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Latest stories – Business

Moving forward with the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

Cecilia Malmstrom and Carlo Calenda © EU

21/11/2014

Business, External relations and foreign affairs

At a meeting of the Foreign Affairs Council on trade issues, the Council confirmed its determination to conclude an agreement with the US as soon as possible.

 

European Commission and data industry launch €2.5 billion partnership to master big data Choose translations of the previous link 

Hand typing on laptop © EU

13/10/2014

Business, Science and technology

The European Commission and Europe's data industry have committed to invest €2.5 billion in a public-private partnership (PPP) that aims to strengthen the data sector and put Europe at the forefront of the global data race.

 

Telecoms: Commission to cut number of regulated markets in Europe Choose translations of the previous link 

Neelie Kroes © EU

09/10/2014

Business, Science and technology

Today the European Commission – in agreement with Member States - decided that two telecom markets should no longer be subject to regulation in Europe, and that two more should be redefined to reflect market and technology developments. The rules take effect immediately.

 

SMEs still struggled in 2013, in spite of signs of positive economic recovery Choose translations of the previous link 

Worker in woodwork shop © EU

03/10/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

These are the conclusions of the annual SMEs Performance Review and country-specific SBA factsheets published today by the European Commission.

 

September 2014: Business and Consumer surveysChoose translations of the previous link 

Graph displaying ESI indicator © EU

29/09/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Statistics

In September the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) decreased in both the euro area (by 0.7 points to 99.9) and the EU (by 1.0 point to 103.6). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area decreased slightly by 0.09 points to +0.07.

 

Council discusses Europe's industrial competitiveness

Maire Geoghegan-Quinn and Stefania Giannini © EU

26/09/2014

Business, Science and technology

Meeting in Brussels, ministers in charge of competitiveness looked at ways of strengthening industry in the EU and discussed the forthcoming review of Europe's 2020 strategy, which is the EU's 10-year plan for growth and competitiveness.

 

EU auditors report on EU co-funded business incubators for start-ups

European Court of Auditors building © EU

03/09/2014

Business

A report published today by the European Court of Auditors (ECA) reveals that the EU has made a significant financial contribution to the creation of business incubator infrastructure, particularly in Member States in which this type of business support is relatively rare. However, the performance of audited incubators was modest.

 

August 2014: Business and Consumer surveysChoose translations of the previous link 

Pen on graph © EU

28/08/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Statistics

In August the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) fell in the euro area (by 1.5 points to 100.6) and the EU (by 1.2 points at 104.6). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area remained broadly flat (at +0.16) compared to July (+0.17).

 

Commission adopts strategy and action plan for better customs risk management Choose translations of the previous link 

Customs officers removing boxes from containers © EU

21/08/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Justice and citizens rights

Robust customs risk management is essential to protect the safety and security of the EU and its citizens, the interests of legitimate traders and EU financial interests, while at the same time enabling the smooth flow of trade.

 

Customs authorities detain nearly 36 million fake goods at EU borders in 2013 Choose translations of the previous link 

Selection of counterfeit products © EU

31/07/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Justice and citizens rights

Customs authorities in the EU detained almost 36 million items suspected of violating intellectual property rights (IPR) in 2013, according to the Commission's annual report on customs actions to enforce IPR.

 

July 2014: Business and Consumer surveysChoose translations of the previous link 

Graph displaying ESI indicator © EU

30/07/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

In July the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) remained broadly stable in the euro area (+0.1 points at 102.2), while it decreased slightly in the EU (by 0.6 points to 105.8). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area decreased marginally by 0.04 points to +0.17.

 

European Commission to tackle unfair practices in the food supply chain Choose translations of the previous link 

Man sorting fruit in warehouse © EU

15/07/2014

Agriculture, fisheries and food, Business

The European Commission has adopted a communication encouraging Member States to look for ways to improve protection of small food producers and retailers against the unfair practices of their sometimes much stronger trading partners.

