Europe on the brink: How should the US engage?
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About This Event

Post-Event Summary
More than two years into the European debt crisis, European leaders are still struggling to find solutions to the eurozone's economic deterioration and the growing debt burdens now engulfing financial markets. During a seminar on Thursday at AEI, panelists discussed how this crisis will affect U.S. growth prospects, electoral politics and foreign policy.

Bank of America’s Michael Levy emphasized that even in the rare instances European leaders have successfully addressed economic difficulties, they have nevertheless failed to properly manage market expectations. In contrast to most commentators, Frank Lavin of Export Now focused on the microeconomic problems that are inhibiting European growth and suggested that a U.S.-European Union (EU) free trade agreement might help resolve some of them.

The panelists then discussed the political ramifications of the euro crisis. Former ambassador to the EU Kristen Silverberg indicated that the region's economic problems are compromising Europe's role as one of the world's economic and political leaders.  She emphasized that such abdication of leadership means that the U.S. will find it increasingly hard to lead global discussions on economic policy and human rights.

Finally, Timothy Adams of the Lindsay Group concluded by addressing the crisis's ramifications on U.S. domestic politics, discussing the enormous number of issues the upcoming U.S. president will have to work on as trouble persists in the eurozone.

--Daniel Hanson

Event Description
After more than two years, the European debt crisis continues unabated. The European economy is once again in recession, Greece is on the cusp of exiting the euro and the crisis has now metastasized to Spain and Italy. These developments are now seriously undermining support for established political parties across much of Europe.

This seminar will focus on Europe’s economic and political outlook. It will consider the impact of developments in Europe on the U.S. economy and the appropriate U.S. policy response to the declining economic and political fortunes of its European partners. It will also consider the implications of the likelihood that US-EU relations could be in terminal decline as a result of European economic stagnation and shrinking European defense budgets.

Agenda

9:45 AM
Registration

10:00 AM
Panelists:
Timothy Adams, The Lindsey Group
Frank Lavin, Export Now
Mickey Levy, Bank of America
Kristen Silverberg, German Marshall Fund
 
Moderator:
Desmond Lachman, AEI

12:00 PM
Adjournment

Event Contact Information

For more information, please contact Daniel Hanson at [email protected], 202.862.5883.

Media Contact Information

For media inquiries, please contact Véronique Rodman at [email protected], 202.862.4871.

Speaker Biographies

Timothy Adams is managing director of The Lindsey Group, an economic advisory firm. Previously, Adams served as the under secretary of treasury for international affairs, where he was the George W. Bush administration’s point person on international financial and economic issues, including G-7 and G-20 meetings and International Monetary Fund issues. Before assuming his post as under secretary, Adams served as the chief of staff to former U.S. Treasury secretaries Paul O’Neill and John Snow. He was policy director for the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign in 2004 and a member of the policy staff during the 2000 campaign. Adams also served under George H.W. Bush at the U.S. Office of Policy Development and Research. In 1993, Adams co-founded the G-7 Group, a Washington, D.C.-based advisory firm. He later headed their Washington, D.C., operation as managing director. He is a senior advisor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a board member of The Atlantic Council.

Desmond Lachman
joined AEI after serving as a managing director and chief emerging market economic strategist at Salomon Smith Barney. He previously served as deputy director in the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) Policy Development and Review Department and was active in the staff formulation of IMF policies. Lachman has written extensively on the global economic crisis, the U.S. housing market bust, the U.S. dollar and the strains in the eurozone. At AEI, Lachman focuses on the global macroeconomy, global currency issues and the multilateral lending agencies.

Frank Lavin
is the CEO and founder of Export Now, which helps companies sell their products online in China from their home office. Lavin previously served as under secretary for international trade at the U.S. Department of Commerce from 2005 to2007, as the department’s lead trade negotiator for China and India and as the senior U.S. policy official responsible for commercial policy, export promotion and trade negotiations across the globe. Lavin was the U.S. ambassador to Singapore from 2001 to2005, where he helped negotiate the landmark U.S.-Singapore Free Trade Agreement. In the private sector, Lavin served in senior finance and management positions in Hong Kong and Singapore with Cushman & Wakefield Investors Asia, Bank of America and Citibank. Lavin is the co-author of “Export Now” (2011).

Mickey Levy is the chief economist at Bank of America, where he analyzes and forecasts U.S. and global economic performance and financial market behavior; he also conducts research on global macroeconomic policies. In addition to his work with Bank of America, Levy serves on the Shadow Open Market Committee and advises several U.S. Federal Reserve banks. He is a member of the Governance Board of the Research Alliance for New York City Schools, the Economic Club of New York, the panel of economic advisers of the Institute for International Finance and the Clearing House Academic Advisory Council. Levy has testified before the U.S. Congress on a variety of topics and lectures at several top business schools.

Kristen Silverberg is a senior resident fellow at the German Marshall Fund and the chief operating officer of Vorbeck Materials, a nanotechnology company in Maryland. She previously served as the U.S. ambassador to the European Union. From 2005 to 2008, she served as assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs at the U.S. Department of State. She previously held a number of positions in the White House, including deputy assistant to the president and adviser to the chief of staff. In 2003, she served as a senior adviser to Ambassador L. Paul Bremer in Baghdad, Iraq.  Silverberg previously practiced law at Williams and Connolly LLP in Washington, D.C. She was a law clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge David Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals.

Event Materials
Levy Presentation
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