Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 29 n° 151

Posts Tagged ‘European Union’

A genuine European Union to ensure welfare, security and democracy

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 21 marzo 2017

European UnionRoma Venerdì 24 Marzo 2017, ore 14:30 Dipartimento di Scienze Politiche, Aula Magna Via G. Chiabrera, 199. Convention: “A genuine European Union to ensure welfare, security and democracy” Following a Manifesto of more than 300 European intellectuals and academics, the Convention aims to frankly and openly discuss the perspectives to concretely and urgently relaunch the European integration process, trying also to share a common strategy with institutional actors, in view of binding commitments that should be taken during the celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of the Rome Treaties, on March 25.
https://scienzepolitiche.uniroma3.it/fmasini

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Brexit and the EU budget: threat or opportunity?/Brexit et budget de l’UE: menace ou opportunité?

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 27 gennaio 2017

brexit.jpgThe British decision to leave the European Union (EU) was influenced by the debate about the EU budget, but it is the opposite also true? Will British withdrawal have a decisive influence on the EU budget? In this policy paper, Jörg Haas, research fellow in our office in Germany, the Jacques Delors Institut – Berlin, and Eulalia Rubio, senior researcher on economic and social affairs, estimate how Brexit would impact the EU’s public finances. The authors draw up four scenarios that tline how the EU could react to the expected budget shortfall after Brexit and provide estimates of how the individual Member States might be affected by the different options. They analyse the political implications of these four scenarios for the upcoming negotiations about the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), which will start in 2018. Overall, the policy paper concludes that Brexit could have a quite significant, although not devastating, impact on the EU budget and would likely deepen the existing cleavage between ‘net contributors’ and ‘net recipients’. This poses a number of tough challenges for the EU but could also support efforts to reform the current system.
La décision britannique de quitter l’Union européenne (UE) a été influencée par le débat sur le budget de l’UE, mais le contraire est-il également vrai ? Le retrait britannique aurait-il une influence déterminante sur le budget de l’UE? Dans ce policy paper, Jörg Haas, chercheur au Jacques Delors Institut – Berlin et Eulalia Rubio, chercheur senior à l’Institut Jacques Delors, analysent de quelle façon le Brexit aurait une incidence sur les finances publiques de l’UE. Les auteurs imaginent quatre scénarios qui exposent la façon dont l’UE pourrait réagir au déficit budgétaire escompté après le Brexit et présentent également des estimations de la façon dont chacun des États membres pourrait être affecté par les différentes options. Ils analysent les implications politiques de ces scénarios pour les prochaines négociations du cadre financier pluriannuel (CFP) qui débuteront en 2018.
Dans l’ensemble, le policy paper conclue que le Brexit pourrait avoir un impact important, bien que non dévastateur, sur le budget de l’UE et qu’il approfondirait probablement le clivage existant entre les « contributeurs nets » et les « bénéficiaires nets ». Il en résulte un certain nombre de défis difficiles pour l’UE, mais cela pourrait également soutenir les efforts de réforme du système actuel. (photo: brexit)

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European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights: Looking forward to 2017

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 4 gennaio 2017

bruxelles-1Other events will focus on the Fundamental Rights report 2017 and its focus on 10 years of fundamental rights achievements. This will take place in Brussels with the support of the Maltese Presidency. Then another anniversary event in Brussels will showcase the main results from the Agency’s second minorities and discrimination survey. This is the largest EU-wide survey of experiences of and attitudes towards some of Europe’s most marginalised communities, including Roma, Muslims, and other minority/migrant groups. With intolerance and hate an increasing concern across many Member States, the results should galvanise efforts to address this worrying trend. Migration will again be strong focus of the Agency’s work in 2017. Throughout the year, it will continue its series of monthly reports on migration-related fundamental rights concerns. In addition, in March, it will publish a major report that has mapped the various national integration policies, action plans or strategies that are being used across all EU Member States. It focused its attention on societal and political participation of migrants and their descendants. Other areas of interest will include the use of biometrics in border management (November), a FRA Opinion on the EU’s fingerprinting database (January), and migrant children in administrative detention (June). Staying with child rights, another core area of the Agency’s 2017 work, a major report on child-friendly justice will present the views of children involved in judicial proceedings. It will complement an earlier report that gave the professionals’ perspective. Then later in November, the Agency will turn its attention to child well-being and poverty across the EU, an issue of particular concern given the vulnerabilities of children and how it can affect their future. The Agency report on fundamental rights and mass surveillance by intelligence services will be another milestone. In October, it will present the findings from its combined socio-legal analysis of existing laws and how they translate into practice, drawing on its update of the legal frameworks that safeguard fundamental rights in the context of surveillance and interviews with all those involved. All told, this is just a snapshot of some of the highlights from 2017.
A fuller picture can be seen in the 2017 calendar. As events around Europe unfold, it is likely the Agency will be called on for its independent expert advice.

