanctions’

In an exclusive interview for EURACTIV Bulgaria, the caretaker justice minister Ivan Demerdjiev offered scathing criticism of Prosecutor-General Ivan Geshev, saying that unless he is removed, Bulgaria risks losing access to EU funding.
11-11-2021

Analyst: Aleksandar Vucic is a Jekyll and Hyde character

Serbian leader Aleksandar Vucic has two personas. The pro-Western, Dr Jekyll side remains reserved for Brussels, EU capitals, and Washington, while citizens in the country get Mr Hyde, who is slowly transforming Serbia into a postmodern Weimar Republic, Srdjan Cvijić told EURACTIV in an interview.

Europe has to become a security provider, says EU’s Borrell

European citizens want to be protected by the European Union, which is why it must become a security provider, EU chief diplomat Joseph Borrell told several European media outlets in an interview.

Canfin MEP: ‘Here is my proposal to find the right compromise on gas and nuclear in the taxonomy’

With proper safeguards in place, both gas and nuclear power can be included in the "transition" category of the EU's green finance taxonomy, says Pascal Canfin, a leading lawmaker in the European Parliament.
Central Asia 05-11-2021

Kazakhstan will stop using coal from 2050

Kazakhstan aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, which means expanding the share of renewables to 83% and halting heat generation from coal after 2050, Serikkali Brekeshev told EURACTIV in an interview.
Energy 01-11-2021

Green MEP: Germany ‘may need some additional gas turbines’ to stabilise renewables

Sven Giegold, a Green MEP who is one of the key negotiators in the German government coalition talks, told EURACTIV that Germany will need "small volumes" of additional gas capacity in order to "stabilise" renewable power on the electricity grid. However, he is opposed to the inclusion of gas in the EU's green finance taxonomy.
Enlargement 29-10-2021

Montenegro minister: I agree we still need Western monitoring, guidance

In an interview with EURACTIV, Montenegro's Interior Minister Sergej Sekulović discussed Western partners' concerns about how reliable the new Montenegrin government is, the 2016 alleged coup attempt, the difficult relations with Serbia, and the latest European Commission report on the country's accession process.
Climate change 29-10-2021

Climate activist: Global North needs to step up at COP26 in order to stop deforestation

Deforestation in countries like Brazil is driven by demand for agricultural products in the Global North. That colonialist system has to change, argues Mitzi Jonelle Tan.
Future EU 28-10-2021

Middelaar: Pandemic exposed Europe’s geopolitical vulnerabilities

The COVID-19 pandemic was much more than a health crisis for Europe, which means it needs to transform from rule-political machinery to a political body able to deal with unexpected events, political philosopher and historian Luuk van Middelaar told EURACTIV.
Energy 27-10-2021

Irish minister: Europe needs to move away from foreign-controlled fossil fuels

The EU needs to increase its renewable energy capacity, become more self-sufficient in energy production and move away from foreign-controlled fossil fuels, according to Ossian Smyth, Irish minister of state.
Climate change 27-10-2021

Climate scientist: On forestry, COP26 must avoid double counting of carbon removals

Global leaders must not allow the double counting of emissions removals from forestry during negotiations at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, says Professor Jean-Pascal van Ypersele.

Slovenia: New Europol mandate expected by end of this year

The European Commission, Parliament, and Council will start negotiating the final version of Europol’s new mandate on Wednesday (27 October), which could be ready by December,  Slovenia’s interior minister Aleš Hojs told EURACTIV.com in an interview. According to him, “positions...
Batteries 26-10-2021

Simona Bonafè MEP: Recovery of raw materials is cornerstone of EU battery law

The European Commission has proposed new standards which would make batteries produced and sold in Europe the greenest in the world. MEP Simona Bonafè spoke to EURACTIV about the EU's battery regulation and the future of battery production in Europe.
Arctic Agenda 17-10-2021

We don’t want to see any flash points in the Arctic, EU envoy says

The EU needs to adapt how it approaches the role of China and Russia in the region, Michael Mann, EU's Special Envoy for Arctic Matters, told EURACTIV.
Elections 15-10-2021

Márki-Zay: My government would be ‘grand prize’ for the EU

A Hungarian government with Péter Márki-Zay at its helm would be like winning the “grand prize” for the EU, the independent Christian conservative mayor of Hódmezővásárhely told EURACTIV in a phone interview. Péter Márki-Zay is one of the two candidates...
Energy 08-10-2021

Industry: Geothermal energy requires European policy solutions

Geothermal power is a reliable and renewable energy source that is local by its nature and offers baseload power generation. Alongside energy efficiency measures and other renewable heat sources, like heat pumps, it could be part of the solution to Europe's energy crisis, says Sanjeev Kumar.
Central Asia 08-10-2021

Kazakhstan minister: We steadily observe our obligations in the field of human rights

Kazakhstan is moving towards reforms progressively and steadily, with the state now supporting and financing NGOs and the political opposition enjoying full parliamentary rights, Aida Balaeva, the minister of information and social development, told EURACTIV in an interview.