MEPs called for talks on a possible trade deal with the US to start in 2013

The European Parliament approved a resolution in which points out the huge potential for growth and jobs on both sides of the Atlantic but caution that the EU's interests must be protected, especially in the farm sector. The Parliament calls in the non-binding resolution for negotiations to begin in the first half of 2013.

Read more …

The Commission proposed to create a Fund to help the most deprived persons in the EU

The European Commission presented its proposal to set up a new Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived. It will count wiht a budget of €2.5 billion for the Fund during the period 2014-2020. Member States would be responsible for paying 15% of the costs of their national programmes, with the remaining 85% coming from the Fund.

Read more …

European Parliament requests to member states to urgently merge national air traffic control spaces in Europe

A resolution adopted by MEPs asks to member states to implement the Single European Sky compromise. National air traffic control spaces in Europe urgently need to be merged so as to clear congestion, boost safety, reduce flight times, delays and fares, create jobs and cut CO2 emissions, according to them.

Read more …

New Commission's action plan for online gambling

The European Commission presented an action plan that includes a series of initiatives over the next two years aimed at clarifying the regulation of online gambling and encouraging cooperation between Member States.

Read more …

The European Parliament refused the Council budget proposal for 2013

The €1.9 billion cuts proposed by the Council in areas that MEPs believe are vital to boost the economy, were refused by the European Parliament in a vote on the budget proposal for 2013. The Council highlights with particular concern that the European Parliament's amendments considerably reduce the margins under the expenditure ceilings of the current multiannual financial framework or even delete it.

Read more …

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.

Read more …

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.

Read more …

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.

Read more …

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.

Read more …

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.

Read more …

The Commission consults on e-invoicing in public procurement

The European Commission launched a public consultation in order to gather views and information on the use of electronic invoicing in public procurement, i.e. in the B2G sector, and on the perceived need of action at EU level. Public authorities, citizens, enterprises, and organisations are welcome to contribute to this consultation before 14 January 2013.

Read more …

New branches from the Enterprise Europe Network in India, Canada and China

India is the latest country set to join the Enterprise Europe Network, with three new centres to start operating in New Delhi. The Network also announced that an office will also shortly open in Canada, while four new branches in Shanghai and Nanjing have brought China's total to 27.

Read more …