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The European Union at crossroads: working together for a better and more cohesive Europe-The romanian Perspective

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 22 novembre 2016

cluj-napoca-romaniaRoma Martedì 22 Novembre 2016, ore 11:00 Dipartimento Scienze Politiche, Sala del Consiglio Via Chiabrera 199 si terrà la Lectio magistralis L’Unione europea al bivio: lavorare insieme per un’Europa migliore e più coesa-la Prospettiva romena -The European Union at crossroads: working together for a better and more cohesive Europe-The romanian Perspective, del ministro degli Affari esteri della Romania, Dott. Lazăr Comănescu, iniziativa promossa dall’ambasciata di Romania in Italia.

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European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 22 giugno 2016

viennaVienna Congress Centre, Messeplatz 1. The search for a workable data-sharing agreement with the US is entering a crucial phase. The European Commission is about to present its latest proposal to the European Parliament. Today at the Fundamental Rights Forum, one of the key figures in the negotiations, Paul Nemitz, will be debating rights-based governance. As Director for Fundamental Rights and Citizenship in the DG for Justice of the European Commission, Mr Nemitz will help to decide the shape of any future deal.
The person responsible for transforming the treatment of migrants in Greece, Asylum Service Director Maria Stavropoulou, will be in a working group exploring how human rights can be placed at the heart of EU asylum policy. She recently oversaw the introduction of a pre-screening process for asylum seekers and may soon be dealing with a whole new committee system for dealing with the backlog of cases. All this while thousands of migrants remain stranded on Greek islands. The Polish government is currently at the centre of an unprecedented dispute with the European Commission over concerns that recent reforms to the media and the court system have eroded the rule of law. The European Parliament is now preparing a resolution on the issue. Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Aleksander Stępkowski has been a vocal defender of the government. He has taken part in the morning panel debate about rights-based governance and is available for interview.

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The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 16 giugno 2016

viennaVienna 20 June to 23 June 2016 Congress Centre, Messeplatz 1 The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) is hosting three days of activities featuring more than 650 experts from academia, business, the arts, and politics, as well as grassroots activists, refugees and professional groups such as educators, health officers and psychologists. The participants will participate in working groups, inspirational talks, panel debates and discussions with guest speakers to devise innovative solutions to the most pressing problems Europe faces today. Their work will be structured around three themes: the refugee crisis, the digital age and inclusion.Those attending include Italian film-maker Gianfranco Rosi, whose award-winning 2016 documentary ‘Fire At Sea’ focuses on the lives of migrants on Lampedusa. He will be joined by dozens of other innovators, like digital rights activist Max Schrems, academic entrepreneur Alberto Alemanno, and Polish anti-surveillance activist Katarzyna Szymielewicz. Senior officials from the EU, including ombudsman Emily O’Reilly, will appear alongside policy makers from the European Parliament and national governments, not least Slovakia’s Deputy Prime Minister Lucia Žitňanská, whose country is about to take over the Presidency of the Council of the EU. Senior managers from businesses including IKEA, Facebook and Google will also be taking part.The aim is for everyone to make new commitments to human rights in their field. The commitments will be enshrined in a list of action points at the end of the Forum. The milestones and key findings of the Forum will be summarised in the Chair’s Statement.The Forum will be opened at Vienna City Hall on 20 June by FRA patron Heinz Fischer, who is stepping down as Austrian president in July after 12 years. He will be joined by Michael Häupl, whose 22 years as Vienna mayor make him the longest-serving incumbent in Europe. The European Commission’s First Vice President Frans Timmermans will give a keynote speech.

