The Letter n°760

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The Letter n°760
The Letter
Tuesday 16th May 2017
issue 760
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Dublin and Schengen - Restoring confidence and strengthening solidarity between Member States of the European Union
Author : Corinne Balleix
Corinne Balleix
The Dublin regulation that is presently being re-drafted aims to protect the area of free movement rather than share the burden of asylum seekers between Member States. The migratory crisis of 2015 demonstrated that this system could endanger the Schengen Area, kindling a confidence crisis between Member States and forcing the EU into uncertain cooperation agreements with third countries that threatened its values. Although greater border control seems vital right now, this does not mean that the issue of making a qualitative leap forward in terms of European migratory solidarity can be avoided.
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Elections : General election in Malta 3rd June
On May 1st Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat (Labour Party (MLP)) announced that a snap election would be held on 3rd June. He under attack because it has been suggested that his wife, his chief of cabinet and the Energy Minister are the respective owners of offshore accounts and businesses, that were challenged in the Panama Papers affairs... Read more
General election in the UK on 8th June
On 18th April last British Prime Minister Theresa May (Conservative Party) took everyone by surprise as she announced that there would be a snap election (3 years before the planned date) on 8th June. Theresa May took over from David Cameron without passing via the ballot box and hopes to strengthen her parliamentary majority on the eve of the Brexit. The situation is favourable to the Tories who hold a significant lead over their Labour rivals in all the polls. Just three weeks before the general elections, victory for the Conservatives seems guaranteed. The only question that remains is how wide the margin will be... Read more

Foundation : "For a few stars more ... which European policy for France?"
The Foundation's Chairman, Jean-Dominique Giuliani, has published "For a few stars more ... which European policy for France?" An enlightening reach after the appointment of the French president in order to understand what President Emmanuel Macron might do... Read more
The "Schuman Report on Europe, State of the Union 2017", now available in paper and digital form
The "Schuman Report on Europe, State of the Union 2017", published by Lignes de Repères in French and English provides a better understanding of the issues and challenges faced by Europe at present. It is available in bookshops and on the Foundation's site and in digital form... Read more

Commission : Growth forecasts up
In its spring forecasts published on 11th May the European Commission is expecting a rise in the GDP of 1.7% in 2017 and 1.8% in 2018 in the euro zone. EU GDP growth is due to stabilise at 1.9% over the next two years... Read more
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Assessment of the strategy for a digital single market and thought about globalisation
Whilst it is now mid-mandate the European Commission published the mid-term assessment of its strategy for the digital single market and its document on thought about harnessing globalisation... Read more
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Final report on the sectoral inquiry into e-commerce
On 10th May the Commission published its final report on the sectoral inquiry into e-commerce... Read more
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Parliament : The EU and UK should first take care of their citizens
According to a communiqué released by the European Parliament on 12th May the EU and the British government should first negotiate an agreement over the situation and the rights of their citizens as a matter urgency, before starting any other talks over the Brexit... Read more

