European Commission - updates

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EU authorizes use of remdesivir to treat coronavirus

Jul 03, 2020 - 7:19 PM

'Today's authorization of a first medicine to treat COVID-19 is an important step forward in the fight against this virus,' says EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides

REMDESIVIR. This file photograph taken on April 8, 2020, shows vials of the drug 'remdesivir' during a press conference concerning the start of a study with the Ebola drug to treat severely ill patients afflicted with coronavirus COVID-19, at The University Hospital Eppendorf (UKE) in Hamburg, northern Germany, amidst the global pandemic. File photo by Ulrich Perrey/Pool/AFP

Brussels probes German regulator over Wirecard scandal

Jun 26, 2020 - 10:55 PM

(UPDATED) The European Securities and Markets Authority will examine whether Germany's regulatory responses to early signs that Wirecard was in trouble 'were adequate to protect investor confidence in EU securities markets'

EU takes aim at Apple in landmark antitrust cases

Jun 16, 2020 - 7:25 PM

(UPDATED) The European Commission also launches an in-depth investigation into Apple Pay, due to concerns the payment system is shutting out rivals

APPLE AND THE EU. People queue before the opening of the new Apple Store Liberty, the first Italian flagship store of Apple in Milan, on July 26, 2018. File photo by Piero Cruciatti/AFP

New turbulence in high-stakes Lufthansa rescue drama

May 27, 2020 - 11:55 PM

Lufthansa says its supervisory board is currently 'unable to approve' the aid package from Germany, as conditions must be 'analyzed intensively'

LUFTHANSA. The German airline's planes parked at the Munich Airport on November 29, 2016. File photo by Christof Stache/AFP

EU approves 7 billion euros in French state aid to Air France

May 04, 2020 - 3:45 PM

Without this approved aid, 'Air France would likely face the risk of bankruptcy,' says the European Commission

MAJOR ORDER. Air France-KLM is buying 60 Airbus A220-300 planes. Image from Airbus

EU scraps import duties for medical equipment

Apr 03, 2020 - 10:50 PM

The European Union moves to make medical equipment more accessible as it battles the coronavirus pandemic

Medical workers wearing a face mask and overalls disinfect their gloves while performing drive-through swabbing tests for coronavirus on people arriving by car outside the polyclinic of Alessandria, Piedmont, on April 2, 2020 during the country's lockdown aimed at curbing the spread of the COVID-19 infection, caused by the novel coronavirus. (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA / AFP)

EU limits medical equipment exports in virus fight

Mar 15, 2020 - 8:00 AM

'This is the right thing to do because we need that equipment for our health care system,' says European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen

FIELD HOSPITAL. A man receives assistance in the a pre-triage medical tent in front of the Cremona hospital, in Cremona, northern Italy, on March 4, 2020. Photo by Miguel Medina/AFP

EU to stop 'ghost flights' in coronavirus fightback

Mar 11, 2020 - 7:45 AM

As passenger numbers drop, many airlines are forced to fly empty planes to ensure they do not lose their slots. The European Commission says this should not be the case.

A general view shows a deserted terminal at Milan-Malpensa airport in Ferno, northwest of Milan, in one of Italy's quarantine red zones on March 9, 2020. - Millions of people in northern Italy were in lockdown as officials struggled to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus COVID-19. (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA / AFP)

Google vs EU: a decade-long saga goes to court

Feb 12, 2020 - 1:45 PM

Google is appealing a 2.4 billion euro fine from 2017 that was the first in a series of major penalties from the European Commission, the EU's powerful anti-trust regulator

Philippines out of European Union's priority watch list on counterfeiting

Jan 27, 2020 - 12:05 AM

The European Union delists the Philippines, citing 'very few complaints received from stakeholders'

FAKE GOODS. The Bureau of Customs turns over an estimated P58 million worth of fake goods to the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines for destruction at Camp Crame on October 18, 2019. Photo from BOC

