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Tobacco giant initiates EU court challenge

30.06.14 @ 09:34

Tobacco giant Philip Morris International (PMI) wants to challenge new EU rules on tobacco to see if it can get the stricter labelling requirements changed. The Marlboro manufacturer on Friday (27 June) said the EU’s ...

AnalysisRegaining faith in bricks and mortar

23.06.14 @ 10:15

One of the abiding memories of the 2008 financial crash which plunged Europe – not to mention the western world – into the deepest economic depression since the 1930s was of a property bubble which burst spectacularly ...

EU ruling could open floodgates on cartel lawsuits

06.06.14 @ 09:59

Individuals can claim compensation from cartels even if they did not buy products from one of the companies involved, the EU's top court has ruled. In a verdict on Thursday (5 June), the European Court of Justice stated ...

Google must respect 'right to be forgotten', rules EU court

13.05.14 @ 20:16

Google must remove information about ordinary people from their search results if requested by the individuals concerned, the EU's top court has ruled. People have the right to request information be removed from search ...

MEPs back net neutrality law

03.04.14 @ 18:40

MEPs have backed open access to the Internet by tightening plans by the European Commission on net neutrality. In a vote on Thursday (3 April), a coalition of centre-left and liberal deputies backed amendments to ...

Trade talks 'honeymoon' over, business chiefs warn EU

28.02.14 @ 19:41

The 'honeymoon phase' of talks aimed at brokering a landmark EU-US trade deal are over, business leaders have warned. Speaking at a meeting of business leaders in Athens to coincide with a meeting of EU trade ministers ...

MEPs back cap on credit card fees

21.02.14 @ 09:24

MEPs have backed plans to cap card payment fees charged to shops by credit card giants Mastercard and Visa in a move aimed at saving €6 billion per year. In a vote of the parliament's economic affairs committee on ...

OpinionCredit card companies are pocketing dazzling profits

14.02.14 @ 17:10

Payment card companies such as Visa and Mastercard and the banks that issue their debit and credit cards have been pocketing dazzling profits as a result of unfair competition. After years the European Union is finally ...

EU bids to end US dominance in internet control

14.02.14 @ 09:29

The European Commission wants to end US control over the governance of the internet, according to a report published Wednesday (12 February). The EU paper on "Europe's role in shaping the future of Internet governance" ...

EU 'will not compromise' on food safety in US trade pact

12.02.14 @ 09:28

A top EU official has sought to allay German fears about the US being able to export bleached chicken and hormone beef to Europe once a free trade pact comes into force. "What is non-negotiable are food safety standards ...

Air passengers to get more rights under EU bill

06.02.14 @ 09:23

Air passengers could receive up to €600 in compensation for delayed flights under new draft rules backed by MEPs in Strasbourg on Wednesday (5 February). “It's a David vs. Goliath story, as only 2 percent of passengers ...

Google on brink of EU settlement

05.02.14 @ 18:12

Google is on the brink of ending a three-year competition battle with the European Commission, after the EU executive indicated it is ready to accept its latest offer to change the way it runs web searches. In November ...

MEPs back pan-EU music licence deal

05.02.14 @ 10:27

Online music providers such as Spotify and iTunes will be able to buy licences allowing them to offer music across the entire EU, under legislation backed by MEPs on Tuesday (4 February). Deputies in the European ...

Mastercard set to lose legal battle with EU over payment fees

30.01.14 @ 20:00

US credit card giant Mastercard looks set to lose its legal battle against an EU cap on its payment fees, following a legal opinion from the European Court of Justice. The dispute follows a Commission ruling in 2007 ...

EU lawmakers agree deal on commodity trading

15.01.14 @ 09:07

EU lawmakers reached a breakthrough on new rules to crack down on commodity speculation on Tuesday night (14 January) in Strasbourg. Under the so-called Market in Financial Instruments directive (MiFiD) that will ...

EU launches probe into Hollywood film licensing

13.01.14 @ 18:18

Hollywood film giants and some of Europe's biggest pay-TV networks face an EU investigation into claims they are breaking competition rules, the European Commission has announced. In a statement on Monday (13 January), ...

EU-US trade talks could become 'another Acta'

18.12.13 @ 09:18

EU-US free trade talks risk following the same path as Acta, the controversial anti-counterfeit treaty which collapsed in 2012. The European Commission spent several years negotiating the Acta treaty, a multilateral ...