Council : Conclusions of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council
The 28 Agriculture and Fisheries Ministers approved new rules on 11th May regarding the protection of fishing resources and the protection of marine ecosystems which define how, where and when fishermen can exercise their profession. They also exchanged views about the MedFish4Ever declaration and the conference on the ocean that will take place in New York from 5th to 9th June 2017 in New York... Read more
Prevention and fight to counter violence against women and domestic violence
On 11th May the Council adopted two decisions regarding the signature of the Convention of the Council of Europe (Istanbul Convention) regarding the prevention and fight to counter violence against women and domestic violence... Read more
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Declaration of the EU-Tunisia Association Council
On 11th May the Maltese Foreign Affairs Minister George Vella, published a joint declaration on behalf of the EU's High Representative and her Tunisian counterpart Khemaies Jhinaoui after the EU-Tunisia Association Council. On 10th May a report on the state of EU-Tunisia relations covering the period 2015-2016 was published... Read more
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Meeting of the Cooperation Council with Tajikistan
On 15th May the EU-Tajikistan Cooperation Council spoke of the strategy to adopt between the EU and the countries of Central Asia and the political and economic developments ongoing in Tajikistan... Read more
Foreign Affairs Ministers' Meeting
On 15th May the 28 Foreign Affairs Ministers debated the situation in Africa and notably the Horn of Africa, Venezuela, the Eastern Partnership and the EU's Strategy regarding Security and Defence... Read more
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Diplomacy : Antidumping and border controls
On 11th May the 28 Foreign Affairs Ministers debated the new anti-dumping measures and adopted a recommendation aiming to extend the temporary but exceptional internal border controls for a further 6 months at the most... Read more
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Federica Mogherini at the UN
On the occasion of Europe Day on 9th May the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini re-asserted the EU's commitment to multilateralism, stressing that no State can face the present world crises alone... Read more
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International Conference on Somalia in London
On 11th May an agreement entitled "A new partnership for peace, stability and prosperity in Somalia" was signed between Somalia and the international community with the aim of stabilising this country, which is one of the poorest in the world. The EU's High Representative Federica Mogherini announced aid totalling 200 million €... Read more
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Meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel
On 15th May, French President Emmanuel Macron visited German Chancellor Angela Merkel on his first visit abroad with the aim of re-committing to the key role to be played by the Franco-German couple in a Europe that he would like to "reshape.".. Read more
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Arctic Council
On 11th May the 10th Arctic Council took place in Alaska, thereby opening the presidency of Finland. The 8 Member States (including five European Nordic States) signed an "Agreement to improve international scientific cooperation in the Arctic" with the aim of fighting against climate change... Read more
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Court of Justice : ECJ decision on the right to residency in the Union
On 10th May the Court of Justice delivered a decision establishing that a "citizen from a non-EU country, can in virtue of his status as parent of a minor that has European citizenship, rely on the derived right to residency in the Union.".. Read more

Germany : German Chancellor meets NATO Secretary General
German Chancellor Angela Merkel met NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg on 11th May in preparation for the meeting of NATO country leaders in Brussels on 25th May and which will focus on sharing the burden of and countering terrorism... Read more
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Trade surplus increases in Germany
The German Statistics Institute Destatis published further data regarding the trade surplus in Germany on 9th May which totalled 25.4 billion € in March... Read more
The CDU wins the elections in North-Rhine Westphalia
The German Chancellor's Party, the CDU won the elections in North Rhine Westphalia on 14th May, the most populous Land in Germany. The CDU led by Armin Laschet, won with 33% of the vote (+7 points in comparison with 2012). SPD candidate Hannelore Kraft lost as many points taking only 31.5% of the vote - the worst score in the party's history... Read more

Austria : Austrian Vice-Chancellor resigns
Austrian Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Reinhold Mitterlehner, head of the People's Party (ÖVP) announced on 10th May that he was resigning from his political office. On 14th he was replaced as ÖVP head by Sebastien Kurz, the Foreign Affairs Minister. A snap election may now be organised... Read more
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Bulgaria : Mariya Gabriel, new European Commissioner?
On 10th May the Bulgarian government announced that it had put MEP Mariya Gabriel forward as the country's representative at the European Commission after the resignation of Kristalina Georgieva at the end of 2016 as Vice-President responsible for the Budget.. Read more

France : Emmanuel Macron becomes president of the French Republic
On 14th May Emmanuel Macron officially became the 8th President of the Republic. Taking over from François Hollande, he was invested at the Elysée. On 15th May he will be travelling to Germany to meet the German Chancellor Angela Merkel... Read more
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Edouard Philippe, new French Prime Minister
On 15th May Edouard Philippe, deputy Mayor of Le Have -LR - 46 years old - was appointed Prime Minister by Emmanuel Macron... Read more
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Greece : Contraction of GDP in Greece
Greece started 2017 with a GDP contraction after 2016 passed by without any growth at all, announced the statistics authorities Elstat on 15th May, just days after the approval of a new series of austerity measures. The GDP contract by 0.1% in the first quarter in comparison with the fourth quarter of 2016 and by 0.5% in comparison with the first quarter of 2016 said Elstat... Read more

