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European renewal – State of the Union Address 2011 - José Manuel Durão Barroso 28 September 2011

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It is in French AND English;


European Parliament
Strasbourg, 28 September 2011


 

Monsieur le Président,
Mesdames et Messieurs les Députés,
Monsieur le Ministre,
Il nous faut être honnêtes et absolument clairs dans l'analyse de l'état de l'Union.
Nous sommes aujourd'hui confrontés au plus grand défi qu'ait connu notre Union, je le crois dans toute son histoire.
Il s'agit d'une crise financière, économique et sociale. Mais aussi une crise de confiance. Tant à l'égard de nos dirigeants en général, de l'Europe elle-même, de notre capacité à trouver des solutions.
Les causes de la crise sont connues: l'Europe n'a pas répondu aux défis de la compétitivité. Certains de nos Etats-membres ont vécu au-dessus de leurs moyens. Dans les marchés financiers, il y a eu des comportements irresponsables et inadmissibles. Nous avons laissé se creuser des déséquilibres entre nos États membres, particulièrement dans la zone euro.
 Et les séismes qui secouent l'ordre international, les pressions de la mondialisation ont encore aggravé la situation.
 Et le résultat est là: nos sociétés éprouvent de vives inquiétudes. Beaucoup de nos citoyens ont peur devant l'avenir. Il y a comme jamais un danger de repli national, pour ne pas dire nationaliste.
Les réponses populistes remettent en cause les grandes réussites de l'Union européenne: l'euro, le marché unique, même la liberté de circulation des personnes.
Je crois qu'on peut dire que la crise de la dette souveraine est aujourd'hui avant tout une crise de confiance politique. Et nos citoyens, mais aussi le monde extérieur nous observe et se demande – sommes nous vraiment une Union? Avons-nous vraiment la volonté de soutenir la monnaie unique?
Est-ce que les États membres les plus vulnérables sont déterminés à faire les réformes indispensables?
Est-ce que les États membres les plus prospères sont vraiment disposés à faire preuve de solidarité?
Est-ce que l'Europe est vraiment capable d'atteindre la croissance et de générer des emplois?
Et moi je vous l'affirme aujourd'hui:
Oui, c'est une situation grave mais il y a des solutions à cette crise.
 L'Europe a un avenir.
 Si nous rétablissons la confiance, et pour rétablir la confiance nous avons besoin de la stabilité, de la croissance, mais aussi de la volonté politique, du leadership politique.
C'est ensemble que nous devons proposer à nos citoyens un renouveau européen.
 Il nous faut traduire dans les faits ce qu'on a constaté dans la déclaration de Berlin, signée par la Commission, par le Parlement, par le Conseil Européen à l'occasion du cinquantième anniversaire de la signature des traités de Rome – on disait à l'époque «Wir leben heute miteinander, wie es nie zuvor möglich war. Wir Bürgerinnen und Bürger der Europäischen Union sind zu unserem Glück vereint.» «Aujourd'hui nous vivons unis, comme jamais nous n'avons pu le faire par le passé.  Notre chance pour nous, citoyennes et citoyens de l'Union européenne, c'est d'être unis.»  C'est une déclaration et les mots comptent. Il faut traduire cette volonté dans le courage de chaque jour.
Avec nos institutions, et non contre elles, nous pouvons réussir.
Pour certains, on le sait, c'est le besoin de stabilité qui l'emporte. Pour d'autres, c'est la croissance.
Et bien je vous dis que nous avons besoin des deux.
Certains prêchent la discipline. D'autres la solidarité.
Et bien nous avons besoin des deux.
 Il n'est plus question de solutions au coup par coup, partielles. Il nous faut une détermination pour des solutions globales. Une plus grande ambition pour l'Europe.
Je crois vraiment que nous sommes aujourd'hui à une période charnière de notre histoire. Un de ces moments où si nous n'avançons pas dans l'intégration, nous risquons la fragmentation.
 C'est donc une question de volonté politique, une épreuve du feu pour toute notre génération.
Et je vous dis, oui il est possible de sortir de cette crise. Non seulement c'est possible, c'est nécessaire. Et le leadership politique c'est cela, rendre possible ce qui est nécessaire.

