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The growing importance of global supply chains has fundamentally changed the way the global economy and goods manufacturing are organised. While trade conducted through global supply chains has fallen somewhat as a share of total trade since the 2008-2010 global financial and economic crisis, more than two-thirds of international trade still involves transactions made possible by such chains. The EU is profoundly involved in these production chains, more so than most other countries, and significantly ...

On 8 October 2021, the OECD announced that, following years of intense negotiations, 136 countries had finally reached an agreement on how to tackle the tax policy challenges arising from the digitalisation of the economy. A growing realisation that these challenges cannot be addressed by the existing tax system – over a century old – helped achieve the breakthrough. With this, one of the main questions pertinent to the digital economy – how to fairly tax businesses that rely on intangible assets ...

In December 2020, the European Commission proposed the creation of the EU-US Trade and Technology Council (TTC), to facilitate trade, expand investment, develop compatible standards, boost innovation and strengthen the partners' technological and industrial leadership. The TTC also aims to 'lead values-based digital transformation'. Meanwhile, trade between the EU and US continues and is as important as ever, manifested in the fact that, together, they form the largest bilateral economic relationship ...

With public financing of enterprises on the rise globally, and substantially increased as a result of the pandemic, subsidisation has become an issue of growing concern in competitive markets. In May 2021 the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on distortive foreign subsidies. It follows a 2020 white paper that identified gaps in the trade laws and put forward ways to close them. The draft regulation aims to tackle those foreign subsidies that have a distortive effect on the ...

The transatlantic relationship has been witnessing a significant injection of renewed enthusiasm and policy activity since Joe Biden became President of the United States in January 2021. This paper focuses on three important issues on the rapidly evolving transatlantic policy agenda, exploring their potential for generating, in effect, new 'common global goods' during the Biden presidency. First, it looks at pathways towards developing some kind of 'transatlantic green deal', taking climate action ...

The single market programme is a new, dedicated €3.7 billion (in 2018 prices) or €4.2 billion (in current prices) programme for the 2021-2027 period supporting the single market. It is particularly aimed at empowering and protecting consumers, and enabling Europe's many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to take better advantage of a well-functioning single market. On 3 May 2021, the Regulation establishing the programme entered into force, with retroactive application from 1 January 2021. ...

The Digital Europe Programme is a new financial support tool for the 2021-2027 period, aimed at bolstering the digital transformation of society, the economy and public administrations in the EU. With a financial envelope of €7.6 billion (in current prices), a figure 17.5 % lower than the initial Commission proposal, it will build up digital capacity and infrastructure and support a digital single market. The programme will operate mainly through coordinated and strategic co-investments with the ...

Lithium and cobalt (used in rechargeable batteries) and rare earth elements (used in wind turbines) are some of the critical raw materials (CRMs) – raw materials of critical importance – for the EU. Global demand for CRMs is rising, yet the export restrictions imposed by the resource-rich countries intensify the competition for these materials. To boost its access to CRMs, the EU has a dedicated strategy based on three pillars: two internal ones (increasing domestic sourcing and circularity) and ...

The pandemic has highlighted the risk involved, including for the EU, in relying heavily on external suppliers. The EU's 30 critical raw materials (CRMs) combine two characteristics: they are strategically important for its industry and economy, and there are high risks associated with securing their supply. The notion of strategic autonomy, which has been gaining track recently, calls for a more autonomous and independent EU policy, also in the area of CRMs. Importantly, the core of the EU's response ...

Article 107(3)(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union provides for the possibility of approving state aid for 'important projects of common European interest' (IPCEIs). These provisions have been used very rarely until recently. A specific framework enabling the creation of IPCEIs, originally only in the areas of research, development and innovation, and environmental protection has been in place for 15 years, yet only four such projects have been notified to and assessed by the ...