At a glance EPRS

This tag is associated with 50 posts

New US tariffs: Potential impact on the WTO

On 8 March 2018, US President Donald Trump signed orders imposing tariffs of 25 % on steel imports and 10 % on aluminium imports. These tariffs will apply to all countries, except Canada and Mexico (and possibly also Australia). Continue reading

Western Balkans: Enlargement strategy 2018

With a resolute tone and a sense of urgency, the European Commission’s new enlargement strategy for the Western Balkans sets a clear direction for the region’s six countries: it offers them a credible enlargement perspective and pledges enhanced EU engagement. It indicates 2025 as a possible enlargement date. Continue reading

Framework for future EU-UK relations

The European Parliament will hold a debate and vote a resolution setting out its proposals on the future relationship with the United Kingdom after Brexit, during its March plenary session. It thus aims to feed into the guidelines the European Council is expected to adopt on 22 March, on opening exploratory discussions with the UK on the framework of the future EU-UK relationship. Continue reading

What if all technologies were inherently social? [Science and Technology Podcast]

How technology has shaped society and how future technologies might affect it in the years to come are subjects for frequent debate. It can be tempting in this context to think of technologies as neutral ‘things’ that can be used for good or bad depending on the user’s intentions and skills. Continue reading

Plenary round-up – Brussels, February II 2018

The session’s highlights included debates on the humanitarian situation in Syria, the outcome of the informal European Council, and activation of Article 7 (1) with regard to Poland. The European Commission also made statements on UN Human Rights Council sessions in 2018, the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia, its former President Barroso’s lobbying activities, and removal of third countries from the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes. Among the votes held, Parliament agreed to set up a new special committee on tax questions (TAXE 3) and elected a new vice-president. Continue reading

Palm oil: economic and environmental impacts

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world’s most widely used vegetable oil. However, its production comes at a heavy environmental cost, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia, the two main producers. Efforts to make its production more sustainable still have a long way to go. Continue reading

Plenary round-up – Strasbourg, February I 2018

Highlights of the session included the second in a series of debates with EU leaders on the future of Europe, with Croatian Prime Minister, Andrej Plenković; and the debate and vote on the composition of the European Parliament after Brexit. Continue reading

What if all our meat were grown in a lab? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Livestock production has an enormous environmental impact. The total land used for keeping animals and growing crops for their consumption amounts to around 30 % of the world’s ice-free land surface, and the livestock supply chain is responsible for about 14.5 % of global human-made greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. Continue reading

The EU’s next long-term budget [What Think Tanks are thinking]

European Union Member States and institutions are preparing to embark on negotiations on the EU’s next long-term budget, or Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), that will cover five or seven years, starting in January 2021. Continue reading

Plenary round-up – Strasbourg, January 2018

The January session highlights were the European Council conclusions debate and a presentation of Bulgarian Presidency priorities, as well as the first in a series of debates with EU leaders on the future of Europe, with the Irish prime minister, Leo Varadkar. Parliament voted, inter alia, on three clean energy package proposals; a review of dual-use items export controls; its opinion on the revised Brussels IIa Regulation; and gave its consent for the conclusion of the Marrakesh Treaty. Continue reading

Western Balkans in the spotlight in 2018

With positive messages and increased attention coming from the EU, 2017 seems to have ended on a high note for the Western Balkans. 2018 starts with the region being high on the agenda of Bulgaria’s EU Council Presidency, and promises a favourable context for advancing its EU bids. For this to happen, however, the six WB countries need to show results on the core EU-related reforms. Continue reading

Future financing of the Union [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The EU has a modest fiscal capacity in the form of an annual budget, whose size and structure are largely predetermined by a Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). The current MFF covers the 2014-2020 period and amounts to €1.09 trillion, or roughly 1 % of EU GDP. Continue reading

North Korea [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

One of the biggest concerns internationally is that 2018 could see the long-standing North Korean crisis develop into a larger-scale conflict, potentially affecting not only eastern Asia, but also a large variety of players across the globe. Continue reading

European elections [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The next European elections – for the ninth elected term – will be held in May/June 2019. But the European Parliament elections struggle to be truly ‘European’ rather than ‘national’ in both form and substance. Continue reading

Future of the euro area [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The euro area twice came under immense pressure in recent years: in 2007, when the US financial crisis spilled over to Europe, and then, when the European sovereign debt crisis broke out, peaking in 2010-2012. The latter clearly revealed weaknesses in the original architecture of economic and monetary union (EMU). Continue reading

Migration [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

Although the record-high migratory flows to the EU witnessed during 2015 and 2016 had subsided by the end of 2017, sea arrivals remained at significant levels. In 2018 and in the years to come, considering the global repercussions of international and internal conflicts, climate change and the growing disparities between the EU and third countries, it is unlikely that migratory pressure will decrease. Continue reading

Youth empowerment [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

According to Eurostat data, there are currently 88.6 million young Europeans between 15 and 29 years old. They constitute 17.4 % of the total population, a slow but steady decline from 19.6 % (96.6 million) in 2006. Continue reading

Rising inequalities [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

Inequalities are a deep-rooted and persistent problem in the EU and globally. While across the EU the Gini-co-efficient of equivalised disposable income has been somewhat stagnant both for individual Member States and for the EU-28 as a whole, there are major territorial and developmental differences. Continue reading

Brexit / United Kingdom withdrawal from the EU [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

On 29 March 2017, the UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, notified the European Council of the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU, thereby triggering a two-year deadline to reach a withdrawal agreement. Continue reading

Disinformation and cybersecurity [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

In 2017, Russian influence campaigns orchestrated via US-based social media continued to arouse deep anxiety in Western democracies. The scope of the Kremlin’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election campaign was steadily revealed throughout 2017. Continue reading

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The content of all documents (and articles) contained in this blog is the sole responsibility of the author and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily represent the official position of the European Parliament. It is addressed to the Members and staff of the EP for their parliamentary work. Reproduction and translation for non-commercial purposes are authorised, provided the source is acknowledged and the European Parliament is given prior notice and sent a copy. Copyright © European Union, 2014. All rights reserved