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The European Union’s external borders

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 9 febbraio 2016

Montenegro exodusThere is a race today in Europe between two very different concepts of how to restore control over the European Union’s external borders. One plan foresees the orderly large-scale resettlement of hundreds of thousands of refugees from Turkey and an end to the Balkan route by controlling the Aegean through close cooperation between Greece and Turkey. Versions of this plan are backed by German chancellor Angela Merkel, although crucial details remain to be settled and negotiated.However, there is also a radically different plan which proposes blocking all refugee movement by constructing a new wall across the Southern Balkans, an insurmountable fence along the green borders between Greece and all of its northern neighbours: Macedonia, Albania and Bulgaria. This idea is the brainchild of Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban, and backed by other Central European political leaders.The decision as to which of these plans will be implemented and backed by European institutions will have far-reaching consequences for Greece, Balkan stability, EU relations with Turkey and the future of refugee law around the world.In recent weeks, ESI presented its analysis on the refugee issue in Vienna, Berlin, Brussels, Washington, Athens, Istanbul, and Munich; we explained what it would take to implement the Merkel plan; and argued why the Orban plan was certain to fail. It would needlessly and unfairly antagonize Greece, destabilise the Western Balkans and create a huge demand for readily available smuggling services. It would also require a fence on the scale of the Iron Curtain or the Israeli fence along its Egyptian border (which took three years to build) and the readiness to use deadly force to have any real chance to stop those determined and desperate enough to cross the Iranian-Turkish border or brave the deadly Aegean.(photo: Montenegro exodus)

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How Brussels should deal with the question of China’s Market Economy Status

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 28 gennaio 2016

shanghai-chinaThe European Union should not rush into granting Market Economy Status to China. Such a step would not only make it harder for the EU to impose anti-dumping duties on Chinese imports, exposing vulnerable European industries to a new price war. It would also risk creating a publicly visible clash of member states’ interests, further suffering of the EU’s legitimacy in the eyes of citizens and business communities, and another blow to the EU’s credibility as an international actor.In their China Policy Brief the MERICS experts Mikko Huotari, Jan Gaspers and Olaf Böhnke analyse the implications of removing one of the last roadblocks against unfair competition from EU-China trade relations. The authors urge European policy-makers to formulate common European interests from a position of strength and to enter into hard-handed negotiations with China. At the same time, the EU should shore up its trade defence regime to prepare for possible conflicts with China.
For the EU, the question of whether or not to grant Market Economy Status (MES) to China should not be on autopilot, regardless of China’s expectation to reach that status in December. EU policymakers should aim to find a solution between fully accommodating China and seeking open confrontation. In doing so, the EU should adopt and combine elements of approaches already pursued by some of the EU’s key Western partners, such as Australia, Canada, or the US. A possible EU strategy could include one or more of the following elements:
Transitional and sectoral bargains: The EU could grant MES in steps taking into account determinations of whether or not specific industries in China operate according to market principles.
Package deal: China would make concessions in exchange for MES. These could include export self-restrictions or a more level playing field for foreign companies in China.
WTO compliance: At the very least, the EU should push China for better compliance with its WTO commitments and to seek progress on concluding the planned WTO agreement on government procurement.
According to the MERICS authors the December 2016 deadline must be pushed back, giving the EU more time to develop a coordinated approach. In the meantime, the EU needs to modernise its trade defence mechanisms to prepare for the impact of the MES decision and possible retaliation from China.
When China joined the World Trade Organisation in 2001, a clause of China’s accession protocol explicitly allowed other states to use specific calculation methods to determine whether imported Chinese goods were unfairly priced. When this clause expires in December 2016, China expects to be automatically accepted as a full market economy by other WTO member states. The granting of MES would make it harder for those states to protect their trade interests from on-going unfair competition against China’s state-led economy.
China has not evolved into a full-fledged market economy in the 15 years since its accession to the WTO. Economic competition between China and Europe remains unfair. China’s current economic slowdown heightens the prospects of a trade war as China is increasingly trying to push its own overcapacities into the global market and to improve its export competitiveness with a further devaluation of its currency.The prevailing preference in the European Commission to proactively grant MES to China poses significant economic and political risks. Taking this step at this point in time would increase the impact of Chinese dumping and put pressure on a number of European industries, especially on heavy industries in Italy, Germany, Spain, France and Poland. Though the net effects are hard to predict, the EU is almost certain to lose credibility among its business community and citizens if it is not seen as fighting for a better deal for its own companies. The EU would also look weak in comparison with other international actors, most of whom are taking a more strategic stance towards Beijing on this issue.

