• Monday, November 24, 2014

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European Union

Time to work for GSP Plus: EU envoy

The European Union yesterday suggested Bangladesh should start working now to get generous benefits under GSP Plus, a preferential trade scheme, by complying with stringent conditions. Bangladesh will lose generalised system of preferences (GSP) and may qualify for GSP Plus in the EU market as soon as it becomes a middle-income country. GSP Plus means full removal of tariffs on goods, but that depends on higher labour standards. It is granted to the nations that graduate from the status of least...

Turkey migrant boat sinks killing 24

Turkey migrant boat sinks killing 24

At least 24 people have been killed and scores are missing after a boat said to be carrying migrants sank off the north coast of Istanbul, officials say. The accident took place at the confluence of the Bosphorus and the Black Sea. A large rescue operation is now reported to be under way. The nationality of...

Russia, Ukraine agree gas deal

Russia, Ukraine agree gas deal

Russia has agreed to resume gas supplies to Ukraine over the winter in a deal brokered by the European Union. The deal will also ensure gas supplies to EU countries via Ukraine are secure. "There is now no reason for people in Europe to stay cold this winter,'' said European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso. European...

EU nations seal major climate deal

European Union leaders agreed yesterday what they hailed as the world's most ambitious climate change targets for 2030, paving the way for a new UN-backed global treaty next year. The 28 leaders overcame deep divisions at a summit in Brussels to reach a deal including a commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent compared to 1990 levels. They also agreed on 27 percent targets for renewable energy supply and efficiency gains, in spite of reservations from some...

EU leaders agree on CO2 emissions cut

EU leaders agree on CO2 emissions cut

EU leaders have reached a landmark deal to cut greenhouse emissions by 40% by 2030, compared with 1990 levels. The binding decision came after heated discussions at a summit in Brussels, as some members had argued that their varied interests should be protected. Correspondents say it could make the EU a leader again in climate...

EU adopts fresh sanctions on Russia

EU adopts fresh sanctions on Russia

European Union member states have formally adopted new sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis. The new measures include restrictions on large Russian state-owned oil companies raising money on European financial markets. However, the new measures will come into effect "in the next few days", not on Tuesday as some had expected. Russia denies accusations by...

Europe drafts emergency energy plan with eye on Russia gas shut-down

The European Union could ban gas exports and limit industrial use as part of emergency measures to protect household energy supplies this winter, a source told Reuters, as it braces for a possible halt in Russian gas as a result of the Ukraine crisis. Russia is Europe's biggest supplier of oil, coal and natural gas, and its pipelines through Ukraine are currently the subject of political manoeuvering - not for the first time - as Europe and Moscow clash over...

'Invasion' in Ukraine

EU set to slap Russia with new sanctions

The European Union geared up a fresh wave of sanctions against Russia yesterday with warnings that the escalating conflict in Ukraine was putting all of Europe at risk of war. Fears of a wider confrontation spiralled after allegations that Russia has sent troops and weapons across the border to help a bloody new counter-offensive by pro-Kremlin rebels. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko visited Brussels to plead his case for a firm response, before the EU's 28 leaders were to hold talks on...

EU sets Russia sanctions ultimatum

EU sets Russia sanctions ultimatum

The European Union has given Russia one week to reverse course in Ukraine or face new sanctions. European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said the EU was working urgently on further restrictive measures. Earlier, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said his country was "close to a point of no return - full scale-war" with Russia. Russia denies...

The European Union and the Twin Civil Wars in Syria/Iraq

IS this one of those rare occasions where policymakers self-critically correct a gigantic blunder? Or is it a cold turn-about guided by pure self-interest? On August the 15th, the Foreign Ministers of EU-countries gathered in Brussels and decided that each would henceforth be free to supply arms to Kurdish rebels fighting Sunni extremists of ISIS in the North of Iraq. Even Germany which in the past had been unwilling to furnish military supplies to warring parties  in 'conflict zones',...

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