 

EU-industry partnerships seek innovation boost with first €1 billion for projects Choose translations of the previous link 

Máire Geoghegan-Quinn © EU

09/07/2014

Business, Science and technology

Research partnerships between the EU, the private sector and Member States presented their first calls for projects and partners under Horizon 2020, the EU's €80 billion research and innovation programme.

 

Market conditions for consumers continue to improve Choose translations of the previous link 

Neven Mimica © EU

30/06/2014

Business, Environment, consumers and health

There is an improved performance across all consumer markets finds the 10th Consumer Markets Scoreboard published today. This improvement is particularly marked for goods markets, while services continue to be the main sources of dissatisfaction.

 

May 2014: Business and Consumer surveysChoose translations of the previous link 

Economic Sentiment Graph © EU

27/06/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

In June the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) decreased in the euro area (by 0.6 points to 102.0), while it remained broadly stable in the EU. The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area decreased by 0.14 points to +0.22.

 

Faster, better public services for business and citizens as Commission proposes push to sweep away e-barriers Choose translations of the previous link 

Room of people using computers © EU

26/06/2014

Business, Science and technology

The Commission adopts a proposal for a new programme that will help Member States to modernise their administrations and provide interoperable digital services at national and European level.

 

A New Deal for European Defence: Commission proposes industrial action planChoose translations of the previous link 

Flag in front of Berlaymont building © EU

24/06/2014

Business

The European Commission has presented a roadmap for measures to strengthen the Single Market for defence, to promote a more competitive defence industry and to foster synergies between civil and military research including details and timelines for the actions.

 

REFIT – Commission making EU law lighter, simpler and less costly Choose translations of the previous link 

Documents in folder on table © EU

18/06/2014

Business, Institutional affairs

A Communication adopted today shows that the implementation of the Commission's Regulatory Fitness and Performance programme (REFIT) is in full swing and that EU law is indeed becoming lighter, simpler and less costly.

 

The EU 2014 Digital Scoreboard: how did you fare? Choose translations of the previous link 

Woman using tablet computer © EU

28/05/2014

Business, Science and technology

New data shows the Commission is on track to 95 of its 101 digital actions by 2015, which shows good progress. EU citizens and businesses are going online more, shopping more and they have greater confidence and skills in ICT.

 

Council agrees its position on the protection of trade secrets

Michel Barnier and Antonio Tajani © EU

26/05/2014

Business, Science and technology

At the Competitiveness Council, EU ministers adopted the position on the improved protection of trade secrets. This paves the way to starting negotiations with the European Parliament.

 

April 2014: Business and Consumer surveys Choose translations of the previous link 

Pen on graph © EU

29/04/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

In April the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) decreased slightly in the euro area (by 0.5 points to 102.0), while it continued to increase in the EU (by 0.9 points to 106.2). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area decreased slightly by 0.13 points to +0.27.

 

March 2014: Business and Consumers surveysChoose translations of the previous link 

Graph showing the ESI indicator © EU

28/03/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

In March the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) increased by 1.2 points in the euro area (to 102.4), while remaining broadly flat in the EU (a marginal increase by 0.3 points to 105.3). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area remained broadly unchanged (at +0.39).

 

Customs officer removing boxes from container © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

EU proposes responsible trading strategy for minerals from conflict zones

05/03/2014

Business, External relations and foreign affairs

The package of measures will make it more difficult for armed groups in conflict-affected and high-risk areas to finance their activities through the mining of and trade in minerals.

 

Janusz Lewandowski © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Final "simplification scoreboard": 120 measures to cut red tape on EU funding

04/03/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Regions and local development

The Commission has adopted its Final Simplification Scoreboard: over 120 measures to simplify the EU funding rules for Europe's businesses, towns, regions, scientists and NGOs.

 

Mr Antonio Tajani and Mr Konstantinos Hatzidakis © EUpdf

Main results of the Competitiveness Council

20/02/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

Ministers held a debate on industrial competitiveness on the basis of the Commission communication “For a European Industrial Renaissance”. They also held a debate on the Commission's Annual Growth Survey (AGS) for 2014.