British MPs set to finally seal Brexit deal

Jan 09, 2020 - 2:11 PM

(UPDATED) The House of Commons will rush through a final day of hearings and ratify Prime Minister Boris Johnson's divorce deal with Brussels, drawing a line under an extraordinary period of political chaos

TALKING BREXIT. Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R) walks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen inside 10 Downing Street in central London on January 8, 2020, ahead of their meeting. Photo by Kirsty Wigglesworth/AFP

Von der Leyen skeptical on Huawei in Europe – report

Dec 27, 2019 - 11:45 PM

Critics say Huawei is too close to Beijing and could by law be forced to hand over data to Chinese intelligence services

Visitors walk past the booth of Huawei promoting its P30 Pro smartphone at the international electronics and innovation fair IFA in Berlin on September 6, 2019. - Exhibitors from more than 100 countries will be presenting their latest products during the fair running from September 6 to 11, 2019. (Photo by Tobias SCHWARZ / AFP)

EU warns Malta against 'political interference' in slain reporter probe

Dec 03, 2019 - 9:13 PM

European Commission Vice President Vera Jourova, who oversees rule of law issues for the EU member states, says 'more work needs to be done' in Malta on maintaining an independent legal system in the country

VERA JOUROVA. European Commission vice-president in charge for values and Transparency Vera Jourova answer questions during her hearing at the European Parliament in Brussels on October 07, 2019. File photo by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP

EU urges UK to explain Brexit plan 'as soon as possible'

Oct 19, 2019 - 10:55 PM

'It will be for the UK government to inform us about the next steps as soon as possible,' says EU Spokeswoman Mina Andreeva

BREXIT UNCERTAINTY. Union and European flags flutter in the breeze in central London. File photo by Niklas Hallen/AFP

Despite having enough food, humanity risks hunger 'crises' – report

Oct 19, 2019 - 12:06 AM

According to a UN report, a key obstacle is unequal access: while some people throw away food they buy too much of, others cannot afford or find the nutrition they need

EU competition chief Vestager gains power in new Commission

Sep 10, 2019 - 10:50 PM

'This commission will be a geopolitical commission, I want the European Union and thus the commission to be the guardian of multilateralism,' says new European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen

TOP TEAM. European Commission President German Ursula von der Leyen gives a press conference to announce the names of the new European commissioners, on September 10, 2019 at the European Commission in Brussels. Photo by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP

EU says UK has yet to show plan to revise Brexit deal

Sep 03, 2019 - 9:26 PM

'Our working assumption is that there will be Brexit on October 31,' says European Commission spokesperson Mina Andreeva

BREXIT. European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker and Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier are due to report to senior EU officials on progress in Brexit talks. File photo by Leon Neal/AFP

Incoming EU chief calls for 'new pact' on migration

Aug 03, 2019 - 8:51 AM

Italy wants other EU countries to take in their fair share of the arrivals of migrants

EU CHIEF. Newly elected European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen speaks as she attends a news conference following a vote on her election at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France on July 16, 2019. Photo by Frederick Florin/AFP

Determined EU defies Boris Johnson push for Brexit rewrite

Jul 26, 2019 - 9:26 AM

Chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier warns EU member states that Britain's new prime minister Boris Johnson is trying to divide them by amping up the threat of a damaging 'no-deal' divorce

EU flags flutter on the day of Britain's newly elected prime minister Boris Johnson's debut in the House of Commons, outside the Houses of Parliament in central London on July 25, 2019. Britain's new Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday called the current Brexit deal negotiated with the EU "unacceptable" and set preparations for leaving the bloc without an agreement as a "top priority" for the government. Niklas HALLE'N / AFP

European Parliament narrowly elects Germany's Von der Leyen to EU top job

Jul 17, 2019 - 1:10 PM

German defense minister Ursula von der Leyen becomes the first woman to head the EU's executive arm

Newly elected European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen speaks as she attends a news conference following a vote on her election at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France on July 16, 2019. German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen was narrowly elected president of the European Commission on July 16, after winning over sceptical lawmakers. The 60-year-old conservative was nominated to become the first woman in Brussels' top job last month by the leaders of the bloc's 28 member states, to the annoyance of many MEPs.  FREDERICK FLORIN / AFP