Honourable members,
Let me start with Greece. Greece is, and will remain, a member of the euro area. Greece must implement its commitments in full and on time. In turn, the other euro area members have pledged to support Greece and each other. As stated at the euro area Summit on 21 July: "We are determined to continue to provide support to countries under programmes until they have regained market access, provided they successfully implement those programmes."
That is why I created the Task Force for Greece.
We have just launched an action plan based on two major pillars:
- Around 100 viable and high-quality projects, investing in all Greek regions, to make the best use of Greece's remaining allocation of the structural funds.
- And a major drive to reduce bureaucratic procedures for European co-funded projects.
€ 15 billion remain to be spent in Greece from the structural funds. This will support the Greek economy with an urgent programme of technical assistance to the Greek administration.
A programme of € 500 million Euros to guarantee European Investment Bank loans to Greek SMEs is already under way.


The Commission is also considering a wider guarantee mechanism to help banks lend again to the real economy.
All of this represents a huge support to Greece's fight back and Greece will have to deliver concrete results. It must break with counter productive practices and resist vested interests.
But we have to be clear about this. This is not a sprint, but a marathon.
The task of building a Union of stability and responsibility is not only about Greece.
The economic outlook that we face is very difficult. We are confronted with the negative effects of an ongoing global re-assessment of risks. It is therefore our responsibility to rebuild confidence and trust in the euro and our Union as a whole.
And we can do this by showing that we are able to take all the decisions needed to run a common currency and an integrated economy in a competitive, inclusive and resource-efficient way. For this we need to act in the short, in the medium and the long term.
The first step is to quickly fix the way we respond to the sovereign debt crisis.
This will require stronger mechanisms for crisis resolution. We need credible firepower and effective firewalls for the euro.
We have to build on the EFSF and the upcoming European Stability Mechanism.
The EFSF must immediately be made both stronger and more flexible. This is what the Commission proposed already in January. This is what Heads of State and Government of the euro area agreed upon on 21 July. Only then, when you ratify this, will the EFSF be able to:
- deploy precautionary intervention;
- intervene to support the recapitalisation of banks,
- intervene in the secondary markets to help avoid contagion
Once the EFSF is ratified, we should make the most efficient use of its financial envelope. The Commission is working on options to this end.
Moreover we should do everything possible to accelerate the entry into force of the ESM.
And naturally we trust that the European Central Bank – in full respect of the Treaty – will do whatever is necessary to ensure the integrity of the euro area and to ensure its financial stability.
But we cannot stop there. We must deepen economic coordination and integration, particularly in the euro area.
This is at least as big a political task as an economic one.
Today, you will vote on the so-called "six-pack" proposals that we put in front of you and the Council one year ago.  This "six-pack" reforms the Stability and Growth Pact and widens surveillance to macro-economic imbalances. We are now back very close to what the Commission originally put on the table. You have played a decisive role in keeping the level of ambition of these proposals, and I really want to thank you and congratulate you for that.
This legislation will give us much stronger enforcement mechanisms. We can now discuss Member States' budgetary plans before national decisions are taken. This mix of discipline and integration holds the key to the future of the euro area. Only with more integration and discipline we can have a really credible euro area.


 


Honourable members,


These are indeed important steps forward, but we must go further. We need to complete our monetary union with an economic union. We need to achieve the tasks of Maastricht.


It was an illusion to think that we could have a common currency and a single market with national approaches to economic and budgetary policy. Let's avoid another illusion that we can have a common currency and a single market with an intergovernmental approach.


For the euro area to be credible – and this not only the message of the federalists, this is the message of the markets – we need a truly Community approach. We need to really integrate the euro area, we need to complete the monetary union with real economic union. And this truly Community approach can be built how? In the coming weeks, the Commission will build on the six-pack and present a proposal for a single, coherent framework to deepen economic coordination and integration, particularly in the euro area. This will be done in a way that ensures the compatibility between the euro area and the Union as a whole. We do not want the euro area to break of course the great acquis of the single market and all our four freedoms.


At the same time, we can pool decision making to enhance our competitiveness. This could be done by integrating the Euro Plus Pact into this framework, in full respect of the national implementation competences.


For all of this to work, we need more than ever the independent authority of the Commission, the proposed and assessed actions that the Member States should take. Governments, let's be frank, cannot do this by themselves. Nor can this be done by negotiations between governments.


Indeed, within the Community competences, the Commission is the economic government of the Union, we certainly do not need more institutions for this.


For a reason the Treaties have created supra-national institutions. For a reason the European Commission, the European Central Bank, the European Court of Justice were created. The Commission is the guarantor of fairness. Moreover, the Commission, which naturally works in partnership with the Member States, is voted by and accountable to this House. The directly elected Parliament both of the euro area and of the European Union as a whole.


