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Business news and information from the European Union

EU leaders strengthen resolve as 2nd Covid wave hits Europe
EU leaders at a summit Thursday resolved to strengthen their collective effort to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, with a focus on testing and tracing policies, and on vaccines.

Harmonised procedures boost rail sector across EU
As of 31 October, Europe's rail sector will benefit from new harmonised procedures expected to significantly simplify procedures and reduce costs for railway undertakings operating across Europe.

Covid crisis needs adequate minimum wages, says EC
The European Commission proposed Wednesday a new directive to ensure that EU workers are protected by adequate minimum wages allowing for a decent living during the COVID crisis.

Brussels puts forward Atlantic and North Sea 2021 fish quotas
The EU Commission set out its proposal for catch limits for fish stocks in the Atlantic and North Sea Tuesday, the basis for EU fisheries ministers to set final catch limits at a 15-16 December Council.

EU gets WTO green light for tariffs on US exports over Boeing
The WTO's dispute settlement body gave formal authorisation Monday for the EU to increase duties on U.S. exports worth up to $4 billion, in retaliation for illegal subsidies granted to U.S. aircraft maker Boeing.

EU states agree informal deal to improve rail passenger rights
EU ambassadors endorsed a reform of rail passenger rights Wednesday with a view to strengthening the rights of all rail passengers, in particular those with disabilities or reduced mobility.

Strong take-up of EUR 17 bn inaugural EU 'social bonds'
There was strong investor interest in the EUR 17 billion inaugural 'social bonds' issued Wednesday under the EU's 'SURE' instrument, set up to help protect jobs and keep people in work over the pandemic.

Euro-Parliament awards 2020 Sakharov Prize to Belarus opposition
The European Parliament awarded its Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought Thursday to the democratic opposition in Belarus - in a political crisis since the disputed 9 August presidential elections.

Eco-schemes feature in EU's greener common farm policy
Farmers will be afforded flexibility on the way to higher environmental standards in farming in the post-2020 common agricultural policy reform package agreed provisionally by EU ministers Wednesday.

Cyber attacks threat grows under Covid-19
Cyber criminals have advanced their capabilities during the pandemic, adapting quickly and targeting victim groups more effectively, according to a report Tuesday from the EU cybersecurity agency.

EU Baltic 2021 fish quotas to help stocks recover
The EU agreed on 2021 fishing catch limits for the Baltic Sea Tuesday, with an acceptance of the need to continue decreasing the fishing opportunities for several fish stocks to help them recover.

Europe's nature under pressure
Intensive farming, urbanisation and unsustainable forestry are contributing to the decline of protected habitats and species in Europe, a review of vulnerable species and habitats showed Monday.

'Farm to fork' strategy commits EU to sustainable agri-food sector
The EU Council adopted Monday a set of conclusions on a 'farm to fork' strategy, endorsing the goal of developing a European sustainable food system, from production to consumption.

Brussels points way to greener, more digital economy post-COVID
A more healthy and fairer Europe is promised in the EU Commission's 2021 work programme, published Monday with the aim of accelerating a long-term transformation to a greener economy, fit for the digital age.

EU steps up 'no-deal' preparations as UK refuses to budge
With time running out for successful conclusion of an EU-UK trade deal and insufficient progress on key issues, EU leaders called on the UK at a summit Friday to make moves to make an agreement possible.

EU imposes sanctions on Russian officials for Navalny poisoning
The EU imposed sanctions Thursday against six Russian officials involved in the assassination attempt on Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny, poisoned in Russia with a Novichok toxic nerve agent.

New EU chemicals strategy targets harmful consumer products
A new strategy on chemicals, unveiled Wednesday by the EU Commission, would prohibit the use of the most harmful chemicals in consumer products such as toys, cosmetics and detergents.

Auditors look into effectiveness of EU funding for SMEs
The European Court of Auditors launched a new audit Wednesday to examine whether EU funding for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) is helping to make them more competitive and future-proof.

EU puts in place rail safety measures for Channel Tunnel
The EU Council adopted legislation Wednesday to ensure safe and efficient operation of the Channel Tunnel rail link between continental Europe and the United Kingdom after the end of the Brexit transition period.

MEPs want to increase 2030 emissions reduction target to 60 pct
All EU Member States must become climate neutral by 2050, the European Parliament said Thursday in a vote on EU climate law, with MEPs calling for ambitious 2030 and 2040 emissions reduction targets.

Helping small businesses trade internationally
The European Commission launched the Access2Markets online portal Tuesday, to help small and medium-sized firms trade beyond the EU’s borders and successfully navigate the world of international trade.

EU states look to coordinate COVID travel measures
The EU adopted Tuesday a common framework on travel measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with recommendations to help states take decisions based on the epidemiological situation region by region.

Brussels settles antitrust chips dispute with Broadcom
The EU Commission accepted commitments by Broadcom Wednesday to suspend exclusivity agreements and/or leveraging provisions for Systems-on-a-Chip used in TV set-top boxes and Internet modems.

EU to issue EUR 100bn social bonds to protect jobs
The EU Commission announced Wednesday that it will issue its forthcoming SURE bonds of up to EUR 100 billion - designed to help protect jobs and keep people in work through the pandemic - as social bonds.

EU likely to miss targets for recycling plastic packaging
There is a significant risk that the EU will not meet its plastic packaging recycling targets for 2025 and 2030, according to a review published Tuesday by the European Court of Auditors.