The Letter n°641

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The Letter n°641
The Letter
Tuesday 7th October 2014
issue 641
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The European Neighbourhood Policy put to the test by the Ukrainian crisis
Author : Gilles Lepesant
Gilles Lepesant
One month after the signature of the Eurasian Economic Union between Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus in Astana, on 27th June the European Union signed an Association Agreement with Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. Although the former President of the Commission, Romano Prodi, who launched the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) saw in this an opportunity to create a "circle of friends" the European continent is in fact divided between two regional, competing and incompatible integration processes. The Ukrainian crisis– 10 years after the Orange Revolution – triggered off by the sudden response of civil society indeed caused not only a renewal in terms of the regime in place in Kiev, but also intervention by Russia in Crimea and the Donbass. Whatever the conclusion of this crisis might be Russia's goal of strengthening its grip on its "near abroad" is being challenged by its neighbours' attachment to their independence and invites us to question about the purpose and means available to the European Neighbourhood Policy.
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Front page! : European Security: JC Juncker's other challenge
Jean-Dominique Giuliani, Chairman of the Robert Schuman Foundation has published an editorial on his site entitled "Juncker's other challenge: European security". He points to the growing number of threats that are forcing the States to respond and to do more together. What is happening within the European institutions that have not been able to move forwards to date?.. Read more

Elections : The GERB wins the general elections in Bulgaria
The Citizens for the European Development of Bulgaria (GERB), the main opposition party led by former Prime Minister (2009-2013) Boyko Borissov, came out ahead in the general elections that took place in Bulgaria on 5th October, winning 32.66% of the vote and 85 of the 240 seats in the National Assembly (Narodno sabranie), the only chamber in Parliament. The Socialist Party (BSP), followed with 15.34% of the vote but the number of its MPs has halved (40 seats ie 44 less than previously). In third place came the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, which represents the Turkish minority with 14.79%, 35 seats. Five other parties will be represented in the National Assembly. The Reformist Bloc (RB) won 8.92% of the vote and 23 seats. The Patriotic Front won 7.3% of the vote and 19 seats; Uncensored Bulgaria (BBC) won 5.59% and 16 seats; Ataka, a far right party won 4.53% and 11 seats and finally Alternative for Bulgarian Revival (ABV) led by former President of the Republic (2002-2012) Georgi Parvanov, 4.16% and 11 MPs. Turnout did not rise beyond 45% and was at its lowest since the fall of communism in Bulgaria in 1989... Read more
General Election Results in Latvia
Harmony Centre (SC) came out ahead in the general elections that took place in Latvia on 4th October but the party achieved a lower score than predicted by the polls: 23.13% of the vote and 24 of the 100 seats in the Saeima (Parliament) ie 7 less in comparison with the previous general election on 17th September 2011. Unity (Vienotiba, V) the main outgoing government coalition party took second place with 21.76% of the vote and 23 seats (+3), the Greens and Farmers' Union (ZZS) member of the outgoing government won 19.92% and 21 seats (+8); the National Alliance, an outgoing government coalition member 16.57% and 17 seats (+3). No sirds Latvia won 6.88% of the vote and 7 seats, the Regions Alliance 6.55% and 8 seats. Turnout totalled 58.83% - the lowest level since Latvia regained independence in 1991... Read more
Presidential Election in Romania
18.3 million Romanians will be appointing their president on 2nd November next. If none of the 14 candidates running wins the absolute majority in the first round, a second will be organised on 16th November. Outgoing head of State Traian Basescu, who is ending his second term, is not allowed to stand for re-election. The president is elected for five years. All candidates standing for the supreme office have to be aged at least 35 and has to have collated at least 200,000 voters' signatures. He must also swear that he did not work with the Securitate, the Romanian secret policy under the Communist regime. 14 people are officially running for the presidential office:Victor Ponta (Social Democratic Party, PSD), Prime Minister since 7th May 2012; Klaus Johannis (National Liberal Party, PNL), Mayor of Sibiu; Calin Popescu-Tariceanu (Liberal Reformist Party) present leader of the Senate and former Prime Minister (2004-2008); Dan Diaconescu (People's Party-Dan Diaconescu, PP-DD); Elena Udrea (People's Movement), former Regional and Tourism Minister (2009-2012); Hunor Kelemen (Democratic Union of Hungarians of Romania, UDMR), present Culture Minister; Monica Macovei, member of the Liberal Democratic Party (PD-L) at present she is an MEP; William Brinza (Romanian Ecologist Party, PER);Constantin Rotaru (Socialist Alliance Party, PAS); Corneliu Vadim Tudor (Grand Romania Party, PRM); Zsolt Szilagyi (Hungarians of Transylvania People's Party EMNP); Mirel Mircea Amaritei (Prodemo Party); Teodor Melescanu, independent; Gheorghe Funar, independent... Read more

