Europe turns right with feet in centre

European Parliament (EP), comprising 720 members and elected every five years, has shifted centre-right, with the Ursula von der Leyen-led European People’s Party (EPP) tightening its grip after the June 6-9 elections. Far-right parties have made key gains, delivering defeats to the parties of German chancellor Olaf Scholz, French president Emmanuel Macron, and Austrian chancellor Karl Nehammer. Macron has called for a snap poll. But the far-right can’t control parliament due to disunity among its ranks. Broadly, EP results signal broad policy continuity, but with pushbacks in green policies and migration.

Key concerns for voters included the economy, cost of living, the Russia-Ukraine war and its impacts, and immigration. Response to these concerns will determine how the majority coalition shapes its policy agenda. Stability is crucial, and will influence EPP’s choice of partners in forming a majority coalition.

Given the divisions within the far-right, EPP, with 184 seats, is likely to ally with centre-left socialists and democrats group, with 139 lawmakers, followed by the drastically pared-back liberal Renew group, with 80 seats. The coalition needs 361 seats for a majority. The state of play shows the outgoing European Commission’s signature Green Deal won’t be dismantled, but it may no longer be the centrepiece. Instead, it will be mediated by concerns about cost of living, energy price crisis, risk of deindustrialisation and rising inequalities. From a global perspective, this ‘right turn’ will mean Europe focusing on competitiveness and trade, and addressing migration. India’s growing economy and favourable geopolitical conditions provide an opportunity to cement a mutually beneficial partnership with the EU.


This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.