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New GM proposals could open Europe's doors to risky unauthorised crops
Leaked European Commission documents obtained by Friends of the Earth Europe reveal new proposals that would open Europe’s doors to the import of unauthorised genetically modified (GM) feed. The proposed change in EU policy is a direct response to industry pressure to weaken Europe’s safety laws.

Maternity rights: European Parliament votes for more equality between women and men and a more sustainable future!
The European Parliament today by a large majority passed a Resolution in favour of substantially increasing European minimum standards for maternity and paternity leave provisions. In what supporters are lauding a great victory for the women and men living in Europe, the Parliament approved an increase of maternity leave provisions from 14 weeks to 20 weeks and the introduction of two weeks leave for new fathers, both fully paid.

Greenpeace calls for deep sea drilling ban as Commission shakes up oil rules
New deep sea oil operations should be banned as the only sure way of preventing a Deepwater Horizon-like spill in Europe, Greenpeace said in response to today’s shake-up of offshore drilling rules by the European Commission.

Big retailers caught breaching EU chemicals law
A report released today reveals big retailers are breaching the EU’s flagship regulation on chemicals, while many products such as school supplies, sports accessories and sex toys are shown to contain high concentrations of ‘substances of very high concern’.

CEA calls for EC tax proposals to differentiate between insurers and banks
The CEA, the European insurance and reinsurance federation, believes that today’s Communication from the European Commission on Taxation of the Financial Sector fails to differentiate appropriately between different types of financial institutions.

Online gaming and betting: Romanian draft triggers European Commission’s objections
The European Commission issued a detailed opinion against the Romanian draft legislation regulating online gaming and betting. Such detailed opinion implies that the Commission has strong doubts about the compatibility of the draft legislation with EU law and means Romania cannot adopt its draft in its current shape.

Expiring measures on loan guarantees and risk capital must be kept, say SMEs
The European Commission should keep in place the temporary support measures for loan guarantees and risk capital introduced in 2008 and due to expire at the end of the year, according to UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers’ organisation.

New EU Strategy for gender equality has potential to deliver results, says European Women's Lobby
The European Women’s Lobby (EWL), the largest umbrella organisation of women’s associations in the European Union, has welcomed the launch of the EU’s much anticipated new five year strategy for equality between women and men.

"Youth on the Move" flagship initiative does not totally convince, say SMEs
UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers' organisation, was left with mixed feelings by today's "Youth on the Move" communication by the European Commission, which is aimed notably at improving employment prospects and promoting learning mobility of young people.

Fifth quantitative impact study is crucial element in finalisation of Solvency II
The CEA, the European insurance and reinsurance federation, has today called on all European insurers, both large and small, to take part in the European Commission’s fifth quantitative impact study (QIS 5). Broad participation will ensure that a clear picture is reached of the appropriateness and feasibility of the tentative solutions and options identified by the Commission and will thus pave the way for the finalisation of Solvency II, the EU’s new regulatory regime.

EU consumers left drastically short-changed by state gambling monopolies
RIGHT2BET has exclusively revealed that throughout the World Cup European state betting monopolies offered their customers, on average, 32% worse odds than those available with private betting companies.

European Commission’s proposals on intra-corporate transferees fail to address the needs of working spouses
Proposals by the European Commission for a directive on the entry and residence of Intra Corporate Transferees fail to address the needs of working spouses and partners.

Innovation must start from the market, not from R&D, SMEs tell Ministers
A better understanding of how small businesses operate and innovate is a must for the success of the upcoming “EU Innovation Act”, according to UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers’ organisation. Ahead of the informal Council of European Industry Ministers organised by the Belgian Presidency of the EU and starting today (Wednesday), UEAPME put forward a series of policy recommendations on how to maximise SMEs’ innovation potential.

Commission plans to relax rules on GM crops in Europe - Procedural tweaks fail to protect public and environment
The European Commission will announce today proposals to speed up the union’s genetically modified (GM) crop authorisation procedure. Member states are being promised the right to ban GM cultivation if they reduce their opposition during the EU-level authorisation process.

CEA questions EC proposals on insurance guarantee schemes
The CEA, the European insurance and reinsurance federation, supports the objective of protecting insurance policyholders and beneficiaries that underlies the package of measures the European Commission has published today. Nevertheless, the CEA has concerns over the EC’s proposals for EU legislation to create guarantee schemes to fund potential insurer insolvencies.

New deposit guarantee rules are first step in right direction
Today the European Commission adopted its proposal which revises EU rules on deposit guarantee schemes. BEUC welcomes that the European Commission prescribes faster payouts, takes the coverage of temporary high balances into account and addresses the issue of cross border deposit guarantees.

European Commission proposals to ban GM crops: an empty and dangerous deal - New plans could open Europe's fields to GM crops
New proposals due to be introduced in the coming days that are supposed to allow European countries more autonomy over the decision to ban genetically modified (GM) crops form an empty and potentially dangerous deal for member states, according to Friends of the Earth Europe.

ECJ: Swedish sanctions for gaming adverts cannot discriminate against EU operators - Industry calls on Swedish government to adapt legislation to EU market reality
Today, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) rendered a preliminary ruling addressing questions relating to the compliance of Swedish gaming legislation with the EU Treaty.

Halt to bad consumer surprises thanks to data roaming cut-off limit
BEUC welcomes that, as of the 1st of July 2010, a mandatory cut-off limit on data roaming charges lowers the financial risks for European mobile phone users. The maximum charge for data roaming (connecting to mobile internet, downloading and sending files when abroad) will be set at €50, unless consumers deliberately choose another limit. Furthermore, maximum wholesale prices for data roaming will decrease from €1 to 80 cents per megabyte.

Transparency still out of sight on lobby register's second anniversary
Two years after its introduction the European Commission's lobby register has failed to bring lobbying into the open, the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation in the EU (ALTER-EU) said today. The group used the anniversary of the register to call on the Commission to take urgent steps towards a mandatory, joint register for the European Commission and European Parliament with improved transparency standards.

Survey highlights lack of information and funds as main obstacles to greater SME energy efficiency
A new EUROCHAMBRES survey, presented at a European Sustainable Energy Week event in Brussels today reveals that businesses are conscious of the importance and benefits of using energy more efficiently, but most of them lack the information and resources to do so.

Parliament votes against entrepreneurship
In a disastrous vote the European Parliament has opened the floodgates to legislation that will harm entrepreneurship throughout the European Union. By deciding against a Commission proposal which aims to exclude independent self-employed drivers in the transport sector from a directive that rigorously restricts working hours, the Parliament has set a dangerous precedent in interfering in the manner in which self-employed organize their working time.

Food Industry 1 – 0 Consumers
MEPs caved into pressure from the food industry today when plans to introduce a colour coding system for food labelling were rejected by almost 400 MEPs.

Future of food labelling at stake
MEPs still have a chance to give consumers the means to make informed choices about which food products they buy during a crucial vote next week (16th June) in the plenary session of the European Parliament on a new regulation on food information to consumers.

Bluefin tuna quota fished out for 2010
Bluefin tuna is one step closer to extinction as the EU prepares to close this year’s Mediterranean bluefin season – which should not have been opened in the first place, said Greenpeace. The closure will become effective at the latest as of midnight on Wednesday, the European Commission said in a statement.