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5 scenarios for the future of the EU after Brexit

Where could this bring the social housing sector?

Brussels, 3 March 2017 | Published in Future of the EU & Housing

On March 1st, the European Commission has presented 5 scenarios for the future of the EU after Brexit. Although discussions at all levels about those scenarios will continue until the next European elections in 2019, it is interesting to see how our main policy dem

In the following, we have rephrased the 4 main scenarios as follows:

  • Single market only (“Single Market Only” scenario )
  • Small Europe (“Doing less more efficiently” scenario)
  • Big Europe (“Doing much more together” scenario )
  • Multispeed Europe  ( “those who want more do more” scenario )

For each scenario, we have tried to figure out what impact it might have on key EU policies/mechanisms which are relevant for public, cooperative and social housing. We have chosen 5 relevant areas:

a) State Aid

b) the European Semester

c) Funding

d) Energy & Environment

e) Social

From this first short analysis (it the picture above and it PDF below), it seems that there will be positive and negative points for national housing policies in every scenario.

In the “Small Europe” scenario there is at the same time subsidiarity and flexibility for national housing policies on the one hand and some financial support on the other hand.

“Big Europe” would certainly bring more financial support but it could mean more prescription from the EU on economic and fiscal policies with an impact on social housing. But it is probably the only scenario where integration of migrants and fight against housing exclusion would be tackled to some extent at the EU level.

Mulitspeed Europe would bring complex decision making at the EU level (which would make our advocacy work less efficient) and potentially differentiated access to finance for “B countries” and/or countries not ready to follow the reinforced cooperation.

Single market only could bring more competition in the construction sector but at the expense of less funding for affordable housing and reinforced state aid control.

It is certainly too early to have a clear opinion on all those scenarios, but Housing Europe will continue to have a voice in the debate, putting forward the ideas and values of its members and the demands (for instance as part of the Housing4all campaign).