EP rejects Commission's proposal on body scanners at airports

In adopting a resolution on the impact of security measures and body scanners on human rights, privacy, personal dignity and data protection, MEPs believe that this draft measure could exceed the implementing powers as the measures foreseen cannot be considered mere technical measures related to security, but have a serious impact on the fundamental rights of citizens. MEPs consider that the conditions for a decision have not yet been met, given that essential information is still lacking.

Read more …

EC debates EU's Integrated Maritime Policy at BioMarine Forum

The European Commission welcomes BioMarine, an international maritime forum on oceans sustainability an innovative solutions, organised under the aegis of the French Presidency of the European Union, which gathers business, scientific and political communities. This is a major event which will enable Europe's maritime community to reinforce the development of an integrated approach to maritime affairs.

Read more …

Chinese political activist Hu Jia awarded with Sakharov Prize 2008

The European Parliament's Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought has been awarded this year to Chinese political activist Hu Jia. With this year's award he European Parliament firmly and resolutely acknowledges the daily struggle for freedom of all Chinese human rights defenders. The prize ceremony will take place in Strasbourg on December 17th.

Read more …

EC reintroduces customs duties on imports of certain cereals for the 2008/09 marketing year

The European Commission has published in the Official Journal of the European Union of October 23rd, Regulation (EC) Nº 1039/2008 of October 22nd 2008, reintroducing customs duties on imports of certain cereals for the 2008/09 marketing year. This decision is based in the current level of FOB prices of common wheat in EU recorded in EU ports, and modifies Regulation (EC) Nº 608/2008, which in June, temporarily suspended such duties.

Read more …

Impact Assessment: combat illegal logging

The Commission has published a staff working document related to the Summary of the Impact Assessment of additional options to combat illegal logging related to the proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council determining the obligations of operators who make timber and timber products available on the market (COM(2008) 644 final - SEC(2008) 2615).

Read more …

EP backs a new programme to support safer Internet for children

The European Parliament has adopted a proposal for a new programme aiming to promote safe use of the Internet by children. The programme, whose budget for the period 2009-2013 is some 55 M€, will support actions aiming to ban illegal contents, sexual abuses, and prevent  the risk of bullying or grooming. Social networks and communications with mobile phones will also be a priority.

Read more …

EP supports EU joint action to tackle financial crisis

The European Parliament supports the idea that EU needs a coordinated response on a range of fronts in order to tackle the financial crisis and limit its impact on economic growth, jobs and small businesses. In a resolution on last EU summit, they also call for measures to improve financial supervision and look at issues from climate change to the Caucuses. MEPs held a debate over those issues with  EU President-in-Office Sarkozy.

Read more …

EP calls for measures to reduce administrative burdens for European companies

The European Parliament adopted on October 21st, 2008, a report proposing measures to improve the legislative activity in the European Union. This text supported the Commission's proposal to reduce administrative burdens by 25% by 2012, but insisted that such cuts do not need to be overridden by new burdens in other areas, and should not mean falling into self-regulation which could lead to "legislative abstinence".

Read more …

19 Key questions to improve agricultural quality products

The Commission has decided to launch a reflection in a Green Paper on agricultural product quality: product standards, farming requirements and quality schemes (15/10/2008) on how to ensure the most suitable policy and regulatory framework to protect and promote quality of agricultural products, without creating additional costs or burdens As a first step it intends to launch a wide consultation on whether the existing instruments are adequate, or how they could be improved and what new initiatives could be launched.

Read more …

Sources of funding in addition to revenue from auctioning of allowances

The European Commission has published on the 17 october a Communication Addressing the challenges of deforestation and forest degradation to tackle climate change and biodiversity loss SEC(2008) 2618  - 17.10.2008 where it is analyised the sources of funding.

Read more …

New designated Commissioner Ashton faces EP hearing

Commissioner-designate Catherine Ashton faced a hearing at the European Parliament on Monday, October 20th. MEPs questioned Baroness Ashton on the future of the Doha Round, the financial crisis, bilateral trade negotiations, as well as on her own experience.

Read more …

Published the 19th Annual Report on Implementation of the structural funds

The EC has published on the 20th October 2008 the 19th Annual Report on Implementation of the structural funds.

Read more …