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All of the EP’s 20 standing committees and two subcommittees held their constitutive meetings on Wednesday to elect their chair and vice-chairs.

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Ministers are outlining the priorities of the German Presidency of the Council of the EU to parliamentary committees, in a series of meetings.

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Parliament must use its influence on framing the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) rules to ensure that they serve all EU citizens, not just a few economic players and must therefore insist that the talks are more democratic and more transparent, said trade committee chair, Bernd Lange (S&D, DE), on Wednesday

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Negotiations on a Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), with countries representing 70% of world trade in services, should deliver international rules and more opportunities for EU firms to supply services such as transport and telecoms in third countries. But "nothing should prevent EU, national and local authorities from maintaining, improving and applying their laws", notably on labour and data protection, say international trade MEPs in recommendations, voted on Monday, to EU negotiators.

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All but the smallest EU importers of tin, tungsten, tantalum, gold and their ores will have to do "due diligence" checks on their suppliers, and big manufacturers will also have to disclose how they plan to monitor their sources to comply with the rules, under a draft EU regulation on “conflict minerals” agreed by MEPs, ministers and the EU Commission on Tuesday in Strasbourg. It aims to stop the financing of armed groups and human rights abuses through trade in minerals from conflict areas.

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Ministers are outlining the priorities of the Croatian Presidency of the Council of the EU to parliamentary committees, in a series of meetings.

       
 

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