selection

briefings

This tag is associated with 847 posts

Consumers and repair of products

Repairing broken or damaged products can save consumers money by helping them postpone making replacement purchases, while also bringing benefits to the environment through lower waste production and use of resources. Continue reading

Women in foreign affairs and international security: Contours of a timely debate

The debate on the participation and role of women in foreign affairs and international security is a timely and relevant one, and is being raised with increasing frequency at both national and international levels. Continue reading

International trade [What Think Tanks are thinking]

The escalating trade conflict between the United States (US) and China has dampened economic growth in the European Union and other regions of the world, analysts say, and poses a further question mark over the continuity of the post-Cold War rules-based order. The EU is seeking to position itself as a defender of the multilateral rules-based system in the context of growing economic nationalism. Continue reading

EU challenges at a time of transition [What Think Tanks are thinking]

The European Union faces numerous challenges, both short and long-term, as it prepares to choose the new executive European Commission for the next five years, following elections to the European Parliament in May 2019. The most immediate task is for European Commission President-elect, Ursula von der Leyen, to put together a college of Commissioners and secure the approval of the European Parliament for it. The EU is also engaged in tough negotiations on the terms of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU, currently due on 31 October. Continue reading

The trade pillar of the EU-Mercosur Association Agreement [International Agreements in Progress]

On 28 June 2019, the European Union (EU) and the four founding members of Mercosur (the ‘Southern Common Market’) – Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – reached an ‘agreement in principle’ on a free trade agreement (FTA) as part of a wider association agreement (AA). Continue reading

The European Council’s role in the EU policy cycle

Since its establishment in 1975, the European Council, which is made up of the Heads of State or Government of EU Member States, has wielded considerable influence over the development of the European Union. According to the Treaties, the European Council’s primary role is to ‘define the general political directions and priorities’ (Article 15(1) of the Treaty on European Union). This role has rapidly evolved over the past decade, and today the European Council’s involvement in the EU policy cycle is much broader, covering tasks from agenda-setting to exercising scrutiny. In practice, its activities often exceed the role envisaged in the Treaties. This level of involvement has a significant impact both on the role of the other EU institutions within the policy cycle and the functioning of the ordinary legislative procedure. Continue reading

Sustainable finance – EU taxonomy: A framework to facilitate sustainable investment [EU Legislation in Progress]

In March 2018, under its capital markets union project and as part of a broader initiative on sustainable development, the European Commission presented an action plan on sustainable finance, in order to facilitate investments in sustainable projects and assets across the EU. Continue reading

European Solidarity Corps 2021-2027 [EU Legislation in Progress]

The financial allocation for the European Commission proposal for a European Solidarity Corps programme is €1 260 million at current prices. Projected to offer opportunities for 350 000 18 to 30 year olds from 2021 to 2027, the programme is included under Heading 2 ‘Cohesion and Values’ of the multiannual financial framework covering the same period. Continue reading

Sustainable finance and benchmarks: Low-carbon benchmarks and positive-carbon-impact benchmarks [EU Legislation in Progress]

In May 2018, the European Commission presented a package of measures on the financing of sustainable growth. The package includes three proposals aimed at establishing an EU taxonomy on sustainable economic activities, improving disclosure requirements and creating a new category of benchmarks to help investors measure the carbon footprint of their investments. Continue reading

Revising the Taking of Evidence Regulation [EU Legislation in Progress]

On 31 May 2018, the Commission proposed a proposal for a new regulation on taking of evidence in civil proceedings. It takes stock of the existing regulation (from 2001), but provides for a number of changes to remove legal uncertainty and to promote electronic communications. Continue reading

Parliamentary hearings of the Commissioners-designate: A decisive step in the investiture process [Policy podcast]

The hearings of the Commissioners-designate before the European Parliament’s committees are a necessary ingredient in informing Parliament’s decision to give its consent to, or reject, the proposed College. Continue reading

Annual EU budgetary procedure: An introduction to the steps in the EP [Policy podcast]

The European Parliament (EP) and the Council are the budgetary authority of the European Union. The two institutions, assisted by the European Commission, decide on the budget in the annual EU budgetary procedure. Continue reading

Role and election of the President of the European Commission

The President of the European Commission has taken on an ever more prominent leading role within the College of Commissioners, with the increasingly presidential system eclipsing the principle of collegiate decision-making. Continue reading

The European elections and thereafter [What Think Tanks are thinking]

On 23-26 May, 2019, European Union citizens elected a more fragmented European Parliament than its predecesor, with the two main political groups – the European People’s Party and the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats losing some ground, and the Liberals, now known as Renew Europe, and the Greens-European Free Alliance strengthening their representation. Continue reading

Multiannual financial framework for the years 2021 to 2027: The future of EU finances [EU Legislation in Progress]

On 20 June 2019, the European Council examined the progress of work in the Council on the Commission proposal for the long-term design of the post-2020 EU budget. The European Council now aims to reach an agreement among Heads of State or Government before the end of 2019. Continue reading

Representative actions to protect the collective interests of consumers: A new deal for consumers [EU Legislation in Progress][Policy Podcast]

On 11 April 2018, the European Commission published a proposal for a new directive on representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers. Currently, consumer organisations or independent public bodies can bring actions in the name of consumers in courts or before administrative authorities to stop infringements of consumer legislation. Continue reading

Human rights in EU trade agreements: The human rights clause and its application [Policy Podcast]

The practice of linking human rights with trade liberalisation has gained ground among many trade partners. Not only the EU, but also other important trade powers, such as the US and Canada, embed human and labour-rights provisions in their new trade agreements. For the EU, this ensues inevitably from the normative vision underlying all of its external policies, as enshrined in the Treaties. Accordingly, the EU has committed to respecting and promoting human rights and democracy through its external action. Continue reading

Impact Assessment and European Added Value work during the eighth legislative term, 2014-2019

Better law-making is at the same time both a policy objective and a process. As a methodology, its purpose is to design and to decide on regulation that is fit for purpose. Continue reading

Multinational enterprises, value creation and taxation: Key issues and policy developments [Policy Podcast]

The substantial reduction in trade costs and the rapid technological advances characterising the global economy over the past three decades have allowed multinational enterprises (MNEs) to increasingly break up their supply chains and spread them across different countries. Continue reading

Towards unified representation for the euro area within the IMF [Policy Podcast]

Looking back on 20 years of the euro, it is widely acknowledged that it has proved successful as the common currency of the euro area, and that it has also developed into a vehicle for international trade, having become the second most widely used currency in the world. Continue reading

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