Europe





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EU-US Trade Negotiations
- Corporate Europe Observatory
: LINK ¤ C E O

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  • "the report reveals a dramatic business-bias in the Commission’s consultation policy around this giant trade deal"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "of the 560 lobby encounters that DG Trade held to prepare the negotiations"

 

 

 

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  • "520 (92 per cent) were with business lobbyists, while only 26 (four per cent) were with public interest groups"

 

 

 

 

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  • "for every encounter with a trade union or consumer group, there were 20 with companies and industry federations"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "DG Trade actively involved business lobbyists in drawing up the EU position for TTIP"

 

 

 

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  • "while keeping "pesky" trade unionists and other public interest groups at bay"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the result is a big-business-first agenda for the negotiations"

 

 

 

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  • "which endangers many achievements that people in Europe have long struggled for, from food safety rules to environmental protection"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "no sector has lobbied the European Commission more during the preparation phase for the negotiations on the proposed EU-US trade deal (TTIP) than the agribusiness sector"

 

 

 

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  • "food multinationals, agri-traders and seed producers"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "agribusiness lobbies such as the pesticide industry have strongly pushed their agenda via the TTIP negotiations"

 

 

 

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  • "with the aim of undermining current EU food regulations"

 

 

 

 

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  • "trade tools such as "mutual recognition" and "regulatory co-operation" would lead to an erosion of food safety standards"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "other economic sectors that were lobbying actively in the preparatory phase of the TTIP negotiations"

 

 

 

 

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  • "including telecommunications, IT, auto industry, engineering, as well as the chemical sector"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the agenda-setting for TTIP has been largely driven by businesses with headquarters in the US, Germany and the UK"

 

 

 

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  • "and by industry lobby groups organised on the EU level such as the European employers’ federation BusinessEurope"

 

 

 

 

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  • "and the European Services Forum, a lobby outfit of large services companies such as Deutsche Bank and TheCity UK"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the data also reveals that more than 30 per cent (94 out of 269) of the private sector interest groups"

 

 

 

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  • "that have lobbied DG Trade on TTIP are absent from the EU’s Transparency Register"

 

 

 

 

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  • "among them large companies such as Walmart, Walt Disney, General Motors, France Telecom and Maersk"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "some of the industry associations lobbying hardest for TTIP such as the US Chamber of Commerce"

 

 

 

 

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  • "and the Transatlantic Business Council are also lobbying under the radar of the lobby register"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Europe can Survive without Russian Gas
- Bruegel: LINK ¤ BRUEGEL

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  • "replacing 130 bcm of natural gas imports from Russia would be a significant challenge, but not impossible"

 

 

 

 

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  • "alternative natural gas supplies: Europe received natural gas from Russia (27%), Norway (23%)"

 

 

 

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  • "North Africa (8%), as liquefied natural gas (LNG) from other suppliers (9%) and domestic production (33%)"

 

 

 

 

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  • "increasing pipeline imports from Norway (102 bcm) is possible up to about 120-130 bcm"

 

 

 

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  • "there is certainly spare capacity for importing more in the summer months to fill the European gas storages"

 

 

 

 

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  • "increasing natural gas imports from North Africa from 35 bcm to 50 bcm also seems feasible"

 

 

 

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  • "most importantly, however, LNG import capacities are underused"

 

 

 

 

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  • "there is 180 bcm/year of existing re-gasification capacity in the European Union, plus an additional 35 bcm under construction"

 

 

 

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  • "but only 46 bcm was used"

 

 

 

 

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  • "in the short term opportunities for stepping up domestic production exist"

 

 

 

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  • "the largest natural gas field in Europe - the Dutch Groningen field - for example produced significantly less gas than it is able to deliver"

 

 

 

 

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  • "there is still 60 bcm of gas used for generating electricity, that can be produced from other sources"

 

 

 

 

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  • "also industry might switch away from using gas"

 

 

 

 

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  • "most of the natural gas consumed was for residential and commercial heating and industry"

 

 

 

 

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  • "reducing ambient temperature by 1.5 °C during heating season (or energy efficiency measures at the residential level)"

 

 

 

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  • "will reduce corresponding natural gas consumption by about 10 percent, or 19 bcm"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "replacing 130 bcm of natural gas imports from Russia within a year would be a significant challenge"

 

 

 

 

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  • "but, as our rough estimates show, not impossible"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the impact on Russia would be more severe than the impact on the EU"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Inflation
- Kenneth Rogoff: LINK ¤ PROJECT SYNDICATE

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  • "yes, inflation is an unfair way of effectively writing down all non-indexed debts in the economy"

 

 

 

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  • "price inflation forces creditors to accept repayment in debased currency. In principle, there should be a way to fix the ills of the financial system without resort to inflation"

 

 

 

 

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  • "unfortunately, the closer one examines the alternatives, including capital injections for banks and direct help for home mortgage holders"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the clearer it becomes that inflation would be a help, not a hindrance"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "moderate inflation in the short run - say, 6% for two years - would not clear the books"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "but it would significantly ameliorate the problems"