Foundation : New World Forum
On 7th and 8th October the 6th New World Forum will be taking place in Paris. It comprises several plenary sessions bringing together many personalities. One of these sessions will be on the theme "What kind of Europe for the Future Generations? Jean-Claude Trichet, former ECB President, Irina Bokova, Director General of UNESCO, Hannes Swoboda, former MEP, Arnaud Montebourg, former Minister, Jean-David Levitte, Ambassador for France, Jean-Dominique Giuliani, Chairman of the Robert Schuman Foundation will be taking part in this event of which the Foundation is a partner... Read more
Border Walls in the World
On 8th October Amnesty International is organising a conference in Brussels on the as an extension to the exhibition "The Wall and Fear. India-Bangladesh." Three speakers will share their view of this issue. Michel Foucher, geographer, Professor of Geography at the University Lumière Lyon II and member of the Foundation's Scientific Committee will provide his analysis of this geopolitical question... Read more
New challenges for Ukraine and Europe
On 9th October the Bernardins College in Paris is organising a study day on "New Challenges for Ukraine and Europe" notably with Philippe de Suremain, former Ambassador and member of the Foundation's Scientific Committee... Read more
Security and Justice in Europe
Jean-Dominique Giuliani, Chairman of the Robert Schuman Foundation will be speaking on 13th October to auditors at the 26th session of the "Institut des Hautes Etudes Nationales de la Sécurité et de la Justice" (IHNESJ). His speech will focus on the European dimension of this theme... Read more

Financial Crisis : The euro zone's Composite PMI revised downwards in September
Growth waned again in September in the euro zone revealing its lowest level in 10 months indicated Markit on 3rd October as it published the PMI index. The euro zone's Composite PMI has been revised downwards to lie at 52. It lay at 52.5 in August. The recently observed slowing in the euro zone economy continued in September. The most recent Composite PMI figures highlight a further decline in new order and output growth over the month in the euro zone's private sector... Read more
Rise of unemployment in Spain
Unemployment continued to rise in Spain in September confirming the reversal of the August trend bringing the total number of unemployed up to 4.45 million according to figures published on 2nd October by the Employment Ministry. At the end of September 4,447,650 were unemployed in Spain, ie 19,720 more than in August said the ministry, whilst between February and August the figure had declined... Read more
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The French government debt rises over 2000 billion euro for the first time ever
According to an INSEE study published on 30th September France's government debt lay at 2,023,700 billion euro at the end of the second quarter in 2014 rising above the 2000 billion mark for the very first time. In terms of national wealth the debt now totals 95.1% of the GDP. In the "Point de Conjoncture" dated October 2014 INSEE stresses the general weakness of recovery in developed countries. Indeed growth was disappointing everywhere in 2014 - in the euro zone and also in the USA. It will total +0.4% in France for the whole year... Read more
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Greece plans for growth of 2.9% in 2015
Greece is planning for vigorous growth of 2.9% in 2015 according to a draft budget unveiled on 6th October by the Deputy Finance Minister Christos Staikouras. He said that growth is due to return in 2014 to 0.6% after six years of recession which made the country lose one quarter of its GDP. The draft budget, which is being presented on 6th October to Parliament's Finance department before its discussion in November, provides for a government deficit of 0.2% of the GDP against 0.8% in 2014... Read more
The Italian government revises its economic forecasts downwards
The Italian government revised its GDP forecasts downwards on 30th September and is now reckoning on a contraction of 0.3% in 2014, but with a return to growth next year. The council of ministers adopted an economic and finance document that is forecasting a GDP contraction of 0.3% this year and growth of 0.6% in 2015, said Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan during a press conference after the meeting. In April official forecasts reckoned on growth of 0.8% in 2014... Read more

