The Letter n°948

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The Letter n°948
The Letter
Tuesday 21st September 2021
issue 948
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The Common Agricultural Policy 2023-2027: change and continuity
Author : Bernard Bourget
Bernard Bourget
The new measures governing the common agricultural policy for the years 2023-2027, which were agreed last June, are a continuation of the previous programmes in terms of taking greater account of the environment and climate. It is also evolving in its functioning, in particular for the organisation of markets and the application of the principle of subsidiarity.
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Front page! : German Uncertainties
The German parliamentary elections on 26 September are particularly important for Europe. The lack of substantive debates during the campaign and the weakening of the two major parties, however, point to long months of coalition building and a fear of reform, which could prove detrimental to European progress, notes Jean-Dominique Giuliani... Read more

Elections : General Elections in the Czech Republic on 8 and 9 October
The ANO movement of outgoing Prime Minister Andrej Babis is expected to lead the legislative elections on 8 and 9 October. But due to the weakening of its coalition partner, the Social Democratic Party, and the establishment of two opposition coalitions to remove it from power, it may not be able to form a government. It should be noted that the voting system, and in particular the distribution of seats, was changed this year... Read more

Foundation : How to make the European Union a realistic power?
At the invitation of the Institute for Applied Geopolitical Studies (EGA), Pascale Joannin, Managing Director of the Foundation, will speak at a videoconference on 22 September on "How to make the European Union a realistic power?.. Read more
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Who will be the next German chancellor and with which government coalition?
On 14 September, the Foundation organised an online debate on Germany and the federal elections of 26 September with Frank Baasner, Joachim Bitterlich and Hélène Kohl with the aim of analysing the issues at stake in the elections and outlining the country's political future with a new chancellor and a new government coalition... Read more
Special page - German Federal elections 2021
On 26 September, Germans will vote to elect their MPs and indirectly choose who will succeed Angela Merkel after 16 years in the Chancellery. To understand what is at stake in these decisive elections for Germany and the European Union, here you can find the Foundation's publications and the debates we are organising around this election, as well as our interventions in the media and resources on the programmes of the contending parties... Read more
Belarus: chronology of a revolution in progress
In Paris from 15 to 17 September, the opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya called on France and the international community to work towards a dialogue in Belarus and to find a solution to the crisis. To follow the crisis sparked by the rigged presidential election of August 2020, the Foundation offers you a chronology of events and links to European responses and initiatives... Read more
Map of Health Measures and Travel Conditions in Europe
Outdoor masks have not been mandatory in Portugal since 13 September. In Austria, since 15 September, unvaccinated people must wear FFP2 masks in transport, shops and cultural venues, and antigen tests are only valid for 24 hours. From 25 September, in the Netherlands, the 1.5 metre distance will no longer be compulsory but a health pass will be introduced in bars, restaurants and cultural venues. In Italy, the health pass will be extended to all workplaces from 15 October. To follow the development of the situation and to understand the conditions of entry in the different EU Member States, the Foundation offers you a complete map of the measures in place. An indispensable, regularly updated resource... Read more
The Schuman Report on Europe, State of the Union 2021
You have not yet had the opportunity to read the 2021 edition of the "Schuman Report on Europe, the State of the Union", a reference work published by Marie B.? You can still do so. It is available in hard copy in bookshops and on our website, as well as in digital form... Read more
The Permanent Atlas of the European Union is available
This autumn, it is worth reading the new edition of the 'Permanent Atlas of the European Union' published by Marie B. This book reflects the latest political and economic changes in the European Union and its Member States. Using more than 50 maps, texts and thematic sheets, the Atlas summarises the essential history and political and statistical realities of the Union. It is available in hard copy in bookshops and on our website, and in digital format... Read more

