ECB boss pledges to MEPs to fight inflation and restore confidence

ECB boss pledges to MEPs to fight inflation and restore confidence

Members of the European Parliament voiced concerns about rising energy and food prices, and mortgage rates during a hearing with European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde. MEPs in the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee discussed how to avoid fragmentation between member states and reduce inflation uniformly across the euro area. MEPs focused on a planned deployment of the Transmission Protection Instrument, (TPI) which aims to ensure that the ECB monetary policy is effectively applied in all euro area members to ensure price stability. In particular, the Committee members asked how the ECB would decide a country’s eligibility for assets purchase…
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EU Commission President von der Leyen delivers State of the Union speech

EU Commission President von der Leyen delivers State of the Union speech

LIVE BLOG Thank you for following us today. Below, you can find a round up of the key points raised by Ursula von der Leyen in her State of the Union speech and the key reactions by the different political groupings in the European Parliament. Updated 1050: Reactions by Political Groupings Manfred Weber (EPP Group) called for a "Winter of solidarity" as the solution to the current situation. Millions of people, have lost their home, their future, their livelihoods. It is the brutal reality of Putin’s war. At the same time in our countries businesses are closing because of the…
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Europe needs strategic autonomy in energy, food, defence and technology – Finnish PM

Europe needs strategic autonomy in energy, food, defence and technology – Finnish PM

Addressing MEPs in Strasbourg as part of the “This is Europe” debate series, Prime Minister of Finland Sanna Marin said that Ukrainians have proven their bravery and endurance and they must win the war. Europeans must therefore continue supplying all types of aid to Ukraine, and be ready to adopt even stronger sanctions and visa restrictions against Russia, she continued. Russia’s short-sighted actions have already led to an even more united Western Alliance, said Marin - not least with Finland and Sweden applying to join NATO. Turning to the volatile situation in the energy markets, Marin called for short-term measures…
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EP appoints Alessandro Chiocchetti as new Secretary General

EP appoints Alessandro Chiocchetti as new Secretary General

Today the Bureau of the European Parliament appointed Mr Alessandro Chiocchetti as the institution’s new Secretary General. The newly appointed Secretary General will take up his functions on 1 January 2023. The appointment follows the decision of the Bureau in June 2022 to accept incumbent Secretary General Klaus Welle’s wish to retire by the end of 2022. According the European Parliament's Rules of Procedure the Bureau appoints the Secretary General. The process allowed for the Members of the Bureau to hear four different candidates and ask questions. After careful deliberations, the Bureau decided with a very large majority to appoint…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events at the European Parliament, European Commission and European Council: 30 August: On 30 and 31 August, Prague will host a Gymnich meeting of EU foreign ministers, so named after the place where the first such meeting took place in 1974. European ministers will be discussing two main topics: the Russian aggression against Ukraine and the EU's relations with Africa. 31 August: At a time when the people of Ukraine are bravely defending their country against Vladimir Putin's aggression, the conference will feature a special "Forum for Ukraine" where participants will address the post-war future of…
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EU Parliament says Orbán’s remarks go against bloc’s values

EU Parliament says Orbán’s remarks go against bloc’s values

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's racist remarks have met with strong criticism in the European Parliament. Leaders of the European Parliament’s main groups on Friday castigated Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s “inexcusable statements” on race and Europe, urging the bloc to continue withholding funds from the country. The statement, approved Friday evening, came from the Parliament’s Conference of Presidents, which includes leaders of the legislative body’s various political groups, as well as Parliament President Roberta Metsola, POLITICO reports. We, the leaders of the political groups of the European Parliament, strongly condemn the recent openly racist declaration by Prime Minister Orbán about not…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Union institutions. 26 July: Extraordinary Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (Energy): Energy ministers will hold an exchange of views on security of energy supply in the EU and further measures to be taken ahead of next winter. n this context, the Commission presented the 'Save gas for a safe winter'  package on 20 July. The package includes a proposal for a regulation on gas demand reduction and a European gas demand reduction plan. Ministers will discuss the initiatives presented by the Commission and brief each other on the current security of energy supply situation…
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EU lawmakers seek more energy savings to tackle gas crunch