EU leaders adjourn summit to break jobs stalemate

Jul 01, 2019 - 8:42 PM

The 28 EU leaders are trying to agree on who will steer the bloc over the coming years through the looming challenges of Brexit and the rise of populist parties in Europe

EU TOP JOBS. European Council President Donald Tusk (R) and Estonian Prime Minister Juri Ratas speak as they arrive to attend a working dinner during a European Council Summit at The Europa Building in Brussels, on June 30, 2019. Photo by Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt/Pool/AFP

EU leaders meet to assign Brussels' top jobs

Jun 20, 2019 - 10:38 PM

None of the leading names to have emerged during last month's election has won consensus support from the 4 main parliamentary parties to replace Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the EU's executive arm

LEADERS. European Union leaders attend a EU summit in Brussels, Belgium, on June 20, 2019. Photo by Johanna Geron/Pool/AFP

EU warns UK must pay bill even in 'no deal' Brexit

Jun 13, 2019 - 8:00 AM

The European Commission says it will not enter talks on future trade until London honors 'the financial obligations the UK has made as a member state'

A European Union flag and a UK flag are pictured during a special meeting of the European Council to endorse the draft Brexit withdrawal agreement and to approve the draft political declaration on future EU-UK relations on November 25, 2018 in Brussels. The European Union's top official urged British lawmakers to ratify the Brexit deal Prime Minister Theresa May has negotiated with European leaders, warning it will not be modified. "This is the best deal possible for Britain, this is the best deal possible for Europe. This is the only deal possible," Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, said after a Brussels summit.  EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP

Leaders meet as EU haggles over top jobs

Jun 07, 2019 - 9:51 PM

It is an uphill task, overshadowed both by genuine policy differences and by haggling over the jobs of Commission and Council presidents, foreign policy chief, parliamentary speaker and director of the European Central Bank

EUROPEAN UNION. European flags are reflected at the entrance of the Berlaymont building EU Commission in Brussels on May 21,2014. File photo by Georges Gobet/AFP

The biggest world stories of the week: May 26-June 1, 2019

Jun 02, 2019 - 9:25 PM

Here's a roundup of the stories that made headlines across the globe

FIRST PUBLIC STATEMENT. Special Counsel Robert Mueller leaves after speaking on the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election, at the US Justice Department in Washington, DC, on May 29, 2019. Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP

EU leaders launch hunt to fill Brussels' top job

May 28, 2019 - 8:39 PM

The key job to be filled is that of president of the European Commission, the union's powerful chief executive, a five-year post currently held by Jean-Claude Juncker

EU. A European flag flutters in the wind in front of the European Commission headquarters in Brussels on March 14, 2018. File photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

EU's Juncker laments not 'interfering' in Brexit campaign

May 07, 2019 - 11:17 PM

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker says he made a mistake by listening to British leader David Cameron when he told him to stay out of the campaign before the June 2016 vote

BREXIT. EU Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker gestures ahead of a College Commissioners meeting at the EU headquarters in Brussels on July 18, 2018. File photo by John Thys/AFP

How the world is reacting to Venezuela 'coup bid'

Apr 30, 2019 - 9:26 PM

Here are some initial reactions from world governments

'COUP BID.' Soldiers loyal to Venezuelan opposition leader and self-proclaimed acting president Juan Guaido take position in front of La Carlota base in Caracas on April 29, 2019. Photo by Yuri Cortez/AFP

European parliament deals setback to EU-U.S. trade talks

Mar 14, 2019 - 10:26 PM

The European Parliament only has an advisory role with regard to the EU's negotiating mandate, but it will have the final say once an agreement has been concluded

EU-US TRADE TALKS. In this file photo, US President Donald Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (L) give a statement in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, on July 25, 2018. File photo by Saul Loeb/AFP

EU says 'no solution' yet to break Brexit deadlock

Mar 06, 2019 - 9:11 PM

EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has informed the European Commission that 'no solution has been identified at this point that is consistent with the withdrawal agreement'