Commission : Speech regarding the State of the Union
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivered her annual State of the Union address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg on 15 September. She announced an investment of €50 billion by 2027 to prepare for and counter future pandemics, a doubling of EU funding to protect biodiversity worldwide, as well as increased funding for international climate action. She also announced a forthcoming EU semiconductor law and a European defence summit to be held during the French EU Presidency in 2022... Read more
European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority
On 17 September, the Commission established the European Health Emergency Response and Preparedness Authority (HERA) to prevent, detect and respond rapidly to health emergencies. The aim is to support research and innovation on the development of new medical countermeasures. HERA will have a budget of €6 billion and should be fully operational by early 2022... Read more
Plan for Digital Transformation
On 15 September, the Commission presented an implementation plan for digital transformation by 2030, with objectives centred on skills, infrastructure, digital transformation of businesses and public services. The plan sets out a new governance framework based on a cooperation mechanism with Member States... Read more
Precise contours of the new European Bauhaus
On 15 September, the Commission outlined the new European Bauhaus. This €85 million project adds a sustainable innovation dimension to the Green Pact. It includes the decarbonisation of the construction and textile industries. On 16 September, the Commission awarded 20 projects and concepts that illustrate the values of the new European Bauhaus: sustainability, aesthetics and inclusion... Read more
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Recommendations regarding the protection of journalists
On 16 September, the Commission presented a series of recommendations to Member States to strengthen the safety of journalists and other media professionals, through the creation of independent national support services, hotlines, as well as access to legal advice, psychological support and accommodation. It stressed the importance of providing specific support to women journalists, who are particularly vulnerable to threats and attacks... Read more

Parliament : European Citizens' Panel on the Future of Europe
The first of four citizens' panels organised in the framework of the Conference on the Future of Europe was held in Strasbourg from 17 to 19 September. The participants, selected to represent the whole population of the Union, discussed topics related to the economy, social justice, employment and digital transformation. The panels will continue over three weekends. The resulting recommendations will be debated by the Parliament in December. All Europeans can contribute to the debates on the conference platform... Read more
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Resolution on the partnership with the outer most regions
In a resolution adopted on 14 September, MEPs called on the Commission to improve dialogue and take into account the local interests of the EU's outermost regions (Guadeloupe, Martinique, Réunion, French Guiana, Madeira and the Azores, and the Canary Islands), in particular through the creation of a specific committee. They also approved a Council draft on the association of the overseas countries and territories with the European Union... Read more
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Resolution regarding the maritime strategy for the Atlantic region
In a resolution adopted on 14 September, MEPs called on the Commission to include in its maritime strategy for the Atlantic region better protection of the oceans by promoting environmentally and socio-economically sustainable projects.. Read more
Resolution to improve working conditions of platform workers
MEPs called on 16 September for workers on digital platforms such as meal delivery services to be given the same social protection as other workers. MEPs are calling for a more protective social contributions and liability regime... Read more
Adoption of the reform of the European Blue Card
On 15 September, MEPs adopted a reform of the EU Blue Card Directive, which sets out the conditions of entry and residence for third-country nationals, with a view to facilitating the employment of highly skilled immigrants. A 6-month contract or job offer will be sufficient to obtain the card, and the minimum wage threshold will be lowered. Beneficiaries of international protection will be able to apply for a Blue Card in Member States other than the one in charge of their protection. The text must now be approved by the Council... Read more
Prevention of disease via greater cooperation
On 14 September, MEPs adopted amendments to the regulation on serious cross-border health threats, stressing the importance of cooperation between Member States and with EU agencies, the protection of personal data and the safeguarding of the proper functioning of the single market in times of crisis in order to deal with future pandemics... Read more
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Approval of the Brexit Adjustment Reserve
The €5 billion Brexit adjustment reserve to help Member States cope with the consequences of the UK leaving the EU was approved by the Parliament on 15 September. The sum will be allocated gradually to Member States until 2025, taking into account the size of their trade with the UK, the extent of their fisheries in the UK's exclusive economic zone and the populations living in regions bordering the UK. The text still needs to be formally approved by the Council... Read more
Condemnation of attacks on media freedom in Poland
On 16 September, MEPs once again condemned the systemic violations of the rule of law in Poland. In particular, they denounced the adoption on 11 August of a law limiting the independence of the media and called on Poland to respect the rule of EU law... Read more
Visa Programme for Afghan Women
On 16 September, MEPs called on the EU and Member States to provide a coordinated response to the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. They call for the evacuation of EU citizens and Afghans under threat to be facilitated by the creation of humanitarian corridors and support from neighbouring countries. They also call for the establishment of an asylum policy that would include a special visa programme for Afghan women fleeing the Taliban regime... Read more
Resolution on relations with China and Russia
On 16 September, MEPs called for a reduction in the EU's energy dependence on Russia and a strengthening of dialogue with China, pointing to violations of democratic values and human rights by both countries. They recommend continuing sanctions against Russia for its destabilisation of the European political order and call on China to allow an independent investigation into the origins and spread of the COVID-19 virus... Read more
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Diplomacy : Proposal for strategy for the Indo-Pacific
On 17 September, the Commission proposed to strengthen the EU's strategic engagement in the Indo-Pacific region. This strategy is characterised by the establishment of new trade partnerships with the countries of the region, better ocean governance and increased naval deployments to secure the area... Read more

