Expert Comments

The expert comments are brief 1.000- to 1,500-word pieces produced by the Elcano Royal Institute's analysts as an immediate response to international events relevant to Spain.


Windows of opportunity in the Korean Peninsula

Félix Arteaga and Mario Esteban. Expert Comment 35/2017 - 26/5/2017.

The most realistic option to face the DPRK nuclear crisis is to reopen a process of political dialogue. Negotiations based on a North Korean moratorium on nuclear and missile tests are the best scenario.


Reflections on the Commission’s euro reflection paper: let’s get the sequencing right

Miguel Otero-Iglesias. Expert Comment 30/2017 - 6/6/2017.

It is important to think harder on how to improve and strengthen the political union. Only in this way will there be a greater momentum and willingness to introduce the technical solutions that most economists agree upon.


The Paris Agreement after Trump and the future of climate action

Lara Lázaro. Expert Comment 29/2017 - 6/6/2017.

The message from world leaders is clear: there is no intention of abandoning an agreement that has taken over five years to negotiate. The world will move forwards towards a low-carbon future despite Trump’s efforts to hold it back.


The new silk roads: opportunities for Spanish companies?

Mario Esteban. Expert Comment 26/2017 (English version) - 5/6/2017.

As long as the greater part of financing for new silk road projects continues being earmarked for projects where the contracts are not tendered for in a transparent and competitive way, the prospects for Spanish companies’ participation will remain highly limited.


Crossing the red line: how Russian interference in Western democracy is backfiring

Ulrich Speck. Expert Comment 24/2017 - 29/5/2017 .

Those in the West who argue in favour of detente, of an easing of sanctions and a rapprochement with the Kremlin, find it much more difficult to defend this course of action because of the rising anger over Russian political warfare tactics.


Discovering the Mediterranean (and tapping into its pro-European attitudes)

Ignacio Molina. Expert Comment 20/2017 (English version) - 8/5/2017.

If it sets its mind to it, it seems likely that the group of Southern EU countries that met in Madrid will be able to mould the debate on the future of Europe in a decisive way.


From Istanbul to Madrid: five things to know before the Turkish constitutional referendum

İlke Toygür. Expert Comment 18/2017 - 12/4/2017.

Polls show a neck-to-neck race between the two sides. Today, the main question is not the constitutional reform itself, but approval of the governing party, and even more so of the figure of President Erdoğan.


Germany and Trump-America: back on track?

Ulrich Speck. Expert Comment 16/2017 - 11/4/2017.

The widely anticipated clash between Germany and the Trump Administration has not happened. Instead, Berlin and Washington DC seem to be on the way to pragmatic cooperation, even when there is still significant disagreement.


Jihadist mobilisation, undemocratic Salafism and terrorist threat in the EU

Fernando Reinares. Expert Comment 13/2017 - 10/3/2017.

Each time a terrorist attack is perpetrated, jihadism is to be thought of not just as a national security problem but also as a challenge to the very fabric of open societies.


Turkey’s critical constitutional referendum: an introduction

Ilke Toygür. Expert Comment 12/2017 - 6/3/2017.

As a new challenge to its democratic existence, Turkey is going to a constitutional referendum on April 16th, with a heavily polarised society. It is widely questioned if the referendum will be ‘free’ and ‘fair’ under the current state of emergency.