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Zveřejněno na 17-07-2018

Kashmir: 70 years of disputes

17-07-2018

Kashmir, located between China, India and Pakistan, has been at the heart of a complex, 70-year dispute between Delhi and Islamabad, which has strained bilateral relations and impeded the development of stronger ties in the whole of South Asia. In the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, an uprising against Delhi's rule has been ongoing since 1989. In June 2018, a UN human rights report on Kashmir called for establishing a commission of inquiry into multiple violations from both sides. Kashmir is a ...

Kashmir, located between China, India and Pakistan, has been at the heart of a complex, 70-year dispute between Delhi and Islamabad, which has strained bilateral relations and impeded the development of stronger ties in the whole of South Asia. In the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, an uprising against Delhi's rule has been ongoing since 1989. In June 2018, a UN human rights report on Kashmir called for establishing a commission of inquiry into multiple violations from both sides. Kashmir is a mountainous area the size of Germany, in the north-west of the Indian subcontinent, home to K2, the world's second-tallest mountain, and also narrow valleys and barren plateaus. It is also prone to seismic activity: as recently as 2005, a strong earthquake is estimated to have claimed 75 000 lives.

Euronest 2018: Way forward after the Eastern Partnership summit

17-07-2018

The European Parliament regularly hosts the Euronest parliamentary assembly of the Eastern Partnership (EaP). Launched in 2011, the EaP is composed of the EU and its Member States, together with six of their eastern European neighbours: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. During their Riga summit in 2015, the partners in the EaP decided to focus on four areas: economic development and market opportunities; institutional capacity and good governance; connectivity, energy efficiency ...

The European Parliament regularly hosts the Euronest parliamentary assembly of the Eastern Partnership (EaP). Launched in 2011, the EaP is composed of the EU and its Member States, together with six of their eastern European neighbours: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. During their Riga summit in 2015, the partners in the EaP decided to focus on four areas: economic development and market opportunities; institutional capacity and good governance; connectivity, energy efficiency, environment and climate change; mobility and people-to-people contacts. Before the EaP's 2017 Brussels summit, the European Commission and the European External Action Service published '20 deliverables for 2020', a series of specific objectives that are being piloted by various partners and have to be achieved by the EaP countries by 2020. To facilitate this task, the two institutions also proposed to streamline the structure of the EaP, which the Brussels summit endorsed. In June 2018, the Euronest meeting in Brussels adopted a number of resolutions on the EU’s mediation in frozen conflicts, on foreign direct investment and on undeclared labour. It also called for the release of Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia.

Fairness and transparency for business users of online services

17-07-2018

The Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services on 26 May 2018. Providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon and eBay) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) are required to implement a set of measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses (e.g. online retailers, hotels and restaurants businesses, app stores) which use such ...

The Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services on 26 May 2018. Providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon and eBay) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) are required to implement a set of measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses (e.g. online retailers, hotels and restaurants businesses, app stores) which use such online platforms to sell and provide their services to customers in the EU. The proposal is still at an early stage in consideration in the European Parliament, where it has been assigned to the IMCO committee.

Pakistan ahead of the 2018 elections

17-07-2018

Pakistan will hold general elections on 25 July 2018. This event deserves attention for several reasons. With around 200 million inhabitants, Pakistan has the sixth-largest population in the world. One of the world's nine nuclear powers, it is the only Muslim country among them. It is strategically located between India, China, Afghanistan and Iran. It plays a major role with regard to Afghanistan's stability and the fight against terrorism, for which it has often been accused of connivance with ...

Pakistan will hold general elections on 25 July 2018. This event deserves attention for several reasons. With around 200 million inhabitants, Pakistan has the sixth-largest population in the world. One of the world's nine nuclear powers, it is the only Muslim country among them. It is strategically located between India, China, Afghanistan and Iran. It plays a major role with regard to Afghanistan's stability and the fight against terrorism, for which it has often been accused of connivance with militant groups. Finally, it is home to the world's second-largest Muslim population. The election is set to secure the second consecutive democratic transition of power in a country marked by chronic dualism between political and military power. The event is particularly important, given the current political turmoil following the removal of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif from office. Pakistan is accused of giving support to terrorist groups. However, after the Taliban massacred 132 children at an army-run school in 2014, the authorities adopted a number of provisions to curtail terrorism. Nevertheless, the US administration, which considers Pakistan one of its key allies in the Afghanistan war, is unsatisfied with its record of fighting terrorism. The resultant US freeze on military aid to Islamabad may force the latter to switch allegiance to China and Russia, which could jeopardise Washington's efforts in Afghanistan. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) of infrastructure projects is an example of the already flourishing relations with Beijing. An EU election observation mission is monitoring the electoral process. Since 2014, Pakistan has benefitted from the EU's Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), which has boosted the country's exports to the EU. A new EU-Pakistan strategic engagement plan is to be signed in 2018. The European Parliament has expressed concern over the country's human rights situation on several occasions, with special reference to the persecution of religious minorities.

More flexible VAT rates

17-07-2018

Value added tax (VAT) is an important source of revenue for national governments and the European Union (EU) budget and, from an economic point of view, a very efficient consumption tax. However, the rules governing value added tax as applied to intra-Community trade are 25 years old and the current common EU VAT system is both complicated and vulnerable to fraud. Businesses doing cross-border trade face high compliance costs and the administrative burden of national tax administrations is also excessive ...