EU lawmakers seek more energy savings to tackle gas crunch

BRUSSELS, July 13 (Reuters) - Lawmakers on the European Parliament's energy committee supported more ambitious EU targets to save energy and expand renewable power on Wednesday, viewed as key to ending Europe's reliance on Russian gas. Brussels is scrambling to prepare for further cuts to Russian gas supplies, and will unveil a plan next week for how countries could cope this winter if Moscow halted deliveries. Meanwhile, the EU is negotiating more ambitious laws to push countries to replace Russian gas with clean energy this decade and reduce planet-warming CO2 emissions. The Parliament's energy committee backed a proposal on Wednesday to raise…
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UPDATED: Adapted, two-strain vaccines to lift COVID protection – EU official

UPDATED: Adapted, two-strain vaccines to lift COVID protection – EU official

FRANKFURT/LONDON, July 13 (Reuters) - Adapted versions of established mRNA COVID-19 vaccines that address two variants in one shot will soon offer people better protection than vaccines that are now available, a European health official said on Wednesday. Moderna and the BioNTech-Pfizer alliance are working on vaccines based on a combination of the original Wuhan virus and an Omicron subvariant. Referred to as bivalent shots, these are planned for use in the autumn vaccination campaign. While the existing coronavirus vaccines continue to provide good protection against hospitalisation and death, vaccine effectiveness has taken a hit as the virus has evolved. In recent days, EU…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are this week's events at the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission: 12 July: The European Council is expected to adopt the final three legal acts which will enable Croatia to introduce euro as its currency on 1 January 2023. 13 July: the Industry, Research and Energy Committee will adopt its positions on two draft bills that are part of the "Fit for 55" package to fight climate change. MEPs will vote on new EU targets to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy and increase energy efficiency. The measures would also support the EU's energy sovereignty and security…
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Big Tech platforms could face new major EU limits on targeted political ads

Big Tech platforms could face new major EU limits on targeted political ads

Facebook and Google could be significantly restricted from targeting people with political ads ahead of the 2024 European Parliament elections, according to a draft Parliament report released Wednesday. Lead MEP, Renew's Anna Donáth of Hungary, proposed to ban online platforms from displaying political ads based on people's profiling and tracking on the internet. Political parties could soon only target voters via online ads based on data they themselves choose to share, including their gender, age, location and language. The move could have a significant effect on online political advertising, where politicians and foreign actors alike have in past years been able…
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EU lawmakers back mandatory use of green jet fuel from 2025

EU lawmakers back mandatory use of green jet fuel from 2025

BRUSSELS, July 7 (Reuters) - The European Parliament on Thursday backed landmark rules on aviation fuel that set binding targets for the replacement of kerosene with less polluting energy sources, but extended the definition of what a green fuel could be. The requirements, which if approved would be a world first, were originally proposed by the European executive commission last year to cut the climate impact of the aviation sector, which is deemed responsible for up to 3% of global emissions.  Under the approved text, suppliers would be required to blend a minimum of 2% of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) into their…
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EU parliament backs labelling gas and nuclear investments as green

EU parliament backs labelling gas and nuclear investments as green

BRUSSELS (Reuters) -The European Parliament on Wednesday backed EU rules labelling investments in gas and nuclear power plants as climate-friendly, throwing out an attempt to block the law that has exposed deep rifts between countries over how to fight climate change. The vote paves the way for the European Union proposal to pass into law, unless 20 of the bloc's 27 member states decide to oppose the move, which is seen as very unlikely. The new rules will add gas and nuclear power plants to the EU "taxonomy" rulebook from 2023, enabling investors to label and market investments in them…
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UPDATED: Austria to challenge EU’s “greenwashing” nuclear, gas decision

