Monday

27th May 2019

Berlin, Paris and London form industry alliance

Europe's big three, Germany, France and the UK, have secretly formed an "industry alliance" to strengthen the interests of their industry in future EU legislation, reports the German news magazine, Der Spiegel.

The countries, who have been working together for the past three months, want, in the future, to introduce an "impact analysis" for all EU legislation that affects businesses and companies.

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Among their other main goals is to strengthen the Competition Council (they propose that EU competition ministers should consult with each other on all legislative proposals) and a common approach on as many industry-relevant political questions as possible.

The European Commission has yet to be formally informed of the trio's activities.

France, Germany and the UK account for 59% of the EU's gross domestic product (GDP) but have only 33% of the votes in the council, notes Der Spiegel.

This new industry alliance is likely to run into hard opposition from the environmental lobby - and so the three countries are taking their time to work out concrete proposals.

In the future, the trio, who argue that industry policy is not being taken seriously enough, want to take on the environmental lobby using its own tool.

Whereas the environmentalists are able to delay legislation with arguments about the impact it will have on the environment, Berlin, Paris and London want to use the same 'impact' tools to argue about the effect of not having such legislation - on creating employment for instance.

In the autumn, the trio will start to discuss concrete proposals with industry groups.

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