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MEPs to Reform Electoral Law of EU

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 12 novembre 2015

electoral lawOn Wednesday evening, the European Parliament will vote on proposals for future electoral reforms to enhance the democratic nature of the European elections. Among these measures we find:
– The possibility for all EU citizens living abroad to vote in European elections.
– The increase of electronic, online ad postal voting.
– The increase of gender balance in voting lists.
– The lowering of the voting age to 16.
– The nomination of lead candidates to preside the European Commission.

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11th Annual European Union Film Festival in Toronto

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 12 novembre 2015

festival torontoToronto Sunday, November 15 – 8:30pm. Royal Cinema – 608 College St. Directed by Laura Bispuri Italy/Switzerland/Germany /Albania/Kosovo,  Drama, 90 min, Language: Italian/Albanian Cast: Alba Rohrwacher, Lars Eidinger, Flonja Kodheli
Hana Doda, still a girl, escapes from her destiny of being a wife and a servant, a future imposed on women in remote village life in Albania.  With the help of her uncle’s guidance, Hana appeals to the old Kanun traditional law and takes an oath of eternal virginity for the chance to  bear a rifle and live free as men. For the villagers, Hana becomes Mark, a “sworn virgin”.  But something restless stirs under these men’s clothes. Years later, the immense Albanian mountains and her choice now seem like a prison.  Mark decides to set out on a journey, too long put off. He travels to Italy, crossing borders into many different worlds: Albania and Italy,  past and present, masculine and feminine.

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Come costruire un’Europa di tutte le culture?

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 22 settembre 2015

eurozonaRoma Giovedì 24 Settembre dalle 9.30 alle 18.00 Salone delle Fontane Via Ciro il Grande 10/12. In un momento storico in cui crisi economiche, conflitti etnici, mutamenti politici e sociali sono di straordinaria attualità, il Parlamento europeo offre una concreta occasione di dialogo per riflettere insieme su un’Europa senza frontiere culturali. Come possono le politiche comunitarie guidare i cambiamenti necessari ad accompagnare la costruzione di una nuova identità europea, in grado di riconoscere e garantire le sue numerose specificità culturali?
Il 24 settembre, presso il Salone delle Fontane dell’EUR, ad ogni cittadino interessato sarà data l’opportunità di diventare protagonista di un grande Open Space sull’identità transculturale europea, un incontro dedicato a tutti coloro che si occupano di educazione, di politica e di religione in cui ci si possa confrontare liberamente sulle sfide dell’Europa del terzo millennio.L’evento, alla cui realizzazione hanno collaborato numerose comunità civili e religiose, sarà introdotto dall’On. Antonio Tajani, Primo Vicepresidente del Parlamento europeo, e accoglierà all’apertura dei lavori un videomessaggio dell’On. Silvia Costa, Presidente della commissione Cultura del Parlamento europeo.Le riflessioni che emergeranno durante i meeting e i workshop che animeranno l’incontro verranno infine raccolte in un documento che sarà portato all’attenzione della commissione Cultura del Parlamento europeo, impegnata entro il 2015 nell’adozione di una Relazione di iniziativa sull’interculturalismo in Europa.

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Visita delegazione PE in Sicilia per valutare utilizzo fondi strutturali