UPDATED: Austria to challenge EU’s “greenwashing” nuclear, gas decision

BERLIN, July 6 (Reuters) - Austria will bring a legal complaint against the European Union's decision to classify gas and nuclear energy as green and sustainable transitional energy sources, its climate protection minister said. "Especially with the war waging in Ukraine, we can't have a greenwashing programme for investment in nuclear power and fossil gas," Leonore Gewessler said in a statement. "Nuclear energy and natural gas do not contribute to climate protection." "As soon as this greenwashing programme comes into force, Austria will lodge its already-prepared complaint against it with the European Court," she said, adding that Austria would seek to recruit…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events at the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission: 5 June:Digital Services Package: Parliament will hold the final vote on the new Digital Services Act (DSA) and Digital Markets Act (DMA), the landmark EU digital rules that oblige online companies to protect users from illegal content, increase accountability and limit the market power of tech giants. A press conference will take place on Tuesday at 14.00. 6 June: MEPs will decide whether to veto the Commission's proposal to classify nuclear and gas energy as transitional activities contributing to climate change mitigation. If an absolute…
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The EU needs a fallback position on Green Deal – MEP Alfred Sant

The EU needs a fallback position on Green Deal – MEP Alfred Sant

The EU needs a fallback position on the Green Deal in terms of finance and energy supplies, MEP Alfred Sant says. “My argument is that the EU needs a fallback position on the Green Deal in terms of finance, energy, not just where but which energy, and perhaps a rethinking of nuclear.” He added that if Russia cuts more supplies it will be increasingly difficult for countries like Bulgaria and Romania to make a switch. More so, the EU’s distrust in nuclear energy could create more problems. "We’re going to have a difficult 5 or 6 months on dealing with…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events at the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission: 28 June: Environment ministers will aim at reaching a general approach on proposals that are part of the 'Fit for 55' package, relating to the carbon market, carbon sinks, effort sharing between member states, CO2 emission performance standards for cars and vans and a social climate fund. 29 June: The Members of the European Committee of the Regions will hold a meeting for the 150th Plenary Session on 29-30 June 2022. 30 June: The European Investment Bank (EIB) Summer School is a 10-day programme for graduate students to…
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“We are at crunch time with Poland,” MEP says

“We are at crunch time with Poland,” MEP says

It's crunch time on Poland, Renew MEP Sophie In't Veld said, adding that she was disappointed in the latest European Commission decision to endorse a €36 billion fund to the country. Warsaw has been criticised by the EU after political decisions to empower the disciplinary chamber of the Supreme Court to punish magistrates who were suspected of engaging in "political activity." Potential penalties included fines, salary cuts and outright suspension. The United Nations and the European Union see the reform as dangerous encroachment by the executive branch upon the judicial arm of the state and, therefore, a threat to the separation…
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Big tech should be regulated- MEPs

Big tech should be regulated- MEPs

Labour MEP Alex Agius Saliba and German Greens MEP Alexandra Geese have asserted that big corporations like Apple, Google and Facebook may be regulated in the public interest despite the fact these large tech firms are the new public utilities of our day. Agius Saliba noted that lobbyists, particularly from large digital companies, would frequently inform MEPs that regulating these businesses and their ecosystems is a very challenging undertaking. After working on the Digital Markets Act and the Digital Services Act, he stated, "we proved that as lawmakers, with the benefit of regulating the internal market and representing the 27…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission: 21 June: Ministers will prepare the agenda of the upcoming European Council of 23 and 24 June, where EU leaders are to address the situation in Ukraine, discuss the economic situation, set out the way forward on the Conference on the Future of Europe and hold a strategic discussion on EU relations with partners in Europe. 22 June: MEPs will vote on three draft laws that are part of the "Fit For 55" package - the Revision of the Emissions Trading System, the Social Climate Fund…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events at the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission 15 June: The Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) met on 12 June in Geneva, in the margins of the WTO ministerial conference, to define the EU's position. The Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) will meet again at the end of the WTO ministerial conference. Its meeting will focus in particular on the reform of the WTO, the WTO's pandemic response, the fisheries subsidies negotiations, agriculture and food security and the extension of the e-commerce moratorium. All of this will be in the context of Russia's war of aggression…
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EU lawmakers back ban on new fossil-fuel cars from 2035

EU lawmakers back ban on new fossil-fuel cars from 2035

European Parliament lawmakers on Wednesday voted to support an effective EU ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2035, rejecting attempts to weaken the proposal to speed Europe's shift to electric vehicles. The vote upholds a key pillar of the European Union's plans to cut net planet-warming emissions 55% by 2030, from 1990 levels - a target that requires faster emissions reductions from industry, energy and transport. Lawmakers suported a proposal, made by the European Commission last year, to require a 100% reduction in CO2 emissions from new cars by 2035, which would make it impossible…
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Apple will need to change iPhone charger after EU Parliament and Member States reach agreement on common port

