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Tax Justice

On Wednesday 15th of July the General Court of the European Union annulled the Commission's 2016 state aid decision concerning Apple in Ireland. The ruling by the General Court on illegal state aid to Apple in Ireland is a huge setback in the fight against tax dumping in Europe.

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Unlocking the potential of Erasmus+

Press release from EFA MEP Ernest Maragall (Catalonia)

In a landmark report by Greens/EFA MEP Ernest Maragall, the European Parliament's Culture Committee has called for the EU's flagship Erasmus+ to do much more to promote mobility in vocational training across Europe. The report, approved by the Culture Committee today, says that whilst Erasmus+ has b...


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Energy security

European Commission rolls out the red carpet for Gazprom

The European Commission today presented a package of proposals on energy security. However, in spite of the agreement reached last December at the Paris climate negotiations, the proposals’ main focus for the supply of energy is on fossil fuels. Commenting on these proposals, MEP Claude Turmes, en...


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Corporate tax avoidance

IKEA cheating EU governments out of massive tax revenue according to new research

A new investigative report on the tax strategy of furniture multinational IKEA has revealed the details of the system they employ to avoid paying their tax responsibility across the EU. The report, which was commissioned by the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, highlights how IKEA avoids ...


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Kosovo

EU perspective crucial for reform momentum

The European Parliament today adopted a report assessing Kosovo's progress in the context of the EU accession process. After the vote, Green MEP and EP vice-president Ulrike Lunacek, who is the parliament's rapporteur/draftsperson on Kosovo stated:"The European Parliament has today given anothe...


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EU car pollution rules

European Parliament abdicates responsibility and waves through license to pollute for carmakers

A decision introducing new loopholes to EU law aimed at limiting car pollution was today waved through the European Parliament. The decision introducing 'conformity factors' as part of the testing procedure for car pollutant emissions will allow car manufacturers to produce and market cars t...


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Brexit vote must respect all constituent parts of UK

Press release from EFA MEP Jill Evans (Plaid Cymru)

The UK government should only have a mandate to leave the European Union if all four constituent parts of the UK vote to leave in the forthcoming referendum, Plaid Cymru MEP Jill Evans has told a debate in the European Parliament. MEPs were debating the renegotiation deal in Strasbourg with European...


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TiSA international services agreement

EU Parliament misses opportunity

The European Parliament today adopted a resolution setting out its position with regard to the ongoing negotiations on the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA). The Greens criticised the resolution, which fails to properly highlight the major concerns with the negotiations. After the vote, Greens/EFA ...


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EFA logo

Celtic United Front on UK EU Referendum

EFA Press release from Alyn Smith (SNP) & Jill Evans (Plaid Cymru)

MEPs Alyn Smith, Martina Anderson and Jill Evans representing the SNP, Sinn Fein and Plaid Cymru have today (Wednesday) intervened in a European Parliament debate on the EU proposals which may form a basis for agreement to be presented by the UK Prime Minster in a referendum on EU membership. All ag...


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Undeclared work

New EU platform must not become debating club

The European Parliament today voted to approve the establishment of a European Platform to prevent undeclared work. The Greens welcomed the new platform, with social policy spokesperson Terry Reintke stating: "Undeclared work is a widespread phenomenon in Europe, which leads to the exploitation...


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EU-US data protection/Safe Harbour

EU Commission steamrolling right to data protection

The European Commission today announced the proposal of a new legal framework for the transfer of the private data of EU citizens to the US. The new framework is supposed to replace the Safe Harbour decision, which was deemed illegal by the European Court of Justice. Commenting on the Commission's p...


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Trade secrets

New EU rules open the door to abuses by unscrupulous firms

A legislative agreement on new EU rules on the protection of trade secrets was today endorsed by the European Parliament's Legal Affairs committee. The Greens have expressed concern with the law, with Greens/EFA MEP Julia Reda, commenting after the vote: “These new rules on 'trade s...


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EU corporate tax rules

Slow progress on addressing tax avoidance continues

The European Commission today presented its 'Corporate Tax Package', a set of proposals to update EU rules on corporate taxation. Commenting on the proposals, UK Green MEP and tax policy spokesperson Molly Scott Cato said: "These proposals on corporate taxation represent another small but incom...