Commission : Annual report on the monitoring of the application of EU law
On 1st October the European Commission published its 31st annual report on the monitoring of the application of EU law in 2013. This report highlights a notable decrease in the number of infringements over the last few years, whilst the number of cases settled via mechanisms like the "Pilot EU" has increased significantly. As in 2012 the report shows that the share of infringements (62% of all cases) involve conformity with European law governing the environment, taxation, transport, the internal market and services. The Member States with the worst results in terms of falling in line with community law are Italy, Spain, Greece and Latvia, whilst Malta and Estonia were the best performers. Croatia's results will be taken into account in 2014. This report "reflects the Commission's determination to work with the Member States to settle problems resulting from the non-respect of EU law at an early stage," commented the Commission in a press release... Read more
The 7th round of TTIP negotiations concluded in the USA
On 3rd October after a week's work the 7th round of negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), was concluded in Chevychase, Maryland, USA. The representatives of the European Commission and the American administration debated new measures. During the press conference Dan Mullaney, the deputy American spokesperson responsible for trade with Europe and the Middle East declared that public services like healthcare and education are not a part of the TTIP negotiations. There is also disagreement over the transparency of the work ongoing between the two sides. Many negotiators including Ignacio Garcia Bercero, the EU's head negotiator, seem to think that the negotiations are sufficiently advanced for them to be given a more transparent nature. Negotiators stressed the advantages of the agreement for SMEs as well as a greater similarity between US and EU standards... Read more
Further emergency measures in support of perishable fruit and vegetables
On 29th September the European Commission announced the adoption of a new series of emergency measures in support of perishable fruit and vegetables following the Russian embargo on certain agricultural product imports from the EU. Thanks to this programme 165 million euro will be added to the 125 million already released in August for EU fruit and vegetables. This additional sum will provide aid for the withdrawal of surplus volumes from the market... Read more
The Commission strengthens the regulation governing credit ratings agencies
On 30th September the European Commission adopted the technical regulatory standards required to implement stricter rules governing credit ratings agencies. Three main standards were adopted to regulate the information that firstly the issuers, initiators and sponsors disclose regarding structured financial instruments, secondly the information that ratings agencies have to report to the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) and thirdly the reports that the agencies have to deliver to the ESMA as part of their continuous supervision regarding the fees they invoice... Read more

Parliament : 2015 Budget: the European Parliament's Budgets Committee opposes the Council
Additional funds should be added to the EU's 2015 budget for growth and employment policies, likewise for education and the Erasmus+ programme in support of student mobility and also for the EU's humanitarian activities in war affected regions. This was the assertion made by MEPs of the Budgets Committee on 29th and 30th September. They are recommending that Parliament annuls the cuts put forward by the Council for both planned and real spending... Read more
Summary of the first week of hearings with the candidates designate
Since 29th September 21 of the 27 Commissioners designate have been heard by MEPs in respect of the appointment procedure of the new college described in article 17 of the treaty on the European Union. During the three hour hearing the Commissioners designate answered many questions set by the MEPs. The coordinators of the political groups then meet to assess the hearings. The hearings will continue until 7th October. The Vice-Presidents designate will heard by MEPs after this. Several candidates have been called for a further oral or written hearing before a final decision is taken... Read more

Council : Concept of operations for EU civilian advisory mission in Ukraine agreed
On October 1st the concept of operations for the EU civilian advisory mission in Ukraine to reform the civil security sector was agreed. In virtue of the EU's common security and defence policy this civilian mission heralds a further step towards the rapid start of the mission's work in support of efficient, trusted and democratically controlled civilian security services in Ukraine. It is due to achieve several goals which include overseeing the development of a reform strategy for the civilian security sector as well as the respect of human rights, the fight to counter corruption and equal opportunities. This mission will also ensure coordination and coherence with other EU work, as well as with the OSCE and other international partners... Read more