Apple will need to change iPhone charger after EU Parliament and Member States reach agreement on common port

Apple will have to change the connector on its iPhones sold in Europe by 2024 as EU countries and EU lawmakers on Tuesday agreed to a single mobile charging port for mobile phones, tablets and cameras. The agreement is a world first and came after companies failed to agree on a common solution. The European Commission had pushed for a single mobile charging port more than a decade ago. Users if iPhones and Android phones have long complained about having to use different chargers for their devices. The former is charged from a Lightning cable while Android-based devices are powered using USB-C connectors. Half the…
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Macron’s party proposes new European centrist alliance

Macron’s party proposes new European centrist alliance

French President Emmanuel Macron’s party has proposed creating a new pan-European centrist alliance, party officials told POLITICO. The initiative would combine Macron’s Renaissance alliance and other parties with the longstanding Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) party, which is currently holding a congress in Dublin. If the move goes ahead, it would increase Macron’s influence in European politics and effectively mean the end of ALDE, which was founded more than 40 years ago, as a separate entity. Macron’s alliance and ALDE MEPs already form a group in the European Parliament, under the name of Renew Europe, but the…
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Lukashenko and Putin are two sides of the same coin – Metsola

Lukashenko and Putin are two sides of the same coin – Metsola

“Lukashenko and Putin are two sides of the same coin”, EP President Roberta Metsola said during an EU Summit in Brussels. “Sanctions on Russia must go hand in hand with sanctions on Belarus. We should not move on this. Those who have given up everything for a democratic Belarus and who look to us for support are looking to us again now”, she insisted. Metsola also tackled the issue of food security, noting how the pressure that Russia’s invasion has caused on global food supply chains is extremely worrying. “It goes beyond Europe. It is not beyond the realm of…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the biggest events in the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission this week: 31 May: The European Council will discuss Ukraine, defence, energy and food security. 01 June: Transport Ministers are invited to adopt General Approaches on the three relevant components of the "Fit for 55" package: Alternative Fuel Infrastructure (AFIR), RefuelEU Aviation and FuelEU Maritime regulations, respectively. 02 June: The 2022 edition of the European Citizens' Initiative Day, organised by the European Economic and Social Committee and its partners, will mark the 10th anniversary of this unique instrument of participatory democracy.  03 June: Telecommunications ministers will…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Council and the European Commission: 17 May: the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety will adopt six reports, part of the "Fit for 55 in 2030 package", which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels and achieve climate neutrality by 2050. 18 May: Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen will discuss with the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee (IMCO) the impact of the recently agreed Digital Services Act (DSA) and the Digital Markets Act (DMA) in preparation of IMCO's delegation…
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EU lawmakers back effective ban on new fossil-fuel cars from 2035

EU lawmakers back effective ban on new fossil-fuel cars from 2035

Lawmakers on the European Parliament's environment committee backed an EU plan to effectively ban new petrol and diesel car sales from 2035, while voting against proposals for tougher targets to cut car CO2 emissions within this decade. The committee supported the proposal for a 100% cut in CO2 emissions by 2035, which would make it impossible to sell new fossil fuel-powered vehicles in the 27-country bloc. The European Commission proposed the targets as part of a bigger package of climate change policies last July, on the basis that new cars stay on the roads for 10 to 15 years -…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events at the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission 10 May: In the context of the ongoing Russian war against Ukraine, the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Security and Defence Subcommittee will debate with Ambassador Rafael Mariano Grossi, Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), on the safety and security of nuclear installations in Ukraine. 11 May: The Environment and Public Health Committee will vote on draft legislation to strengthen the CO2 emission performance standards for new passenger cars and new light commercial vehicles in line with the EU's increased climate ambition.…
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EU Agenda: EP to discuss State of the EU with Draghi

