EU Court of Justice rules on protection of trade mark’s investment function and free-riding

In its judgement, the Court of Justice of the European Union, addresses the extent of possible violations of the trademark “function” and answers the reference for preliminary ruling raised by British courts in relation to a claim put forward by the company Interflora against Marks & Spencer for the use of one of its trade mark as a keyword on Google referencing service.

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In 2010, 90% of the EU budget was dedicated to projects in Member States or in partner countries abroad

The annual financial report has been published by the European Commission. This report shows detailed information on what the EU money was spent on and how was it managed. According to Commissioner responsible for Financial Programming and Budget Janusz Lewandowski, it is essential that EU taxpayers are provided with the fullest possible information. In addition, the implementation rate of the EU budget reached 97% in 2010.

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Minors' privacy could be better protected on the social networks, according to a Commission report

The European Commission presented a report in which it considers that the social networks could improve the default settings in order to better protect minors' privacy. Although a majority of sites tested do give youngsters age-appropriate safety information, only two out of nine social networking sites (Habbo Hotel and Xbox Live) have default settings.

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The results of a survey shows that public opinion approves the key elements of the forthcoming CAP reform package

A new Eurobarometer recently published by the European Commission shows there is a broadly favourable vision to key elements of the forthcoming CAP reform package. Those key elements where there was an agreement were the concept of enhancing the link between Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) payments and environmental protection throughout the EU and limiting the amount of payments any individual farm.

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Member States agreed in a compromise text to enable consumers to make healthier dietary choices

The Council approved a compromise text aimed at ensuring that food labels carry essential information in a clear and legible way. Thus, the new draft regulation requires labelling to be clear and legible. Its main objective of the new regulation is to enable consumers to make balanced and healthier dietary choices.

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Combating road traffic offences will be easier with the directive on cross-border exchange of information

The Council adopted a Directive on cross-border exchange of information on road safety offences on the basis of a text agreed with the European Parliament. The objective of this directive is to combat road traffic offences that considerably jeopardise road safety, by  facilitating cross-border exchange of information. The United Kingdom, Ireland and Denmark, due to their special position under the Lisbon treaty with regard to policy cooperation, do not participate in this measure, but may decide to join in later.

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EU-funded research discovered 16 new sections of the genetic code associated with lung function

A study which brought together 175 scientists across 126 research centres around the world, plus the EU funds, has permitted to discover 16 new sections of the genetic code associated with lung function. This new discovery could shed more light on the molecular basis of lung diseases.

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A report shows a decrease in the number of infringement procedures launched for failure to apply EU law

The 28th Annual Report on monitoring the Application of EU Law issued by the European Commission shows a decrease in the number of infringement procedures launched by the Commission against Member States for failure to apply EU law. An innovative online platform for exchange of information between the Commission and almost all Member States, has played a major role in this context.

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Both indicators, the Economic Sentiment and the Business Climate for the EU and the euro zone declined strongly

In September, the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) declined strongly by 3.4 points in both the EU and the euro area, reaching the level of 94.0 and 95.0, respectively. The decrease reflects broad-based cross-sector deterioration in sentiment, with particularly strong losses in confidence in industry and services. In addition the data for the Business Climate Indicator (BCI) showed for the euro area fell for the seven month in a row and is now in slightly negative territory.

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MEPs asked to the WHO to remove gender identity disorders its classification of mental and behavioural disorders

A resolution approved by the European Parliament demands that the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people be upheld fully within the EU and defended systematically in its external relations. Also MEPs called for gender identity disorders to be removed from the World Health Organisation's classification of mental and behavioural disorders.

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EU residents made one billion holiday trips in 2010

Eurostat published its latest estimations on the holiday trips made by the EU residents in 2010. According to this office, EU residents made one billion holiday trips, of which more than three-quarters were domestic trips, within the country of residence, and around one quarter were outbound trips outside the country of residence.

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The EP believes that cutting red tape is fundamental to boost EU regional development and competitiveness

MEPs approved a non-legislative resolution at the plenary session in which they underlined that EU and national procedures must be simplified to enable poorer regions in particular to access and invest higher rates of EU funding for regional development and building competitiveness.

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