Banks to pay out €1.7 billion in rate-fixing scandal

04.12.13 @ 19:02

Eight European banks have been fined a total of €1.7 billion after the European Commission found that they had been participating in illegal cartels to fix the multi-trillion euro market of financial derivatives. The ...

Europeans turning their back on culture, survey says

05.11.13 @ 09:51

Fewer Europeans are reading books or going to the theatre, mainly due to lack of interest, time and money, according to new research. Cinema-going was the only activity not to see a fall in numbers between 2007 and 2012 ...

OpinionThe real agenda behind cutting red tape

29.10.13 @ 09:00

One of the worrying issues that emerged from last week’s European Council in Brussels is the ‘cut red tape’ initiative promoted by UK Prime Minister David Cameron. The proposal, which was welcomed by other EU leaders, ...

Cameron sees EU 'sea change' on red tape

26.10.13 @ 11:58

UK prime minister David Cameron has praised the European Commission's commitment to slashing red-tape on businesses saying there had been a "sea change in thinking" by Brussels. Speaking on Friday (25 October) following ...

MEPs back higher medical safety standards following PIP scandal

22.10.13 @ 18:53

Medical devices ranging from pacemakers to breast implants will be subject to stricter controls under rules agreed by MEPs on Tuesday (22 October). Deputies voted by a large majority to support two new laws covering ...

EU commission takes aim at credit card fees

24.07.13 @ 17:11

Mastercard was in the EU's line of fire on Wednesday (24 July), after the bloc's internal market chief accused the credit-card giant of waging a "mad" lobbying campaign against plans to cap fees for using credit and ...

EU ministers endorse ban on menthol cigarettes

21.06.13 @ 19:10

EU ministers of health have reached political agreement to strengthen EU tobacco legislation in an effort to curb the number of smokers. “I do believe that this is truly an important step because it is about stopping ...

OpinionGoogle's collision course with member states

08.04.13 @ 09:45

European Union regulators have taken their first step to making good on their recent threat to take “repressive action” against Google by summer. Following last month’s final meeting between Google and European ...

OpinionThe Cyprus bailout is a disaster for the EU

18.03.13 @ 17:56

Cyprus has been forced to apply a levy on ordinary bank deposits of the type that fall under the €100,000 deposit guarantee that is required by a European Directive. This is an upper limit for guarantees, taking away ...

New EU passenger rules give airlines more time

13.03.13 @ 17:58

New EU passenger rights will allow airlines more time to repair or call in new aircraft before having to pay out compensation. The rules, proposed by the European Commission on Wednesday (13 March), would extend the ...

Horsemeat scandal widens to France, Sweden, Romania

11.02.13 @ 09:25

Europe's horse meat scandal has widened to affect several member states, with Romania emerging as the possible source. Britain first discovered the presence of horse meat in what were supposed to be beef burgers in late ...

Would-be commissioner takes step toward EU approval

14.11.12 @ 09:38

A leading critic of Malta's would-be EU commissioner has said he will back him after his answers on gay rights at a European Parliament hearing. British centre-left MEP Michael Cashman - who co-chairs parliament's gay ...

Auditor: EU agencies may pose threat to safety

12.10.12 @ 09:22

Conflicts of interest in four EU agencies authorising food, medicines, chemicals and aviation security standards might be putting people's safety at risk, an audit has shown. "None of the four agencies under review ...

EU working on consumer labels for Israeli settlement products

14.09.12 @ 09:28

Denmark is fronting an EU initiative to help consumers boycott Israeli settlement products. Its foreign ministry is funding an event in Brussels on 23 October to get EU diplomats and NGOs, such as Oxfam and Crisis ...

Global maize price hike impacting EU livestock

14.08.12 @ 17:49

The United Nation's agency for Food and Agriculture (FAO) says the recent spike in the price of maize and soja is causing problems for the EU's animal feed sector. "We already see that the prices of the feed sector is ...

FocusPublic consultation on 'net neutrality' to delay EU rules on ISPs

24.07.12 @ 20:07

Plans for tighter EU rules on Internet service providers have been pushed back to 2013 after the European Commission this week launched a public consultation lasting until mid-October. The EU executive is seeking ...

