The Commission presented its proposal for enhanced cooperation on financial transactions tax

The European Commission presented a proposal for allowing the 10 member states that wish to apply an EU financial transaction tax (FTT) through enhanced cooperation to do so, because all the legal conditions for such a move are met. The proposal must be adopted by a qualified majority of Member States, and receive the Parliament's consent, in order for the 10 Member States to move forward.

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Unemployment is currently the top priority and main concern across all the EU regions

According to the first ever Eurobarometer survey conducted at a regional level, public perception across the EU of the current economic situation and quality of life indicate major variations not only at national level but even more so at a regional level. The report results also show that with the exception of certain parts of Germany, unemployment is the top priority and main concern across all the EU regions, and environment has almost gone off the agenda of most citizens.

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20th anniversary of two keystones of EU environmental policy: LIFE fund and Habitats Directive

The European Union is celebrating that it is now twenty years since the EU adopted the Habitats Directive, one of the two building blocks of Natura 2000, Europe's network of protected areas. LIFE, the EU funding instrument for the environment, is also celebrating its 20th anniversary.

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Over €150 billion is the estimated economic cost of Europe’s youth not in employment, education or training

Eurofound published a report that reveals how the greatest urgency lies with the 14 million young people currently not in employment, education or training (NEETs). The report shows that the economic loss to society of not integrating NEETs is estimated at €153 billion, in addition to the inestimable costs for their disengagement from society in general.

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The Council reached an agreement on fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea for 2013

The first day of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting ended with an agreement between ministers on fishing opportunities for 2013 for certain fish stocks in the Baltic Sea. This agreement lays down for 2013 the maximum quantities of fish from specific stocks that can be caught in the Baltic Sea (total allowable catches (TACs) and quotas), as well as the fishing effort limits for Baltic cod stocks.

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