Protecting the EU’s IP

The European Commission published today the latest report on protection and enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) in third countries. While developments have taken place since the publication of the previous report, concerns persist and a number of areas for improvement and action remain to be addressed. Intellectual property rights infringements worldwide cost European firms…

Wealth Effects of WTO Membership

A new report says that the USA, China and Germany are the countries that benefit the most worldwide from their accession to the WTO. They achieve by far the largest income gains, which are directly attributable to their membership in the trade organization.  For the United States, income gains amount to about 87 billion US…

Russia: EU prolongs economic sanctions by six months

Today, the Council prolonged the economic sanctions targeting specific sectors of the Russian economy until 31 July 2020. This decision follows an update by President Macron and Chancellor Merkel to the European Council on 12 December 2019 on the state of implementation of the Minsk agreements, to which the decision on maintaining sanctions is linked. Given that the…

Making the EU Ukraine Agreement Work

The new President, Parliament and Government of Ukraine have all stated their commitment to the continued implementation of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement.  A report by the EU finds that, over the past year, Ukraine has adopted important legislation and strengthened institutions, as demanded by the Ukrainian citizens, but that further work is needed, particularly to improve…

New Plant Health Rules Come Into Effect

New rules on plant health, designed to stop diseases spreading or jumping borders, will become effective on Saturday. The EU Regulation 2016/2031 on protective measures against plant pests was steered through the European Parliament by UK member Anthea McIntyre, Conservative MEP for the West Midlands. It became law in December 2016 and is directly applicable…

Change to EU-Ukraine Trade Agreement for poultry meat

The European Parliament has agreed to modify the EU-Ukraine trade agreement to curb imports of cheap Ukrainian poultry meat entering the EU using a legal loophole. In a resolution adopted by 444 votes to 128 with 74 abstentions, MEPs called on Ukraine to respect the full trade agreement for good cooperation between the EU and Ukraine. Food…

Defend Our Scotch Whisky

The European Union’s deepening trade war with America must be de-escalated if the Scotch whisky industry is not to suffer severe damage in the crossfire, a Conservative MEP has warned. Baroness Nosheena Mobarik said her constituents in Scotland were concerned by the potential harm to exports and jobs from the crisis. She spoke out ahead…

European Parliament opposes Commission’s plans to authorise GMO imports

MEPs opposed the EU Commission plans to authorise imports of products containing three glyphosate and glufosinate ammonium-resistant GMOs, in non-binding resolutions on Thursday. On Wednesday evening, MEPs also held a debate with the European Commission on the authorisation process for GMO imports, the shortcomings of which have been regularly pointed out by Parliament. These authorisations…

EU To Strike Trade Deal with Mercosur Countries

The European Union and Mercosur have reached a political agreement for an ambitious, balanced and comprehensive trade agreement.  The new trade framework – part of a wider Association Agreement between the two regions – will consolidate a strategic political and economic partnership and create significant opportunities for sustainable growth on both sides, while respecting the environment…