EU Agenda: EP to discuss State of the EU with Draghi

These are the key appointments in Brussels and Strasbourg this week. Monday through Thursday: Plenary Meeting of the European ParliamentThe European Parliament plenary session in Strasbourg on 2-5 May 2022 will be dominated by debates on the war in Ukraine, its impact on women and girls, and the social and economic consequences. The plenary session will also assess the outcome of the Conference on the Future of Europe; discuss the state of the EU with Italian Prime Minister Draghi; vote on a proposed new electoral law for European Elections; and look into rule of law developments in Poland and Hungary,…
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NATO  warns of possibility war may drag on ‘for months and years’

NATO  warns of possibility war may drag on ‘for months and years’

NATO is prepared for a possibility that the war in Ukraine will drag on and last for months and years. However, the alliance said it was ready to maintain its support for Ukraine in the war against Russia for years, including help for Kyiv to shift from Soviet-era weapons to modern western arms and systems. Secretary general Jens Stoltenberg made the remarks during a youth summit in Brussels later on Thursday. The NATO chief said the west would continue to put maximum pressure on Russian president Vladimir Putin to end the invasion of Ukraine through sanctions and economic as well…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission: 26 April: the Women's Rights Committee will adopt a resolution and an oral question on the impact of Russian aggression on women. MEPs will look into the many unofficial reports that refugees are at increased risk of trafficking and sexual exploitation and that women are at risk of becoming victims of rape as a weapon of war. 27 April: A conference, organised together with the European Ombudsman and the French Defender of Rights, will be held in Strasbourg. It will explore the challenges caused by the…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are this week's events in the European Parliament, European Commission and European Council: 19 April: The European Parliament's Committee on Development discusses a study on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development  20 April: The European Parliament meets to debate the assessment of the effectiveness of Western sanctions on Russia 21 April: A special report by the European Court of Auditors on the regularity of EU cohesion policy expenditure is presented to the European Parliament 22 April: European Commissioner Didier Reynders participates via videoconference in a colloquium co-organised by KU Leuven University and the University of Lille…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council: 12 April: European Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli delivers a keynote speech via videoconference at the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe Conference, “Work-life balance as a leverage for women’s, empowerment and promoting gender equality” 13 April: Ms. Stella Kyriakides in Nicosia, Cyprus delivers a speech at the Bank of Cyprus Oncology Centre 14 April: MEPs of the Delegation to the Euro-Latin America Parliamentary Assembly, headed by Chair Javi LÓPEZ (S&D, ES), will be in Buenos Aires (Argentina) for the 14th plenary session…
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EP President Metsola in DW interview says she saw courage and resilience in Zelenskiy

EP President Metsola in DW interview says she saw courage and resilience in Zelenskiy

The president of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, in an interview to DW soon after her return from Kyiv. She said this week could be decisive for Ukraine and the country needs weapons to continue the fight. Metsola told DW Wednesday that she saw courage and resilience in Volodymyr Zelenskiy's eyes on her visit to Kyiv. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVFioato2YM Her visit on April 1 came shortly before the world saw the images of deceased civilians on the streets of Bucha. "I also saw the face of a leader that would like more from the European Union, from leaders," Metsola said. She added, "That is…
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How war in Ukraine ends matters, says EU foreign policy chief

How war in Ukraine ends matters, says EU foreign policy chief

BRUSSELS, April 6 (Reuters) - The European Union wants the war in Ukraine to end as soon as possible, but how that happens is important too, its chief diplomat said on Wednesday, calling for the bloc to send more arms to Kyiv. "We want it to end as soon as possible, but not in any way," Josep Borrell told European Parliament. "Because if we're going to have a destroyed country that has been dismembered territorially and neutralized, with millions of people in exile, and millions of people dead, then no, we don't want this war to end like this," he said. "That…
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EU agenda: Democratic backsliding in Hungary to top EP agenda after Orban victory

EU agenda: Democratic backsliding in Hungary to top EP agenda after Orban victory

Here are this week's events for the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission: Tuesday 5 April: The Education, Youth Culture and Sport council meet to discuss education in various sectors. Ministers are expected to adopt a Council recommendation on building bridges for effective European higher education cooperation. Wednesday 6 April: On Wednesday afternoon, MEPs will take stock of the EU's response so far to the democratic backslide in Hungary and Poland and are set to urge the French Presidency and the Commission to move forward and ensure the respect of rule of law. Thursday 7 April: EU agriculture ministers…
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UPDATE – “If you win, the world wins” – Courage and hope to the people of Ukraine core message EP President Roberta Metsola to Ukraine’s Zelenskiy

