Friday

25th May 2018

Agenda

China comes to EU next WEEK

  • The EU wants to boost its crisis response through setting up a European voluntary corps for humanitarian aid (Photo: Stefan)

China will come to Europe this week (17-24 September) in the form of an EU-China summit, a separate bilateral business summit and a meeting of Chinese and European mayors.

Top brass will be out on both sides. Premier Wen Jiabao will be received by Herman Van Rompuy, EU Council President and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

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The meeting comes as the world continues to watch European politicians struggle with the eurozone crisis. When German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited China last month, she was told that EU leaders needed to do more to stem the crisis.

Meanwhile, Beijing has continued to indicate that it does not think investing in the euro bailout funds is a safe bet.

The visit also comes just after the commission announced it would open an investigation into allegations of Chinese dumping in the solar panel sector. The protection of intellectual property rights - a regular complaint of foreign businesses about China - is also set to be raised.

One prickly issue not on the actual agenda will be whether there will be a press conference at the end of the summit. There was none following the last such event, leaving the EU commission open to accusations that it was letting Beijing set the terms on press access.

The commission will on Monday also reveal proposals to beef up the powers of its statistical arm, eurostat. The potential new powers chime with the commission's strongly increased oversight of national budgets.

Members of the European Parliament's economic and monetary affairs committee will on Monday discuss the future of the eurozone.

They are already squaring up for a fight with member states over how much say they will have on plans to create a banking union. A public hearing with the heads of Europe's financial supervisory authorities is likely to reveal the thinking of the key players in the parliament.

The civil liberties Committee will on Wednesday vote on a law making making it impossible to transfer asylum seekers to member states with poor reception facilities. It will also vote on another law restricting the reasons for detaining asylum seekers.

Mid-week, the commission will propose a law on establishing a European Voluntary Corps for humanitarian aid. Supposed to be operational by 2014, the corps of trained volunteers is meant to strengthen the EU's response to crises.

Opinion

EU quiet as trouble brews in Asia

As tensions rise between Asia’s economic giants, China and Japan, over a small group of uninhabited mini-islands in the East China Sea, reaction from the EU remains conspicuous by its absence.

Zuckerberg and Trump top the EU's agenda This WEEK

The Facebook CEO will brief MEPs on data protection - but only behind closed doors. Meanwhile EU leaders are scratching their heads on how to deal with US president Trump's erratic decisions on trade and the Iran deal.

All eyes on the EU budget This WEEK

The European Commission will next week unveil its ambitious proposal for the first EU budget without the UK. In the European Parliament, its the Belgian PM's turn to talk about the future of Europe.

Whistleblowers, Syria and digital revolution This WEEK

The European Commission will present proposals to protect whistleblowers, combat fake news and organise the digital single market. The international community will gather in Brussels to discuss how to help Syrians in the current war and after.

Debt relief talks mars Greece's bailout exit

While the Greek government has committed to fulfill the last creditors' requirements in the coming month, Europeans and the International Monetary Fund are still far from an agreement on measures to reduce the country's debt in the future.

Analysis

A good day for Russia in Europe

Russian firm Gazprom is a reformed character, the European Commission has said, improving the climate for more pipelines to Europe.

News in Brief

  1. Italy set to pick eurosceptic finance minister
  2. UK foreign minister fooled by Russian pranksters
  3. Rajoy ally gets 33 years in jail for corruption
  4. Close race as polls open in Irish abortion referendum
  5. Gazprom accepts EU conditions on gas supplies
  6. Facebook tells MEPs: non-users are not profiled
  7. Commission proposes ending France deficit procedure
  8. UK households hit with Brexit income loss

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