The Brief – The future is theirs… unless we destroy it first

Belgian school students feel abandoned by their politicians so they have started a weekly strike for the climate. Their protests pose a major question about how young people are represented in politics ahead of the EU elections in May.
Future of mobility 18-01-2019

Electric bikes still face uphill ride in EU as China tariffs take effect

EU rules are doing a lot to promote the use of electric vehicles but tax reform proposals and motor insurance requirements risk undercutting a growing market for electric bicycles.

Italy’s black MEP victim of repeated racist jibes fears ‘institutional’ racism

Politics consistently keeps overlooking racial issues and this may lead to 'institutional' racism, a former Italian minister and current socialist MEP, who has been the victim of racial abuse, told EURACTIV.com in an interview.
Elections 18-01-2019

Sefcovic confirms run at Slovak presidency

European Commission Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič will take an unpaid leave of absence to run in Slovakia’s presidential elections in May, he confirmed in Bratislava on Friday (18 January).
EU Elections 2019 18-01-2019

Will UK hold EU elections if Article 50 is extended? EU institutions differ

The European Commission indicated on Friday (18 January) that Britons would need to choose their representatives to the next European Parliament if the country were to stay in the European Union beyond the first sitting of the new assembly on 2 July.
Agrifood 18-01-2019

Palm oil no longer considered ‘biofuel’ in France

In a rare revolt against the government, the French National Assembly has passed a bill explicitly saying palm oil "is not a biofuel" and won't be eligible for tax breaks as of 1 January 2020. In Europe, a decision is expected in the coming weeks. EURACTIV France reports. 
Future EU 18-01-2019

Trans-Europe Express – Feminism at the heart of the European Parliament

This week the European Parliament called for a more gender-balanced chamber, as Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez defended feminism as one of the core values of the EU.
Meaningful vote, Adamowicz, and the eurozone turns 20
Brexit 18-01-2019

Tweets of the Week: Meaningful vote, Adamowicz, and the eurozone turns 20

This week, Theresa May thrashed by her peers, mayor’s murder brings Gdansk to tears and the Euro celebrates 20 years. This episode is supported by ACCA.
Agrifood 18-01-2019

Time is running out for biofuels sustainability criteria

The European Commission’s Directorate-General (DG) of Energy will only give two days to other DGs to express their opinion about its much-awaited proposal on the sustainability criteria of biofuels, which will determine the future of palm oil in Europe.
Digital 18-01-2019

Copyright directive faces tough test as EU ambassadors meet

EU ambassadors convene on Friday morning (18 January) to try and reach a provisional deal on the controversial copyright directive ahead of final "trialogue" talks next Monday (21 January). Meanwhile, lobbyists in Brussels ramp up their opposition against the bill.
Global Europe 18-01-2019

Russian MPs prolong payments freeze to Council of Europe

Russia's parliament voted Thursday (17 January) against sending delegates or paying contributions to the Council of Europe, increasing the risk of ultimate exclusion from the rights body and the European Court of Human Rights.
Africa 18-01-2019

EU slams ‘disproportionate’ use of force in Zimbabwe

The EU on Thursday (17 January) decried the disproportionate use of force by Zimbabwe authorities during protests in which doctors say 68 people suffered gunshot wounds.
Global Europe 18-01-2019

Putin calls for ‘stable Balkans’ during Serbia visit

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday (17 January) called for stability in the Balkans during a pageantry-filled visit to Serbia, a key Moscow ally.
Energy 18-01-2019

French wind energy ‘in limbo’ for more than a year

Not a single wind energy project has been approved in France since December 2017, an embarrassing fact for Paris as it tries to position itself as a champion of climate action in Europe.

Europe urged to bolster defences against climate, cyber risks

Nations across the globe should step up preparations against global risks such as climate change and cyber attacks, EU officials say, as these areas remain the most pressing for global experts surveyed ahead of this year's World Economic Forum (WEF) taking place in Davos next week.
EU Elections 2019 18-01-2019

Parliament seeks financial punishment for countries breaching rule of law

European Union countries that undermine the bloc's democratic principles could lose EU funds, under a draft law backed by the European Parliament on Thursday (17 January).
Agrifood 18-01-2019

Time to give up sacred EU budget cows

As EU member states debate the bloc’s next 7-year budget, no sector should be off-limits. Annika Hedberg argues that each euro spent should provide added value for the EU and its citizens, including the agricultural sector, a major recipient of EU money.
#Media4EU 18-01-2019

Protecting journalism is not synonymous with protecting the interests of big press publishers

The review of the EU Copyright Directive must ensure that publishers, regardless of their size, equally benefit from this reform, writes Carlos Astiz.
EU Elections 2019 17-01-2019

The Brief – Look who’s back…

The old king of political vulgarity, the proto-Trump, is back. The news of the day is that Silvio Berlusconi will be running for a seat in the European Parliament, reviving his political career after a ban imposed over a tax fraud conviction expired.
Global Europe 17-01-2019

EU participation in ‘anti-Iran summit’ shrouded in uncertainty

The US-initiated Middle East summit to be held in Warsaw in mid-February has been touted as the most important event held in the city since the 2016 NATO summit. But Tehran has dismissed the meeting as a “desperate anti-Iranian circus" and the EU is struggling for a common position.
Central Asia 17-01-2019

Kazakhstan advocates closer ties between EU and Eurasian Economic Union

A senior official from Kazakhstan, one of the five members of the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), has called for greater cooperation between EEAU and the EU, ultimately aiming to create a single economic space from the Atlantic to Pacific. But a Commission spokesperson made clear it could only be a long-term goal, depending on political developments.
EU Elections 2019 17-01-2019

Berlusconi books ticket to Brussels

Silvio Berlusconi will stand as an MEP in the upcoming EU elections, the former Italian prime minister announced on Thursday (17 January).
Cybersecurity 17-01-2019

Germany considers Huawei 5G ban amid global backlash against Chinese tech giant

The German government is considering excluding Huawei from the country's 5G market amid a global backlash against the Chinese telecoms company. The news comes a week after a senior Huawei executive was arrested on espionage charges in Poland.
Agrifood 17-01-2019

Greens save glyphosate from EU ban calls, as deal with EPP triumphs

The Greens in the European Parliament have blocked an amendment calling for the ban of Monsanto's controversial weedkiller, as part of a broader political deal with the centre-right European People's Party (EPP) to back a report calling for a rethink of the EU's pesticide approval system.

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