24 Jan 2013

The Cyprus Presidency: Pragmatism amid European anxiety

Thomas Linders / Steven Blockmans

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Despite several daunting obstacles, the low expectations and the high level of apprehension that accompanied the start of the Cyprus Presidency, Thomas Linders and Steven Blockmans find in a new CEPS Commentary that the small, remote and politically divided island nevertheless succeeded in scoring a number of positive results, thanks in part to the country’s pragmatic approach to the job and the perpetual motion of the EU legislature. As a corrective instrument to big state politics in the EU, however, the role of the Presidency remains limited. This underscores the changed nature of the rotating Presidency of the the Council of the EU since the Lisbon Treaty entered into force.

Thomas Linders is an intern in the EU Politics and Institutions programme of CEPS; Steven Blockmans is a CEPS Senior Research Fellow and Head of the EU Foreign Policy programme.