European Commission

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Refugee Deal Would 'Break Business Model of Smugglers'

But humanitarian groups say Turkey-EU plan would be 'inhumane'

(Newser) - A possible deal between Turkey and the European Union to handle the ongoing migrant crisis is being hailed as a "breakthrough" by EU leaders after an outline was drafted Tuesday, the AP reports. This "one-for-one" arrangement would mean that in exchange for every migrant in Europe that Turkey... More »

As Ukraine Truce Hangs on, EU Rolls Out New Russia Sanctions

Ceasefire between rebels, Ukraine barely hanging on amid reported casualties

(Newser) - A ceasefire between Ukraine and pro-Russia rebels is hanging on by a thread after a weekend of reported shelling and casualties, but the EU warns that sanctions against Russia will be put in place as early as tomorrow, reports the BBC . The Kremlin said the proposed sanctions—which may include... More »

Russia Mad at Putin's 'I Could Take Kiev in 2 Weeks' Leak

Because it leaked, not because he didn't say it

(Newser) - Vladmir Putin supposedly told the head of the European Commission in a private phone call that "if I wanted to, I could take Kiev in two weeks," reports La Repubblica via the New York Times . The Kremlin hit back today, saying that even if Putin did say that,... More »

Europe Raids Big Oil Firms, Looking for Price Rigging

BP, Shell, and Statoil involved

(Newser) - European authorities raided the offices of BP, Shell, Statoil, and other companies involved in the oil business yesterday, as part of an investigation into what they suspect is a more than decade-old conspiracy to rig oil prices. The European Commission said it had launched "unannounced inspections" of oil company... More »

EU: Economy Worse Than We Thought

Commission revises forecast downward

(Newser) - The European Union's economic near-future is looking bleaker than expected: Its economy is poised to shrink 0.1% this year, the European Commission forecasts, instead of growing 0.1% as February predictions held. Things look even tougher for the eurozone, for which the commission foresees an 0.4% contraction... More »

EU Speeds Up Spanish Bank Bailout

$100B rescue deal will be tied to 'ruthless' pace of reforms

(Newser) - With yet another euro bailout agreement failing to calm markets, causing Spain's borrowing costs to soar back into the danger zone, European Union nations have accelerated their latest rescue plan for Spain's shaky banks, reports the New York Times . Finance ministers from 17 eurozone nations agreed late last... More »

Eurozone Set to Finalize Greece Bailout

Finance ministers inching closer to a $171B deal

(Newser) - Eurozone finance ministers met in Brussels today, in a meeting that they believe will finalize a $171 billion second bailout for Greece, in exchange for roughly $264 billion in Greek government bonds. "I'd like to assume that we will come to a final and definitive agreement tonight,"... More »

EU to Water Bottlers: H20 Won't Stop Dehydration

Companies face 2 years in prison for making claim

(Newser) - "Water prevents dehydration"? The EU is warning water companies not to make such outrageous claims. After a 3-year investigation into the effects of water, EU officials announced this week that bottled-water producers are forbidden from making the statement—and risk 2 years in prison if they do. A... More »

'Serious' Hack Strikes EU on Eve of Summit

It's 'a big one,' but officials mum on details

(Newser) - The EU government was hit with a “serious” cyberattack the day before a summit in Brussels. “We're often hit by cyberattacks, but this is a big one,” said an insider. Officials didn’t provide details of the attack, which targeted the European Commission and the EU’s... More »

As Crises Spread, Europe Scrambles for an Answer

Even healthier countries now feeling pinch

(Newser) - Financial crises in Greece, Ireland, and Portugal have stoked fears for Italy, Belgium, and the more robust Germany as Europe struggles to find a solution, the New York Times reports. Worry that Germany may have to pay the brunt of bailout costs have prompted the sale of its debt; investor... More »

EU Antitrust Regulators Target Google

They say it discriminated against rivals in search results

(Newser) - Google is in hot water with EU antitrust authorities over allegations that it discriminated against rivals in its search results, and barred some websites from using rival ad services with its AdSense contracts. The European Commission will also investigate allegations that Google makes it difficult for advertisers to move data... More »

WHO Exaggerated Swine Flu Pandemic: EU Reports

Watchdogs accuse WHO of colluding with drugmakers

(Newser) - Was the H1N1 pandemic exaggerated? European officials are putting heat on the WHO over its handling of the pandemic, alleging the organization caused unnecessary panic and wasted millions of dollars. Reports released by an EU watchdog and the British Medical Journal go even further: they accuse the WHO of being... More »

Europe Offers $41B to Greece

Officials hope loan will calm markets

(Newser) - European officials made $41 billion in emergency financing available to Greece, hoping the easy access to credit would soothe fears that the country will default. EU Finance ministers agreed to price the loans at a below-market interest rate of 5%, as the Greek government is already struggling to pay high... More »

EU Should Go After Goldman, Since US Won't

Firm helped Greece hide staggering debt, leading to near collapse

(Newser) - With the revelation that Goldman Sachs was peddling exotic instruments to help Greece hide its runaway debts as recently as November, something must be done, Simon Johnson writes. US authorities clearly aren't going to raise a finger—a few phone calls around Washington will ensure that the Fed looks the... More »

Blair Set to Become First European President

Ex-PM expected to become President Blair if Irish pass treaty

(Newser) - Tony Blair could be installed as Europe's first-ever president within weeks if Ireland, in voting today, approves the treaty creating the job. Nicolas Sarkozy believes Blair is the best man for the job, sources tell the Times. Angela Merkel initially believed the job should go to somebody from a country... More »

Euro Farmers Protest Falling Prices With Huge Milk Dump

800,000 gallons in Belgian field after recession takes big toll

(Newser) - European farmers today dumped 800,000 gallons of milk in a Belgian field, AFP reports, in a protest against a dramatic dive in prices. The group behind the scene says three French farmers committed suicide in the past week over prices, which have fallen by as much as half as... More »

Microsoft Move Won't Derail Antitrust Case

Company has unfair advantage, European Commission says

(Newser) - The European Commission is moving forward with its antitrust case against Microsoft even after the company's promise to sell its Windows 7 operating system without Internet Explorer in Europe. The commission "notes with interest" Microsoft's announcement, CNET News reports, but adds that "Microsoft has apparently decided to supply... More »

Tech Leaders Unite Against Microsoft

Nokia, IBM, Oracle join EU antitrust case over Explorer's dominance

(Newser) - A technology consortium whose members include IBM, Nokia, and Oracle has joined the European Commission’s antitrust case against Microsoft, the Financial Times reports. The consortium, Ecis, joins Google and the Mozilla Foundation in accusing Microsoft of using Windows to distort the web browser market in favor of Internet Explorer.... More »

EU Trims Tuna Catch, Experts Warn: 'Not Enough'

New quotas well above sustainable limit

(Newser) - The European Commission completed a deal this week cutting back on the fishing of bluefin tuna, the Economist reports, but not sharply enough to save the species, scientists argue. The deal gradually reduces the legal catch from 28,500 tons this year to 19,950 tons in 2010—but conservationists... More »

EU Unveils $260B Stimulus Package

Struggling industries, member governments targeted in 2-year plan

(Newser) - The European Union Commission passed a $260 billion stimulus package today intended to boost its members’ economies during the next 2 years, Der Spiegel reports. The plan calls for more funds than most economists expected, but as the commission president Jose Barroso put it: “Exceptional times call for exceptional... More »

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