UPDATE – “If you win, the world wins” – Courage and hope to the people of Ukraine core message EP President Roberta Metsola to Ukraine’s Zelenskiy

On Friday, the European Parliament President Roberta Metsola was in Kyiv to deliver a message of courage and hope to all Ukrainians defending their country.  European Parliament President Roberta Metsola thanked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy for fighting "fundamental principles that this continent has for so many centuries defended" during her visit to Kyiv on Friday (April 1). Metsola promised to Zelenskiy to provide Kyiv with assistance it needs to win the war, calling it “whatever it takes” moment. “You are us and we are you. But at the same time, you are also fighting our war, you are fighting for fundamental principles that this…
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European Parliament President Roberta Metsola to visit Kyiv

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola to visit Kyiv

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola will be visiting Kyiv in the coming hours. Metsola announced this on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/roberta.metsola/posts/564995308328473 In her post, Metsola said that she will be conveying a message of support and hope on behalf of the European Parliament. Metsola was clear in her message of support and also in her condemnation to Russia's invasion when she addressed Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada on March 24th. "We must be clear: What is happening in Mariupol and across Ukraine are war crimes. Those responsible - all those responsible - must be held to account. Our International Criminal Court must have the support…
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EU lawmakers set to tighten up on crypto transfers

EU lawmakers set to tighten up on crypto transfers

LONDON, March 31 (Reuters) - European Union lawmakers were set on Thursday to back tougher safeguards for transfers of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, in the latest sign that regulators are tightening up on the freewheeling sector. Two committees in the European Parliament have thrashed out cross-party compromises to be voted on. Crypto exchange Coinbase Global Inc COIN.O has warned the rules would usher in a surveillance regime that stifles innovation. The $2.1 trillion crypto sector is still subject to patchy regulation across the world. Concerns that bitcoin and its peers could upset financial stability and be used for crime have accelerated work by policymakers…
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Photo Story: EP President Roberta Metsola unveils the portrait of predecessor David Sassoli

Photo Story: EP President Roberta Metsola unveils the portrait of predecessor David Sassoli

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola led a ceremony in Brussels for the unveiling of the portrait of the late EP President David Sassoli in the Portraits Gallery. Present for the ceremony was Alessandra Vittorini, David Sassoli’s widow, who also gave a speech at the unveiling of the portrait of her husband, who passed away on January 11. The portrait of David SASSOLI, former EP President, that was unveiled in Brussels. Roberta METSOLA, EP President, speaks to Alessandra Vittorini, the widow of David SASSOLI, former EP President, during the ceremony that was held in Brussels. Photos: EP
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EU elections: MEPs want transnational lists and all countries to vote on

EU elections: MEPs want transnational lists and all countries to vote on

The Constitutional Affairs Committee of the European Parliament has proposed a reform of the European Electoral Act defining common minimum electoral standards and a Union-wide constituency. With 19 votes to 9 and without any abstentions, the EP Committee on Constitutional Affairs backed on Monday a legislative initiative to replace the current European Electoral Act that defines how Members are elected to the European Parliament. In their proposal, MEPs, led by the rapporteur Domènec Ruiz Devesa (S&D, ES), suggest that each voter should have two votes, one to elect MEPs in national constituencies and one in a European Union-wide constituency. 28 additional…
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EU seeks end to golden passport schemes, halt to sales of visas to Russians

EU seeks end to golden passport schemes, halt to sales of visas to Russians

BRUSSELS, March 28 (Reuters) - The European Commission called on EU governments on Monday to end national programmes to sell citizenship to investors, also known as golden passports schemes, and urged them to suspend the sale of visas to Russians and Belarusians. The move follows a new push from the European Parliament to shrink and regulate the multi-billion-euro citizenship and visa industry which lawmakers consider a security risk. It comes amid concerns that people hit by European Union sanctions over Russia's invasion of Ukraine may be holders of EU golden visas or passports.  "Some Russian or Belarusian nationals who are subject to…
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Non-EU countries have to open up their procurement markets – EPP