FocusRadiohead join attack on new EU copyright rules

12.07.12 @ 17:16

Plans to re-write EU rules on music copyright have received a cool reception by artists and collecting societies, with groups criticising the narrow focus of the proposal and insisting that it will leave most existing ...

EU targets €6-bn-a-year artists' royalties business

11.07.12 @ 13:13

The EU has taken a swipe at organisations responsible for collecting up to €6 billion a year in artists' royalties. Single market commissioner Michael Barnier in Brussels on Wednesday (11 July) unveiled draft new laws ...

OpinionMoving the single market for online music

11.07.12 @ 09:14

Music is everywhere, and the digital age has only increased its presence. Today, (11 July) I am proposing a modernised system of collective rights management that will use the single market – the EU's most powerful ...

FocusFirms must protect cloud data, EU watchdog says

06.07.12 @ 18:37

Companies using cloud computing services must "guarantee" compliance with EU data rules, according to the Article 29 Working group, the EU's leading data protection watchdog. In a 27-page legal opinion released this ...

EU commission can seek own damages from cartel cases

28.06.12 @ 09:29

The European Commission has the right to claim damages resulting from its own ruling on a lift and escalator cartel, according to a legal opinion issued on Tuesday (26 June). The case, which marks the first time that ...

FocusEurope failing to reach digital agenda targets, admits Commission

23.06.12 @ 07:18

The EU is set to miss targets for its digital agenda programme, according to a report released this week by the European Commission. Earlier this week (18 June) the commission published its second annual Digital Agenda ...

Police should not be exempt from privacy rules, says EU data chief

21.06.12 @ 13:08

EU data protection chief Peter Hustinx has warned governments not to water down new rules on data protection by excluding police and law authorities from the scope saying that such steps would be "inappropriate." The EU ...

Commission to re-write rules following PIP breast implant scandal

15.06.12 @ 09:33

The European Commission has promised to re-write EU legislation on medical devices to avoid a repeat of the breast implant scandal involving now defunct French-firm Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) which emerged last year. ...

FocusEU deal moves toward pan-European copyright rules

08.06.12 @ 16:55

The EU is moving towards a system of common copyright rules after a deal on so-called "orphan works" was reached by MEPs and ministers on Wednesday (6 June). "Orphan works" include photos, films or pieces of writing ...

FocusBrussles to tackle online blocking and throttling

31.05.12 @ 09:25

Digital agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes is to draft legislation on 'net neutrality' following data that between 20 and 50 percent of European Internet providers use software to block online access. In a press statement ...

VideoPirate MEP: Acta treaty would punish young people

24.05.12 @ 09:47

Swedish Pirate party MEP Christian Engstrom has little interest in economics or foreign affairs. The former computer engineer is concentrating his energy on stopping the EU parliament from adopting the Acta treaty on ...

EU to put online market reform at the heart of consumer strategy

23.05.12 @ 22:53

The European Commission has put reforming the continent's digital market at the heart of a drive to improve consumer rights, amid concerns about the efficiency of the online single market. The proposal forms part of a ...

No compromise in sight on EU document secrecy

23.05.12 @ 09:20

Negotiators remain far apart on new rules to govern which internal EU documents can be released for public scrutiny. Jakob Alvi, the Danish EU presidency spokesman, told EUobserver on Tuesday (22 May) that member states ...

FocusCommission delivers anti-trust ultimatum to Google

22.05.12 @ 14:36

The European Commission has given Google “a matter of weeks” to propose a “remedies package” in order to avoid formal legal proceedings and possible fines over allegations that the online search giant is abusing its ...

VideoCrisis has hit a raw nerve, says Ombudsman

21.05.12 @ 20:33

The economic crisis has shaken citizens' trust in EU institutions, says Ombudsman Nikiforos Diamandouros, who recently hosted a conference designed to give citizens access to the Union's key decision-makers. An Athens ...

FocusChild-proof the Internet or face regulation warns EU Commission

03.05.12 @ 17:52

The European Commission has threatened to table a comprehensive set of child internet safety rules if the software industry fails to self-regulate to protect children online. Unveiling its "European strategy for a ...

Resignation at EU drugs agency highlights ethics issues

05.04.12 @ 20:49

A top scientist within the EU agency authorising new drugs resigned on Wednesday (4 April) after being fired from France's national regulator, itself embroiled in scandals over poisonous diabetes drugs and failing ...