Germany to help China in trade disputes with Brussels

The visit of the new Prime Minister of the People’s Republic of China and party secretary of the State Council, Li Keqiang to Germany paid tangible dividends. After meeting with the German Chancellor Angela Merkel he got an official and public promise from her that Berlin will intervene in the Brussels procedures, to cool down […]

The EU Parliament slams Commission on economic governance

European Commission vice President, Ollie Rehn, responsible for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro, delivered a speech in the European Parliament on the “Social pillar of the European Monetary Union-EMU”, which was very ill-received by the legislators. The Parliamentarians yesterday went as far as to comment bitterly in a resolution they issued afterwards, saying […]

An all-out fight for the EU budget

The European Parliament hardens its stance over the EU budget negotiations with the Council and the Commission. The legislative rejects the proposal of the Ecofin Council for parallel negotiations over the 2013 budget and the Multiannual Financial Framework for the 2014-2020 spending. The three-way budget negotiations include the additional funds needed to pay for the […]

Commission threatens Chinese firms with trade penalties

European Union Trade Commissioner, Karel De Gucht, announced yesterday that, “The European Commission has today taken a decision in principle to open an ex officio anti-dumping and an anti-subsidy investigation concerning imports of mobile telecommunications networks and their essential elements from China”. Without naming individual firms this Commission decision is directly targeted against two international […]

Germany openly seeks more advantages for its banks

The Commission proposal for a Bank Resolution and Recovery Directive divided deeply the Ecofin council in its yesterday’s Brussels meeting. Again the division took the form of North versus South or rather Germany & Co against everybody else. Mr Wolfgang Schauble, the German Federal Minister for Finance, insisted that the line of funds to be […]

Austerity lovers and ‘relaxationists’ fight over the EU budget

The efforts to reach an agreement between the three most important EU bodies, the Council, the European Parliament and the Commission over the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020, for the Union’s proper spending power, will test not only the cohesion of the EU but also the abilities of the ‘austerity lovers’ to wreak their policy options. […]

Tax evasion and fraud threaten the European project

Tax evasion and avoidance has been a perennial issue from the moment taxation was invented. Presently the European Commission estimates that in the EU of 27 member states, tax avoidance and fraud runs up to €1 trillion yearly, more than enough to foot the bill of government deficits that plague the EU economy and have […]

European Union: Retail sales show deep recession

Retail trade sales are to be found in the core of effective demand in every advanced economy. Being the driving force behind consumer spending they are considered as the main indicator for the general course of the economy, that is if it grows or recedes. Unfortunately for Eurozone and for the European Union in general […]

The banks dragged Eurozone down to fiscal abyss

For a long time now economic analysts and commentators have been arguing that government support to financial institutions was the main culpable party of excess fiscal deficits in the Eurozone and the European Union as a whole. Those are direct subsidies under the form of capital injections, quite different from the support to lenders from […]

Commission and ECB prepare new financial mega-tool in support of SMEs

Yesterday the two most important institutions of the European Union, the European Commission and the European Central Bank, separately unveiled their intentions to seriously engage in an effort to create a new policy tool in support of the Union’s Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and defragment Eurozone’s financial markets .The Commission issued an announcement entitled, […]

Uncovered liabilities of €5 billion may render EU insolvent

The deplorable tactics of practically all European Union governments to hide the problems under the carpet, for the next administration to confront them, couldn’t leave Brussels untouched. In this way the European Union budget for 2013 has been loaded with a huge burden of €16.2 billion of unpaid 2012 bills, a fact that threatens the […]

EU Directive makes haircut on uncovered deposits a standard in bank bail-ins

What happened in Cyprus was neither improvised nor exceptional. Peoples’ bank deposits above the secured benchmark of €100.000 were confiscated according to a very important proposal for a Directive which was forwarded from the Commission to the European Council and the European Parliament last June under the name of “Proposal for a DIRECTIVE OF THE […]

EU car manufacturers worry about an FTA with Japan

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA), had expressed reserves over the EU Council and Commission initiative to start negotiations with Japan in order the two sides to conclude a far reaching Free Trade Agreement (FTA). ACEA was founded in 1991 and represents authentically the interests of the fifteen major European car, truck and bus manufacturers […]

Commission’s spending totally uncontrolled

A few weeks ago the European Court of Auditors established that the money spent on EU projects to enhance energy efficiency (€5 billion since 2000) did not achieve targets. More recently, the CoA also found that “The effectiveness of EU funding for municipal waste management (€10.8bn in the period 2000-2006) infrastructures was limited, due to […]

EU Commission closer to imposing anti-dumping duties on Chinese solar panel imports?

According to well-informed Brussels sources, the European Commission secured last week a non-binding authorisation by the EU member states, to impose anti-dumping measures on imports of solar panels and components originating from China. The same sources say, however, that the Commission denied that this will lead to an immediate imposition of such measures and characterised […]

EU Parliament semi worried over democratic deficit

Yesterday at the European Parliament in Brussels, during the closing session of the Parliamentary week devoted to the European Semester (EU economic governance – fiscal treaty), a joint group of EU parliamentarians and members of national parliaments concluded, that the under construction closer economic and monetary union calls for more democratic control. The MEPs and […]

The big five EU telecom operators in dire straights

British Telecom, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, Telecom Italia and Telefónica constitute the exclusive club of major telecom operators in the European Union. The very oligopolistic character of the market has prompted the European Commission some years ago to forcefully introduce ground breaking changes in the EU telecom market. Towards the end of 2009 the Commission […]