Paul Goldschmidt joined Goldman Sachs in New York (1962-1969) and was appointed as a Director of Goldman Sachs International in London (1970-1985). After seven years as a financial consultant in London and Monaco (1985-1993), he became Director of the “Financial Operations Service,” part of the Directorate General for Economic and Financial Affairs at the European Commission (1993-2002). In that capacity, he played a key role in the harmonization and reform of European financial markets before and during the advent of the euro. He also served on the Board of Directors of the European Investment Fund (2001-2002). Since his retirement in 2002, he has been writing on European political and financial matters and has actively participated in many international conferences.
 
Contacts
Résidence “Les Eaux Vives” Apt. N° WX2 89
Avenue Jean et Pierre Carsoel 1180
Brussels

+32 (0)2 3736330
 +32 (0)497 54 92 59
pn.goldschmidt@gmail.com
European, Politics, Uncategorized

La réforme de l’Union Européenne passe vraisemblablement par celle indispensable des Nations Unies.

Sans un aiguillon extérieur, la Conférence sur l’Avenir de l’Europe risque d’accoucher d’une souris ! Une série d’évènements récents nous font brutalement prendre conscience que nous changeons d’époque : que ce soit le réchauffement climatique – identifié de longue date – qui se rappelle à nous par des évènements météorologiques ponctuels plus fréquents (inondations – canicule), qu’il s’agisse de la pandémie qui se moque des frontières et des souverainetés nationales ou encore de la mondialisation qui rend l’interdépendance des populations manifeste et irréversible, tous ces évènements imposent que l’homme doive privilégier l’intérêt collectif de l’espèce aux intérêts nationaux, communautaires et individuels. La prospérité exceptionnelle due aux progrès scientifiques, économiques et sociaux a favorisé, jusqu’à l’outrance, la croyance en la compatibilité illimitée de…

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European, Politics

E.U. reform requires probably the simultaneous re-foundation of the United Nations.

Failing such an external stimulus, the Conference on the future of the EU risks to end in a stalemate! A series of recent events has brutally made us aware that we are living through a major epochal change: be it climate warming – identified years ago  – which confronts us with an increasing number of extreme meteorological events (floods – heatwaves), be it the pandemic that takes no notice of borders or national sovereignty or globalisation that makes the interdependence of populations both manifest and irreversible, all these developments impose on humanity the inescapable obligation to privilege collective rather than national, community or individual interests. The exceptional level of prosperity, made possible by scientific, economic and social progress, has promoted…

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European, Politics

European Union: the scourge of abstention.

Abstention is a challenge to democracy on par with extremism, both at European and National level. The phenomenon of abstention has been growing in the EU over recent decades to the point where it has become the expression of the majority in several elections. Not to be confused with a “blank” vote representing an elector’s protest against the inadequacy of the political choice offered, abstaining is, to the contrary, an expression of disinterest in “public affairs” whose prevalence is challenging the core of democracy, cornerstone of the Treaty among its 27 Members. By its consubstantial nature to the very existence of the Union, this matter should be at the heart of the debates of the Conference on the Future of…

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Politics

The Israeli- Palestinian conflict

Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified: a scandal to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. (1.Cor. 22-25) ——————- When applied to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, this excerpt of Saint Paul’s letter to the Corinthians will probably be fully accepted with regard to the “scandal” and “foolishness” it represents, but will remain profoundly controversial insofar as it testifies to the “wisdom of God”! Indeed the scandal and foolishness of the conflict are manifest and the men who are responsible for resolving it have, once again, demonstrated…

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European, Politics

Can the Conference on the future of the E.U. deliver anything but a damp squib?

On the eve of the Conference on the Future of the European Union, whose preparation and work has – and will – be heavily influenced by the pandemic, one should wonder whether the new political environment has been impacted to such an the extent that the capacity of the debates to offer credible answers to the challenges facing the Union is put into question. Even if this development is the result of a process initiated several decades ago, the pandemic has crystallized its emergence and its growing hold over a broad segment of public opinion. Thus the historical “left – right” divide opposing socio-economic models around which ruling parties alternated in implementing programs sharing a corpus of “centrist” values, has…

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European, Politics

Currencies and Finance are major weapons in the geopolitical game.

The post Covid “Recovery Plan” is a major card in the EU’s hand. The use of monetary and financial weapons in political gamesmanship is not new; it has taken various forms over time: from the flows of gold and silver travelling over the Silk Road, to cargos of precious metals filling the Spanish and Portuguese galleons returning from South America or more elaborate measures including blockades, embargoes, exchange controls, currency depreciation, financial manipulations or outright frauds, the acceleration of globalization and the growing interdependence of its actors have made access to financial markets a matter of survival. After a period of unquestioned domination of Sterling, relying on the vastness of the British Empire, it relinquished its leadership to the $…

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European, Politics

Is the European Union losing its way?

Barring a major effort, the EU is on track to being marginalized! The events unfolding under are eyes and whose roots reach back over the last several decades, are questioning the foundations of the EU which have been the focal point around which European society has coalesced since WWII. Firmly scotched to the USA during the reconstruction period and benefitting from its benign protection against the spread of communism, European nations favored building regimes emphasizing a welfare State and to a greater or lesser extent wealth redistribution, at the expense of their economic, monetary, defense and finally political autonomy, these aspects being clearly closely interconnected. Up until the introduction of the Single Currency, the EU created the illusion of being…

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European, Politics

Europe – Covid and Freedom

The lessons learned from the pandemic opens a window to further European integration. Lassitude, sacrifices, anxieties, unknowns surrounding the pandemic, economic uncertainties are all undermining the spirit of the population, rendering the task of governing ever more complex. The media, be it TV debates, the press or social media platforms, train their sights on the dysfunctionalities, the contradictions, the incoherencies underpinning the opinions of “specialists” (or incompetent participants) who wrangle publicly, thus making the decisions made by political authorities particularly difficult to follow and understand. Within this context, there is a lack of consensus concerning the importance assigned to competing priorities, aiming either at health care, economic activity, social protections or to be respectful of citizen’s rights and liberties, each,…

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Economic and Financial

The debate over the legacy of the sovereign debt burden on future generations is hypocritical.

It constitutes a moralizing fig leaf hiding increasing inequalities. The rejection of an excessive recourse to increasing public debt is often formulated in a language condemning the practice in the name of an “unfair” transfer of its repayment on the shoulders of future generations. Is this criticism necessarily well grounded? In order to pass judgment, it is necessary to define the parameters that establish a level of excess indebtedness. These parameters vary according to the characteristics of the debtor, whether it be an individual, a corporation or a State. In the latter case – which we examine here – it is necessary to determine further whether the State enjoys full monetary sovereignty and whether its debts are expressed in its…

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European, Politics

The Euro as an instrument of Power?

Commentary on the Communication from the European Commission(COM (2021) 32) On the eve of President Biden’s inauguration, the Commission published a Communication aiming at strengthening the role of the Union on the world stage by developing a policy of “open strategic autonomy” outlined in its Communication of May 2020. This new Communication centres on the development of the international role of the €, strengthening the EU’s financial market infrastructures, improving the implementation and enforcement of the EU’s sanctions’ regime as well of the unlawful extra-territorial application of unilateral sanctions and other measures by third countries. As was provocatively suggested in a commentary in the Financial Times of January 21st, the American President will have lost no sleep when informed of…

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