Honourable members,


It is also time to have unified external representation of the euro area. In accordance with the Treaty the Commission will make proposals for this purpose.


A Union of stability and responsibility built on this basis and with common approach will also allow the Member States to seize fully the advantages of a bigger market for the issuance of sovereign debt.


Once the euro area is fully equipped with the instruments necessary to ensure both integration and discipline, the issuance of joint debt will be seen as a natural and advantageous step for all. On condition that such Eurobonds will be "Stability Bonds": bonds that are designed in a way that rewards those who play by the rules, and deters those who don't. As I already announced to this house, the Commission will present options for such "Stability Bonds" in the coming weeks.


Some of these options can be implemented within the current Treaty, whereas fully fledged 'Eurobonds' would require Treaty change. And this is important because, Honourable Members, we can do a lot within the existing Treaty of Lisbon. And there is no excuse for not doing it, and for not doing it now.


But it may be necessary to consider further changes to the Treaty.


I am also thinking particularly of the constraint of unanimity. The pace of our joint endeavour cannot be dictated by the slowest. And today we have a Union where it is the slowest member that dictates the speed of all the other Member States. This is not credible also from the markets' point of view, this is why we need to solve this problem of decision making. A Member State has of course the right not to accept decisions. That is a question, as they say, of national sovereignty. But a Member State does not have the right to block the moves of others, the others also have their national sovereignty and if they want to go further, they should go further.


Our willingness to envisage Treaty change should not be a way or an excuse to delay the reforms that are necessary today but I believe that this longer term perspective will reinforce the credibility of our decisions now.


 A Union of stability and responsibility means swiftly completing the work on a new system of regulation for the financial sector. We need well-capitalised, responsible banks lending to the real economy.


Much has been said about the alleged vulnerability of some of our banks.  European banks have substantially strengthened their capital positions over the past year. They are now raising capital to fill the remaining gaps identified by the stress tests in summer. This is necessary to limit the damage to financial market turbulence on the real economy and on jobs.


Over the last three years, we have designed a new system of financial regulation.


Let's remember, we have already tabled 29 pieces of legislation. You have already adopted several of them, including the creation of independent supervising authorities, which are already working. Now it is important to approve our proposals for new rules on:


- derivatives;


- naked short selling and credit default swaps;


- fair remuneration for bankers.


These propositions are there, they should be adopted by the Council and by the Parliament. The Commission will deliver the remaining proposals by the end of this year, namely rules on:


- credit rating agencies;


- bank resolution;


- personal responsibility of financial operatives.


So we will be the first constituency in the G20 to have delivered on our commitment to global efforts for financial regulation.


Honourable members,


In the last three years, Member States - I should say taxpayers - have granted aid and provided guarantees of € 4.6 trillion to the financial sector. It is time for the financial sector to make a contribution back to society.


That is why I am very proud to say that today, the Commission adopted a proposal for the Financial Transaction Tax. Today I am putting before you a very important text that if implemented may generate a revenue of above € 55 billion per year. Some people will ask "Why?". Why? It is a question of fairness. If our farmers, if our workers, if all the sectors of the economy from industry to agriculture to services, if they all pay a contribution to the society also the banking sector should make a contribution to the society.


And if we need – because we need – fiscal consolidation, if we need more revenues the question is where these revenues are coming from. Are we going to tax labour more? Are we going to tax consumption more? I think it is fair to tax financial activities that in some of our Member States do not pay the proportionate contribution to the society. 


It is not only financial institutions who should pay a fair share. We cannot afford to turn a blind eye to tax evasion. So it is time to adopt our proposals on savings tax within the European Union. And I call on the Member States to finally give the Commission the mandate we have asked for to negotiate tax agreements for the whole European Union with third countries.


Honourable members,


Stability and responsibility are not enough on their own. We need stability but we also need growth. We need responsibility but we also need solidarity.


The economy can only remain strong if it delivers growth and jobs. That's why we must unleash the energy of our economy, especially the real economy.


The forecasts today point to a strong slowdown.


But significant growth in Europe is not an impossible dream. It will not come magically tomorrow. But we can create the conditions for growth to resume. We have done it before. We must and we can do it again.


It is true that we do not have much room for a new fiscal stimulus.


But that does not mean that we cannot do more to promote growth.


First, those who have fiscal space available must explore it – but in a sustainable way.


