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A collection of links to web sites of the European Union institutions and other European business web sites.

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Food Waste 16 October 2017, 16:48 CET
Around 88 million tonnes of food are wasted annually in the EU, with associated costs estimated at 143 billion euros (FUSIONS, 2016). Wasting food is not only an ethical and economic issue but it also depletes the environment of limited natural resources. All actors in the food chain have a role to play in preventing and reducing food waste, from those who produce and process foods (farmers, food manufacturers and processors) to those who make foods available for consumption (hospitality sector, retailers) and ultimately consumers themselves. The central goal of EU food safety policy is to protect both human and animal health. We cannot compromise on these standards but, in co-operation with Member States and stakeholders, are looking for every opportunity to prevent food waste and strengthen sustainability of the food system. This website provides information on EU actions to tackle food waste, a repository of good practices in food waste prevention, communications materials to help raise awareness and a food waste resources library.

Land use and forestry proposal for 2021-2030 16 October 2017, 15:49 CET
On 20 July 2016 the European Commission presented a legislative proposal to integrate greenhouse gas emissions and removals from land use, land use-change and forestry (LULUCF) into the 2030 climate and energy framework . The proposal follows the agreement with EU leaders in October 2014 that all sectors should contribute to the EU's 2030 emission reduction target, including the land use sector. It is also in line with the Paris Agreement, which points out to the critical role of the land use sector in reaching our long-term climate mitigation objectives.

From institutions to community living - European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights report 12 October 2017, 20:50 CET
Many people with disabilities in the EU still live in institutions. They risk being isolated, marginalised and prevented from living a full, independent life, and face worse conditions than people without disabilities. This calls for systematic changes in the way support for people with disabilities is organised and funded, new reports from the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) reveal. They suggest what people with disabilities need from the EU and its Member States to enjoy living independently with community-based support, simply taking public transport or shopping.

EU Banking Union 11 October 2017, 23:18 CET
The banking union ensures that EU banks are stronger and better supervised. The single supervisory mechanism gives the European Central Bank certain supervisory tasks over the EU financial system. The single resolution mechanism (SRM) is a central institution for bank resolution in the EU, and one of the pillars of the banking union. The European deposit insurance scheme is a proposed scheme to protect retail deposits in the banking union.

Sustainable use of pesticides 10 October 2017, 17:44 CET
This European Commission website contains links to EU Member States' websites on sustainable use of pesticides, including Integrated Pest Management (IPM) , with a view to facilitate the exchange of information between them and increase the flow of relevant information to farmers and the general public.

Animal Welfare in the EU 05 October 2017, 15:45 CET
With the support and close co-operation of the Member States, the European Commission has been promoting animal welfare for over 40 years gradually improving the lives of farm animals. An important step in 1998 was Council Directive 98/58/EC on the protection of animals kept for farming purposes which gave general rules for the protection of animals of all species kept for the production of food, wool, skin or fur or for other farming purposes, including fish, reptiles or amphibians. These rules are based on the European Convention for the Protection of Animals kept for Farming Purposes.

EU public procurement legislation 04 October 2017, 14:30 CET
From 18 April 2016, new rules have changed the way EU countries and public authorities spend a large part of the €1.9 trillion paid for public procurement every year in Europe. This date was the transposition deadline for three directives on public procurement and concessions adopted two years ago. In other words, it was the date by which EU countries must have put in place national legislation conforming to the directives.

EU Sugar Market Observatory 29 September 2017, 18:09 CET
The aim of the Sugar Market Observatory is to provide the EU sugar sector with more transparency by means of disseminating market data and short-term analysis in a timely manner. In addition to the website, which is updated regularly, the Observatory has an Expert Group which meets at least 2 times a year. Summaries of these Expert Group meetings are published below under REPORTS.

EU Tourism Policy 29 September 2017, 00:06 CET
EU policy aims to maintain Europe's standing as a leading destination while maximising the industry's contribution to growth and employment and promoting cooperation between EU countries, particularly through the exchange of good practice. The EU's competence in the tourism is one of support and coordination to supplement the actions of member countries.

LIFE Programme - EU financing for the environment and climate action 28 September 2017, 23:04 CET
LIFE is the EU's financial instrument supporting environmental, nature conservation and climate action projects throughout the EU. Since 1992, LIFE has co-financed more than 4,500 projects. For the 2014-2020 funding period, LIFE will contribute approximately EUR 3.4 billion to the protection of the environment and climate.

EU passenger rights 28 September 2017, 22:43 CET
Have you experienced delays and cancellations? As an air, rail, ship or bus passenger, you have rights when travelling in the EU. Air passenger rights - Rail passenger rights - Bus and coach passenger rights - Ship passenger rights - Download the "Your Passenger Rights" app to your smartphone ( Google Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows Phone )

European Pillar of Social Rights website 26 September 2017, 23:18 CET
The European Pillar of Social Rights sets out a number of key principles and rights to support fair and well-functioning labour markets and welfare systems. It will serve as a compass for a renewed process of convergence towards better working and living conditions among participating member states. It is primarily conceived for the euro area, but is applicable to all EU Member States wishing to participate. There are 3 main categories of the pillar: Equal opportunities and access to labour market; Fair working conditions; and Social protection and inclusion.