ECB : New measures adopted by the ECB's Council of Governors
On 2nd October the ECB's Council of Governors, which convened in Naples, adopted the main operational elements of asset back securities and the covered bond purchase programme. These programmes will last for at least two years and will help improve the monetary policy transmission mechanism, facilitate credit provision to the broad economy and generate positive spillovers to other markets. Amongst the measures adopted the Council decided that interest rates on main refinancing operations as well as those on the marginal lending facility and the deposit facility would remain unchanged, at 0.05%, 0.30% and -0.20% respectively... Read more
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European Agencies : Airbus A350-900 receives EASA Type Certification
On 30th September the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) announced that it had certified the A350, the new commercial airliner. Airbus has invested around 15 billion dollars (nearly 12 billion euro) to develop the A350. At the end of August the A350 XWB programme had registered 750 orders with 39 clients - ie the second best commercial result produced by Airbus behind the A320neo. The first A350-900 is due to be delivered at the end of the year to Qatar Airways which has ordered 43 of them... Read more
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Record number of migrant deaths in the Mediterranean
According to a press release published on 29th September by the International Organisation for Migration more than 3000 migrants have perished in the Mediterranean Sea since January, ie more than double the peak in 2011 following the Arab Spring. Of the 4077 deaths recorded in the world in 2013 three quarters of them took place in the Mediterranean, which makes it the mostly deadly journey of the last twenty years for illegal migrants. According to IOM figures most of the dead perished either by drowning, suffocation, hunger or thirst on their way from Africa and the Middle East... Read more
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Denmark : Early elections in Greenland
The government in Greenland announced on October 1st that early elections would be held on 28th November to end the political crisis in which the region sank after the suspension of its Prime Minister Aleqa Hammond following an embezzlement scandal and the transfer of the former government coalition party over to the opposition. Greenland's legislative assembly comprising 31 members decided on October 1st that elections would be held. According to various polls the opposition has a very good chance of winning which would make Sara Olsvig the future Prime Minister taking over from Aleqa Hammond who had been Prime Minister of this autonomous territory of Denmark since April 2013... Read more
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Finland : Alexander Stubb meets French President François Hollande
On 2nd October the French President hosted Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb at the Elysée. During a press conference François Hollande deemed that the 1% growth forecast for 2015 seemed "realistic". Both men also spoke of energy and international issues... Read more
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France : France: Presentation of draft finance bill 2015
Michel Sapin, the French Finance and Government Accounts Minister, together with Christian Eckert, the Secretary of State responsible for the Budget presented the draft finance bill 2015 on 1st October. The structural deficit will remain every high (2.2% next year) in spite of 21 billion euro in savings planned next year and 50 billion over the next three years in all (2015-2017). The level of obligatory contributions will only drop by 0.1 GDP points in spite of the announcement of a reduction on income tax. Government spending will only decline by 0.4 points. Finally high level participation by local authorities in efforts to reduce spending has been planned for: budgetary grants from the State to local authorities will be reduced by 11 billion euro by 2017... Read more
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France steps up its military intervention in Iraq
The President of the Republic convened a restricted defence council on October 1st which was devoted to the fight to counter the threat represented by the Da'esh and affiliated terrorist groups. France is continuing its action in Iraq and said that it was going to step up its military presence in order to weaken the movements of armed terrorist groups and to enable the Iraqi forces to restore stability and security. It will continue to work in close cooperation with all of its partners who are involved in a coalition that is widening... Read more
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls in London
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls made an official trip to London on 6th October. After speaking with his British counterpart David Cameron he gave a speech to City businessmen and bankers. He defended the reforms undertaken in Paris and the "need" for "dynamic investment policies" to revive growth in Europe, whilst recalling his attachment to business: "I love business! My government is pro-business," he declared. Manuel Valls also advocated that the UK remain within the EU declaring that "France wants the UK to stay in the EU." He warned that the UK and especially the City of London "would lose a great deal if they turned their back on Europe.".. Read more
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Italy : Matteo Renzi starts the reform of the labour market
President of the Italian Council Matteo Renzi won the support of the Democratic Party (PD) on 29th September concerning the reform of the labour market and notably the simplification of the dismissal procedure in major companies. The Renzi plan provides for the extension of unemployment rights, a reduction in the number of short-term contracts, the strengthening of the role played by employment agencies and a relaxing in wage guarantees for people with permanent employment contracts. This latter point caused the discontent of the left-wing of the Democratic Party, which as a whole however voted in support of the project 130 votes in support, 20 against and 11 abstentions... Read more
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Italy does not want to follow France in terms of government deficits
On 2nd October Italian Economy Minister Carlo Padoan declared in an interview with the daily Il Figlio that Italy was not intending to adopt the same position as France, whose government deficit has risen over the 3% mark. Even though the situation in the euro zone has worsened the Italian minister explained that Italy was going to adopt a different strategy by reducing GDP forecasts in 2014 and 2015 as well as revising its government deficit goals. The government has also postponed its structural deficit balance goal to 2017. Pier Carlo Padoan deems that "a country with a great deal of debt must respect the markets above all.".. Read more
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Poland : Poland: Eva Kopacz wins MPs' confidence
Polish Prime Minister Eva Kopacz presented her government's political priorities to the Sejm (the lower chamber of parliament) on October 1st. She did not want to set out a detailed timetable for the country's accession to the euro zone deeming that the latter had to be strengthened and that Poland must fulfil all of the membership criteria, "which will be good for its economy in all events." After calling for a "consensus" between all parties on foreign policy Eva Kopacz said she wanted to implement a "pragmatic policy" to the situation in Ukraine. Eva Kopacz's government won MPs' confidence as they were called to vote after the general policy speech - they voted with an absolute majority of 259 votes, 189 voted against and there were 7 abstentions out of the 460 members of the Chamber... Read more