Court of Auditors : Report on the Return Policy
In a report published on 13 September, the European Court of Auditors found that the EU's return policy for irregular immigrants is not effective enough. Return rates are low because the Commission, which negotiates on behalf of the EU, has difficulties in cooperating with third countries and there are insufficient synergies with Member States. Despite the introduction of electronic case management systems, cooperation with third countries remains ineffective, in particular because of the difficulty of using the data provided... Read more

Germany : Meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel
German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited Paris on 16 September for a working dinner with French President Emmanuel Macron. The two leaders discussed the Afghan crisis, the situation in Belarus and Ukraine, European defence sovereignty, the upcoming European deadlines and the preparation of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the first half of 2022... Read more
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Greece : 8th Summit of the countries of the South of the European Union
On the occasion of the EU Med 9 summit held on 17 September in Athens, the leaders of the EU Mediterranean States adopted a joint declaration in view of the COP26 to be held from 1 November in Glasgow in which they reasserted their commitment to the climate transition and environmental protection. Nine countries are now members of the group following the accession of Slovenia and Croatia... Read more
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The Netherlands : Resignations of Foreign Affairs and Defence Ministers
Dutch Foreign and Defence Ministers Sigrid Kaag and Ank Bijleveld resigned on 16 and 17 September, after a vote of no confidence by MPs over Mark Rutte's government's handling of the Afghan crisis and the evacuation of Dutch nationals from Kabul. Trade Minister Tom de Bruijn is taking over the foreign affairs portfolio on an interim basis, and a new defence minister is to be appointed... Read more
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UK : Postponement of customs checks on European imports
The UK government announced on 14 September a delay until 1 January 2022 in the implementation of customs controls on imports of agricultural products of animal origin from the European Union, planned after Brexit. The presentation of phytosanitary certificates has been postponed until 1 July 2022. The British government is thus trying to limit the country's supply difficulties... Read more
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Government Reshuffle
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson reshuffled his government on 15 September. Criticised for his inaction in the Afghan crisis, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab became Justice Secretary and was replaced by Liz Truss. The ministers of Education and Housing were also replaced... Read more
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Court of Justice : Poland fined for mining
On 20 September, the European Court of Justice ordered Poland to pay the European Commission a penalty payment of €500,000 per day until it ceases mining activities at the Turów lignite mine on the border with the Czech Republic, in accordance with an interim order issued by the Court in May. The case was brought before the Court by the Czech Republic, which believes that the mine's operation violates the directive on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment... Read more

Council of Europe : Recommendation regarding the fight to counter antisemitism
The Commission against Racism and Intolerance called on the 47 member states of the Council of Europe on 14 September to take action in the following four areas: institutional coordination policies; prevention and education; protection of Jews, Jewish communities and their institutions; prosecution and law enforcement... Read more
Implementation of ECHR decisions
On 17 September, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted decisions and resolutions concerning the implementation of judgments and decisions of the European Court of Human Rights by member states. France was warned about overcrowding in its prisons and poor conditions of detention. Other resolutions were also adopted, in particular on the damage committed by Turkey in Cyprus and in Romania... Read more
Report on violence against women in Poland
On 16 September, GREVIO, the Council of Europe body responsible for monitoring the implementation of the Istanbul Convention on Combating Violence against Women, published its first report on Poland. It welcomes the progress made on the legal front, with the creation of new criminal offences against sexual and psychological harassment. It makes a series of recommendations, including for a new legal definition of rape, based on the absence of consent... Read more

