BRUSSELS, May 23 (Reuters) – European Union lawmakers voted
on Thursday to limit the scope of a proposed free-trade deal
between Europe and the United States, backing French demands to
leave out culture and potentially irritating Washington.
The European Parliament, which can veto EU trade accords,
voted 460 in favour and 105 against with 28 abstentions to limit
Brussels’ room for manoeuvre in talks on a deal that would
encompass almost half the world’s economic output.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Commission will seek the support of EU governments to launch talks with China on an investment pact that could be a precursor to a free-trade deal if Brussels and Beijing can overcome growing tensions.
EU trade chief Karel De Gucht said on Thursday he would ask the European Union’s 27 countries to agree a negotiating mandate for a deal with China that would reduce barriers to each other’s markets and encourage new capital flows.
BRUSSELS, May 16 (Reuters) – Falling prices in Germany and
France pulled euro zone consumer inflation to a three-year low
in April while imports fell 10 percent in March, as new data
showed the depth of the bloc’s downturn.
The sharp drop in annual consumer inflation to 1.2 percent,
confirmed by the EU’s statistics office Eurostat on Thursday,
highlights the risk of deflation in the euro zone, which slipped
into its longest ever recession at the start of this year.
BRUSSELS/BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s economy crept back into growth at the start of the year but not by enough to stop the euro zone from contracting for a sixth straight quarter, and France slid into recession.
Falling output across the bloc meant the 17-nation economy is in its longest recession since records began in 1995.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union finance ministers gave the green light on Tuesday to start talks with Switzerland and Liechtenstein about surrendering bank data, as Europe stepped up its fight against tax evasion.
The move, described as ‘historic’ by Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, redoubles pressure on Switzerland to open up account details and will likely pave the way for Austria to ditch its own bank secrecy for foreigners.