The European Union is responding to the global economic crisis through actions on different levels.
Fast facts, background information, progress and more in depth information on main EU issues
19/12/2013 - Institutional affairs
The European Council held a thematic debate on defence. It identified priority actions for stronger cooperation. The European Council welcomed the general approach reached by the Council on the Single Resolution Mechanism, which will be a cornerstone of the Banking Union. |PHOTOS|2|3|VIDEO|2|
19/12/2013 - Economy, finance, tax and competition
18/12/2013 - Environment, consumers and health
The clean air policy package updates existing legislation and further reduces harmful emissions from industry, traffic, energy plants and agriculture, with a view to reducing their impact on human health and the environment. |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
18/12/2013 - Agriculture, fisheries and food / Environment, consumers and health
The European Commission has adopted three draft laws on animal cloning and on novel food which will provide legal certainty in this field. Two proposals will ban the use of the cloning technique in the EU for farm animals1 and the imports of these animal clones. |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
18/12/2013 - Institutional affairs / External relations and foreign affairs
The Council discussed enlargement and the stabilisation and association process. "Enlargement remains a key policy of our Union" said Linas Linkevičius, the President of the Council after the meeting. |PHOTOS|
17/12/2013 - Agriculture, fisheries and food
The Council adopted the common agricultural policy (CAP) reform package and transitional CAP measures for 2014 following a first-reading agreement with the European Parliament. Concerning fisheries, the ministers reached a political agreement on fishing opportunities 2014 for certain fish stocks in the Black Sea. |PHOTOS|2|
17/12/2013 - Business / Economy, finance, tax and competition
Compared to last year, European SMEs are becoming more resource efficient and are contributing substantially to the transition towards a low-carbon economy, according to the results of the 2013 Eurobarometer survey on "SMEs, resource efficiency and green markets". |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
17/12/2013 - External relations and foreign affairs
Foreign Affairs ministers discussed a wide range of issues, including the latest developments in the Syrian crisis and recent events in Ukraine. |PHOTOS|
16/12/2013 - Transport and travel
The European Commission adopted "Shift2Rail", a new public-private partnership to invest just under €1 billion in research and innovation to get more passengers and freight onto Europe's railways. |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
16/12/2013 - Business / Economy, finance, tax and competition
The Commission has adopted a communication on completing the single market for parcel delivery to boost e-commerce in the EU, and to ensure that e-retailers and consumers have access to affordable and high-quality parcel delivery services. |VIDEO|
13/12/2013 - Environment, consumers and health
The EU environment ministers discussed a draft regulation on invasive alien species and a draft regulation on CO2 emissions from maritime transport. |PHOTOS|
13/12/2013 - Business / Employment and social rights
Best practices for anticipating company restructuring and minimising their impact on workers and social conditions have been outlined by the European Commission in the form of an EU Quality Framework for anticipation of Change and Restructuring.
13/12/2013 - External relations and foreign affairs
The Foreign Affairs Council dedicated to development issues decided to resume development cooperation with the Republic of Guinea. It also discussed the post-2015 agenda and policy coherence for development. |PHOTOS|
12/12/2013 - Economy, finance, tax and competition
Anyone legally residing in the EU should have the right to open a basic payment account, and this right should not be denied on grounds of nationality or place of residence, said MEPs voting on draft EU legislation.
12/12/2013 - Energy and natural resources / Transport and travel
The Council endorsed a report on the progress on the completion of the EU internal energy market, and a report on the review of developments on the external dimension of the EU energy policy in the follow-up to the European Council of 22 May 2013. |PHOTOS|
11/12/2013 - Science and technology
11/12/2013 - Economy, finance, tax and competition
10/12/2013 - Environment, consumers and health / External relations and foreign affairs
New rules upgrading the EU's civil protection mechanism, which coordinates the EU's response to natural and man-made disasters such as earthquakes, oil spills or forest fires, were backed by MEPs.
10/12/2013 - Agriculture, fisheries and food
The Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) reform package, including measures to halt overfishing and a ban on discarding fish at sea, Parliament's key aims, was approved in a final plenary vote.
10/12/2013 - Employment and social rights
09/12/2013 - Transport and travel
06/12/2013 - Justice and citizens rights
Home affairs ministers took note of the communication provided by the European Commission on the free movement of EU citizens and their families and concluded that work will continue in cooperation with the member states on the basis of the five actions outlined in the communication. |PHOTOS|
06/12/2013 - Transport and travel
The Council held a policy debate on a proposal aimed at amending the EU telecommunications regulatory framework. The draft regulation is part of the Connected Continent package. |PHOTOS|
05/12/2013 - Economy, finance, tax and competition / Statistics
The Governing Council of the ECB decided that the interest rate on the main refinancing operations and the interest rates on the marginal lending facility and the deposit facility will remain unchanged at 0.25%, 0.75% and 0.00% respectively.
04/12/2013 - External relations and foreign affairs / Regions and local development
04/12/2013 - Culture, education and youth / Employment and social rights
The proposal for a Council Recommendation on a Quality Framework for Traineeships would in particular call on Member States to ensure that national law or practice respects the principles set out in the guidelines, and to adapt their legislation where necessary. |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
03/12/2013 - Science and technology
Horizon 2020 will replace the EU's 7th Research Framework Programme (FP7), which runs until the end of 2013. Compared with FP7, the new programme is expected to further eliminate fragmentation in the fields of scientific research and innovation. |PHOTOS|VIDEO|
02/12/2013 - Economy, finance, tax and competition / Institutional affairs
Today's decision marks the end of two and a half years of negotiations and allows the new generation of EU spending programmes to be implemented as from 1 January 2014.