Banking scandal shatters Latvia
Latvia was shattered last week by a scandal involving Central Bank Governor Ilmars Rimsevics, who was arrested and questioned for several hours on corruption suspicion, news wires reported. His office and one of his private properties had been raided by the special Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB). No details from the questioning have emerged, but according to people close to the inquiry Rimsevics is suspected of demanding a huge bribe of no less than €100,000.
Direct payments: simplified and targeted at active farmers
European Agriculture Ministers meeting in Bulgaria on 19 February said direct payments could be more targeted at active farmers. During the debate, the ministers underlined the importance of direct payments and considered that their design could be further improved by making them fairer, more targeted and effective for farmers across the EU.
EU defence industry programme approved
The new European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP), with a budget of €500m for 2019-2020 period, was last Wednesday approved by the Industry and Research Committee, the EP press service reported. The main aim of the programme is to foster the EU's strategic autonomy in the field of defence. EU financial assistance will cover the development of new and upgraded products to make the EU enhance its defence capabilities. Under the programme, Member States will be able to work together to pool resources and spend defence budgets more efficiently.
Europe can double renewables
The European Union can boost the share of renewables to 34% of its energy mix by 2030, triggering hundreds of billions of euros in investment and accelerating reduction of greenhouse gases blamed for global warming. This is one of the main findings from a new report released by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), on request from the European Commission. Lawmakers in the 28-nation bloc are currently discussing policies for the next decade.
Pressure on EU borders remains
The number of migrants trying to reach Europe through the Mediterranean will remain high this year, with more expected to arrive through Spain, Fabrice Leggeri, the head of EU border agency Frontex warned last Tuesday.
Modernising economy with everyone on board
A smart sensor in kids shoes can monitor their motor development, namely from the first steps. The BIOsenSHOES project designed 'shoe' sensor that collects all the data, and a special app calculates the parameters and stores it.
Major mafia trial opens in Spain
A major trial concerning Russian mafia murky deeds opened last week in Spain, news wires reported.
UK urges EU to work jointly reaching fair Brexit deal
Brexit minister David Davis claimed last Tuesday Britain and the EU could reach a deal to access each others' markets and dismissed fears that the UK would use Brexit to cut regulation to attract global businesses, news wires reported.
French villages for sale in protest against reform
French villages were published for sale in protest against the government's reform of the areas receiving agriculture aid.
Innovation through education
A conference on “Intellectual Property in Education - tendencies and perspectives” took place in Sofia on 20 February 2018. Participants stressed the importance of open science and of the new approaches in education for bringing forth the next generation of inventors and creators.
Cutting cash to terrorists
Member States must share intelligence more proactively and track transactions more closely in order to cut off the cash flows to terrorists, MEPs said last Wednesday.
MEPs call for cosmetics' animal testing worldwide ban
The EU should launch a diplomatic drive for a worldwide ban on the animal testing of cosmetics by 2023, Environment Committee MEPs said last Tuesday. Within the EU itself, the sale of all animal-tested cosmetics has been banned since 2013.
Auditors assess wind, solar power initiatives
The European Court of Auditors published last Tuesday a background paper detailing its enquiry into EU and Member State support for wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) power generation, news wires reported.
Consumers get more choice and greater energy security
Consumers should have more choice at the energy market and should enjoy greater security, the Industry and Energy Committee MEPs claimed in a proposal discussed last Wednesday, the EP press service reported.