UK : The British government plans to cut the number of official buildings
The British government presented a plan on 3rd October which aims to divide the number of official buildings in London by three whilst moving some services to the periphery in a bid to save "billions" of pounds. In office since 2010 the Conservative government led by D. Cameron has already reduced the number of ministerial buildings in London down from 143 to 71 said a press release published by the Prime Minister's cabinet. The aim is now to retain only 23 buildings after 2020 and move some services which are a present based in Whitehall. Moving half of the civil servants working in Whitehall "will save taxpayers billions by 2030" maintains the Prime Minister's cabinet which has launched a vast austerity programme... Read more

Sweden : Stefan Löfven becomes Prime Minister of Sweden
On 2nd October the Swedish Parliament (Riksdag) approved the appointment of Stefan Löfven (Social Democratic Party) as Prime Minister. The new government head won 132 votes against 49 and 154 abstentions. He presented his political priorities on 3rd October and announced his government team to parliament. The Greens made their debut in government in Sweden in which the Social Democratic Prime Minister Stefan Löfven appointed women as Foreign and Finance Ministers. "The Swedish people voted for political alternation and a new political direction. A new government comprising social democrats and the Greens is ready to fulfil this task," maintained Mr Löfven in a speech before Parliament. "The new Swedish government is a feminist one," he said, before announcing the list of 24 names comprising 12 men and 12 women. The Foreign Minister is former European Commissioner Margot Wallström and Finance Minister is Magdalena Andersson, an economist who previously headed the tax authorities... Read more
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Russia : Letter from President Barroso to President Putin
On October 1st the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso published a letter addressed to Russian President Vladimir Putin in which he warns him against the introduction of any further trade barriers against Ukraine. During the trilateral ministerial meeting on the implementation of the EU/Ukraine Association Agreement which took place on the same day participants approved the conclusions of this meeting and the legislative measures required. President Barroso is notably concerned about the recent adoption of a decree by the Russian government to introduce further trade barriers between Russia and Ukraine. He deems this decision to be contrary to agreed common conclusions and that it endangers the EU/Ukraine agreement, which is a bilateral one in which only two parties can accept any further adaptations... Read more

Ukraine : Ukraine: the GDP is due to contract by 8% in 2014
On 2nd October the World Bank's country director for Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine, Qimiao Fan declared that the Ukrainian economy is due to contract by 8% this year due to the conflict in the east of the country... Read more
Ukraine: French and German drones to monitor the ceasefire
France and Germany are to send drones to monitor the respect of the ceasefire in the east of Ukraine "within the next few days" announced French Defence Minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian on 5th October... Read more

NATO : NATO's new Secretary General takes office
Jens Stoltenberg, former Norwegian Prime Minister chaired his first Alliance meeting on 1st October 2014 after having taken office as Secretary General. He succeeds Anders Fogh Rasmussen... Read more
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Eurostat : Annual inflation rate in the euro zone at 0.3%
According to a press release by Eurostat on 30th September the euro zone's annual inflation rate is estimated at 0.3% in September 2014. Regarding the main components of euro zone inflation services are due to witness the highest level in September (1.1%, against 1.3% in August), followed by food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (0.2%, against -0.3% in August), industrial goods, energy aside (0.1%, against 0.3% in August), and energy (-2.4% against -2% in August)... Read more
August unemployment figures in the euro zone and the European Union
According to a Eurostat press release published on 30th September unemployment figures, adjusted to seasonal variations, lay at 11.5% in the euro zone in August 2014. In the EU unemployment lay at 10.1% in August 2014, the lowest rate recorded since February 2012. Eurostat noted that there were 24,642 million unemployed men and women in the EU, 18,326 of whom are in the euro zone. Amongst the member states the lowest rates were recorded in Austria (4.7%), Germany (4.9%), and the highest in Greece (27% in June 2014) and Spain (24.4%)... Read more
EU Regional Yearbook
The 2014 Regional Yearbook was published by Eurostat on 6th October. It provides a European regional statistical overview covering a wide range of areas. It also provides a more detailed image of the EU in comparison with national reports and promotes the understanding of regional diversity... Read more