Non-EU countries have to open up their procurement markets – EPP

The European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council have reached a political agreement to give the EU greater leverage to get access to public procurement markets outside the EU, boosting opportunities for EU companies. The agreement on the International Procurement Instrument (IPI) follows the final trilogue in Brussels on Monday. "Today's agreement is a breakthrough. We will guarantee that our European companies will have the same access to the public procurement markets outside the EU as foreign companies have on the European market. The agreement will be an effective door opener for European companies to the global procurement markets…
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<strong>“If you don’t act now, you’ll suffer a worse fate later” – Ukrainian refugee</strong>

“If you don’t act now, you’ll suffer a worse fate later” – Ukrainian refugee

CDE News - Strasbourg Failure of the West to stop Vladimir Putin’s “shameful aggression” of Ukraine will force a “worse fate on Europe” sooner or later, Bozhena Boriak warned in an emotional address at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Boriak, a Ukrainian citizen who escaped the conflict with her daughter while her husband remained in the capital to fight the Russians, strongly appealed for the introduction of a no-fly zone over Ukraine. Addressing a plenary session of the Conference on the Future of Europe, Boriak shared harrowing details of the situation in her home country, a reality which she was…
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Golden passports: Believing due diligence is robust is ‘fiction’ – Dutch MEP

Golden passports: Believing due diligence is robust is ‘fiction’ – Dutch MEP

The Maltese Government's decision to freeze the processing of new applications by Russian citizens for the controversial IIP scheme, particularly following the escalation of war in the Ukraine, is not enough, according to Dutch MEP Sophie in T' Veld. The MEP, who authored a resolution calling on the European Commission to ban the so-called golden passports said that not only new applications should be stopped, but existing beneficiaries should be looked into for possible ties with the Russian regime. Addressing a press briefing in Strasbourg this morning, she dismissed claims by Maltese authorities that the IIP scheme is backed through…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission, as Europe grapples with the Russian- Ukraine conflict: the greatest threat to its security since World War II: 01 March: The plenary will discuss EU responses to Russia's aggression against Ukraine, including EU sanctions agreed at an extraordinary meeting of the European Council on 24 February. MEPs will vote on a resolution. 02 March: The Women's Rights and Gender Equality Committee is organising an inter-parliamentary meeting on ''An ambitious future for Europe's women after COVID-19: mental load, gender equality in teleworking and unpaid care work after…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Council and European Commission Tuesday 22 February: The ministers of transport will come together to discuss their views on current affairs in the transport sector. They will be joined by Adina Valean, the European Commissioner for Transport. Wednesday 23 February: Meeting of the College of Commissioners Thursday 24 February: Ministers responsible for the internal market and industry will discuss the directive as regards corporate sustainability regulation (CSRD) and are expected to agree on a general approach on the file. Friday 25 February: European Citizens' Panels/Conference of the Future of Europe:…
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Rule of law, Russia-Ukraine crisis to dominate Euro Parliament Plenary

Rule of law, Russia-Ukraine crisis to dominate Euro Parliament Plenary

The Russia-Ukraine crisis takes centre stage at this week's European Parliament Plenary session, with High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell set to update MEPs on the diplomatic attempts to de-escalate tensions between Russia and the West over Ukraine. The plenary debate comes amid a surge in diplomatic activity to ease the threat of war in eastern Ukraine as Russia continues to ammass its troops on the frontier, despite the latter's insistence that it had no plans to invade. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday that responses from the European Union…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, the European Council and European Commission: Tuesday 8 February: The Civil Liberties Committee will discuss the situation of migrants in Poland and at the border with Belarus, with Poland's Deputy Commissioner for Human Rights Hanna Machinska. Wednesday 9 February: Political groups will prepare for the 14-17 February plenary session, where MEPs will debate and vote on a new European strategy to fight cancer, EU-Russia relations and the EU's common foreign, security and defence policy, strengthening rules on toy safety, and boosting offshore renewable energy. Thursday 10 February: The Environment and Public…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the EU Parliament, Council and Commission Tuesday 01 February:  Special Committee on Foreign Interference in all Democratic Processes in the European Union, including Disinformation Wednesday 02 February: Committee on Development with the Committee on Foreign Affairs, an exchange of views with the EEAS on the situation in Burkina Faso and Mali Thursday 03 February: Parliament President Roberta Metsola meets with the Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mr Mark Rutte Friday 04 February: Josep Borrell in Washington, United States (until 08/02): participates in the EU-US Energy Council
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You could soon send messages from Whatsapp to another messaging app, thanks to new EU legislation

