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Work starts on Energy Union - EUbusiness Week newsletter 692


EUbusiness Week 692 top stories: EU ready for 'necessary steps' if Ukraine pact breached; Greece hopeful of 'positive' climate at EU summit; EU, US agree to 'full throttle' free trade talks; Hungary to cut EU's highest bank tax; US hopes EU will pool airline passenger data; Swiss government presents bill to rein in EU immigration.

Publisher's Note

Energy moved centre stage this last week, as Commission and ministers discussed wide-ranging ideas for an Energy Union to be unveiled later this month. These will centre around energy security, the internal energy market, renewable energy, energy efficiency and investment in research.

Much rests on these plans, which could provide a big boost for Europe's economy, create jobs and help Europe meet it climate change goals. Most importantly, they should ensure that we have control of our own energy supply.
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Nick Prag
Publisher, EUbusiness


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1. EU ready for 'necessary steps' if Ukraine pact breached

The EU warned Russia Thursday it was ready to take further measures in addition to the sanctions it has already imposed if a new Ukraine peace pact is breached, the bloc's president Donald Tusk said.
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Russia sanctions have cost the EU 21 bn euros

2. Greece hopeful of 'positive' climate at EU summit

Greece expects a "positive" climate at Thursday evening's EU summit despite a failure to agree on its anti-austerity demands a day earlier, says a government source.
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Greece's reform pitch to EU creditors

3. EU, US agree to 'full throttle' free trade talks

The United States and European Union have agreed to work "full throttle" to secure the world's biggest-ever free trade deal despite growing scepticism on both sides of the Atlantic.
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4. Hungary to cut EU's highest bank tax

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has announced that his government will start easing the highest bank tax in the EU, which has angered foreign financial institutions.
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5. US hopes EU will pool airline passenger data

The United States says it wants the EU to pool data on airline passengers to bolster security and prevent Islamist extremists from staging attacks on the West.
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6. Swiss government presents bill to rein in EU immigration

The Swiss government on Wednesday presented a bill for new quotas on immigration from the European Union, a year after voters narrowly approved such curbs and put the country on collision course with Brussels.
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Egypt: the EU has denounced as a violation of Egypt's human rights obligations an Egyptian court's confirmation of death sentences against 183 men convicted of killing 13 policemen.
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Latest news from the European Court of Justice
EU law firms
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Inside the EU Institutions

Council Watch

Greece: Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem on Tuesday extended an olive branch to Athens a day ahead of a crucial meeting to discuss the stand-off over Greece's bailout, saying he was "extremely willing" to work for a solution.
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British business leader urges early EU referendum
Germany's anti-euro party eyes first wins in western state
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Commission Watch

Energy Union: cheaper global oil prices present a "golden opportunity" for the EU to advance its plans for an Energy Union, says Commission vice president Maros Sefcovic.
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EU pledges EUR 1 bn for Syria, Iraq fight against IS
Pristina asks EU to expel illegal Kosovo migrants
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Parliament Watch

LuxLeaks: Euro-MPs approved a probe Thursday into suspect tax breaks that critics said had been watered down, as the Luxleaks scandal continues to dog current Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.
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In plenary this week, MEPs set up a special parliamentary committee to look into Member States' tax rulings; called for EU-wide measures to help patients to access affordable and innovative medicines; and called for an aid and donor conference on the humanitarian crisis in Iraq and Syria.
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EU diary

16 Feb: Eurogroup
17 Feb: Economic and Financial Affairs Council
18 Feb: A Capital Markets Union to unlock investments in Europe
19-21 Feb: European Competition Law for National Judges
20 Feb: 'Destination Europe' Conference
The Week Ahead
Long-term diary


EU Law Firms
Summaries of EU Legislation
EU Decision-Making
Treaties of the European Union
Key EU Legal Terms

Other news on EUbusiness this week

EU patrol 'woefully inadequate' for saving migrants 12-Feb
Norse seamen battling a tide of human misery 12-Feb
Russian embargo: Polish farmers hit roads in protest 11-Feb
Greece anti-corruption minister battles tax evasion 11-Feb
Merkel: Waiting for 'sustainable proposal' from Greece 9-Feb
Anti-Western sentiment 'at record levels' in Russia 9-Feb
EU trade deal boosts Pakistan exports by $1bn 8-Feb

EUbusiness Community


Present your organisation's business and product information, press releases, and calls for proposals directly to Europe's decision-makers
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Data to Drive Change at the Top Among European Enterprises
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Corporate Controller, European Space Agency
Senior Communications Officer, European Environmental Bureau
Legal Advisor, European Chemicals Agency
European Relationship Manager, European Climate Foundation
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Commission begins work on Energy Union
Pension fund exemption from central clearing requirements
EU measures on import of hunting trophies
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17 Mar, Milan: Horizon 2020: SME Instrument: training course
23 Apr, Rome: Annual FOODSEG Symposium
12 May, Copenhagen: European Climate Change Adaptation Conference
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EU sanctions against Russia impact on reported restructuring job losses in Europe
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Winter Economic Forecast 2015


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