Tag Archives: EU

EU Pitches Transatlantic Agenda to Incoming US Administration

On December 2, the European Commission released an 11 page paper proposing a “new EU-US agenda for global change.” The paper proposes cooperation on four priorities:

  • COVID-19 and other emerging health challenges 
  • Climate change/sustainability 
  • Trade and technology policy 
  • Multilateral institutions and democracy

The paper is grounded in the premise that the combined weight of the transatlantic relationship is indispensable to solving global challenges (a theme frequently mentioned by the Biden campaign and transition team). In addition to broad principles, the paper flags a series of proposed “First Steps” to advance this agenda. Though the overall tone is ambitious in some areas, it stops well short of any kind of TTIP relaunch in terms of economic policy. The paper also argues that a more “autonomous” and “sovereign” Europe makes for a better partner for the United States. 

Read the full paper

European Commission: Commission adopts proposals to make EU-US agreement on tariffs effective

The European Commission today published a proposal for a Council and European Parliament regulation to scrap duties on certain imports to the EU. In return, the United States will reduce its duties on certain EU exports to the U.S. market. This will put into effect the agreement announced by the EU and the U.S. on 21 August 2020. These tariff reductions between the EU and the U.S. will increase access to both EU and U.S. markets by around €200 million per year.

Read entire article here

CNBC: Trump’s hostility toward a digital tax could unite Europe to implement one, lawmaker says

Taxing tech giants has long divided policymakers, but disagreements with U.S. President Donald Trump could drive Europe to step up levies on companies like Google and Facebook, a lawmaker told CNBC.

France, Austria and Italy are among the European countries that have implemented taxes on the tech companies at a national level, but there’s been a failure at the European Union level to agree on a joint levy.

The political and economic union of 27 countries failed to reach a consensus in March 2019, when four member states vetoed a common tax. At the time, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark and Finland said there should be a broader debate outside of Europe over a digital tax, before the EU implemented its own.

Read entire article HERE.

MAREX: Nordic Countries Call for Ocean Plastic Treaty

Nordic governments have become the first in the world to formally call for a global treaty to tackle ocean plastic.

The call was made at a gathering of the environment ministers of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden at the Nordic Council in Reykjavik, Iceland. 

In the declaration, the ministers for the environment are pushing for a global agreement on plastic. The declaration, which has been sent to E.U. governing bodies, UNEP, the G7 and the G20, also asks the Nordic Council of Ministers to prepare a study to consider which specific elements should be included in a global agreement to combat microplastics and plastic waste in the marine environment.

Read entire article HERE.

Aftenposten: Norsk gass kan bli utkonkurrert lenge før det går tomt på norsk sokkel

Equinor ser lyst på fremtiden for norsk gass, særlig fordi Tyskland skal fase ut kullkraft. Men selv europeiske energiselskaper sår nå tvil om det er gass som blir vinneren. Energiselskaper tror på batteri og sol.

Ifølge lekkasjer til nyhetsbyrået Bloomberg News kan gassindustrien være for optimistisk. Kull kan fremover bli erstattet av vind og sol kombinert med en forbedret batteriteknologi, i stedet for gass.A

Ifølge studien de omtaler, som er betalt av europeiske energiselskaper, og som ennå ikke er publisert, mener man at gassetterspørselen i Tyskland, Frankrike, Nederland, Belgia og Storbritannia kan falle så mye som 16 prosent de neste 10 årene (målt mot nivået i 2016).

Da mener man at sol og bedre batteriteknologi vil være så kostnadseffektiv at det blir den foretrukne måten å lage elektrisitet på.

Les hele saken HER.

Bloomberg: A High-Stakes Fight Is Brewing in Norway Over EU Relations

By Sveinung Sleire

Kicking off the year in a T-shirt proclaiming that she “loves, loves the EEA,” Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soreide hinted at the high-stakes fight that’s brewing in Norway over its relationship with the European Union.

Soreide’s show of passion comes 25 years after Norway linked itself to the EU in a free-trade deal as part of the European Economic Area, a compromise solution after voters in a referendum rejected joining the bloc.

But the deal that gives Norway unfettered access to Europe’s massive free-trade bloc is increasingly being derided and has come under legal attack from EU skeptics and labor unions who are questioning its impact on wages, labor laws and sovereignty. As of yet, it’s a faint echo of the Brexit process that’s currently tearing at the fabric of the U.K.

“It’s very important that we — supporters of the EEA agreement — are out there defending it, and tell how enormously important it’s to safeguard Norwegian interests,” Soreide said in an interview in Oslo.

Read entire article HERE.