SOLVIT sees 75% growth in case volume in 2007

A Spanish student wanted to start her university studies in Belgium, but was refused because the original certified diploma of her secondary education had not been issued yet by the Spanish authorities. SOLVIT persuaded the university to accept other evidence so that she would not miss an entire academic year. A British manufacturer of marine radio equipment was asked by the German authorities to retest its products in Germany even though they had already been tested and placed on the market in other EU Member States. SOLVIT intervened to ensure that the products could be sold in Germany without costly retesting.

Read more …

The European Commission proposes to improve public access to documents of the EU institutions

The Commission has adopted changes to the rules of access to documents from EU institutions. These changes reaffirm the Commission's commitment to transparency, up-date the rules to reflect recent case-law and aim to allow the institutions to be more efficient in responding to requests from citizens.

Read more …

Euro area unemployment stable at 7.1%

According to the latest figures published by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities, the euro area's (EA15: consists of Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Slovenia and Finland) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate stood at 7.1% in March 2008, unchanged compared with February. It was 7.5% in March 2007. The EU271 unemployment rate was 6.7% in March 2008, also unchanged compared with February. It was 7.3% in March 2007.

Read more …

EC endorses €143 million aid to Ford for two large investment projects in Craiova, Romania

The European Commission has authorised, under EC Treaty state aid rules, €143 million of aid, which the Romanian authorities intend to grant to Ford for the production of vehicles and engines in Craiova, in the South West of Romania.

Read more …

Demands for quality and quantity of long-term care services

The demands for and costs of long-term care provision in the EU will rise significantly by 2050, according to a new report presented by the European Commission. Meanwhile, the vast majority of Europeans (almost nine out of ten) favour home- or community-based care over care in an institutional setting.

Read more …

Increasing turnout at European elections

The European Parliament (EP) is failing to project an image, good or bad, of itself in the minds of over half of Europe’s citizens. The result is a lack of engagement and fall in the number of people participating in European elections. However, campaigning raises the visibility of the Parliament, and the more information people have the more positively they feel towards the institution. These are just some of the findings from a study conducted by the EU-funded CIVICACTIVE project.

Read more …

EU warns against 'criminalising' filesharers

People should not be criminalised for the file-sharing of copyrighted material if they are not profiting from doing so, the European Parliament has recommended.

Read more …

The EU moves toward the creation of a Asylum Support Office

The JHA Council, on the 18th April 2008, adopted conclusions on practical cooperation which invite the Commission to come forward in the near future with proposals to provide adequate support for practical cooperation activities between Member States, including the creation of an Asylum Support Office which would provide for adequate structural and financial backing in order to guarantee the level of ambition necessary to complete the Common European Asylum System.

Read more …

EC proposal for migration from the Schengen Information System

The European Commission have published a proposal for a council decsion on migration from the Schengen Information System (SIS 1+) to the second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II) including the objective of establishing the legal framework governing the migration from the Schengen Information System in its current form (SIS 1+) to the second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II). This will include a comprehensive test, with a view to demonstrating, in particular, that the level of performance of SIS II is at least equivalent to that achieved with SIS 1+.

Read more …

Do we know our data protection rights?

Results of Flash Eurobarometer survey on Data Protection that was conducted in January 2008 have been published. Previous waves of the survey had been performed three times before, in 1991, 1996 and 2003. Fieldwork was carried out from January 8th to 12th, 2008. Over 27,000 randomly selected citizens aged 15 years and over were interviewed in the 27 EU Member States.

Read more …