The European League for Economic Cooperation (ELEC) organizes a few times a year discussion dinners in London. The aim is to have an open debate on economic and financial topics concerning the European Union and the UK attitude towards the EU. Participants come mostly from economic and financial circles and have a keen interest for EU affairs. The discussions are confidential ("Chatham House Rule"). The maximum number of participants is limited to 20.
As an independent network of intellectuals that has no links to political parties or national interests or to any other pressure group, ELEC proposes to offer a forum for creative thinking and open discussion on European issues. Having no member section in the UK – Britain was one of the founders of ELEC in 1946 but the UK section closed in 2005 – the London dinners aim at becoming, under ELEC auspices, a catalyst for those in Britain who are interested in the European integration project.
London (UK) - 25 Februray 2013
Topic: John Bruton, former Prime Minister of Ireland (1994-1997), was the keynote speaker at the dinner that took place on February 25th 2013. The dinner was attended by some 20 participants and took place at the National Liberal Club. Coming only a few weeks after David Cameron’s promise to hold a referendum on the UK membership of the European Union, Mr. Bruton’s intervention and the debate that followed mainly focused on the difficult relations between the UK and the EU and on the chances that the UK would effectively leave the EU. At the end of the dinner Jean-Pierre Wellens, former Chairman of the International Capital Market Association, commented on the role of the big banks in the present financial crisis.
London (UK) - 30 October 2012
Topics: Participants discussed how much, under the impact of the crisis, the governance of the eurozone had evolved and would evolve further while substantial structural reforms were under way in the crisis countries of Southern Europe and in Ireland. The ambitious nature of establishing a Single Supervisory Sechanism was stressed. The proposed Banking Union was not only about regulatory reform but also about rationalization and depoliticisation of the banking system. At the same moment, the political class in the UK did not appear to realize that it was setting itself on a course that, further to a referendum, might lead to an exit of the U.K. from the European Union, something that could only be detrimental to the genuine economic and political interests of the U.K.
London (UK) - 25 June 2012
Topic: the ELEC London dinner that took place on Monday 25th June 2012 at Vintners Hall focused on the difficult relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union. The crisis in the euro zone and the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance, to which the UK decided not to participate, have led to an even greater divide. Peter Wilding, head of EU policy at the British Sky Broadcasting Ltd and director of Nucleus, invited Tobias Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East, parliamentary private secretary (PPS) to David Lidington, minister for Europe, and David Seymour, former political editor of the Mirror Group, to give their views on the situation.
London (UK) - 13 April 2012
Topics: the keynote speaker was Prof. Dr. Willem Buiter (London School of Economics), former chief economist of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and former external member of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee, who is now chief economist of Citigroup. Buiter was as always very outspoken in his views on the future of the European Monetary Union, giving rise to an animated debate among the many participants to the London dinner. At the end of the dinner Wim Boonstra presented the proposals of the ELEC working group on the euro T Bill Fund.
London (UK) - 20 October 2011
Topics: the eurozone sovereign debt crisis, more precisely the longer term issue of the changes in economic policies, economic governance and legal and constitutional arrangements needed to ensure the future sustainability of the eurozone and of the European integration project - the impact of the crisis on the UK relationship with the EU.
London (UK) - 30 June 2011
Topics: the information deficit on Europe in several EU countries, the economic conditions in the US and the question of bank resolution.
London (UK) - 2 March 2011
Topics: the state of the banking sector, the (Greek) sovereign debt crisis and the British attitude towards closer integration in the euro zone.
ELEC · Square de Meeûs 25 · B-1000 Bruxelles · BELGIQUE · tel : +32.4126.96.36.199