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Car industry regulation

Revamping European type approval system overdue but EU governments must play ball

The European Commission today presented legislative proposals aimed at strengthening the system for approving road vehicles for use in Europe. The Greens welcomed the proposals, which would address some of problems with the current national-based 'type approval framework', but cautioned that...


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EU-Kosovo

Landmark EU-Kosovo agreement gets all clear

The European Parliament voted to approve the EU-Kosovo Stabilisation and Association Agreement. Welcoming the vote, Green MEP and EP vice-president Ulrike Lunacek, who is the parliament's rapporteur/draftsperson on Kosovo stated: "The European Parliament has today given the all clear to the EU-...


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Car pollution scandal

EU Parliament inquiry committee takes shape

  The European Parliament today voted to approve the composition of the new parliamentary inquiry committee, set up to investigate the car pollution scandal. The 45 member committee will include 3 Green members: Greens/EFA co-president Rebecca Harms (DE), Bas Eickhout (NL) and Karima Delli (...


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Fundamental rights

Presumption of innocence guaranteed across Europe under new EU rules

The European Parliament today adopted a final legislative agreement, which establishes the presumption of innocence in criminal proceedings in EU law. After the vote, Green justice and home affairs spokesperson Jan Philipp Albrecht said: "The new rules adopted today will set out EU-wide minimu...


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EU food law

Draft EU baby food rules sunk by MEPs due to provisions on sugar

The European Parliament today voted to reject draft EU rules on baby food, which would have allowed baby foods to contain far higher levels of sugar than those recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) (1). Commenting after the vote, UK Green MEP Keith Taylor, who was behind the motion to r...


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©alexey-topolyanskiy

Situation in Poland - the Silesian minority

Press release from EFA MEP Josep-Maria Terricabras (Catalonia)

President of the EFA Group in the European Parliament, Josep-Maria Terricabras, intervened in a debate about the situation in Poland to raise the issue of the country's Silesian minority and the denial of minority rights. The debate was held at the European Parliament in Strasbourg in the pre...


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Belgian nuclear reactors

New study confirms risks remain and reactors must be shut down

The Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament today presented the third study in a series on the Belgian nuclear reactors Doel 3 and Tihange 2, which was commissioned from materials scientist Dr Ilse Tweer. The study presents new information on flaws in the reactor pressure vessels (1) and underli...


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EU car pollution rules

Postponing vote on controversial car emissions is political chicanery

A much anticipated vote on draft EU rules on testing pollutant emissions from cars, which was foreseen for next week, will be postponed. The decision was taken at the Conference of Presidents of political groups today and was supported by the EPP and S&D political groups. The vote on the proposa...


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Poland

EU Commission correct to address rule of law concerns in Poland

The European Commission today announced it is putting Poland under a monitoring procedure under the EU's rule of law framework. The move comes in response to the legal and constitutional changes in Poland regarding the public broadcaster and the judiciary. Commenting on the situation, Greens/EFA co-...


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EU arms export rules

EU must prevent arms going to repressive regimes and terrorists

The European Parliament today adopted a report setting out its assessment of how EU rules on arms exports are being implemented and how to tighten them up, with a large majority of MEPs voting in favour. Commenting after the vote, Green MEP Bodil Valero, who is the European Parliament's rapporteur/d...


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GMO authorisation

Scandalous authorisation of GM maize underlines need to overhaul EU approval procedure

The European Parliament voted to object to a decision by the European Commission to authorise a new glyphosate-resistant GM maize variety (NK603 x T25) for use in the EU. Commenting after the vote, Green food safety spokesperson Bart Staes said: “In objecting to the authorisation of this GM maize...


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European-Parliament-©-Rauf-Guliyev
© Rauf Guliyev

Making the positive case for EU membership

Press release from EFA MEP Jill Evans (Plaid Cymru)

Plaid Cymru MEP Jill Evans has told the European Parliament in Strasbourg that 'Wales has a great deal to contribute to making the EU more effective - improving Europe for all its people'. Plaid Cymru MEP Jill Evans (EFA) The MEP was speaking in a key debate with European Commission Pr...