 

Workers and machinery in factory © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

2013 industrial structure report highlights need for industrial renaissance

17/02/2014

Business

According to a European Commission report on the current status of EU industry, most sectors have still not regained their pre-crisis level of output and significant differences exist between sectors and Member States.

 

José Manuel Barroso and Antonio Tajani © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission calls for immediate action for a European Industrial Renaissance

22/01/2014

Business, Employment and social rights

The European Commission is urging Member States to recognise the central importance of industry for creating jobs and growth and to mainstreaming industry-related competitiveness concerns across all policy areas.

 

Joaquín Almunia © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission adopts new rules on risk finance

15/01/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

The European Commission has adopted new guidelines setting out the conditions under which Member States can grant aid to facilitate access to finance by European SMEs and companies with a medium capitalization (the so-called "midcaps").

 

Draft of contract in folder © EU

New EU-procurement rules to ensure better quality and value for money

15/01/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

New EU rules on public procurement and concession contracts approved by Parliament will ensure better quality and value for money when public authorities buy or lease works, goods or services.

 

Credit card © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA): Commission introduces an additional transition period of six months

09/01/2014

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

The Commission has adopted a proposal to give an extra transition period of six months during which payments which differ from the SEPA format can still be accepted so as to ensure minimal disruption for consumers and businesses.

 

Antonio Tajani © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

European SMEs getting greener, contributing to a resource-efficient economy

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".

 

People sorting parcels in warehouse © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission presents roadmap for completing the single market for parcel delivery

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.

 

Man and woman holding folders © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission proposes best practices to reduce the social impact of restructuring

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.

 

Person holding folder with EU flag © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission proposes rules to help protect against the theft of confidential business information

28/11/2013

Business

The European Commission has proposed new rules on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use and disclosure.

 

Worker in woodwork shop © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Growth prospects for SMEs are encouraging

26/11/2013

Business

2013 is likely to mark a turning point for the EU small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The total employment in the EU SMEs is expected to increase by 0.3% and value-added by 1% as compared to 2012.

 

Algirdas Šemeta © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Tackling tax avoidance: Commission tightens key EU corporate tax rules

25/11/2013

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

The proposal will close loopholes in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive, which some companies have been using to escape taxation. In particular, companies will no longer be able to exploit differences in the way intra-group payments are taxed across the EU to avoid paying any tax at all.

 

Woman holding folder © EU

40% of seats on company boards for women

20/11/2013

Business, Justice and citizens rights

Companies listed on stock exchanges in the EU would have to bring in transparent recruitment procedures so that by 2020, at least 40% of their non-executive directors are women, under a draft EU directive voted by Parliament.

 

Two people shaking hands © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission Proposal on Small Claims helps consumers and SMEs

19/11/2013

Business, Justice and citizens rights

The European Commission has proposed to strengthen the position of consumers and businesses in low-value cross-border disputes.

 

Person holding binoculars containing 1 euro coins © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

European Semester 2014: strengthening the recovery

13/11/2013

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition, Employment and social rights

The biggest challenge now facing Europe's economy is how to sustain the recovery that is now underway. This is the main message of this year’s Annual Growth Survey (AGS), adopted by the Commission.

 

Algirdas Šemeta © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Standard VAT Return: Easing life for businesses and improving tax compliance

23/10/2013

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

A new standard VAT return, which can cut costs for EU businesses by up to €15 billion a year, has been proposed by the Commission. The aim of this initiative is to slash red-tape for businesses, ease tax compliance and make tax administrations across the Union more efficient.

 

Stephen Harper and José Manuel Barroso © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

EU and Canada strike trade deal

18/10/2013

Business, External relations and foreign affairs

Commission President José Manuel Barroso and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper have today reached a political agreement on the key elements of a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) after months of intense negotiations between EU Trade Commissioner De Gucht and Canadian trade Minister Ed Fast.

