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Finance and Monetary Affairs in the EU

Latest news on economic and monetary affairs in the European Union.

EU Auditors to examine VAT and customs duties in e-commerce
The European Court of Auditors announced Thursday it is to conduct an audit to find out how effectively the EU is addressing the challenges posed by e-commerce in terms of VAT and customs duties.

Auditors look into enforcement of EU competition rules
The European Court of Auditors announced Tuesday it is to conduct an audit of whether the European Commission has been effective in enforcing EU competition rules in the Single Market.

50 years of the EU Customs Union
In 2018 the European Union celebrates the 50th anniversary of the EU Customs Union. Since 1968, the Customs Union has been protecting the safety and security of citizens of its member countries and collecting customs duties that represent an important source of revenue in the EU, whilst transforming customs into a modern and responsive partner to trade. Events are organised all over the European Union to mark the anniversary.

EU Customs Union: the world's largest trading bloc
The EU's Customs Union celebrated its 50th anniversary on July 1, and is seen by many as one of the European Union's greatest achievements.

Survey shows Solvency II brings benefits but deters long-term business
A survey of insurers from across Europe has shown that over three quarters of the respondents have seen a positive effect from the EU's 2016 Solvency II regulation on their risk management and governance practices and on their management of assets and liabilities.

Special VAT scheme for small enterprises: VAT exemptions should not lead to unfair competition
On 11 July, the Economic and Monetary Committee (ECON) of the European Parliament will vote on the proposal amending Directive 2006/112/EC regarding the common system of value added tax, with the special scheme for small enterprises at the heart of discussions.

EU finance ministers close deficit procedure against France
EU finance ministers closed the excessive deficit procedure for France Friday, confirming its deficit has dropped below 3% of GDP. They also issued budgetary recommendations to Hungary and Romania.

Talks set to start on pan-European pension
EU states have asked the presidency to start negotiations with the Parliament on a proposal for a pan-European pension product that would make it easier for people to put money aside for their old age.

EU budget for external action
For the next long-term EU budget 2021-2027, the European Commission is proposing to increase the external action budget to €123 billion, with plans to simplify its structure and make it much more flexible and effective to address today's global challenges.

Tax cooperation strengthened in next EU budget
Continuing its detailing of plans for the next long-term EU budget, the Commission outlined proposals Friday to make tax and customs cooperation between Member States better and more efficient.

Europe Must Show Leadership, but also do More to Fight Illicit Trade
The Transnational Alliance to Combat Illicit Trade (TRACIT) and The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) released on 7 June the Global Illicit Trade Environment Index (the Index), ranking 84 countries on the extent they enable or prevent illicit trade.

Single Market Programme will continue to support SMEs' competitiveness
UEAPME welcomes the support specifically dedicated to SMEs proposed by the European Commission for the next Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027.

Parliament, Council reach deal on EU-wide penalties for money laundering
The European Parliament and the EU Member States reached provisional agreement Thursday on strengthened criminal law measures to counter money laundering.

InvestEU programme - legal texts and factsheets
The InvestEU Programme will bring together under one roof the multitude of EU financial instruments currently available and expand the model of the Investment Plan for Europe (the 'Juncker Plan'). With InvestEU, the Commission aims to boost investment, innovation and job creation, triggering an estimated EUR 650 billion in additional investment.

InvestEU fund: sounds good, but devil will be in the detail
Today the European Commission proposed a new fund aimed at mobilising EUR 650 billion to finance 'sustainable infrastructure' such as wind farms and the energy renovation of buildings.

New social fund, double Erasmus funding in new EU Budget
For the next long-term EU budget, the EU Commission proposes to reinforce and better target several existing Funds including a new European Social Fund and double funding for Erasmus to EUR 30 bn.

Use Country-Specific Recommendations to build growth in the EU
Commenting on the country-specific recommendations (CSRs), issued last week by the European Commission as part of the European Semester process, EuroCommerce Director-General Christian Verschueren, said:

Straws, cotton buds targeted in EU plan to ban single-use plastics
Plans to tackle marine litter, outlined by the EU Commission Monday, would ban ten single-use plastic products most often found on Europe's beaches and seas, as well as lost and abandoned fishing gear.

Commission tables update to rules on excise duties
An update of rules governing excise duty on alcohol within the EU, proposed Friday by the Commission, would reduce costs for small alcohol-producing businesses and better protect consumer health.

Excise duties for alcohol
The European Commission proposed on 28 May to reshape the rules governing excise duty on alcohol within the EU, paving the way for a better business environment, reduced costs for small alcohol-producing businesses and better protection for consumer health.

Boost for SME access to EU finance markets
The European Commission proposed new rules Thursday to give small and medium enterprises (SMEs) easier and cheaper access to financing through public markets to help them expand.

Commission proposal to amend the Motor Insurance Directive
The European Commission proposed on 24 May to strengthen EU rules on motor insurance to better protect victims of motor vehicle accidents and improve the rights of insurance policyholders.

Brussels looks to boost EU market for sustainable finance
The Commission put forward a new set of proposals on sustainable finance Thursday, hoping more sustainable investments from the EU financial sector can lead the way to a greener economy.

Commission proposals on financing sustainable growth
The EU Commission delivered on 24 May the first concrete actions to enable the EU financial sector to lead the way to a greener and cleaner economy.

EU finance proposals: first steps towards sustainability
Today's sustainable finance proposals from the European Commission would encourage more sustainable investments. The proposals are the first steps towards implementing some of the recommendations of the EU's High-Level Expert Group on sustainable finance.