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Review of dual-use export controls

15-01-2021

Certain goods and technologies have legitimate civilian applications but can also be used for military purposes; so-called 'dual-use' goods are subject to the European Union's export control regime. The regime has just been revised, mainly to take account of significant technological developments, increase transparency and create a more level playing field among EU Member States. The proposed regulation will recast the regulation in force since 2009. Among other elements, the proposal explicitly ...

Certain goods and technologies have legitimate civilian applications but can also be used for military purposes; so-called 'dual-use' goods are subject to the European Union's export control regime. The regime has just been revised, mainly to take account of significant technological developments, increase transparency and create a more level playing field among EU Member States. The proposed regulation will recast the regulation in force since 2009. Among other elements, the proposal explicitly defines cyber-surveillance technology as dual-use technology and introduces human rights violations as an explicit justification for export control. It also includes provisions to control emerging technologies. The proposed regulation introduces greater transparency into dual-use export control by increasing the level of detail Member States will have to provide on exports, licences, licence denials and prohibitions. On 17 January 2018, based on the INTA committee's report on the legislative proposal, the European Parliament adopted its position for trilogue negotiations. For its part, the Council adopted its negotiating mandate on 5 June 2019, and on the basis of this mandate, the Council Presidency began negotiations with the European Parliament's delegation on 21 October 2019. Trilogue negotiations ended on 9 November 2020, with agreement on a final compromise text. Endorsed by the INTA committee on 30 November, the Parliament is expected to vote in plenary on the text in early 2021. Sixth edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

EU trade policy review

22-12-2020

In June 2020, the European Commission launched an EU trade policy review that will lead to a revised strategy to be adopted early in 2021. The aim is to set a new course for trade policy in a changing global context, aligned with EU priorities and supporting recovery from the coronavirus crisis. Parliament has contributed to the process with a resolution on 26 November 2020, and will continue monitoring implementation of the new policy in 2021.

In June 2020, the European Commission launched an EU trade policy review that will lead to a revised strategy to be adopted early in 2021. The aim is to set a new course for trade policy in a changing global context, aligned with EU priorities and supporting recovery from the coronavirus crisis. Parliament has contributed to the process with a resolution on 26 November 2020, and will continue monitoring implementation of the new policy in 2021.

Impact of state aid on competition and competitiveness during the COVID-19 pandemic: an early assessment

17-12-2020

This economic assessment of EU state aid principles and practises related to the COVID-19 pandemic confirms the clear focus on maintaining the level playing field in the EU single market. Future monitoring and policy fine-tuning, focusing on SMEs, and keeping all Member States involved are the main challenges. Moreover, current policies fail to incorporate a strong focus on broader, strategic policy goals like the green and digital transformation of the European economy or the enhancing of EU firms ...

This economic assessment of EU state aid principles and practises related to the COVID-19 pandemic confirms the clear focus on maintaining the level playing field in the EU single market. Future monitoring and policy fine-tuning, focusing on SMEs, and keeping all Member States involved are the main challenges. Moreover, current policies fail to incorporate a strong focus on broader, strategic policy goals like the green and digital transformation of the European economy or the enhancing of EU firms’ global competitiveness. This document was prepared by the Policy Department for Economic, Scientific and Quality of Life Policies at the request of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON).

Autore esterno

Jan VAN HOVE

Important projects of common European interest: Boosting EU strategic value chains

12-11-2020

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 ...

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 Commission so far. The first two – in the area of infrastructure – were partially annulled by the Court of Justice, and the Commission opened in-depth investigations to examine their compatibility with State aid. One of those concluded that the aid was legal, the other is ongoing. The next two were launched successfully in the areas of strategic value chains for microelectronics and batteries. After this rather modest start, there seems to be strong momentum to create more IPCEIs, including in the context of the debate on how to foster the emergence of 'European champions'. The marked political shift towards greater technological sovereignty and strategic autonomy within the EU has been given further impetus with the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, which disrupted global value chains and highlighted the case for a more self-sufficient EU model. IPCEIs may be useful tools for creating complex new value chains that have the potential to ensure the EU's long-term competitiveness and economic growth. A growing number of governments, experts and organisations have been calling for the simplification of current rules to make IPCEIs more frequently and widely used. The European Parliament would also like to see the requirements for the IPCEIs streamlined to allow smaller industrial research projects also to acquire IPCEI status. In its 2021 work programme, the European Commission announced the revision of the current IPCEI framework planned for the fourth quarter of the year.

EU competitiveness and global growth

10-09-2020

With rising tensions surrounding the multilateral and liberal trading order in recent years, and declining public support for globalisation, the coronavirus pandemic has hit the world economy hard. In the short term, the efforts of the European Union (EU) and its Member States, as well as many other jurisdictions, are focused on supporting a sustained and inclusive economic recovery and on protecting businesses, jobs and livelihoods. At the same time, policy-makers in Europe should seek to address ...

With rising tensions surrounding the multilateral and liberal trading order in recent years, and declining public support for globalisation, the coronavirus pandemic has hit the world economy hard. In the short term, the efforts of the European Union (EU) and its Member States, as well as many other jurisdictions, are focused on supporting a sustained and inclusive economic recovery and on protecting businesses, jobs and livelihoods. At the same time, policy-makers in Europe should seek to address medium- to long-term challenges to minimise long-term scarring and restore eroding competitiveness. Decisive action is needed to secure EU global leadership of environmental and digital transformation. This will include investing in research and innovation, implementing structural reforms, and completing the (digital) single market, while screening foreign investments more efficiently and leading more efficient global coordination. The EU must equip itself with the right toolbox to ensure efficiency and the ability to shape global long-term trends, and prevent or at least mitigate structural risks and threats.