Second, all member states need to promote structural reforms so that we can increase our competitiveness in the world and promote growth.


Together, we can and must tap the potential of the Single Market, exploit all the benefits of trade and mobilise investment at the Union level.


Let me start with the Single Market.


Full implementation of the Services Directive alone could, according to our estimates, deliver up to € 140 billion in economic gains.


But today, two years after the deadline for implementation, several Member States have still not adopted the necessary laws.


So we are not benefiting from all the possible gains from having a true services liberalisation in Europe.


But we can also do more.


We must adopt what is on the table. We have adopted the Single Market Act in the European Commission. A number of key initiatives are ready.


We are close to having a European patent which would cut the cost of protection to 20% of current costs. I expect this is to be concluded by the end of this year.


Moreover, for the Single Market Act, we should consider a fast track legislative procedure. By the way, in many areas we should take a fast track legislative procedure because we are living in real emergency times. This will allow us to respond to these extraordinary circumstances.


And growth in the future will depend more and more on harnessing information technology. We need a digital single market, which will benefit each and every European by around €1500 per year – by using the possibilities of e-commerce to ending, for instance, mobile roaming charges.


An extra 10 % in broadband penetration would bring us between 1 and 1.5 % of extra annual growth.


In a competitive world we must be also well-educated with skills to face these new challenges. We must innovate. And we must act in a sustainable way.


We have already presented detailed proposals on innovation, resource-efficiency and how we can strengthen our industrial base.


Modern industrial policy is about investing in research and innovation.


We need to accelerate the adoption of our efforts to boost the use of venture capital to fund young, innovative companies across Europe.


Sustainable jobs will come if we focus on innovation and new technologies, including green technologies. We must see that "green" and growth go together. 


For example, the renewables sector has already created 300,000 jobs in past 5 years in the European Union. The global green technology market will triple  over the next decade.


We must focus our action on where it makes a real impact. Growth of the future means we must actively pursue also our smart regulation agenda, which will give a saving of € 38 billion for European companies, particularly for SMEs. But Member States must also do their part in reducing the administrative burden.


But we also need investment. These reforms are important but we also need some kind of investment at European level.


A Union of growth and solidarity needs modern, interconnected infrastructures.


We have proposed for the next Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF) to create a facility to connect Europe – in energy, in transport, in digital.


This innovative part of our MFF proposal has to be seen together with another very important innovative idea: the project bond.


In the coming weeks the Commission will publish its proposals for EU project bonds. We are also proposing pilot projects, so that we can fund that growth. We can do iteven before the MFF is adopted. In this way we can frontload some of the major infrastructure investments Europe needs.


The Union and its Member States should urgently consider how to allow our own policy-driven bank, the European Investment Bank to do more – and possibly much more – to finance long-term investment.


To do so, we need to explore ways to reinforce the EIB's resources and capital base so that it can lend to the real economy.


In the year 2000, there was € 22 billion of venture capital in Europe. In 2010 there was only € 3 billion. If we want to promote entrepreneurship we must reverse this decline and we need that support namely for SMEs.


We can also get more growth out of the Structural Funds, by increasing absorption capacity, using the Structural Funds to support macroeconomic performance. They are essential for innovation, for training and employment, and for SMEs.


I would also like to urge this House to adopt by the end of the year the proposals we made in August to increase cofinancing rates to those countries with assistance programmes. This will inject essential funding into these economies, while reducing pressure on national budgets.


Honourable members,


Reforms to our labour markets, public finances and pension systems require a major effort from all parts of society.


We all know these changes are necessary, so that we can reform our social market economy and keep our social model. But it is imperative that we hold on to our values – values of fairness, of inclusiveness and of solidarity.


Right now we need to give concrete hope to the 1 in 5 of our young people who cannot find work. In some countries, the situation of our young people is simply dramatic. I want to call on companies to make a special effort to provide internships and apprenticeships for young people. These can be supported by the European Social Fund.


By getting businesses, the social partners, national authorities and the Union level working in a "Young Opportunities Initiative", we can make a difference. This I believe is the most urgent social matter to respond to the anxiety of our young people that cannot find a job and it is much better to have an apprenticeship, a traineeship, than to be with that anxiety in the streets expressing that lack of confidence in the Union as a whole.


We must accelerate the most urgent parts of our Growth and Jobs Plan, Europe 2020. The Commission will focus on the situation of young people in each and every Member State in its Country-specific recommendations for next year.


I believe we must give our future a real chance.