Ireland : Michel Barnier calls for non-aggressive negotiations with London
On 11th May during a speech delivered at the Irish Parliament in Dublin the Brexit negotiator for the EU Michel Barnier called for "non-aggressive" negotiations with London so that the EU and the UK can maintain "strong relations"... Read more
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Italy : G7 Finance Ministers Meeting
The meeting of the G7 Finance Ministers and the governors of the central banks met on 12th and 13th May in Bari to discuss cybersecurity and the fight to counter the financing of terrorism... Read more
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The Netherlands : Opening of biggest offshore windfarms in the Netherlands
The Gemini windfarm in the North Sea, off the coast of the Netherlands celebrated its opening on 8th May. It is one of the biggest offshore farms and will provide energy for one and a half million people... Read more
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Kosovo : Collapse of Kosovo government and elections to come
The Kosovar parliament brought down the government on 10th May as it adopted a motion of censure thereby leading to a snap election. The two main parties in the coalition in office have not agreed over the ratification of an agreement over the definition of the border with Montenegro, a condition for visa exemptions with the EU... Read more

Ukraine : Permission for short stays without visas for the Ukrainians
On 11th May the EU gave the greenlight for the visa-free entry of Ukrainian citizens into its territory, for stays of under three months, a measure that has been much awaited in Ukraine... Read more

Switzerland : Switzerland limits the arrival of Romanian and Bulgarian workers
Switzerland announced on 10th May that it was to limit access to its labour market for one year to Romanian and Bulgarian citizens quoting the triggering of the "safeguard clause" provided for in its relations with the EU. On 11th it published a report on the implementation of support measures to the free movement of people between Switzerland and the EU in 2016... Read more
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Eurostat : 63,300 asylum seekers deemed to be unaccompanied minors
In 2016 63,300 asylum seekers asking for international protection in the EU's Member States were deemed to be unaccompanied minors, a number that is one third less than in 2015 but still nearly five times higher than the national average noted over the period 2008-2013 (around 12,000 per year)... Read more

Studies/Reports : A new accelerator at the CERN
On 9th May the CERN (European Centre for Nuclear Research) presented a new linear accelerator (Linac 4). It is due to feed the CERN accelerator complex with particle beams of higher energy. It took ten years to build... Read more

Culture : European Museum Night
On 20th May European Museum Night will take place in 30 European countries. The museums are open to all artistic movements with which visitors make up their own visit... Read more
Film Festival Cannes
One of the biggest cinema festivals in the world and one covered most by the media, the Cannes Festival, is taking place between the 17th to 28th May... Read more
EUROPAfest in Bucharest and Sibiu
The 24th edition of the EUROPAfest will be taking place in the Romanian cities of Bucharest and Sibiu between 11th and 20th May. This international music festival brings together groups playing jazz, blues, pop and classical music... Read more
Film music festival Krakow
From 17th to 23rd May Krakow is hosting its Film Music Festival. Grandiose performances on the programme with symphonic orchestras from all around the world which will be playing music from films that will be on screen... Read more
Jazz Festival Slovenia
From 18th to 20th May the town centre of Cerkno in Slovenia will be moving to the rhythm of jazz on the occasion of its annual music festival... Read more
Brighton Festival
Until 28th May Brighton is hosting its festival which is one of the biggest British gatherings for the performing arts with parades, theatre plays and circus performances, concerts and dance... Read more
Les Puces du Design
From 18th to 21st May the "Puces du Design" are taking place in Paris. This is the first historical market exclusively devoted to design in the 1950-2000's, a unique event of this size in France bringing together design, vintage and contemporary... Read more

15th May 2017


"Foreign Affairs" Council

15th to 18th May 2017


Plenary session of the European Parliament

16th May 2017


European Economic Area Council


General Affairs Council

18th May 2017


Justice and Internal Affairs Council


Foreign Affairs Council (Defence)


Foreign Affairs Council (Development)