 

Euro symbols on cranes © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Crowdfunding in the EU - exploring the added value of potential EU action

03/10/2013

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

The European Commission has launched a consultation inviting stakeholders to share their views about crowdfunding: its potential benefits, risks, and the design of an optimal policy framework to untap the potential of this new form of financing.

 

Documents in folder on table © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

"Fit for growth" – Commission takes ambitious next steps to make EU law lighter

02/10/2013

Business, Institutional affairs

The Commission sets out in a very concrete way, policy area by policy area, where it will take further action to simplify or withdraw EU laws, ease the burden on businesses and ensure that implementation is becoming lighter.

 

From left to right: Benoît Battistelli, Michel Barnier and António Campinos © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Study indicates that roughly 35% of jobs in the EU rely on IPR-intensive industries

30/09/2013

Business, Economy, finance, tax and competition

The European Commission welcomed the publication of a study on Intellectual Property Rights, which was carried out jointly by the European Patent Office (EPO) and the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM).

 

Worker in woodwork shop © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Without a strong industrial base, Europe's economy cannot prosper

25/09/2013

The two industrial Competitiveness reports published by the European Commission highlight that Member States have made progress in improving the business environment, exports and sustainability. However, many problems still remain.

 

Different files and file with EU symbol © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Employment: over 6000 entrepreneurs have received Progress Microfinance loans to start or expand their business

12/09/2013

More than 6000 entrepreneurs have already benefitted from loans worth a total of close to €50 million under the European Progress Microfinance Facility, according to the third annual report on this EU instrument.

 

Woman holding folder © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Trade protectionism still on rise across the world

02/09/2013

In a report released today, the European Commission identified about 150 new trade restrictions introduced over the last year, whereas only 18 existing measures have been dismantled.
 

Pen on graph © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Industrial production up by 0.7% in euro area

13/08/2013

In June 2013 compared with May 2013, seasonally adjusted industrial production grew by 0.7% in the euro area and by 0.9% in the EU27, according to estimates released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

 

EU patent sign on map of Europe © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission fills legal gaps for unitary patent protection

29/07/2013

The European Commission has proposed to complete the legal framework for Europe-wide patent protection by updating EU rules on the jurisdiction of courts and recognition of judgements.

 

Soldiers holding EU flag © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Towards a more competitive and efficient European defence and security sector

24/07/2013

The European Commission has presented a Communication which contains an Action Plan to enhance the efficiency and competitiveness of Europe’s defence and security sector. The Communication foresees measures to strengthen the internal market for defence, to promote a more competitive defence industry and to foster synergies between civil and military research.

 

Scientist and representation of atoms © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

EU and industry join forces to invest €22 billion in research and innovation

10/07/2013

The European Commission, EU Member States and European industry will invest more than €22 billion over the next seven years in innovation for sectors that deliver high quality jobs.

 

Graph displaying the ESI indicator © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

June 2013: Business and Consumers surveys

27/06/2013

In June the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) improved markedly, continuing last month's increase. Sentiment increased by 1.8 points in both the euro area (to 91.3) and the EU (to 92.6). The Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area increased by 0.07 points to ‑0.68.

 

E-procurement illustration © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

E-invoicing in public procurement: another step towards end-to-end e-procurement and e-government in Europe

26/06/2013

The European Commission has proposed a draft directive on e-invoicing in public procurement, accompanied by a communication setting out its vision for the full digitisation of the public procurement process, so-called 'end-to-end e-procurement'.

 

Different professions and EU flags © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission proposes to help jobless by improving efficiency of public employment services

17/06/2013

The European Commission has proposed a Decision to help public employment services to maximise their effectiveness through closer cooperation to better address the needs of the unemployed and businesses.

 

Steel factory © EUChoose translations of the previous link 

Commission presents an action plan for the steel sector

11/06/2013

The European Commission puts forward an action plan for the European Steel Industry to help this sector confront today’s challenges and lay the foundations for future competitiveness by fostering innovation, creating growth and jobs.