Right now we also need to act to help the 80 million Europeans at risk of poverty. This means that the Council must finally approve our proposal to safeguard the programme for the supply of food for the most deprived persons. I would like to thank this Parliement for the political support it has given to our proposed solution.


Honourable Members,


Fifty years ago, 12 countries in Europe came together to sign the Social Charter. It was exactly in October 50 years ago. Today, that Charter has 47 signatories, including all our Member States.


To guarantee these fundamental values in Europe, I believe we need to boost the quality of social dialogue at European level. The renewal of Europe can only succeed with the input and the ownership of all the social partners – of trade unions, of workers, of businesses, civil society in general.


We should remember that our Europe is a Europe of citizens. As citizens, we all gain through Europe. We gain a European identity and citizenship apart from our national citizenship. European citizenship  adds a set of rights and opportunities. The opportunity to freely cross borders, to study and work abroad. Here again, we must all stand up and preserve and develop these rights and opportunities. Just as the Commission is doing now with our proposals on Schengen. We will not tolerate a rolling back of our citizens' rights. We will defend the freedom of circulation and all the freedoms in our Union.

Mesdames et Messieurs les Parlementaires,
Les activités de la Commission, couvrent beaucoup d'autres domaines vous le savez bien. Je ne peux pas tous les aborder ici mais ils sont évoqués dans la lettre que j'ai adressée au Président du Parlement et que vous avez tous reçue.
Toutefois avant de conclure, laissez-moi parler de la responsabilité externe de l'Union Européenne. Je veux une Europe ouverte, une Europe engagée dans le monde.
L'action européenne dans le monde est non seulement la meilleure garantie pour nos citoyens, la défense de nos intérêts et de nos valeurs, mais aussi c'est une action indispensable dans le monde. Aujourd'hui c'est à la mode de parler du G2.
Je crois que le monde ne veut pas un G2. Les deux eux-mêmes n'auraient pas intérêt à un G2. Nous savons dans la Guerre Froide la tension que la bipolarité a créée.  Je crois que l'Europe est plus que jamais indispensable si nous voulons un monde juste et un monde ouvert.
Je crois que le monde en mutation auquel nous assistons a besoin d'une Europe qui assume ses responsabilités. Une Europe influente, une Europe à 27 et bientôt 28, avec l'adhésion de la Croatie. Une Europe qui continue à montrer la voie à suivre que ce soit en matière de commerce ou de changement climatique, alors que de grands rendez-vous nous attendent, de Durban à Rio +20, et l'Europe doit garder sa position de leadership sur ces questions.
Tournons aussi notre regard et notre attention vers nos voisins du Sud. Le Printemps arabe c'est une transformation profonde qui aura des conséquences très importantes non seulement pour ces peuples mais aussi pour nous, pour notre Europe. C'est pourquoi l'Europe doit être fière. Nous étions les premiers à être à côté des Tunisiens, des Egyptiens, des Libyens qui voulaient de la démocratie et de la liberté. C'est pourquoi l'Europe soutient ces aspirations légitimes, notamment à travers notre Partenariat pour la Démocratie et pour la Prospérité. 
Le Printemps arabe, je l'espère, c'est aussi la porte ouverte à l'espoir de la paix pour l'ensemble de la région, à l'idée d'un Etat Palestinien qui vive en paix avec l'Etat d'Israël, comme l'Europe le souhaite. 
Mais tournons aussi notre regard et notre attention vers nos voisins de l'Est. Vendredi je vais participer à Varsovie au Sommet du Partenariat oriental. Je vais m'y rendre porteur d'une ambition pour une relation  politique et une intégration économique plus étroites entre nous et nos partenaires de la région. L'Union européenne a un pouvoir de transformation extraordinaire. C'est une inspiration pour beaucoup de gens dans le monde et si ces pays font des réformes profondes nous pouvons les aider et nous pouvons les associer plus étroitement d'un point de vue politique et aussi nous intégrer plus d'un point de vue économique.
Enfin ne délaissons pas les plus démunis de tous et soyons à la hauteur de nos engagements pour atteindre les Objectifs du millénaire pour le développement.
Soyons également réalistes et reconnaissons que pour que l'Europe exerce toute son influence, si l'Europe veut vraiment être une puissance, il nous faut renforcer la Politique étrangère et de sécurité commune. Il faut qu'elle soit crédible. Il faut qu'elle s'appuie sur une dimension de sécurité et de défense commune si on veut vraiment compter dans le monde. 