Studies/Reports : SMEs have experienced problems in 2013 in spite of signs of recovery
In 2013 economic conditions remained difficult for SMEs in most Member States. Economic results seem to show that recovery has started but this is occurring unequally and is still fragile. These are the findings of the annual SME Performance Review and the country per country Small Business Act reports published on 3rd October by the European Commission... Read more
European Semester: assessment of the introduction of economic reform
The Commission's DG Economic and Financial Affairs published a report on 1st October assessing the introduction of economic reforms in the Member States in comparison with the recommendations put forward by the European Semester, the cycle of economic and budgetary coordination in the EU. The index set in place by the European Commission enables the assessment of the introduction of economic reform leading to a score of just over 40% over the last four years. The report also highlights that the implementation of these reforms was lower in 2013 than in 2012 and that this "seemed to vary according to the electoral cycle in the Member States.".. Read more
Publication of the first Horizon report on Education/Digital challenge
The European Commission and the New Media Consortium, an American a not-for-profit body which brings together education experts, published the first "Horizon" report on 2nd October which highlights the technological trends and developments that might affect education over the next five years. This report ranks the challenges facing European education institutions into three categories: solvable, difficult and wicked. This year the report promotes the "low digital competences and skills of schoolchildren and the need for the effective use of ITC's in teacher training" as the priorities of European education... Read more
Food product retail sales
On 2nd October the European Commission published the results of an indepth study on the development in choice and innovation in the retail sale of food products in Europe over the last decade. Since 2004 innovation has led to greater consumer choice in the shops. However the number of new products that reach consumers on a yearly basis has dropped by 6.5% since 2008. According to Joaquin Almunia, Vice-President of the Commission, responsible for Competition, this study has revealed interesting insights in order to assess citizens' concerns about the food supply chain... Read more

Publications : Publication 71 of the review "Géoéconomie"
A review devoted to debate founded in 1997 Géoéconomie focuses on the study of the origins, developments and perspectives of globalisation - it aims to clarify the main trends that structure new world governance as well as to decipher the power strategies of the players who make up the international arena. In the 71st issue of this review, which has just been published, Michel Roger, Minister of State for the Principality of Monaco and member of the Robert Schuman Foundation's Scientific Committee has published an article entitled "La Principauté de Monaco, un État aux spécificités utiles à l'Europe"... Read more

Culture : Book fair in Frankfurt
The Frankfurt Book Fair will be taking place from 8th to 12th October 2014. This literary event is the biggest of its kind in the world: yearly it attracts more than 300,000 authors, editors and visitors from the world over. This year Finland will be the fair's guest of honour... Read more
Katsushika Hokusai on show in Paris
The French National Museums are running a unique exhibition of the works of Katsushika Hokusai at the National Galleries of the Grand Palais, Paris until 18th January 2015. Designed in two parts the exhibition unveils 500 exceptional pieces of work most of which will not leave Japan once the Hokusai Museum is opened in 2016. The exhibition offers therefore an exceptional opportunity to discover the work by the world's most famous Japanese artist - via both his painting and his prints... Read more
Sigmar Polke at the Tate Modern, London
The Tate Modern is running a unique retrospective from 9th October 2014 to 8th February 2015 on the work by contemporary German artist Sigmar Polke. This exhibition is the first to bring together such a wide range of artistic supports with which Polke works - not only painting, drawing, photography, cinema and sculpture but also laptops, slideshows and photocopies. In addition to the exhibition the museum is putting on various events focused on Polke's work: film showings, conferences, seminars, lessons and workshops. The exhibition is being organised by the Museum of Modern Art of New York together with the Tate Modern... Read more
Monet, Gauguin, Van Gogh: Japanese inspirations
The Folkwang Museum in Essen, Germany is running an exhibition until 18th January 2015 which highlights the Japanese influences in the art of the grand masters such as Degas, Monet, Gauguin and Van Gogh. The museum especially wants to highlight this period ranging from 1860 to 1910 in France called "Japonism". This exhibition provides an opportunity to compare work by the greatest European artists of the 19th century with those of some grand masters of Japanese art... Read more

6th and 7th October


Hearings of Commissioners at the European Parliament continued ...

8th October


Transport, Telecommunications, Energy Council

9th and 10th October


Justice/Internal Affairs Council

13th October

Eurogroup Meeting

13th and 14th October


Agriculture and Fisheries Council

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