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EFA logo

Symbolic empty chair for Saudi blogger in the European Parliament

Press release from EFA MEP Alyn Smith (SNP)

An empty seat was left in the European Parliament today (Wednesday) for Raif Badawi, Saudi blogger and activist, winner of this year's prestigious Sakharov prize for freedom of expression. Alyn Smith, SNP Member of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee once again called on the Saudi ...


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Car pollution scandal

EU Parliament to set up inquiry on Green initiative

  The European Parliament's Conference of Presidents of political groups today agreed to the setting up of a parliamentary inquiry committee to investigate the car pollution scandal. The European Parliament will now vote as whole on the draft mandate for the committee in its plenary sess...


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©andrea-boldizsar

EU Energy Union

EU energy policy direction at odds with UN climate agreement

The European Parliament today adopted two reports setting out its position on the European Energy Union and the proposal for a 10% target for electricity interconnectivity across the EU. Commenting on the vote on the EP's position on the Energy Union, Green energy spokesperson Claude Turmes said...


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EU data protection rules

Major step forward for consumer protection and competition

Negotiators from the European Parliament and Council this evening reached an agreement on the long-open reform of the EU's data protection rules. The agreement must now be confirmed by the representatives of EU governments before the end of the year (1).  Commenting on the agreement Green MEP a...


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EU car pollution rules

Controversial car emissions tests rejected by MEPs

The European Parliament's environment committee this evening voted to reject a decision to introduce 'real driving emissions' (RDE) tests for measuring compliance with EU car pollution limits. The controversial decision by EU governments would create tests with such major loopholes ('...


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Kosovo

EU-Kosovo agreement gets go-ahead from MEPs

The European Parliament's foreign affairs committee today voted to approve the EU-Kosovo Stabilisation and Association Agreement. Welcoming the vote, Green MEP and EP vice-president Ulrike Lunacek, who is the parliament's rapporteur/draftsperson on Kosovo stated: "MEPs have today given their cl...


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UN climate talks

Paris Agreement temperature goal means phasing out fossil fuels by 2050

Commenting on the outcome of the COP21 UN climate summit in Paris, Green climate change spokesperson Yannick Jadot MEP said: “This Paris Agreement will begin a new international regime of cooperation on climate change and point the direction for the transformation of economies around the world. Th...


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PNR air passenger data retention

MEPs wave through new PNR system

The European Parliament's lead civil liberties and home affairs committee today approved a legislative agreement on the creation of an EU passenger name record system (1). The Greens have criticised the creation of the system and voted against the agreement, with Green home affairs spokesperson Jan ...


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EU copyright and online content rules

Commission fails to dismantle digital borders

The European Commission today presented a 'communication' setting out its plans for reforming EU copyright rules, as well as a legislative proposal on the portability of legally acquired digital content. Commenting on the proposals, Greens/EFA vice-president and copyright spokesperson Julia Reda sai...


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Aviation sector

EU Commission's myopic focus on growth ignores major problems with air transport

The European Commission today presented its 'aviation strategy', setting out proposals for the adapting the rules governing the aviation sector in Europe. Commenting on the proposals, Green transport spokesperson Keith Taylor said: "This strategy paper has again revealed the myopic focus of the...


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Justice and home affairs council

PNR deal diverts energy from real solutions

Yesterday afternoon a provisional agreement was reached between the European Parliament and Council on the stall proposal to create an EU passenger name record system, to access and store the data of air passengers travelling in the EU (1). Commenting on the deal and in the context of the council of...


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EP tax investigation continued

Strong mandate for new committee to continue tax investigation

The European Parliament's conference of presidents today agreed to create a new special committee on taxation to last 6 months, with a new mandate based largely on the mandate of the previous committee and the same structure. Commenting after the conference of presidents, Greens/EFA president Philip...


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Circular economy

Revised Commission proposals undermined by lowered ambition

The European Commission today presented new proposals the circular economy and resource use. Reacting to the proposals, Greens/EFA vice-president and environment spokesperson Bas Eickhout said: "While we welcome the fact the Commission has finally come forward with revised proposals on the circ...


