EURACTIV.com reporting from Strasbourg

Agrifood 19-07-2019

‘Environmentalist’ von der Leyen forgot farming in her speech, MEPs say

Ursula von der Leyen' slip-up on agriculture did not pass unnoticed by lawmakers, who voiced regret that the Commission president-elect did not mention at all the farming sector in the first speech she addressed to the plenary in Strasbourg last Tuesday (16 July).

Finnish presidency commits to linking rule of law with EU funding

Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne told the European Parliament on Wednesday (17 July) that his country’s presidency of the Council of the EU would continue negotiations on how to link more closely the disbursement of EU funds with respect for the rule of law in member states.
Future EU 16-07-2019

Von der Leyen confirmed as new Commission president by paper-thin majority

Updates with von der Leyen’s first press conference The European Parliament confirmed on Tuesday (16 July) Ursula von der Leyen by a paper-thin majority as the new European Commission president, giving her the reins of the EU executive for the...
Politics 16-07-2019

ECR at odds with other groups over last remaining Parliament committee chair

Europe's conservative group (ECR) insisted on presenting former Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydło as its candidate for the chair of the European Parliament's social affairs committee on Monday (15 July). But she was voted down again by her peers.
Future EU 04-07-2019

MEPs furious over Council’s ‘backroom horse-trade’ on EU top jobs

Lawmakers of the newly constituted European Parliament slammed EU leaders on Thursday (4 July) for their 'backroom package deal' on the EU's top jobs, with a potential inter-institutional conflict looming ahead as the chamber's decision to approve it is on a knife-edge.
Agrifood 24-04-2019

Food industry hails new EU rules on mutual recognition of goods

Food industry representatives welcomed the recently revised EU legislation on mutual recognition of goods as a major step forward in the completion of the EU single market. But they said more efforts were needed to improve standardisation, even the well-harmonised food sector.
Economy & Jobs 19-04-2019

Social security reform postponed until next European Parliament

Deep divisions among MEPs made it clear on Thursday (19 April) that the social security coordination directive, aimed at enforcing the rights of mobile workers, would be postponed for the next European Parliament, after May's EU elections.

Endocrine disruptors drop the curtain on this European Parliament

On Thursday (18 April), the European Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution asking the European Commission to ensure a higher level of protection against endocrine disruptors (EDCs) by making a legislative proposal on the matter no later than June 2020.
Politics 18-04-2019

The Brief – Tales from the ‘Bourg

MEPs closed the Strasbourg shop this week before the EU elections and EURACTIV was there to see all the comings and goings. What happens in Alsace, definitely does not stay in Alsace...

EU lawmakers rubber-stamp European Defence Fund, give up parliamentary veto

MEPs signed-off a deal establishing the multi-billion European Defence Fund (EDF) on Thursday (18 April), giving up parliamentary oversight of the EU's military subsidies programme.
Agrifood 18-04-2019

Chorus of approval over new EU food safety transparency rules

On Wednesday (17 April) a large majority of MEPs gave a thumbs up to an overhaul of  the General Food Law (GFL). The increased transparency of the EU risk assessment, already acknowledged as one of the most stringent in the world, has now been hailed.
Agrifood 18-04-2019

MEPs confirm electric fishing ban, despite eleventh-hour Dutch effort

The European Parliament approved on Tuesday (16 April) new technical rules on fishing activities and catching methods allowed within EU waters, confirming that the use of electric currents or 'pulse fishing' will be illegal from mid-2021.

Letters reveal Parliament split ahead of European Defence Fund vote

Ahead of a crucial European Parliament vote on the European Defence Fund (EDF) on Thursday (17 April), MEPs are at odds over the issue of parliamentary scrutiny, internal communication seen by EURACTIV suggests.
Road safety 17-04-2019

Bulc urges 5G advocates to focus on autonomous driving, leave connected cars to WiFi

A European Commission plan to push WiFi as the technology of choice for connected cars over 5G is proving to be controversial. EU transport chief Violeta Bulc told EURACTIV in an interview that saving lives is the most important factor and WiFi is the only proven option.
Politics 16-04-2019

The Brief – Against all odds

If the race for the EU's top job this summer really comes down to a choice between Manfred Weber and Michel Barnier, the outcome might still surprise us.
Climate change 16-04-2019

Greta Thunberg urges MEPs to ‘panic like the house is on fire’

Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old Swedish climate activist, made an impassioned plea for the planet at the European Parliament on Tuesday (16 April), urging MEPs to “start panicking about climate change” rather than "waste time arguing about Brexit".
Global Europe 13-03-2019

Russia can’t be considered strategic partner of EU anymore, MEPs say

The EU should be ready to impose further sanctions on Russia if the country continues to violate international law, EU lawmakers said in a resolution adopted in the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Tuesday (12 March).
Future EU 12-03-2019

We are pro-EU and pro-NATO, Slovak PM tells MEPs

Slovak Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini called for lawmakers to make renewed efforts to ensure social and economic cohesion in the EU in his ‘future of Europe’ speech to MEPs in Strasbourg on Tuesday (12 March) . Delivering his speech to a...

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.
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.
EU Elections 2019 15-01-2019

Scrap Strasbourg seat, urges Italy’s Di Maio

Italy's Five Star Movement has decried the "waste of money” of the European Parliament's seat in Strasbourg, putting its abolition at the centre of the party's campaign for the European elections in May.

European Defence Fund could be breaching European treaties, legal opinion says

The European Defence Fund (EDF) moved closer to becoming reality this week in Strasbourg when MEPs gave it the green light. However, some uncertainties persist as a legal expert opinion obtained by EURACTIV suggests that establishing the fund could be violating EU law.

The Brief – The show must go on

The first reports of the Strasbourg shooting attack arrived on smartphones just as EU staff were heading to dinners and pre-Christmas parties. The European Parliament immediately triggered its emergency containment procedure and turned into a bunker, grids lowered, doors locked.
Politics 16-11-2018

Trans-Europe Express – Few ideas, many grievances  

Angela Merkel's speech on the future of Europe this week produced a few ideas. But even though observers had hoped to hear a new game plan for Europe's mounting challenges, expectations fell short. At least altercations between Parliament and Commission officials were not in short supply.

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