European Council President Donald Tusk urged Europeans to abandon dreams of a federal Europe as these will only stoke the rise of anti-EU populists.
The former Polish prime minister, who presides over EU leaders summits, made the comments three weeks before Britain votes in a June 23 referendum on EU membership.
“There is no worse prospect for the European economy than the omen of a triumph of anti-liberal and Eurosceptic political forces,” Tusk told a meeting of business leaders on Wednesday.
In order to combat this rise in populism, “Europeans must depart from utopian dreams and move on to practical activities, such as for instance reinforcing the EUs external borders or consistently completing the Banking Union,” he said.
European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker also warned against demands for a more unified Europe.
“I think that in the end, too much Europe will kill Europe,” Juncker, who is widely considered a European federalist, said in an interview with Der Spiegel magazine published Thursday.
“But it is also true, that too little Europe would kill Europe,” he added.