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Farm to Fork and Biodiversity Strategies: small steps forward instead of a giant leap
The European Commission today launched two packages of policies as part of the European Green Deal - the Farm to Fork and Biodiversity Strategies.

EU Commission plans green reset for nature, food and farming
Today, the European Commission took steps towards sustainable biodiversity, food and farming policies by publishing policy roadmaps for the next 10 years. In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, which has brought our relationship with the natural world into sharp focus, the strategies have never been more timely.

Farm to Fork Strategy: work continues for SMEs
In a first reaction to the Farm to Fork Strategy, SMEunited welcomes the comprehensive food-chain approach that acknowledges the role of the various food chain actors in delivering the change towards more sustainable food systems.

SMEs need an ambitious Recovery Strategy
During its e-meeting, SMEunited's Board of Directors addressed the current challenges SMEs face and highlighted the importance of a bold, forward looking and targeted Recovery Strategy including a European Recovery Fund.

Parliament: EUR 2 trillion EU recovery funds must drive climate neutrality and nature protection
In its resolution on the "new multiannual financial framework, own resources and the recovery plan", the European Parliament has reiterated its call for a green recovery with an overwhelming majority, emphasising that all recovery funds need to be fully compatible with the Paris Agreement, EU climate neutrality and biodiversity objectives.

Retailers and wholesalers call for urgent amendment of card fees regulation
EuroCommerce Director-General Christian Verschueren today pressed the European Commission to act on the growing problems facing retailers and wholesalers resulting from the limited scope of the Interchange Fee Regulation (IFR).

European Patent Office gives green light to prohibit patents on plants and animals
Patents on plants and animals derived from conventional breeding can be fully prohibited in Europe. This is the result of a verdict published today by the Enlarged Board of Appeal, the highest legal body of the European Patent Office (EPO).

Automotive CEOs and European Commission discuss recovery plan that bolsters economy and Green Deal
CEOs from across the automotive value chain came together for a meeting with the European Commission to align on the priorities for a solid recovery plan for the automotive sector, with a view to stimulating the wider economy and bolstering the transformation to a carbon-neutral society.

Civil society calls for a ban on biometric mass surveillance in Europe
European Digital Rights (EDRi) releases its paper "Ban Biometric Mass Surveillance: A set of fundamental rights demands for the EU Commission and EU Member States".

Europe - at 70, needed more than ever
To mark Europe Day tomorrow, and the anniversary 70 years ago of the Schuman Declaration, Christian Verschueren, Director-General of EuroCommerce issues the following statement.

298 automobile factories operating across Europe, new data shows
298 automobile assembly and engine production plants operate in Europe today, according to freshly-updated data from the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA).

Court rules in favour of protecting the iconic Pirin National Park in Bulgaria
Bulgaria’s Supreme Administrative Court has suspended the execution of Pirin National Park's new management plan, which would have allowed construction in 66% and logging in 48% of the national park and World Heritage Site. In a time of crisis, this is a victory for nature and the rule of law in Bulgaria.

Greener, Fairer and Simpler VAT and Excise duties - and zero VAT and customs duties for protective equipment during COVID-19 crisis
Speaking today on the publication of the EuroCommerce paper on VAT and excise duties, EuroCommerce Director-General commented:

Merkel gets behind climate action as part of green recovery
At today's Petersberg climate dialogue, hosted by Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel said greater climate action should be part of our economic recovery from the health crisis. She also spoke in favour of a "50% or 55%" emissions reduction target for 2030 - up from the 40% target today.

EU's bank recovery billions must be green - NGOs
11 NGOs are calling on the European Investment Bank to ensure its response to the Covid-19 health crisis is aligned with the EU Green Deal and helps stimulate a green economic recovery in Europe.

SMEs across Europe focus on day present and after
During a Board of Directors e-meeting on Friday 24 April, SMEunited gathered the views of Board members across Europe on the SME business environment in this COVID-19 crisis. Entrepreneurs are handling the day present, however already look forward to the day after as well.

Motor vehicle taxation brings in €440.4 billion for governments in major European markets
New data shows that motor vehicles generate more than €440 billion in taxation for national governments in the major EU markets plus the UK, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) reports.

EU Council: governments must act together to 'build back better'
As EU heads of state and government today discuss a collective response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Friends of the Earth Europe has called on them to act urgently and decisively and put addressing inequalities and the planetary emergency at the heart of a recovery plan.

COVID-19 crisis: we need a strong Europe
Statement ahead of the EU heads of state and government video call

SME emergency actions, exit and recovery strategies presented to Commission and Council
The business environment for SMEs has dramatically changed for the worse in the past weeks. This has a huge negative impact on hundreds of thousands of Crafts and SMEs, and also threatens fundamentally the core role which SMEs play in European citizen's everyday life. To support the survival and quick recovery of SMEs across Europe, SMEunited presents proposals on the emergency actions, exit and recovery strategies.

Recovery from COVID-19 needs free trade, not protectionism
Speaking today, EuroCommerce Director-General Christian Verschueren called upon leaders across the world to drive the economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic by freeing up global trade:

Brexit chaos 'more nerve-wracking than the World Cup', say parcel export experts
'We'd rather watch England take penalties in the World Cup final than see Britain go into the final round of Brexit negotiations so disunified' says ParcelHero

Need for COVID exit plans across Europe
EuroCommerce is pleased that the Commission has sought to propose a number of ideas on how Europe can gradually return to normal once the immediate danger of the COVID-19 pandemic has eased.

EU governments rally behind green recovery
WWF welcomes a letter signed by the ministers of Austria, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Portugal, in which they urge to apply the European Green Deal as "roadmap to make the right choices in responding to the economic crisis while transforming Europe into a sustainable and climate neutral economy".

Joint statement EuroCommerce/UNI-Europa
The EU Social Partners in the retail and wholesale sector are working together to ensure the continued safety of its workforce who are interacting daily with European consumers, while working to avoid the present COVID-19 pandemic putting at risk the 29 million jobs in the sector in Europe.