Vlagyiszlav Makszimov

European Parliament lawyers up for rule of law battle with the Commission

Following a long will-they-won't-they saga, European Parliament President David Sassoli announced on Wednesday (20 October) his institution will sue the European Commission if it fails to trigger the regulation linking EU funds to rule of law before 2 November.
20-10-2021

EU to pour more money into strengthening rule of law in the Balkans

The European Commission, battling the growing threats to its core democratic values at home, has promised to dedicate more funds to rule of law programmes for countries in the Western Balkans, against a backdrop of increasing frustration in the region with the sluggish speed of the EU's enlargement process.

Polish PM remains defiant, demands dialogue and legal changes

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki stood firm on Warsaw's challenge to the primacy of EU law and accused the EU of overstepping its competences in an emotionally charged speech before the European Parliament on Tuesday (19 October).
Enlargement 15-10-2021

‘EU can play dumb as long as it wants’ on Croatian border violence

Several officials on the ground, as well as first-hand testimonies given to EURACTIV by migrants, have detailed signs of systematic illegal border violence and pushbacks by Croatian police against people attempting to cross over from Bosnia. EURACTIV travelled to the...
Global Europe 10-10-2021

Global Europe Brief: Money is not enlargement, it’s background music

Welcome to EURACTIV’s Global Europe Brief, your weekly update on the EU from a global perspective. In this week’s edition: EU-Western Balkans summit fallout, 2022 work programme sneak peek and EU defence woes.
Enlargement 06-10-2021

EU leaders offer words, funds to disillusioned Western Balkans

EU leaders failed to make any further tangible commitment to enlargement on Wednesday (6 October), and instead promised once again "the European perspective" and broader economic support to the increasingly disillusioned Western Balkans, in the hope of keeping the region on its European path.
Enlargement 05-10-2021

EU leaders to restate Western Balkans enlargement commitment but without timeline

EU leaders are set to reconfirm their commitment to further enlargement ahead of a summit with the six Western Balkan hopefuls on Wednesday (6 October), offering much broader cooperation to the region but failing to commit to a timeline, according to a draft document seen by EURACTIV.

Civil society calls for transparency in Commission’s rule of law report

62 organisations have complained about a lack of transparency, tight deadlines, and limited scope of the European Commission's annual report assessing the rule of law situation in the EU Member States.
Economy & Jobs 21-09-2021

‘Year of Youth’ gets early start with Erasmus going digital

On Tuesday (21 September), the European Commission announced a significant upgrade to the app for students studying abroad on an EU-funded scheme, a week after EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen announced she would push to make 2022 the ’Year of European Youth‘.

Hungarian minister: Schinas wants to ‘hide’ migration from German, French voters

Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga has lashed out against European Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas after he told EURACTIV in an interview that the much-awaited European migration pact should be approved after the French elections due next year.
Elections 16-09-2021

Opposition-led Hungarian capital holds democracy conference in sign of defiance

As Hungarian opposition parties are preparing to elect a single challenger to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, Budapest's green mayor, one of the prime ministerial hopefuls, is holding a conference on sustainable democracy together with an exiled liberal university and opposition think tank.
Economy & Jobs 16-09-2021

France steps up dual education as EU announces Erasmus for the unemployed

A French scheme pushing for more apprentice mobility within the European Union may serve as a roadmap for ALMA, a EU's new programme to help young people who are neither in employment nor in education.
Enlargement 14-09-2021

US wants to see Western Balkans as part of Europe, ‘full stop’

Washington hopes EU countries "understand" that the Western Balkans should be part of Europe "full stop" and is worried about the weak message coming from European capitals, the newly appointed department of state official responsible for the region said on Monday (13 September).

Commission ups the ante, asks court for financial penalties against Poland

In a highly unusual move in its ongoing legal spat with Poland, the European Commission asked the top EU court on Tuesday (8 September) to impose a daily financial penalty for Warsaw's non-compliance with temporary measures European judges put in place in July.
03-09-2021

EP liberals’ group backs party boss in far-right alliance scandal at home

Renew Europe has denied that its Romanian member, the party of the group’s parliamentary leader, has entered into a pact with far-right political forces in an effort to bring down the government in Bucharest. Romanian media reported on Thursday (2...
Europe's East 01-09-2021

EU chides Georgia over loans for reform programme

Following the Georgian government's decision not to take the €75 million worth second instalment of loan assistance from the EU, Brussels said on Tuesday (31 August) Tbilisi had failed to fulfil the reform conditions attached to the assistance, the latest sign of a cooling relationship with the post-Soviet country's leadership.

EP presses ahead to sue Commission for dragging its feet on rule of law

The main organisational body of the European Parliament has given the go-ahead to continue the drawn-out procedure of suing the executive for failing to activate the budgetary conditionality linking EU funds to rule of law amid doubts over the action's speed and efficacy.
28-07-2021

Conference on bloc future could give new purpose to federalists in European Parliament

The EU-wide exercise on the future of the bloc could give new impetus to the federalist-minded group in the European Parliament who have been struggling in the past years to connect with young Europeans.
Eastern Europe 23-07-2021

Newer EU members support Associated Trio as ‘champions’

Though vast majority of EU countries welcome deeper integration with Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, their "Associated Trio" initiative finds more support within Eastern and Central Europe, while the Commission and Western member states remain hesitant to adopt the term.
Non-discrimination 21-07-2021

Orbán announces referendum on controversial LGBTQI+ law provisions

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán announced plans on Wednesday (21 July) to call a referendum on child protection issues to combat pressure from the European Union over legislation which the bloc says discriminates against LGBTQI+ people.

Commission struggles to defend usefulness of its rule of law report

Despite increasingly common violations of basic democratic standards, top EU officials say that the Commission's freshly released second annual rule of law report helps prevent future headaches, while critics warn that summaries of problems can do little to resolve deepening crises within the bloc.
Central Asia 15-07-2021

Kazakh human rights reforms signal modernisation but EU lawmakers doubtful

Current human rights-related reforms in Kazakhstan are a step in the right direction, stakeholders from the country told a recent EURACTIV event but European Parliament lawmakers across the political spectrum were not entirely convinced.
Non-discrimination 15-07-2021

Commission goes after Hungary, Poland over LGBTQI+ rights

The European executive launched three proceedings against Hungary and Poland over what it sees as violations of fundamental rights of LGBTIQ+ people on Thursday (15 July), leaving Budapest and Warsaw two months to respond to its concerns.
Cities & regions 13-07-2021

Local players still sidelined in global sustainability efforts

With less than a decade to achieve the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs) by 2030, new studies show that local and regional authorities are still often sidelined in the monitoring and national coordination of implementing the global benchmarks.