New EPP leader angers Madrid, contradicts von der Leyen – EURACTIV.com
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In today’s news from the capitals:
New leader of Europe’s conservative political camp (EPP), Bavarian Manfred Weber, has sparked a strong backlash from EU socialists after accusing them of ‘spending money recklessly’ and urging the European Commission to show the ‘red card’ to the Socialist Prime Minister of Spain. Minister Pedro Sanchez. Read more.
Hungary blocks EU sanctions against blacklisting Russian patriarchs. Hungary on Wednesday (June 1) delayed approving a new round of EU sanctions against Russia, including a ban on most oil imports, over its opposition to the Russian patriarch’s listing on a blacklist, diplomats said. Read more.
Egypt asks for EU support for the dam as relations intensify. The Egyptian president called on the EU to support his country’s stance on the “existential” Grand Ethiopian Renaissance dam as the two sides seek to intensify their political and economic relations amid Russia’s war in Ukraine. Read more.
Berlin promises heavy weapons to Ukraine, but delivery can take months. Chancellor Olaf Scholz promised to send Ukrainian heavy weapons, including air defense systems, although Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock quickly dashed hopes of a quick delivery. Read more.
French diplomats on strike against civil service reform. French diplomatic staff will strike on Thursday in response to a decree that will abolish the diplomatic corps and the special status it currently enjoys from 2023. Read more.
THE HAGUE | BERLIN
The Netherlands and Germany announce joint drilling operation in the North Sea. The Netherlands and Germany will drill gas together in the North Sea, with production to start in 2024, the Dutch government has announced. Read more.
Austrian Chancellor warns against neglect of migration issues amid war in Ukraine. Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer reaffirmed that the issue of migration policy should not be left aside during his speech at the congress of the European People’s Party in Rotterdam. Read more.
UNITED KINGDOM AND IRELAND
Urgent action is needed for Ireland to meet its climate targets, the agency says. Urgent and additional action is needed if Ireland is to meet the climate targets it has set, the country’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said in a recently published report. Read more.
NORDIC AND BALTIC
Finland opens fast-track immigration service for skilled workers. A new fast-track service for highly skilled workers whose work requires specialized knowledge was launched by the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) on Wednesday 1 June. Read more.
Denmark will join EU defense policy after a historic vote. Denmark will join the European Union’s defense policy after a referendum on Wednesday, final results showed, signaling the latest shift among the Nordic countries to deepen defense ties in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. . Read more.
The former Swedish environment minister denounces the government’s green policies. Sweden’s former environment minister Per Bolund criticized the government’s climate policy ahead of the United Nations “Stockholm + 50” climate meeting in the capital on Thursday and Friday. Read more.
The former Greek prime minister “is not sure” that the United States wants to end the war in Ukraine. Washington is playing a decisive role in resolving the crisis in Ukraine, but its motivation to end the war is unclear, former conservative prime minister Kostas Karamanlis has said.
His statement comes amid a fierce clash in Greek politics over the decision of the ruling New Democracy (EPP) party to send more weapons to Ukraine without informing parliament. Greeks learned the news from German Chancellor Olaf Scholz after announcing a arms swap deal with Athens.
Meanwhile, Berlin admitted the deal was struck between the pair on the sidelines of the EU summit. Read more.
The Italian government is considering another cut in excise duties as fuel prices soar. The government is considering extending the reduction in excise duties, which will expire on July 8, Maria Cecilia Guerra, the economy’s undersecretary, told TV. Rain news 24 Wednesday. Read more.
Spain’s centre-right leader confident of his victory in the legislative elections. Alberto Núñez Feijóo, who was elected leader of the centre-right Partido Popular (PP) in April, told members of the European People’s Party (EPP) congress in Rotterdam that his party represents hope for many Spaniards and is expected to win next year’s general election. Read more.
Portugal’s political top dogs in Hannover to strengthen ties with industry. Prime Minister António Costa, Economy Minister António Costa Silva and Education Minister Elvira Fortunato traveled to the world’s largest industrial fair, Hannover Messe, Germany, where their country is represented by 109 companies and senior government officials. Read more.
The Polish opposition remains cautious after the approval by Brussels of the recovery plan. The European Commission’s acceptance of Poland’s national recovery plan following a months-long dispute has drawn a flood of both positive and skeptical comments. Read more.
Orbán declares no savings, again. Besides properties in his hometown and in the upscale district of Budapest, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s asset declarations once again show that the Hungarian Prime Minister, in power since 2010, has no savings. Read more.
EU-funded Czech projects threatened by inflation. Projects co-financed by EU cohesion policy worth €1.3 billion are at risk due to rising prices and the war in Ukraine. Read more.
Housing affordability is falling rapidly, warns the Slovak National Bank. The National Bank of Slovakia (SNB) expects a sharp drop in housing affordability and will return to prices of ten years ago until the end of 2022. Read more.
The Bulgarian president hints at the referendum on North Macedonia. Bulgarian President Rumen Radev hinted he could call a referendum on Bulgaria’s veto of North Macedonia’s EU membership, but denied he would discuss the issue with French President Emmanuel Macron. Read more.
Romania does not meet any euro zone criteria, according to the Commission. Romania does not meet any of the necessary conditions for adopting the euro, the European Commission said in its 2022 convergence report. Find out more.
The Commission gives the green light to Croatia for the adoption of Euro 2023. Croatia meets all the economic criteria to join the euro zone in January 2023 despite rising inflation, according to the European Commission’s semi-annual convergence report, published on Wednesday (June 1). Read more.
The Slovenian Parliament confirms the new cabinet of the left-liberal government. Prime Minister Robert Golob’s cabinet was sworn in on Wednesday after being confirmed by a 53/28 vote in the National Assembly a month after general elections. Read more.
US envoy calls on Serbia to impose sanctions on Russia. Serbia was invited to join the EU sanctions against Russia by US Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Balkans Gabriel Escobar via a video speech at the Southeast Europe Democracy Summit in Montenegro. Read more.
Afghan refugees in Albania, forgotten and threatened with deportation. Afghan refugees staying in the Albanian coastal town of Shengjin until their visas for the United States and other countries are processed say they face deportation, passport confiscation and many NGOs who were helping them left. Read more.
- EU: Cohesion General Affairs Council, Jordan-EU Association Council, Transport Council.
- Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni meets the European Executive Directors of the International Monetary Fund.
- Meetings of European Parliament committees (ITRE, AFET, JURI, ENVI, DEVE).
- Germany: Chancellor Olaf Scholz talks to the leaders of the 16 German states, followed by a press conference.
- France: President Emmanuel Macron speaks on the phone with New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
- The Netherlands: The European Medicines Agency gives a press briefing.
- UK: Celebrations of the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.
- Sweden: International conference on the environment “Stockholm+50” within the framework of the “Decade of action” of the United Nations.
- Spain: King Felipe VI meets International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach.
- Renault (Mobilise) presents its first electric vehicle intended for VTCs and taxis, the Limo.
- Italy: Italy celebrates the 76th anniversary of the founding of the Italian Republic.
- Poland: European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen is visiting Poland as part of the Recovery and Resilience Facility/NextGenerationEU and the National Recovery and Resilience Plan.
- Romania: Turkish Minister of Defense Hulusi Akar travels to Romania to meet President Klaus Iohannis and Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca.
[Edited by Sarantis Michalopoulos, Vlad Makszimov, Daniel Eck, Benjamin Fox, Zoran Radosavljevic, Alice Taylor, Eleonora Vasques, Sofia Stuart Leeson]