Senior correspondent, Brussels
Robin's Feed
May 27, 2013

EU duties on Chinese solar panels losing member state support

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – A majority of EU governments oppose a plan to impose hefty duties on solar panel imports from China, a survey of member states showed on Monday, undermining efforts by Brussels to pressure Beijing over its trade practices.

The European Commission, the EU’s executive, accuses Chinese firms of selling solar panels at below cost in Europe – a practice known as “dumping” – and plans to impose duties, making it far harder for China to gain market share.

May 23, 2013
May 23, 2013
May 23, 2013

EU lawmakers back French push to limit U.S. trade talks

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.

May 23, 2013

EU trade chief to seek investment pact with China

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.

May 16, 2013

Cooling prices, falling imports highlight euro zone’s malaise

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.

May 15, 2013
May 15, 2013
May 15, 2013

Germany can’t stop euro zone from sinking into longest recession

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.

May 14, 2013

Europe pushes Switzerland to end bank secrecy

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.

    • About Robin

      "Robin is a Brussels-based correspondent covering Europe's debt crisis, and editor of the euro zone page on He joined Reuters from the Financial Times in Mexico City in 2002, moving to Panama City and then to Lima, Peru, before heading back to Mexico to cover the U.S.-Mexico border. He led the drugs war coverage that was nominated for an Overseas Press Club award in the United States in 2010. Robin started out in Amsterdam at Dutch financial daily Het Financeele Dagblad as an English-language staffer."
      Joined Reuters:
      Spanish, French
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