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674656June 21, 2012 – Jerusalem, Israel – Ambassador Daniel Shek led a panel of experts including German Ambassador to Israel, Andreas Michaelis, Associate Editor and Chief Economics Commentator of the Financial Times, Martin Wolf, and Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Ambassador Lamberto Zannier, in analyzing the ramifications of the current Eurozone economic crisis and its long-term effect on the European Union and global economy.

In referring to yesterday’s session at Israeli Presidential Conference entitled, ‘The World Economy: Will it get worse before it gets better?’ Shek echoed the prediction Jacques Attali made that the EU must move towards federalism or risk losing the Euro within a year.

“Countries cannot neutralize debt without neutralizing sovereignty, we have to move towards integration,” said Michaelis. “The question is whether we have enough time and if political powers in the EU are strong enough to push this agenda. Germany is not naïve about the vision of integration, it must be a federation of nation-states, not making the nation-state disappear, but rather, introducing enough functions to run an organization like the European Union in the 21st century.”

Martin Wolf suggested that if the Eurozone succeeds, it will be a much more integrated entity, and if it breaks up, it will destabilize the entire European Project.

In reference to how the financial turmoil in Europe may affect Israel, Stein commented, “if the Eurozone were to disintegrate, it would have severe implications on Israel economically, politically and strategically - although it will get worse before it gets better, we as Israelis need to understand that disintegration in Europe is not in our best interest and we should take a keen interest in the EU during this period of transition.”

Facing Tomorrow 2012, the fourth annual Conference under the auspices of the President of the State of Israel, Mr. Shimon Peres, is taking place in Jerusalem from June 19-21, 2012, and will take place at Jerusalem’s International Convention Center. The conference is organized in partnership with Hebrew University.


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About Facing Tomorrow 2012

The Fourth Israel Presidential Conference 'Facing Tomorrow' will be held from June 19-21, 2012. The first presidential conference took place in May 2008, one week after Israel celebrated its 60th year of independence, and on the basis of its success became an annual event. Attended by more than 5,000 people from around the world, and dedicated to designing a better tomorrow, the conference is centered around discussions, panels and plenary sessions aimed at answering one question: how can we foster a better tomorrow for the international community, Israel and the Jewish world. For more information, please visit www.presidentconf.org.il