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Top Stories from the European Council - 18-22 February 2019

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European Border and Coast Guard: Council agrees negotiating position

The European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) is being strengthened in terms of staff and technical equipment. It is also being given a broader mandate to support member states' activities.


EU measures in support of generic pharmaceuticals producers

The EU is adopting new rules expected to boost the competitiveness of EU producers of generic medicines and biosimilar products.


Increased transparency in doing business through online platforms

The EU is introducing new rules offering businesses a more transparent, fair and predictable online platform environment, as well as an efficient system for seeking redress. Member states' ambassadors meeting in Coreper today endorsed the provisional agreement reached on 13 February with the European Parliament on a draft regulation that addresses relations between online platforms and businesses that conduct their business through them.


Speech by President Donald Tusk upon receiving the Honorary Doctorate from the Lviv National Ivan Franko University

On the occasion of the award of the Honoris Causa diploma from the Lviv National Ivan Franko University, President Tusk delivered an inauguration speech.


Visa policy: Council confirms agreement on changes to the visa code

The EU is updating its visa rules to improve conditions for legitimate travellers and increase the tools available to respond to the challenges posed by illegal migration.


Basic air connectivity in the event of no-deal Brexit - provisional agreement with the Parliament

The EU is introducing a set of measures to mitigate the severe disruption to air connectivity for passengers and freight between the EU and the United Kingdom in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.


Persistent organic pollutants: Provisional agreement on the world's most dangerous pollutants

The Council reached a provisional agreement with the Parliament on protecting people and the environment against the most lasting and polluting chemicals.


Better security for ID documents: Council Presidency and European Parliament reach provisional agreement

Proposed new rules will improve the security of ID documents by introducing minimum standards for the information they contain and for common security features.


Speech by President Donald Tusk at the Ukrainian Parliament in Kyiv

Following the commemoration of the fifth anniversary of Maidan, President Donald Tusk delivered a speech at the Verkhovna Rada.


Securing free and fair European elections: Council adopts conclusions

The Council adopted conclusions on securing free and fair European elections.


Heavy-duty vehicles: Council presidency agrees with Parliament on Europe's first-ever CO2 emission reduction targets for trucks

The Council reached a provisional agreement with the Parliament on new CO2 emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles.


Council conclusions on EU relations with the Swiss Confederation

The Council adopted conclusions on EU relations with the Swiss Confederation.


Immigration liaison officers: Council Presidency and European Parliament reach provisional agreement

The EU is strengthening the cooperation and coordination between liaison officers deployed to third countries by member states or the EU to deal with immigration-related issues.


Indicative programme - General Affairs Council meeting, Brussels 19 February 2019

Main agenda items, approximate timing, public sessions and press opportunities.


European Coordinated Plan on Artificial Intelligence

The Council today adopted conclusions on the Coordinated Plan on the development and use of Artificial Intelligence Made in Europe.


Yemen: Council adopts conclusions

The Council adopted conclusions on Yemen.


Human rights: Council adopts conclusions on EU priorities in UN human rights fora in 2019

The Council adopted conclusions on EU priorities in human rights fora in 2019.


Climate diplomacy: Council adopts conclusions

The Council adopted conclusion on Climate Change Diplomacy.


Sahel: EU takes further steps to better support the security of the region

The Council adopted a decision to further regionalise the work of the EU Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) missions in the Sahel, namely EUCAP Sahel Mali, EUCAP Sahel Niger and EUTM Mali.


Main topics and media events 18 February - 3 March 2019

Overview of the main subjects to be discussed at meetings of the Council of the EU over the next two weeks.


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