Commission proposes to the Council to participate in negotiations on a new international agreement on trade in services

The European Commission proposed to the Council to give its green light for negotiations on a new international agreement on trade in services. Together, the 21 initial countries (WTO Members) participating in the negotiations represent more than two thirds of world trade in services. The EU wants to develop new rules on trade in services.

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An agreement on Trans-Adriatic Pipeline project (TAP) was concluded between Albania, Greece and Italy

The European Commission welcomed the signature of a tri-lateral intergovernmental agreement (IGA) as an essential step in the preparation of the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline project (TAP). TAP is an important gas pipeline between Italy, Albania and Greece with a starting capacity of minimum 10 billion cubic metres per annum (bcma).

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The United States and the European Union agreed to launch negotiations on a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

The EU and US have decided to take their economic relationship to a higher level by agreeing to launch negotiations for a comprehensive trade and investment agreement. When negotiations are completed, this EU-US agreement would be the biggest bilateral trade deal ever negotiated – and it could add 0.5% to the EU's annual economic output.

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The European Commission provides support to facilitate market access in China for EU SMEs

The China IPR Helpdesk, the EU SME Centre and the European Enterprise Network are established in China to help by bringing the risks – and rewards – of the Chinese market into focus. In particular, the EU SME Centre is a support service provider for European small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) facilitating market access in China, says the European Commission.

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Foreign Direct Investment stocks held by the EU and those held by the rest of the world have risen steadily between 2008 …

According to Eurostat, the EU held Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) stocks of €4,983 billion in the rest of the world at the end of 2011, while stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU amounted to €3,807 billion, meaning that the EU is a net investor in the rest of the world.

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Four African countries will get duty- and quota-free access to the EU market

The European Parliament endorsed the EU's first economic partnership with an African region deal that grants Madagascar, Mauritius, the Seychelles and Zimbabwe duty- and quota-free access to the EU market.

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MEPs ask to make mandatory the use of made in origin labels on goods imported from third countries

The European Parliament objected to the European Commission's plans to withdraw the proposed "made in" regulation. MEPs stressed that the EU must make the use of "made in" origin labels on goods imported from third countries mandatory.

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The highest proportions of enterprises with innovation activity were recorded in Germany, Luxembourg and Belgium

A report published by Eurostat shows that 53% of enterprises from industry and services reported innovation activity between 2008 and 2010. However there are important difference among Member States. The highest proportions of enterprises with innovation activity were recorded in Germany,Luxembourg, Belgium, while the lowest were recorded in Bulgaria, Poland, Latvia, Romania and Hungary.

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The European Commission clears the resolution plan for Dexia under certain conditions

The European Commission has announced its approval to the aid granted by Belgian, French and Luxembourg governments for the resolution of the financial group Dexia. According to the Commission's decision, this plan will allow the residual group to exit from the market altogether.

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The Commission wants to modernise, strengthen and rationalise the customs union in the years ahead

The European Commission presented a Communication which takes stock of the current state of the EU customs union, identifies the challenges that it currently faces, and sets out priority actions for ensuring its future evolution.

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The EU and Singapore agreed on the EU's second ambitious trade agreement with a key Asian trading partner

The EU and Singapore reached an agreement which is, according to the European Commission, one of the most comprehensive the EU has ever negotiated and will create new opportunities for companies from Europe and Singapore to do business together. After the EU-Korea FTA, the EU-Singapore FTA will be the EU's second ambitious agreement with a key Asian trading partner.

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MEPs approved the pacts freeing up EU trade with Colombia, Peru and six countries in Central America

The European Parliament approved in plenary session two landmark pacts freeing up EU trade with Colombia, Peru and six countries in Central America. MEPs also voted on the Regulation implementing the bilateral Safeguard Clause of the agreements that will provide a safety net for the EU industries in case of injurious surge of imports from the countries concerned.

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