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Road and rail transport and coronavirus: Mapping the way out of the crisis

In the first weeks of the coronavirus crisis, the lockdown and border closures halted most passenger services in road and rail transport and left road hauliers to face uncertainty and very long waiting times at many border crossings. Continue reading

Outcome of the Special European Council meeting of 17-21 July 2020

After almost five days of negotiations, the European Council finally reached a political agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021 to 2027 and a specific recovery instrument following the coronavirus crisis – Next Generation EU (NGEU) – together totalling €1 824.3 billion. Continue reading

Future financing of the Union: MFF, Own Resources and Next Generation EU

On 21 July, EU Heads of State or Government reached a political agreement on the future design of EU finances. Continue reading

Korean peninsula: State of play – Further uncertainty follows period of hope

North Korea and South Korea have been on different paths since World War II. The North has remained isolated and poor, its regime inspired by Soviet structures, with a centrally planned economy. Continue reading

Review of EU Enforcement Regulation for trade disputes [EU Legislation in Progress]

On 12 December 2019, the European Commission adopted a proposal to amend Regulation (EU) No 654/2014 concerning the exercise of the EU’s rights for the application and enforcement of international trade rules (‘the Enforcement Regulation’) of 15 May 2014. Continue reading

Impact of the pandemic on elections around the world: From safety concerns to political crises [Policy Podcast]

The coronavirus has taken a heavy toll on electoral processes around the world, with many elections being postponed because of emergency situations. Continue reading

Coronavirus: An uncertain future [What Think Tanks are thinking]

The spread of the coronavirus pandemic is reshaping the world economy and politics. Analysts and politicians argue that the extent of changes will depend of the persistence of the crisis and the ability of global powers to cooperate in efforts to contain and control it. Continue reading

Tracking key coronavirus restrictions on movement and social life

All the EU Member States adopted emergency measures in an attempt to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Continue reading

Lifting coronavirus restrictions: The role of therapeutics, testing, and contact-tracing apps

The key to tackling the coronavirus pandemic is a combination of safe and readily available vaccines that provide everyone with immunity, as well as effective treatments that work to cure the disease in all infected people. Continue reading

Negotiations on the next MFF and the EU recovery instrument: Key issues ahead of the July European Council

The current multiannual financial framework (MFF), also known as the EU’s long-term budget, comes to an end this year. Continue reading

Jacques Delors: Architect of the modern European Union

The consensus among most historians of European integration and political scientists is that Jacques Delors, who served as President of the European Commission from 1985 to 1995, was the most successful holder of that post to date. His agenda and accomplishments include the EU single market, the Single European Act, Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and the rapid integration of the former German Democratic Republic into the European Community. His combination of coherent agenda-setting and strong negotiating skills, acquired through long experience of trade union bargaining and years of ministerial responsibilities in turbulent times, puts Delors above other Commission Presidents, whether in terms of institutional innovation or the development of new Europe-wide policies. He also showed himself able to react swiftly to external events, notably the collapse of the Soviet bloc, whilst building Europe’s credibility on the international stage. This Briefing records Delors’ life across its crucial stages, from trade union activist, senior civil servant, French politician, and Member of the European Parliament, to the helm of the European Commission, where he left the greatest individual impact on European integration history to date. It also traces the most important ideas that guided Delors in his national and European roles. Finally, it describes the political events and key actors which made Delors’ decade in office a time of important decisions and progress in the process of European integration and, in doing so, it draws on recent academic literature and on speeches Delors gave in the European Parliament. Continue reading

Towards a revision of the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive

In the December 2019 European Green Deal communication, which aims to reboot the EU’s efforts to tackle challenges related to climate change and the environment, the European Commission proposed to review the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive. Continue reading

Outlook for the special European Council meeting of 17-18 July 2020

Based on an updated ‘negotiating box’ presented by the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, on 10 July, the special meeting of the European Council on 17-18 July will aim at finding a political agreement on the EU recovery fund, entitled ‘Next Generation EU’, and the multiannual financial framework (MFF) for the 2021-27 seven-year financing period. Continue reading

Plenary round-up – Brussels, July 2020

The July 2020 plenary session was the fifth conducted with Members participating remotely, using the alternative voting procedure put in place in March by Parliament’s Bureau, although a majority were present in Brussels. Continue reading

EU tourism sector during the coronavirus crisis

Tourism in the European Union (EU) is one of the sectors hardest hit by the coronavirus crisis, with some parts of the sector and some regions more affected than others. Continue reading

Cultural tourism out of confinement

The lockdowns, border closures and other restrictive measures in response to the coronavirus pandemic brought tourist and cultural activities to a halt in most EU Member States between mid-March and mid-June, significantly affecting businesses and consumers. A progressive easing of these restrictive measures is now under way. Continue reading

Coronavirus: Tough decisions ahead [What Think Tanks are thinking]

As the coronavirus crisis shows no sign of abating globally, many governments around the world face tough choices between easing virus containment measures, in order to allow economic recovery, or keeping these measures in place, to protect their citizens’ health and their healthcare systems from being overwhelmed. Continue reading

The right to disconnect

According to Eurofound, the ‘right to disconnect’ refers to a worker’s right to be able to disconnect from work and refrain from engaging in work-related electronic communication, such as emails and other messages, during non-work hours and holidays. Continue reading

States of emergency in response to the coronavirus crisis: Situation in certain Member States IV

With the virulence of the coronavirus pandemic gradually diminishing, and in the light of the restrictive measures adopted by Member States, attention remains on the way chosen by the various states to respond to the crisis. Continue reading

Next Generation EU: A European instrument to counter the impact of the coronavirus pandemic

The socio-economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic across the European Union (EU) is posing significant challenges, not least to the good functioning of the single market and the euro area. Continue reading

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