A low-key end to a difficult year for the EU

Barely three months ago, December’s European Council was being sold as a potential turning-point in the history of the European Union. There was talk of giving the European Commission control of national budgets and spending, contracts forcing member states to implement structural economic reforms, eurobonds, the establishment of a separate eurozone budget, steps towards treaty change, and further integration of the eurozone that would change the EU forever.

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