EU Legislation, Initiatives, etc.

EU News: The European Commission is putting into place new rules on what exactly telecoms operators and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) should do if their customers' personal data is lost, stolen or otherwise compromised.

The purpose of these ‘technical implementing measures’ is to ensure all customers receive equivalent treatment across the EU in case of a data breach, and to ensure businesses can take a pan-EU approach to these problems if they operate in more than one country.
Press release & links
 
EU News: The European Medicines Agency has released a draft policy on the publication & access to clinical-trial data for consultation. Stakeholders have until 30 September 2013 to send their comments on the draft policy to the Agency.
Press release & links
 
EU News: Ireland’s Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan T.D., has welcomed an agreement between the European Parliament and the Council that will give effect to the year 2020 CO2 emissions target for new passenger cars by defining the ‘modalities’ within which the car industry must operate to achieve this target.
Press release & links
 
EU News: The Commission has launched its search for the 2016 European Green Capital.  The Award recognises cities that are at the forefront of environmentally-friendly urban living and is intended to inspire European cities to take action to become more attractive and healthy places to live, work and visit – cities that are “fit for life”.
 
For the first time, cities across Europe with more than 100,000 inhabitants can apply for the title.  Previously only cities with a population of 200,000 or more were eligible. The change means that the award is now accessible to over 400 cities across Europe.
Press release & links
 
EU News: The Commission recently releases a new policy to help public authorities avoid dependence on a single ICT supplier. Following the recommendations in this new ‘against lock-in’ approach could save the EU's public sector more than €1.1bn a year.  
Press release & links
 
EU NewsEuropeans consumers are not getting the broadband download speeds they pay for. On average, they receive only 74% of the advertised headline speed they have paid for, according to a new European Commission study on fixed broadband performance.
Press release & links
 
EU NewsBusinesses around Europe will now have easier access to much needed finance as the European Commission expands the single portal on EU finance, to include EU Structural Funds: the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Social Fund (ESF).
 
Launched last month, the new single portal on EU finance provides easy, complete and up-to-date information on how entrepreneurs & SMEs can access over €100bn of EU financing from various 2007-2013 programmes. The recent additions will double the number of partner banks & funds to over 1,000, further strengthening a vital information source for SME financing through guarantees, loans and venture capital.
Press release & links
 
WAG: A £3m EU-backed pilot project to test how solar energy technologies can be integrated into the fabric of buildings to make them more energy efficient has been launched by Finance Minister Jane Hutt. The project aims to explore how the role of the building facade could be transformed to incorporate systems which can generate, store & distribute renewable energy.
Press release
 
EU NewsThe European Parliament, the EU Council of Ministers and the European Commission have reached an agreement on reforming the common agricultural policy (CAP) post 2013
 
All aspects of the reform will be applicable as from 1 January 2014, except for the new direct payments structure ('green' payments, additional support for young people, etc.) which will apply as from 2015 in order to give Member States time to inform farmers about the new CAP and to adapt computer-based CAP management systems.
Press release & links ~ Defra: UK votes on Common Agricultural Policy reform
 
EU NewsPublic authorities will get better tools to make more strategic & responsible use of taxpayers' money when buying works, goods or services, thanks to a political deal on public procurement & utilities struck by Parliament and the Council last Wednesday.
 
The provisional agreement reached with Council by Parliament's negotiators from the Internal Market Committee concerns a directive overhauling public procurement rules and a second directive covering water, energy, postal and transport services.
Press release & links ~ Procurement package: MEPs close deal with Council on concession contracts
 
EU NewsThe Council has set out its position on a draft directive establishing a framework for the recovery & resolution of credit institutions and investment firms (11148/1/13 REV 1). It called on the presidency to start negotiations with the European Parliament with the aim of adopting the directive at first reading before the end of the year.
Press release & links
 
EU NewsThe European Commission has recently proposed a draft directive on e-invoicing in public procurement, accompanied by a communication setting out its vision for the full digitisation of the public procurement process, so-called 'end-to-end e-procurement'.
Press release & links
 
EU NewsThe European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has completed a major piece of work that will provide the scientific basis for the modernisation of meat inspection across the EU.  Following a risk based approach, EFSA has identified & ranked public health hazards in meat.  As requested by the European Commission, EFSA has recommended improvements to meat inspection procedures to protect consumers from risks related to such hazards.
Press release & links
 
EU NewsThe European Commission has welcomed the adoption of the Marrakech Treaty to facilitate access to published works for persons who are blind, visually impaired, or otherwise print disabled by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

The adoption follows 2 weeks of negotiations at a WIPO Diplomatic Conference in Marrakech in which the EU played an active role to facilitate access to protected works by visually impaired persons within the existing international copyright framework.
 
The Marrakech Treaty will require signatory members to introduce copyright exceptions similar to those that already exist in the EU.  Moreover, it provides for ways to exchange special format copies across borders.  The Treaty builds on international copyright conventions and has been designed to respect the rights of authors and to encourage their creativity.
Press release & links
 
BIS: Details of EU Structural & Investment Fund allocations for Local Enterprise Partnerships in England have recently been published in Parliament.
Press release & links
2020 Vulnerability Roundtables