22nd May 2017


General Affairs Council (Article 50)



22nd & 23rd May 2017


Education, Youth, Culture and Sports Council

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Records of the Letter
année 2017
The Letter n°769
EU-Ukraine, Franco-German, Budget, UK/Brexit, Festivals
published on 17/07/2017
The Letter n°768
Defence, EU-Japan, G20, Migration/Italy, ESA/Mercury, Airbus/China, ESM/Greece
published on 10/07/2017
The Letter n°767
Google, Simone Veil, Helmut Kohl, EU Budget, Slovenia/Croatia
published on 03/07/2017
The Letter n°766
Editorial, European Council, Negotiations/Brexit, Romania, Albania, Serbia
published on 26/06/2017
The Letter n°765
Editorial, End of Roaming Fees, Helmut Kohl, Elections/France, Aid/Greece, Varadkar/Ireland
published on 19/06/2017
The Letter n°764
Elections/UK, Defence, European Prosecutor's Office, ECB, Union/Capital
published on 12/06/2017
The Letter n°763
Elections/Malta, EU/China, Digital, Transport, EMU, Competitiveness
published on 05/06/2017
The Letter n°762
NATO/Summit, G7/Summit, Franco-German, USA/EU, Defence
published on 29/05/2017
The Letter n°761
Editorial, France/Government, Recommendations/European Semester, France/Elections, Court/Trade
published on 22/05/2017
The Letter n°760
France/President & Prime Minister, Growth/Forecasts, Globalisation, G7/Finances, CERN
published on 15/05/2017
The Letter n°759
Editorial, 9th May, France/President, Government/Bulgaria, EU/ACP, House of History/EU
published on 09/05/2017
The Letter n°758
Editorial, European Council, ECB, Social Rights, G20/Women, Hungary/Infringement, Greece/Agreement
published on 02/05/2017
The Letter n°757
1st round/France, Poll, IMF Outlook, Surplus/Greece
published on 24/04/2017
The Letter n°756
Election/France, Budget/France/Italy, G7/Diplomacy, Referendum/Turkey
published on 18/04/2017
The Letter n°755
France/EU, Syria, Roaming, EU/Switzerland
published on 10/04/2017
The Letter n°754
Editorial, Book/Europe/France, Article 50, Note/50€, G7/Culture, Migration
published on 03/04/2017
The Letter n°753
Schuman Report, 60 years/Rome Treaties, Elections/Bulgaria, Elections/France, EU/Japan
published on 27/03/2017
The Letter n°752
Elections/Netherlands, Brexit, G20/Finance, Merkel/Trump;Merkel/Abe, President/Germany
published on 20/03/2017
The Letter n°751
Schuman Report on Europe, European Council, ECB/Governors, Tripartite Social Summit
published on 13/03/2017
The Letter n°750
Future/EU, Northern/Ireland, Defence, Digital
published on 06/03/2017
The Letter n°749
Elections/Bulgaria, European Semester, Planets/Trappist 1, Rule of Law/Poland, Trade Facility/WTO
published on 27/02/2017
The Letter n°748
General Election/Netherlands, EU/Canada, Security, NATO, G20/Diplomacy, Romania/Referendum
published on 20/02/2017
The Letter n°747
Germany/President, Agreement/roaming, Article 50/Vote
published on 13/02/2017
The Letter n°746
Romania, Declaration/Malta, Roaming, UK/White Paper, Energy, Transport
published on 06/02/2017
The Letter n°745
Schuman/Albania, Bulgaria, Court/Brexit, Committees/EP, Migration/Mediterranean, Law/Italy
published on 30/01/2017
The Letter n°744
Editorial, President/Germany, May/Speech, Budget/EU, Tajani/Parliament, ECB
published on 23/01/2017
The Letter n°743
Cyprus/Reunification?, Malta/EU Presidency, Resignation/Northern Ireland, Government/Iceland, Budget/EU
published on 16/01/2017
The Letter n°742
Editorial, Hearing/Schengen, Romania/Government, Erasmus, Orion
published on 09/01/2017