You could soon send messages from Whatsapp to another messaging app, thanks to new EU legislation

Users could soon send messages from one app to another, thanks to an EU proposal which recommends inter-app compatibility. Mandatory inter-operability would mean that a new messaging service could decide to let its users send messages to WhatsApp and vice versa. The European Union is seeking to weaken the monopoly large corporations like Google and Facebook have on the use of digital platforms. "The dominant position gained by some of these platforms gives them significant advantages over competitors, but also undue influence over democracy, fundamental rights, societies and the economy. They often determine future innovations or consumer choice and serve…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Commission and European Council Tuesday 18 January:  MEPs will choose Parliament's next President on Tuesday through remote voting. An absolute majority of votes, cast by secret vote, i.e. 50% plus one, is needed to be elected Wednesday 19 January: MEPs will discuss with French President Emmanuel Macron the political strategy and aims of France's six-month Presidency of the Council of the EU. The French Presidency's motto is "Recovery, Strength and a Sense of Belonging". Thursday 20 January: MEPs will debate and vote on how to improve animal welfare during transport,…
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Roberta Metsola is new European Parliament President

Roberta Metsola is new European Parliament President

Nationalist MEP Roberta Metsola has been elected as the new President of the European Parliament with an outright majority of votes in the first round of voting. Metsola, who hails from the centre-right EPP Group, thus becomes the third woman to hold the post, after Simone Veil and Nicole Fontaine. She will succeed the late David Sassoli, who passed away earlier this month. She received 408 votes. The other candidates were Alice Bah Kuhnke for the Greens/EFA, Kosma Zlotowski for the ECR and Sira Rego for The Left. Kuhnke received 101 votes, Sira Rego 57 votes. There were 74 blank votes.…
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European Parliament opts to pick new president remotely

European Parliament opts to pick new president remotely

The European Parliament will elect its president remotely next Tuesday, overruling precedent amid Europe’s runaway coronavirus caseload. The legislative body’s political leaders approved the decision on Thursday, concluding it was “dangerous” for MEPs to gather in Strasbourg and vote in person, citing the “additional threats and challenges deriving from the coronavirus and its Omicron variant.” France, like much of the Continent, is experiencing record daily infections. The decision was outlined in a document issued by Maltese MEP Roberta Metsola, who is acting as the Parliament’s interim president following the death of outgoing President David Sassoli earlier this week. Metsola is…
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EU agenda

EU agenda

Here are the latest events in the European Parliament, European Commission and European Council 11 January: The Permanent Representatives Committee or ‘Coreper’ meets to discuss the work of the Council of the EU. It consists of the Member States' ambassadors to the EU (‘Permanent Representatives’) and is chaired by the Member State which holds the Council Presidency. 12 January: The second meeting of Permanent Representatives Committee (COREPER) takes place 13 January: Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety meets to discuss the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure. 14 January: Vice-President Schinas delivers via videoconference a lecture at the…
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UPDATE – European Parliament President David Sassoli has died

UPDATE – European Parliament President David Sassoli has died

UPDATED 1400 Media reports indicate that First Vice President Roberta Metsola is set to take Sassoli's place as Acting President for the remainder of the term. The EP is set to elect a new President next week, with the Maltese PN MEP being the centre-right's EPP candidate. European Parliament President David Sassoli has died, his spokesperson Roberto Cuillo said in a tweet on Tuesday. Sassoli, 65, passed away at 1.15 am on Jan. 11 in Italy, where he was hospitalised, Cuillo added. https://twitter.com/robertocuillo/status/1480724154567598082 Sassoli has been hospitalised in Italy since Dec. 26 due to a "serious complication" related to his immune…
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