'DEADLOCK.' Britain and the EU are stuck in a deadlock over Brexit. File photo by Daniel Sorabji/AFP

EU vetoes train-maker merger, drawing France's fury

Feb 06, 2019 - 7:48 PM

(UPDATED) 'The Commission prohibited the merger because the companies were not willing to address our serious competition concerns,' says the EU's powerful antitrust sheriff, Margrethe Vestager

TOP TRAIN MAKER. This file photo taken on November 19, 2009, shows an employee of Alstom walking past locomotives in a testing workshop of French engineering giant Alstom in Belfort, eastern France. Sebastien Bozom/AFP

Juncker doubts Romania's ability to assume EU presidency

Dec 29, 2018 - 9:48 PM

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker says the EU presidency ' requires a willingness to listen to others and a willingness to put one's own concerns in the background'

DOUBTING ROMANIA. EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker gestures ahead of a College Commissioners meeting at the EU headquarters in Brussels on July 18, 2018. Photo by John Thys/AFP

Dengvaxia sale approved for dengue-endemic areas in Europe

Dec 20, 2018 - 3:43 PM

Sanofi's vaccine is known to prevent the dengue virus in individuals who have been affected previously, but poses more risks for those who have not been infected before immunization

DENGVAXIA. The world's first anti-dengue vaccine was given to Filipino grade-schoolers under the government's now-suspended school-based dengue immunization program. File photo by Joel Liporada/Rappler

EU drifts toward rocks on populist tide

Dec 18, 2018 - 6:00 PM

'2019 will be a pivotal year with major challenges,' says Jonathan Faull, a former senior administrator at the European Commission

Socialists pick Dutchman Timmermans for tilt at top EU job

Dec 08, 2018 - 11:57 PM

Dutch politician Frans Timmermans is the common candidate at the 11th congress for Europe's alliance of socialist parties in Lisbon

CANDIDATE. First Vice-President of European Commission Frans Timmermans attend the XI Party of European Socialists Congress at the University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE) on December 8, 2018 in Lisbon. Photo by Patricia de Melo Moreira/AFP

EU should worry about Huawei, other Chinese firms – official

Dec 07, 2018 - 9:41 PM

European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip says Chinese companies 'have to cooperate with their intelligence services. And this is about mandatory backdoors.'

ANDRUS ANSIP. Vice-President of the European Commission Andrus Ansip (C) attends the India Mobile Congress 2018 in New Delhi on October 25, 2018. File photo by Chandan Khanna/AFP

EU vows P9.2 million for flood victims in PH

Aug 08, 2018 - 12:30 PM

The European Union is extending this aid even as President Rodrigo Duterte lambasts them for supposedly interfering in his bloody anti-drug campaign

FLOODED. Residents brave knee-high flood along Antero Soriano Highway in General Trias, Cavite, due to Tropical Depression Josie and the southwest monsoon on July 22, 2018. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Trump, EU's Juncker agree to ease trade tensions

Jul 26, 2018 - 7:58 AM

(UPDATED) The leaders agree to 'launch a new phase' in the relationship and 'to work together towards zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers, and zero subsidies on non-auto industrial goods'

TRADE. US President Donald Trump meets with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, on July 25, 2018. Photo by Saul Loeb/AFP

Poland sees end to EU differences

Jun 27, 2018 - 2:11 PM

'I think we have satisfied the EU's curiosity over the judicial reforms in Poland,' says Polish secretary of state for EU affairs Konrad Szymanski

PROTESTS. In this file photo, protesters hold Polish and European Union flags as they take part in a demonstration in front of the Polish Supreme Court on July 21, 2017 in protest against new bill changing the judiciary system. Wojtek Radwanski/AFP

EU urges Facebook to 'cooperate fully' in data scandal

Apr 13, 2018 - 2:45 PM

Facebook admits up to 2.7 million people in the EU may have been affected by the scandal

ZUCKERBERG. Facebook co-founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before a combined Senate Judiciary and Commerce committee hearing in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill April 10, 2018 in Washington, DC. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/AFP