Eurostat : Increase in Trade Surplus
The euro area recorded a surplus of €20.7 billion in international trade in goods in July, up 17.1% on July 2020, according to figures published by Eurostat on 16 September. The surplus for the European Union was €15.7 billion... Read more

Culture : Museum of German Romanticism
The Museum of German Romanticism was opened on 14 September in Frankfurt am Main. It brings together a considerable collection of literary, artistic and musical works from the German Romantic period... Read more
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George Enescu Festival
The 25th edition of the George Enescu International Festival takes place until 26 September in several theatres and emblematic cultural venues in Bucharest. Classical music, contemporary music and jazz meet in a multitude of events around the theme "History made with love"... Read more
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40 years of donations of the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado
Until January 16, 2022, the Prado Museum in Madrid is devoting an exhibition to 40 years of donations from the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado, bringing together for the first time these works, including paintings by Fra Angelico and Goya... Read more
Photos by Vivian Maier in Paris
The Musée du Luxembourg in Paris is exhibiting previously unseen photographs and films by the Franco-American artist Vivian Maier until 16 January 2022. In the streets of New York and then Chicago, the photographer captured the changes in American society from the 1950s onwards. Discovered after her death in 2009, Vivian Maier's street photographs offer a new perspective of the other side of the American dream... Read more
Basel Art Fair
From 24 to 26 September, the international contemporary art fair will be held in Basel, Switzerland. Art Basel offers an overview of contemporary art from all over the world with no less than 4,000 artists from 35 different countries... Read more
Design Festival in London
Until 26 September London is hosting its Design Festival, a series of free installations and exhibitions to promote the creativity of the world's leading designers... Read more
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Art in Contemporary Poland
Until 30 October, the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw presents "Did you know that a rainbow glows in the dark?", an exhibition bringing together works by contemporary artists since 1989 to tell the story of Poland's transformation through the representation of issues such as the climate crisis, social division, inequality, migration or changes in information... Read more

Napoleon's Bicentenary : For the Best and for the Empire
Until 6 March 2022, the exhibition "Pour le meilleur et pour l'Empire - Sur les pas de Napoléon Ier à la Monnaie de Paris" (For the best and for the Empire - In the footsteps of Napoleon I at the Monnaie de Paris) sheds light on the birth of the Germinal Franc and on the role of medals and symbols in the service of Napoleonic power... Read more

21 September 2021


General Affairs Council

21-23 September 2021


Informal Meeting of Transport and Energy Ministers

21-27 September

New York

United National General Assembly

23-24 September 2021


Informal Meeting of Ministers responsible for Consumer Protection

26 September 2021


Bundestag Elections

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The Letter n°982
Europe in a perfect storm
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The Letter n°981
In support of a new approach to the Western Balkans
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The Letter n°979
Europe Day: 72 years of European Integration
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The Letter n°978
The challenges in Protecting Maritime Areas of Common Interest, from the Atlantic to the Indo-Pacific
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The Letter n°977
Strategic dependencies, a question of sovereignty
published on 25/04/2022
The Letter n°976
Reception of Ukrainian refugees. Between emergency responses and long-term solutions
published on 19/04/2022
The Letter n°975
From the Russia Pact to the Green Deal?
published on 11/04/2022
The Letter n°974
Global food crisis: Europe must choose between retreat and responsibility
published on 04/04/2022
The Letter n°973
European unilateralism as a tool for regulating international trade
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The Letter n°972
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published on 21/03/2022
The Letter n°971
The Eastern Partnership under the test of war in Ukraine
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The Letter n°970
"Russia's invasion of Ukraine is a moment of truth for Europe"
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The Letter n°969
A few truths about Ukraine and Russia
published on 28/02/2022
The Letter n°968
Russia, Ukraine and international law
published on 21/02/2022
The Letter n°967
The European Strategy for a "New Deal" with Africa
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The Letter n°966
"If only ageing Europe had chosen the easy option of more immigration"
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The Letter n°965
"The European strategy in the Indo-Pacific is subtle and perfectly adapted"
published on 31/01/2022
The Letter n°964
European sovereignty, strategic autonomy, Europe as a power: what reality for the European Union, and for which future?
published on 24/01/2022
The Letter n°963
For a new European growth strategy
published on 17/01/2022
The Letter n°962
The Challenges of the French Presidency of the Council
published on 10/01/2022