Publication Archive

This archive contains all documents published by cep over the last few years:

cepAdhoc: Incisive comment on current EU policy issues.

cepPolicyBrief: Concise 4-page reviews of EU proposals (Regulations, Directives, Green Papers, White Papers, Communications) – including a brief summary and economic and legal assessments.

cepInput: Impulse to current discussions of EU policies.

cepStudy: Comprehensive examination of EU policy proposals affecting the economy.

 

 

2014

The “Digital Agenda” designates “key actions” which will facilitate “smarter work” and the establishment of the Digital Single Market. It aims at a sustainable economic and social use of the Digital Single Market, rooted in fast internet connections for EU-wide services.

The Commission names as “key performance targets” for 2015, amongst other things, that 50% of the population buy online, the removal of tariff differences between telephone calls at home and abroad (“roaming”) and an average price per minute of 13 cents (including roaming).

2014

Specialisation agreements are horizontal agreements between undertakings on the specialisation requirements regarding the production of certain goods or the provision of services. With regard to specialisation agreements on intermediary products captively used for the production of downstream products the recast version of the Block Exemption Regulation requires a second market share threshold. Moreover, the Commission specifies the definition of “potential competition“ and clearly states that specialisations can be exempted even if a party chooses to cease production only “partly”.

2014

According to the Commission, a solid vocational education is key to a smooth entry into the labour market. In addititon, the expected shortage of skilled professionals can be best tackled through a consistent vocational training based on a solid vocational education. Moreover, the cross-border mobility of employees can be improved if the comparability of national educational qualifications is ensured and if skills acquired abroad are equally recognised at home. In its Communication, the Commission clearly stresses the necessity to give “a new impetus” to the Copenhagen process which forms the basis of modernising the system of vocational education in Member States in order to establish future-oriented and sustainable vocational education and training systems.

2014

The new „dual layer structure consist of: the comprehensive network (1st level) which is to be maintained. It serves as a basis for the construction of a coherent “core network” (2nd level). The latter is to be made up of links of “the highest strategic and economic importance” and of a “genuine European planning perspective”. The ideas presented for discussion by the Commission concern the future planning of TEN-T, its implementation and its institutional and legal framework.

2014

The latest economic crisis has led to a substantial reduction in EU greenhouse gas emissions. The Commission is examining the option of tightening greenhouse gas emission targets in 2020 from 20% to 30%. At the same time, it stresses that the current Communication’s purpose “is not to decide now” to move to a 30% target since “the conditions set are have clearly not yet been met”. However, it keeps this option still open.

2014

Within the framework of the Europe 2020 strategy, Member States agreed to improve there coordination of their economic policies. To this end, the Commission recommends to the Member States guidelines to harmonise their economic policies. In shaping their economic and fiscal policies and in developing national reform programmes, Member States should act in line with these guidelines.

2014

Member States have agreed to improve the coordination of their employment policies, in the scope of the Europe 2020 strategy. To this end, the Commission presented to the Council guidelines for employment policies outlining the direction which educational, labour and social policies of Member States should take. The headline targets of the guidelines are identical to those proposed to the European Council within the context of the Europe 2020 strategy.

2014

The Commission promotes the expansion of the EU internal energy market and announces a legal framework for the safe storage of nuclear waste. The expansion of EU energy grids is to be better coordinated. The Commission wishes to promote technological innovation and initiate a shift towards a low-carbon energy system by 2020 through market-based instruments.

2014

The Commission presents a strategy for encouraging the development and uptake of green road vehicles. In particular, it wishes to promote “clean and energy efficient” vehicles based on conventional combustion engines and “ultra-low-carbon vehicles“ through the deployment of new technologies such as alternative fuels, electric motors and fuel cells.

2014

The Commission is reviewing the European standardisation procedures in terms of their efficiency and transparency. The aim is to develop a reform proposal (“standardisation package”) facilitating a more efficient and transparent European standardisation. Moreover, the Commission wishes to simplify the access to standards for SME and to increase the capacity for innovation of European enterprises.

2014

The action plan is intended to implement the objectives laid down in the Stockholm Programme. It cites 354 measures and a precise timetable for this purpose.

2014

The Commission criticises the fact that the agreement among 29 Heads of State and Government on the Copenhagen Accord “falls well short“ of the EU’s objective to reach a “robust and effective legally binding“ follow-up agreement to the Kyoto Protocol. The Commission gives its view on financing of climate actions and adaptation measures, on the shortcoming of the Kyoto Protocol ant on international emissions trading. In order to keep up the momentum of global efforts to tackle climate change, the Commission outlines the main features of its further strategy.

2014

Following the failure of its last Amendment Proposal, the Commission is again planning a review of the Working Time Directive. Based on a questionnaire, the Commission intends to undertake a full-scale consultation of the social partners (workers and employers associations) at European level, in order to clarify whether the social partners also consider a review of the Working Time Directive to be necessary and, if so, what such a review could look like.
The key issues are the rules on the maximum working time, dealing with on-call time, determining rest periods and calculating the average weekly working time.

2014

“Implementing acts” serve the purpose of implementing legislative EU acts. The implementation of legally binding EU acts subject to national law is principally a task of the Member States. If an implementation is required throughout the EU, the basic act provides for a conferment of powers upon the Commission. The Regulation Proposal is laying down the rules for control by Member States of the Commission’s exercise of implementing powers.

2014

In 2010, the Commission will publish a White Paper on the European transport policy for the period of 2010-2020. The present Draft Report of the transport committee presents the European Parliament’s prospective of the challenges and key issues of a future European transport policy. Moreover, it defines concrete “measurable” targets for the transport sector to be accomplished by 2020. For instance, CO2 emissions from the road transport are to be reduced by 20% compared to those in 2010. Finally, the Report takes opposition to an inter-modal competition and instead chooses “effective comodality” as the preferred policy approach in the matter.

2014

Road traffic generates costs that can be split into those directly borne by road users and those imposed on others and the public (so-called external costs, e.g. air pollution, noise pollution, loss of time due to congestion). According to a Commission’s Proposal Member States are to be authorised to include the external costs of road freight transport into road tolls levied on HGV (so-called internalisation). The European Parliament and the Council have not yet reached any agreement on said Proposal. To this end, the Council asked the Commission to have an analysis drawn up exploring the impacts of a possible internalisation.

2014

The strategy „Europe 2020“ replaces the failed strategy of Lisbon and is to „turn“ the EU into a „smart, sustainable and inclusive economy“ delivering “high levels of employment, productivity and social cohesion”. The Commission is setting five headline targets to be attained by 2020 with the highest priority being smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The European Council has approved three of the five key targets, but strongly mitigated the other two. Moreover, the Commission is putting forward seven flagship initiatives which are to “commit both the EU and the Member States” and to be pursued by the Commission and the Member States. The Commission intends to monitor progress of target achievement by reports to be provided by the Member States.