Trump to EU: We'll drop our tariffs if you drop yours

Mar 11, 2018 - 9:02 AM

The EU's top trade official says the US failed to provide full clarity on how Europe and Japan could be spared set to continue next week

TIT-FOR-TAT. US trades tariff threats with the EU. File photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images/AFP

Remove 'terror content' within an hour, EU tells web firms

Mar 02, 2018 - 10:53 AM

The new recommendations also include steps to crack down on other harmful illegal content such as hate speech and images of child sexual abuse

ANDRUS ANSIP. European Commissioner for Digital Single Market and Vice President of the European Commission, Estonian politician Andrus Ansip, gives a press conference on the first day of the Mobile World Congress (MWC) on February 26, 2018 in Barcelona. Photo by Lluis Gene/ AFP

Countdown begins for tough EU asylum reform by June

Jan 25, 2018 - 1:07 PM

The European Commission aims to insist all member countries accept controversial refugee quotas at the talks in Sofia with the 28-nation bloc's interior ministers

TOPIC: EU ASYLUM. EU Commissioner of Migration & Home Affairs Dimitris Avramopoulos speaks during an interview at the EU headquarters in Brussels on January 23, 2018. John Thys/AFP

What this media briefing room tells us about the EU

Dec 06, 2017 - 3:17 PM

The EU is not, as many Filipinos think, a monolithic body that knows nothing but to criticize President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs

LIKE A THEATER. The media briefing room of the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, can accommodate up to 300 out of 1,000 accredit journalists. All photos by Paterno Esmaquel II/Rappler

Brexit talks in 'disturbing deadlock', EU's Barnier says

Oct 13, 2017 - 8:29 AM

EU leaders are set at a summit next week to order the launch of preparatory work on a future trade deal, even though they will not approve moving on to full trade talks until December.

'DEADLOCK.' Britain and the EU hail the progress of 'constructive' Brexit divorce negotiations. File photo by Daniel Sorabji/AFP

Competition policy enforcement in the digital age

Sep 30, 2017 - 11:26 AM

The decisions to be made by the Philippine Competition Commission in coming months, as it fully implements the Philippine Competition Act, will set the tone for competition regulation in Philippine markets

Belgium accuses Netherlands of tainted eggs cover-up

Aug 09, 2017 - 9:57 PM

UPDATED When a country like the Netherlands one of the world s biggest exporters of eggs does not pass on this kind of information that is a real problem says Belgium s Agriculture Minister Denis Ducarme

TAINTED EGGS SCANDAL. Belgium Minister of SMEs, Entrepreneurs, Agriculture and Social Integration Denis Ducarme speaks to journalists at a hearing of the parliamentary commission for agriculture and public health, at the Federal Parliament in Brussels, on August 9, 2017. Photo by Virginie Lefour/ Belga / AFP

EU takes legal action against Poland over court reform

Jul 29, 2017 - 7:47 PM

The European Commission comes down hard on Warsaw to prevent what it says is not just an increasing threat to Poland s democratic standards but those across the 28 nation bloc

PROTESTS. In this file photo, protesters hold Polish and European Union flags as they take part in a demonstration in front of the Polish Supreme Court on July 21, 2017 in protest against new bill changing the judiciary system. Wojtek Radwanski/AFP

European Commission gives P49-M aid for Marawi evacuees

Jul 04, 2017 - 5:50 PM

The humanitarian aid will directly benefit over 50 000 people affected by the Marawi siege

MARAWI EVACUEES. A family from Marawi City takes shelter in an evacuation center in Balo-i on May 29, 2017. Photo by Ted Aljibe/Rappler

Italy to pay up to 17-B euros to deal with two troubled banks – gov't

Jun 26, 2017 - 7:28 AM

Italy will pay up to 17 billion euros 19 billion to break up two insolvent Venetian banks which have posed a threat to country s banking system

VENICE VIEW. A picture taken from the Rialto bridge shows a general view of the Canale Grande (Grand Canal) in Venice on April 8, 2017. Miguel Medina/AFP