BusinessEurope Headlines No. 2017-34
Discussion with President Tusk ahead of the October EU Council meeting
President Marcegaglia and Director General Beyrer met the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, on 17 October 2017. They conveyed BusinessEurope’s message in view of the European Council meeting on 19-20 October 2017. Today there is a window of opportunity offered by an improved economic situation and by a strong sense of unity behind the European project, which we should use effectively. For BusinessEurope, this means continuing to make the reforms that are necessary to modernise our economies and societies, strengthening the EMU, delivering a structured way forward on industrial policy, being at the forefront on trade policy and fighting against protectionism and shaping Europe’s social dimension in a way that supports economic development and employment creation in all Member States. They also expressed concern about the slow progress in Brexit negotiations.
Contact: Daniele Olivieri
Photo copyright: European Union
Europe needs ambitious trade agenda and social reforms
Speaking at the Tripartite Social Summit on 18 October 2017 in Brussels, BusinessEurope's President Emma Marcegaglia stressed that the EU needs to become more attractive for investment and to maintain a fair and ambitious trade agenda opening new markets and creating sustainable growth and new business opportunities for enterprises of all sizes. As regards the social dimension of Europe, she added that the key challenge is to set in motion a partnership for reforms for improved employment outcomes and stated that “The European Union should act where there is a shared understanding of its added value, respecting subsidiarity and social partner autonomy”.
Contact: Maxime Cerutti
Investing in research is key for the future of Europe
How to ensure that Europe as an inventor of ground-breaking new technologies will also commercially benefit from its own innovative technologies? How to adapt the EU’s research policy in this respect? To discuss these questions with BusinessEurope's Executive Committee on 12 October 2017, Director General Markus J. Beyrer welcomed Pascal Lamy, former Director General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), former EU Trade Commissioner and current chairman of the High-Level Group on maximising the impact of EU research and innovation programmes. Discussing the key findings of the report “Investing in European future” recently presented by an expert group under Lamy’s guidance, Beyrer said: “We invent ground-breaking new technologies in Europe, but we should also commercially exploit them here, instead of waiting for the USA and China to do so. We should also be less risk-averse and make EU regulation innovation-proof”.
Contact: Alexandre Affre
More EU innovation should lead to more EU business success
For the full interview with Pascal Lamy, former Director General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), former EU Trade Commissioner and current chairman of the High-Level Group on maximising the impact of EU research and innovation programmes, click here.
Discussing trade priorities with Finland’s Trade Minister
“We need to bring free trade agreements home and a pragmatic approach must be found”, said BusinessEurope’s Director General Markus J. Beyrer during his meeting with Kai Mykkänen, Finland’s Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, on 13 October 2017. However, he added, “we are concerned of which consequences there might be on the EU’s leverage, should the EU not follow a consistent approach in negotiations in the future”. The possibility of “splitting” trade agreements in two parts was one the topics discussed during the meeting, which also touched upon current priorities in bilateral negotiations with Mercosur and Japan, for instance, in addition to the European Commission proposal on investment screening, Brexit, and Trade and Sustainable Development Chapters in free trade agreements.
Contact: Eleonora Catella
The importance of upgrading the EU-Mexico trade relations
In a public hearing at the European Parliament on the modernisation of the trade pillar of the EU-Mexico Global Agreement on 18 October 2017, BusinessEurope Director of International Relations Luisa Santos pointed out that “given the importance of Mexico's market and its strategic dimension in the north-American region, we have every reason to believe the modernisation of the EU-Mexico Global Agreement will create opportunities for EU companies that haven’t been explored thus far.” Since it entered into force in 2000, the Agreement has produced many positive results, including a constant increase in trade exchanges. Its update would allow even more opportunities to be unleashed. “Breathing new life in the bilateral relationship and an efficient facilitation of trade will only be realised through the inclusion of contemporary trade issues”, Santos concluded.
Contact: Eleonora Catella
- 18-24 October: 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China
- 19-20 October: European Council
- 20-21 October: Czech elections
- 22 October: Japan elections
- 23 October: Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council
- 24 October: European Commission college adopts Work Programme (CWP) and presents it to the European Parliament
- 24 October: BusinessEurope breakfast event on the 9th Framework Programme