The European Union was battered by one crisis after another in 2015. Terrorist attacks, the second Greek bailout, and the influx of more refugees than even before put the European Union’s future in jeopardy according to George Soros. Soros is known for his economic predictions. He’s not afraid to tell the world that things aren’t great especially in Europe and China. Soros talked about the European Union with a German magazine recently. The New York Review of Books also published that interview.
In an interview by Bloomberg TV, Soros said the European Union could unravel in 2016. According to Mr. Soros, the European Union is unpopular in Europe. The economic issues and the political fighting have been roadblocks to progress on any important issues. And the migration issue is no different. Trying to find common political ground in the EU is like trying to find dirt that doesn’t move in an earthquake. George Soros believes German Chancellor Angela Merkel has to be the leader that mends the EU, so a solution to the overwhelming migration crisis can br found. But Merkel is in a political battle in Germany over her migration policy, and that battle doesn’t seem to be going away.
Merkel’s decision to allow 1.1 million asylum-seeking refugees into Germany was accepted at first, but when the terrorists’ attacks started, public opinion changed dramatically. Over 650 women were assaulted on New Year’s Eve in Cologne, and the attackers were asylum seekers. The Germans were also less than thrilled when the European Union decided to bail out Greece for a second time. Merkel played a strategic role in that decision as well.
The German Chancellor did speak about the visa policy that was put in place by Sweden and Denmark in the Schengen Area at the beginning of the year. Merkel said the policy was undermining the foundation of the EU, and she has a point. The EU was founded on the premise that all borders should be opened, but that was before Syria turned into a killing field. Open borders are an important principle, and one of the highlights of the European Union.
The exodus from the Middle East, North Africa, and other war-torn countries has been percolating for some time. And according to Soros, wars will continue. Soros believes the consequences of the migration will bring the European Union to its knees. There is just not enough support or respect for the EU in Europe.
If the European Union does collapse, the euro may not go away with it. Some countries have gotten used to the euro, and they will want to keep using it. How that will play out in the financial market is another question. But, George Soros probably has the answer to that question.