Value added tax (VAT) is an important source of revenue for national governments and the European Union (EU) budget and, from an economic point of view, a very efficient consumption tax. However, the rules governing value added tax as applied to intra-Community trade are 25 years old and the current common EU VAT system is both complicated and vulnerable to fraud. Businesses doing cross-border trade face high compliance costs and the administrative burden of national tax administrations is also excessive. The reform towards the definitive system is planned in several consecutive steps and will take some years. In the meantime, this proposal will amend the VAT Directive (Directive 2006/112/EC) and reform the rules by which Member States set VAT rates. The reform will enter into force when the definitive system is in place; it will give more flexibility to Member States to set VAT rates and will end the current arrangements and their many ad-hoc derogations.

Defence: What has the EU done?

29-06-2018

Attempts to move towards a common defence have been part of the European Project since its inception. However, more has been achieved in the past two years than in the last 60 years.

Attempts to move towards a common defence have been part of the European Project since its inception. However, more has been achieved in the past two years than in the last 60 years.

Defence: Member States' Spending

31-05-2018

In 2016, the amount of expenditure dedicated to defence represented 1.3% of GDP for the EU-28 and 1.2% of GDP for the Euro area. This is much less than the amount spent on social protection (which is equivalent to 19.1% of GDP), Health (7.1%) or Education (4.7%) but not quite as much as the amount spent on Public Safety and Order (1.7% of GDP) and significantly higher that the amount spent on environmental protection (0.7% of GDP). In 2016, the highest levels of expenditure in defence in the EU were ...

In 2016, the amount of expenditure dedicated to defence represented 1.3% of GDP for the EU-28 and 1.2% of GDP for the Euro area. This is much less than the amount spent on social protection (which is equivalent to 19.1% of GDP), Health (7.1%) or Education (4.7%) but not quite as much as the amount spent on Public Safety and Order (1.7% of GDP) and significantly higher that the amount spent on environmental protection (0.7% of GDP). In 2016, the highest levels of expenditure in defence in the EU were observed in Estonia (2.4% of GDP), followed by Greece (2.1% of GDP), the United-Kingdom (2.0% of GDP) and France (1.8% of GDP). As a share of total government expenditure, defence expenditure amounted to 2.9% in the EU and to 2.6% in the Euro area.

How to include ’Mode 5’ services commitments in bilateral free trade agreements and at multilateral stage?

11-07-2018

Mode 5 refers to services which are incorporated into goods which are then traded across international borders. Unlike traditional services, Mode 5 services are not subject to the existing international trade regime under the WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). Rather, they are subject to trade rules under the framework that governs trade in goods. As a consequence, trade in Mode 5 services is not fully liberalised, even though liberalisation would be in the best interest of international ...

Mode 5 refers to services which are incorporated into goods which are then traded across international borders. Unlike traditional services, Mode 5 services are not subject to the existing international trade regime under the WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). Rather, they are subject to trade rules under the framework that governs trade in goods. As a consequence, trade in Mode 5 services is not fully liberalised, even though liberalisation would be in the best interest of international trade and the European Union. This report explores different avenues for including Mode 5 service commitments in multilateral trade agreements and free trade agreements, analyzing benefits and associated challenges. The broad conclusion is that while it may be possible to pursue Mode 5 options at the multilateral level, the most viable immediate strategy would consist in including such commitments in free trade agreements between the EU and its trading partners.

Externí autor

Ms Marina FOLTEA

Zveřejněno na 16-07-2018

The advent of blockchain in trade

16-07-2018

Blockchain is a fairly new technology that is still evolving. Initially used for digital currencies, most research into this technology has been carried out for the finance industry. In recent years, however, research and development on supply chains and trade-related business processes have also gained ground. Start-ups and large companies have already exploited a wide range of blockchain-based applications in these areas, but the opportunities generated by this technology in international trade ...

Blockchain is a fairly new technology that is still evolving. Initially used for digital currencies, most research into this technology has been carried out for the finance industry. In recent years, however, research and development on supply chains and trade-related business processes have also gained ground. Start-ups and large companies have already exploited a wide range of blockchain-based applications in these areas, but the opportunities generated by this technology in international trade have yet to be fully exploited.

Human Rights in Cambodia

16-07-2018

Ravaged by genocide and armed conflict in the 1970s and 1980s, since 1985 Cambodia has been under the stable but repressive rule of Prime Minister Hun Sen. Nominally a multi-party democracy, the country has long been in effect a one-party state. Repression has intensified since the results of the 2013 election showed growing support for the opposition. With the next parliamentary election scheduled for July 2018, the government decided to ban the country's main opposition party, a move which drew ...

Ravaged by genocide and armed conflict in the 1970s and 1980s, since 1985 Cambodia has been under the stable but repressive rule of Prime Minister Hun Sen. Nominally a multi-party democracy, the country has long been in effect a one-party state. Repression has intensified since the results of the 2013 election showed growing support for the opposition. With the next parliamentary election scheduled for July 2018, the government decided to ban the country's main opposition party, a move which drew international condemnation.

Chystané akce

18-07-2018
Tables rondes à Niamey : Numérique, eau et agriculture, et énergies renouvelables
Další akce -
BURO EPRS
04-09-2018
Fiscal stabilization capacity for the Euro area: IMF proposals and political reality
Další akce -
EPRS

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