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A series of sensitive topics feature on the agenda of the last regular European Council meeting before the summer break, taking place on 23-24 June. Considering the magnitude of the issues at stake, this European Council meeting – if successful – could become a milestone summit. Notably, EU leaders are expected to consider granting candidate country status to Ukraine and Moldova, most probably with certain specific conditions, to reaffirm the Western Balkans' European perspective, and to consider ...

This note is prepared in view of a regular public hearing with the Chair of the European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB), Christine Lagarde, which will take place on 20 June 2022. The aim of the meeting is to discuss recent developments in macroprudential policy field, potential systemic risks looming ahead, notably the impact of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The briefing provides (i) summaries of the issues highlighted by the ESRB in its letters to the European Parliament; (ii) the risks building-up ...

The war in Ukraine, overlapping with the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, is causing a significant economic impact on the euro area economy. On the rise since mid-2021, annual headline inflation in the euro area surpassed 8% in May 2022. Previously driven mainly by increasing energy prices and supply chain bottlenecks, inflationary pressure is becoming more persistent and broad-based. The European Central Bank (ECB) is now facing a difficult challenge: commencing a monetary policy tightening ...

Russia's continuing war on Ukraine was central to the EU leaders' debates at their special meeting on 30-31 May 2022. Closely linked to Ukraine, food security, security and defence, and energy were also high on the agenda. EU leaders approved €9 billion in special macro-financial assistance for Ukraine and agreed on a sixth package of sanctions against Russia, including a ban on seaborne oil (two-thirds of imports) with a temporary exemption for pipeline oil imports. On food security, the European ...

The Russian war on Ukraine has shattered long-held views that war was 'a thing of the past' on the European continent. The new security situation has sparked debates in capitals all over Europe on security and defence arrangements, policies and strategic orientation. While it has become commonplace to argue that the EU has made substantial progress on European defence cooperation since 2016, the Strategic Compass, adopted in March 2022, represents a 'sea change' in EU defence landscape, according ...

The paper presents the findings of a study on external policy measures adopted by the European Union and like-minded partners to address modern slavery in third countries. The study is intended to support the European Parliament in monitoring EU external action and initiating the refinement of existing or the adoption of new external policy instruments relating to forced labour and modern slavery The study provides a review of the different external policy tools available to the EU to contribute ...

The coronavirus crisis has demonstrated not only that the European Union faces a variety of risks, and that those disparate risks are inter-linked, but that the response to such challenges to the Union - even in areas in which the EU does not have explicit competence - is stronger with the Union and its Member States acting together. Russia's war on Ukraine, which was launched while this study was being drafted, shows us not just the added value of concerted action by the Union but also the ability ...

The Southern Neighbourhood (SN) of the European Union (EU) remains in what appears to be a state of permanent turmoil. Similarly, the rift in Euro-Mediterranean relations seems to be growing, as exemplified by reactions to the Russian aggression on Ukraine across the SN region and despite a window of opportunity the pandemic offered to relaunch cooperation between both sides of the Mediterranean. The Joint Communication on a ‘Renewed partnership with the Southern Neighbourhood: a New Agenda for the ...

Hours before the Beijing Winter Olympics officially opened on 4 February 2022, Chinese President Xi Jinping had a long meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. In the joint statement issued after the meeting, the Chinese leader for the first time voiced his country's outright opposition to NATO enlargement and support for Russia's 'proposals to create long-term legally binding security guarantees' in Europe. This stance might be seen as the culmination of a relationship, formed in 1992, between ...

Russia's war on Ukraine and the linked issue of energy security constituted the clear focus of the European Council meeting held on 24 25 March 2022. The meeting included a joint session with the President of the United States of America, Joe Biden, and it formed part of a trilogy of summit meetings in Brussels (NATO, G7 and EU) demonstrating Western unity in support of Ukraine and in response to President Vladimir Putin's unacceptable violation of international law. The main outcomes of the meeting ...