Loin est le temps où certains pouvaient s'opposer à l'idée d'une défense européenne par crainte qu'elle puisse nuire à l'Alliance atlantique. Vous avez déjà remarqué, aujourd'hui ce sont les Américains, eux-mêmes, qui nous demandent de faire plus en tant qu'Européens. Le monde a changé, le monde est en train de changer fondamentalement. Est-ce que nous voulons vraiment compter dans le monde? 
C'est pourquoi au moment où les budgets de défense sont sous pression, nous devons faire davantage ensemble avec les moyens dont nous disposons.
La Commission prend en cela sa part de responsabilité en poursuivant ses efforts vers un marché unique de la défense et en mettant à profit les compétences qui  lui sont conférées par le traité pour développer une base industrielle européenne de défense.
Mesdames et Messieurs les Députés,
Ne soyons pas naïfs, le monde est en train de se transformer et si l'Europe veut compter dans le monde et défendre les intérêts de ces citoyens, il nous faut la dimension politique et la dimension de défense si on veut compter et influencer l'avenir du monde.
Mesdames et Messieurs les Députés,
Je conclus.
A la fin de notre mandat, en 2014, il y aura exactement un siècle qu'éclatait sur ce continent la Grande Guerre, période noire à laquelle a succédé la Seconde Guerre mondiale, l'une des pages les plus dramatiques de l'histoire de l'Europe et du monde. Aujourd'hui je crois qu'on peut dire que de telles horreurs sont inimaginables en Europe. Elles le sont dans une large mesure parce que nous avons l'Union européenne, parce que nous avons, grâce à la vision de l'Europe, par l'intégration économique et politique construit la garantie de la paix dans notre continent. C'est pourquoi nous ne pouvons pas laisser mettre en danger cette grande œuvre. Nous avons reçu cela des générations précédentes. Ce ne sera pas notre génération qui va mettre en cause cela. Et soyons clairs, si on commence à fragmenter l'Europe, si on commence à revenir en arrière dans les grandes conquêtes de l'Europe, il y aurait sans doute un risque de fragmentation pour notre objectif.
Comme je l'ai dit, au fond de la crise que nous avons maintenant, c'est un problème politique. C'est un test de notre volonté de vivre ensemble. C'est pourquoi nous devons approfondir l'Union européenne, c'est pourquoi nous avons construit des institutions communes. C'est pourquoi il faut garantir l'intérêt européen.
Et la réalité aujourd'hui c'est que la coopération intergouvernementale n'est pas suffisante pour sortir l'Europe de cette crise, pour doter l'Europe d'un avenir.  Tout au contraire, un certain intergouvernementalisme risque de mener à la renationalisation et à la fragmentation. Un certain intergouvernementalisme pourrait être la mort de l'Europe unie telle que nous la voulons.
N'oublions pas que les décisions que l'on prend maintenant ou que l'on ne prend pas vont façonner notre avenir. Une chose que je voudrais vous communiquer, c'est que je me sens blessé lorsque je vois certains, dans d'autres parties du monde, avec un certain paternalisme à nous dire, à nous Européens, ce que nous devons faire. Je crois franchement que nous avons des problèmes, des problèmes très sérieux, mais je crois que nous n'avons pas à nous excuser de nos démocraties. Nous n'avons pas à nous excuser de notre économie sociale de marché. Donc je crois qu'on doit demander à nos institutions, mais aussi à nos Etats membres, aussi à Paris, à Berlin, à Athènes, à Lisbonne, à Dublin, un sursaut de fierté d'être Européens, un sursaut de dignité et dire à nos partenaires "Merci pour vos conseils, mais nous sommes capables ensemble de dépasser cette crise". J'ai cette fierté d'être Européen.  
Et la fierté d'être Européen ce n'est pas seulement notre grande culture, notre grande civilisation, tout ce que nous avons mis au monde. Ce n'est pas la fierté seulement du passé, c'est la fierté dans notre avenir. C'est cette confiance là qu'il nous faut recréer entre nous. Je crois que c'est possible.
Certains disent, c'est très difficile, ce n'est pas possible. Là j'aimerais rappeler ce qu'a dit un grand homme, un grand Africain, Nelson Mandela: "It always seems impossible, until it is done. Let's do it.". Nous pouvons le faire avec confiance, nous pouvons le faire - le renouveau de notre Europe.
Je vous remercie pour votre attention.
José Manuel Durão Barroso
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