Employment contracts 26 September 2017, 22:32 CET
The following pages present the minimum requirements set by the EU employment laws. The following information aims to give an overview of employment contracts rules, but won't cover all the details of the rules and provisions.

Fair Taxation of the Digital Economy 21 September 2017, 18:48 CET
The European Commission Communication 'A Fair and Efficient Tax System in the European Union for the Digital Single Market' was adopted on 21 September 2017. The taxation of the digital economy is part of the EU's fair taxation agenda. It wants an ambitious EU agenda on the matter and a common EU approach to influence the international discussions and develop meaningful solutions to taxing the digital economy to be agreed at the international level by spring 2018.

State of the Union 2017 13 September 2017, 15:43 CET
On Wednesday 13 September 2017, the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, delivered his annual speech on the State of the European Union at the European Parliament. The speech takes stock of Europe's current political and economic landscape. It is an opportunity to review the work of the EU over the past year, and to look ahead to the priorities of the coming year.

WIFI4EU - Free Wi-Fi for Europeans 12 September 2017, 17:23 CET
The aim of WiFi4EU is to promote free Wi-Fi connectivity for European citizens and visitors in public spaces such as parks, squares, public building, libraries, health centres, and museums everywhere in Europe through WIFI4EU.

European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) 05 September 2017, 00:04 CET
EU-OSHA is the European Union information agency for occupational safety and health. EU-OSHA works to make European workplaces safer, healthier and more productive - for the benefit of businesses, employees and governments. EU-OSHA promotes a culture of risk prevention to improve working conditions in Europe. Its work contributes to the European Commission's Strategic Framework for Safety and Health at work 2014-2020 and other relevant EU strategies and programmes, such as Europe 2020.

Vacuum cleaners 01 September 2017, 12:44 CET
Vacuum cleaners are subject to EU energy labelling and ecodesign requirements. From September 2017, the most efficient vacuum cleaners will carry a label of A+++. These ratings take into account the vacuum cleaners' total power and how efficiently that power is used to pick up dust. With more efficient vacuum cleaners, Europe as a whole can save up to 20 TWh of electricity per year by 2020. This is equivalent to the annual household electricity consumption of Belgium. It also means over 6 million tonnes of CO2 will not be emitted – about the annual emissions of eight medium-sized power plants.

International carbon market 16 August 2017, 23:44 CET
International carbon markets can play a key role in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions cost-effectively. The number of emissions trading systems around the world is increasing. Besides the EU emissions trading system (EU ETS), national or sub-national systems are already operating or under development in Canada, China, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Switzerland and the United States.

EU Emissions Trading System 16 August 2017, 23:26 CET
The EU emissions trading system (EU ETS) is a cornerstone of the EU's policy to combat climate change and its key tool for reducing greenhouse gas emissions cost-effectively. It is the world's first major carbon market and remains the biggest one.

Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) 10 August 2017, 23:05 CET
Created in 1979, RASFF - the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed - enables information to be shared efficiently between its members (EU-28 national food safety authorities, European Commission, EFSA, ESA, Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland and Switzerland) and provides a round-the-clock service to ensure that urgent notifications are sent, received and responded to collectively and efficiently. Thanks to RASFF, many food safety risks had been averted before they could have been harmful to European consumers.

How is the EU progressing towards its Europe 2020 targets? 20 July 2017, 23:37 CET
The Europe 2020 strategy, adopted by the European Council in June 2010, is the European Union's agenda for jobs and growth for the current decade. As a main objective, the strategy strives to deliver high levels of employment, productivity and social cohesion in the Member States, while reducing the impact on the natural environment. To reach this objective, the EU has adopted targets to be reached by 2020 in five areas: employment, research & development (R&D), climate change & energy, education and poverty reduction.

EU Stability and Growth Pact 13 July 2017, 13:48 CET
The Stability and Growth Pact (SGP) is a set of rules designed to ensure that countries in the European Union pursue sound public finances and coordinate their fiscal policies.

Invasive alien species 12 July 2017, 23:25 CET
Invasive Alien Species are animals and plants that are introduced accidentally or deliberately into a natural environment where they are not normally found, with serious negative consequences for their new environment. They represent a major threat to native plants and animals in Europe, causing damage worth billions of euros to the European economy every year. As invasive alien species do not respect borders, action at the European level will be more effective than action at the Member State level.

Cultural and Creative Cities Monitor 06 July 2017, 23:07 CET
The Cultural and Creative Cities Monitor is designed to help national, regional and municipal policy makers identify local strengths and opportunities and benchmark their cities against similar urban centres using both quantitative and qualitative data. The platform allows users to browse the 168 selected cities and the quantitative and qualitative information about their performance in the Countries and Cities pages.