 

 

 

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  • "making other steps less costly and more effective"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "fortunately, creating inflation is not rocket science"

 

 

 

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  • "all central banks need to do is to keep printing money to buy up government debt"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the main risk is that inflation could overshoot, but this problem is easily negotiated"

 

 

 

 

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  • "with good communication policy, inflation expectations can be contained"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and inflation can be brought down as quickly as necessary"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Merkel's Austerity Drive has failed
- the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "in outspoken comments Benoit Hamon, the Social and Consumer Affairs Minister of France, said"

 

 

 

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  • "it is time to finish with the politics of austerity in Europe"

 

 

 

 

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  • "only Merkel, supported by a few northern countries, believes austerity is working"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "when it's clear there is no prospect of unemployment rates going down"

 

 

 

 

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  • "as eurozone economies continued to stagnate and unemployment soared, particularly in southern Europe"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the tide was turning against Merkel's emphasis on reducing debts at all costs"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the wave of opinion against austerity is in the majority now among leaders and economists"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Solidarity in the EU - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "echoing calls by the Spanish and Italian Governments for German support to bring down the costs of their borrowing in the bond markets"

 

 

 

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  • "François Hollande, President of France, said, they should be able to finance themselves at "reasonable" rates"

 

 

 

 

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  • "it was unfair some eurozone countries were borrowing at 1% and others at 7%"

 

 

 

 

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  • ""solidarity" has to come first followed by deeper integration"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "whenever we take a step towards solidarity, the union"

 

 

 

 

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  • "which means the respect of common rules around governance - should progress"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "solidarity can't go without democratic control"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "France would "tirelessly" champion the growth agenda"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "this compromise between getting out of debt and growth"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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European Debt Crisis
- Carmen Reinhart - Vincent Reinhart: LINK ¤ WASHINGTON POST

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  • "once investors decide that a country living beyond its means will have a hard time meeting its debt obligations"

 

 

 

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  • "spending cuts become a reality of arithmetic"

 

 

 

 

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  • "a large and sudden contraction in government spending"

 

 

 

 

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  • "is almost sure to shrink economic activity"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "this means tax collections fall and unemployment and welfare benefits rise"

 

 

 

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  • "undermining efforts to reduce the deficit"

 

 

 

 

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  • "even if new borrowing is reduced or eliminated, it takes time to whittle down a large debt"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a country such as Greece should seek to negotiate with its creditors to reduce its debt"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Airbus - US cable - 2009: LINK ¤ 09BERLIN1355

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  • "Airbus CEO Thomas Enders expressed strong disappointment regarding the bidding process"

 

 

 

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  • "for the next generation of US air force tankers"

 

 

 

 

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  • "Boeing has used its influence"

 

 

 

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  • "to ensure a process that will work in its favor"

 

 

 

 

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  • "Airbus would win any "free and fair" process"

 

 

 

 

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  • "Enders accused Boeing of structuring the competition as a "price shoot-out""

 

 

 

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  • "and since its aircraft is smaller, it will always be cheaper"

 

 

 

 

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  • "Boeing has made the contest "protest proof""

 

 

 

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  • "Airbus is an entire generation ahead of Boeing"

 

 

 

 

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  • "that is why it won the first contest"

 

 

 

 

 

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comment US:

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  • "Enders made it clear that Airbus has strong political supporters in European Governments"

 

 

 

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  • "who would be angered by a Boeing victory"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Europeans for Financial Reform: LINK ¤ EUROPEANS FINANCIAL REFORM

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  • "the financial reforms which have recently been undertaken in Europe are fragmented and have limited scope"

 

 

 

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  • "EU proposals so far are limited and fall short of what is needed to shape a sound financial system"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "it’s time for citizens around Europe to raise our voices and demand that the fundamental causes of this crisis be addressed"

 

 

 

 

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  • "we need tough rules to stop the financiers’ folly"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and a new framework that better serves the public interest"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the unregulated global financial market and economy must be subject to fair and transparent global governance"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Spinelli Group: LINK ¤ SPINELLI GROUP

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  • "it will be the moment of new action and it will be the moment for new people:"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the moment for a free and united Europe"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Draft Treaty establishing the European Union - Spinelli - PDF: LINK ¤ I D W
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  • "the draft Treaty creates Union citizenship, establishes the protection of fundamental rights"

 

 

 

 

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  • "and the obligation of the Members of Parliament to observe them"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "as well as democratic principles"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Draft also introduced the principle of subsidiarity"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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EUROPE - Wikipedia EN: LINK ¤ EUROPE

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  • "Europe is a continent that comprises the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia"

 

 

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  • "Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, and the Black Sea and its connected waterways to the southeast"

 

 

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  • "Europe is the third-most populous continent after Asia and Africa, with a population of 743 million or about 11% of the world's population"

 

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