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EU border management/FRONTEX

EU Parliament calls for complaints mechanism for refugees

The European Parliament will this evening vote on a report setting out recommendations to the EU border agency FRONTEX on how to better protect the fundamental rights of refugees. The report calls for the creation of a complaints mechanism for refugees and calls on the Commission to include this in ...


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EU economic governance

EU Parliament to ensure oversight of financial adjustment programmes

The European Parliament is to establish a structure and process for the oversight of EU financial adjustment programmes. The decision was taken at the conference of presidents of political groups today and follows a request made by Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipiras. The Greens have been pushing f...


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Urban mobility

EU Parliament calls for shift towards sustainable transport policy

The European Parliament today adopted an initiative report outlining its position on urban mobility, which was drafted by Green MEP Karima Delli. After the vote, the rapporteur Karima Delli said:"The European Parliament has today voted in favour of reorienting of transport policy in our cities ...


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Lobbying transparency

New EU rules overdue; Greens/EFA launches new tool

The Greens/EFA group has urged the European Commission to stop delaying anticipated proposals setting out new rules on lobbying transparency. The group made the call today in the context of its launch of a new online tool for automatically making public any meetings MEPs hold with lobbyists (1). Com...


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EFA logo

New initiative to publish details of lobbying

Press release from EFA MEP Jill Evans (Plaid Cymru)

Plaid Cymru MEP Jill Evans is using a new online tool which will publish details of any meetings she has with lobbyists as and when they happen. MEP Jill Evans The tool called LobbyCal has been developed by her parliamentary group to help elected members share details online of lobbyist meetings (ht...


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GMO authorisation

MEPs issue rebuke to EU Commission on authorisation of GM maize variety

The European Parliament's environment committee today voted to object to a decision by the European Commission to authorise a new GM maize variety (NK603 x T25) for use in the EU. The objection, which will now be voted on by the parliament as a whole, is not binding but sends a strong political sig...


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UN climate talks

EU must regain leadership role and make Paris climate summit a success

The COP21 UN climate summit is set to open on Monday with a meeting of heads and state and government from around the world. The summit is then set to last two weeks, with expectations it will deliver a binding global agreement on tackling climate change. Ahead of the conference, Green climate chang...


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Energy Union

Energy ministers give guidance on governance but ignore elephant in the room

EU energy ministers today agreed on measures regarding the governance of the EU's Energy Union at their Council meeting. Commenting on the Council conclusions, Green energy spokesperson Claude Turmes said: "EU energy ministers have today given some clear guidance as regards the crucial issue of...


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EP tax investigation

EP president Schulz blocking investigative work

The European Parliament's conference of presidents today failed to agree on extending the mandate of EP's special committee investigating taxation. EP president Martin Schulz and the socialist (S&D) group expressed legal concerns with the extension, despite there being no legal advice to this en...


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Car pollution scandal

EP inquiry must be finalised without delay

The socialist (S&D) group today added its support to a proposal made by the Greens/EFA group to set up a parliamentary inquiry committee to investigate the car pollution scandal. With a majority of groups now supporting an inquiry, a decision will be taken at an extraordinary conference of presi...


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EP tax investigation

Special committee extension blocked to protect Juncker and Dijsselbloem

Philippe Lamberts, Sven Giegold and Eva Joly host a press conference on the developments with the EP's tax investigation at 16.00 today in the press room in Strasbourg. It will be streamed at: http://www.greens-efa.eu/ep-tax-investigation-prolongation-blocked-by-political-groups-14858.html A previou...


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Radicalisation

EU Parliament finds common ground on measures to tackle radicalisation

The European Parliament today adopted a report setting out its position on how to tackle radicalisation in Europe. After the vote, Green civil liberties spokesperson Jean Lambert said: “The European Parliament has today found common ground on how to tackle radicalisation, which has to be a core el...


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EFA logo

Money lost to tax evasion is worth whole EU budget

Press release from EFA MEP Ernest Maragall (Catalonia)

MEP Ernest Maragall has welcomed a series of recommendations approved by the European Parliament to tackle corporate tax evasion, following a special committee of enquiry of which he is a substitute member. MEP Ernest Maragall The vote comes on the same day that the European Parliament gave its...


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