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 22 settembre 2015

cataniaCatania 24 settembre alle ore 13 presso lo stabilimento 3SUN – Contrada Blocco Torrazze snc conferenza stampa della delegazione della Commissione per lo Sviluppo Regionale (REGI) del Parlamento Europeo per valutare utilizzo fondi strutturali. Dal 23 al 25 settembre sarà in Sicilia una delegazione della Commissione per lo Sviluppo Regionale del Parlamento Europeo che comincerà la visita da Catania proseguendo poi per Siracusa, Modica, Piazza Armerina ed Enna. La delegazione, composta da 12 membri del Parlamento Europeo di 7 diversi Stati, che arriva nell’isola su proposta dell’eurodeputata siciliana Michela Giuffrida, componente della stessa Commissione, visiterà i principali progetti realizzati in Sicilia Orientale grazie ai fondi strutturali della politica di Coesione e incontrerà i rappresentanti del Governo nazionale e regionale, oltre a diversi sindaci e protagonisti imprenditoriali del Distretto.
Dopo l’accoglienza, il pomeriggio del 23 in Municipio a Catania, del sindaco Enzo Bianco, la delegazione, guidata dall’eurodeputato francese Younous Omarjee, il giorno successivo visiterà il Parco Scientifico e tecnologico della Sicilia, accolta dal presidente della Regione Rosario Crocetta e dal presidente dell’Assemblea regionale siciliana Giovanni Ardizzone.
Successivamente si svolgerà la visita allo stabilimento 3Sun, dove la Commissione Regi incontrerà il sottosegretario alla Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri, Claudio De Vincenti.
Alle ore 13 la Commissione e il sottosegretario De Vincenti incontreranno i giornalisti durante una conferenza stampa nel corso della quale sarà fatto il punto sulla progettualità legata ai fondi europei che riguarda la Sicilia e sulla programmazione 2014/2020.
Al termine della conferenza la delegazione lascerà Catania per spostarsi, lungo l’autostrada Catania-Siracusa, alla volta di Modica, tappa successiva della visita in Sicilia.

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Catella: EUR 850 million invested in sustainable real estate funds in Europe by mid-2016

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 3 settembre 2015

Banca europea per gli investimentiSustainability has become much more prominent in Europe’s real estate sector over the past decade, and green issues are today an integral part of the business. It should therefore come as no surprise that green funds are growing in importance in the property investment market.In its Market Tracker for September, entitled Sustainable Real Estate Funds, Catella addresses the question of why these particular investments have grown slowly in recent years.“The sustainable investments segment is booming worldwide, and European volume in 2014 was EUR 5.2 trillion. In the same period, sustainably designed and managed real estate funds achieved just EUR 495 million,” says Dr. Thomas Beyerle, Head of Group Research at Catella. Why is this, when investors are increasingly seeking out responsible investments and when corporate governance rules and reporting requirements have tightened significantly?“This is partly due to the almost granular number of new builds in Europe in recent years. The mass of buildings is simply missing. On the other hand for refurbishments of the existing stock more questions occur than answers can be given. Another problem is a lack of uniform standards in building assessment and certification; there is neither a universal seal of approval for sustainable real estate funds nor a benchmark for peer-group comparisons, which are absolute prerequisites to kindle the competition,” says Dr. Beyerle.In spite of these shortcomings on the structural side, Catella expects positive developments in the next three quarters. Pressure is increasing significantly from institutional investors for sustainably designed and managed real estate funds, and the process of transformation from conventional buildings towards a reorganised energy-efficient portfolio is a billion-dollar business in Europe alone. Furthermore, sustainable review criteria have been introduced into due diligence processes and transaction standards. A detailed comparison of the pros and cons can be found in the attached report.“We anticipate a volume in Europe of some EUR 850 million by mid-2016 finding its way into newly-designed sustainable real estate funds. A key factor is that many existing properties have potential for optimisation, and a large part of the portfolio properties are in exposed locations. It will be crucial for funds relying on sustainability to structure their investments well, especially because not all sustainable investments can provide returns in the short term. In addition, there is the risk of over-investment in sustainability from regulatory policy incentives, such as for solar, the latest to join the segment,” says Dr. Beyerle.

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Migration

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 12 agosto 2015

migrantiOn migration, 60% said the EU has mishandled the arrival of refugees from Libya, against just 8% who were positive. Italians were almost twice as likely as Germans to be critical, at 84% versus 48% respectively.
Equally, 83% of Italians think it is unfair that they have to process all of the migrants coming from North Africa. A majority of all other countries surveyed agreed, although the UK was the least sympathetic with 55% believing this to be unfair and 13% thinking it is fair. Showing how relatively hardline the UK’s stance is, 41% of British adults think refugees from North Africa who reach their country should be returned to Italy. Whereas other respondents from outside Italy broadly disagreed with this approach. However, most of the respondents did agree that Italy is within its rights to prevent ships from offloading anymore refugees at its ports, with those aged 55+ most likely to agree with this and those aged 18-34 least likely (59% vs. 49% respectively). Brexit and repatriation of powers On another hot topic for Europeans, the poll showed divided opinions on the EU’s handling of the UK referendum on membership of the bloc. While 35% of respondents think the EU has dealt with this badly, a mere 15% were positive. Most critical were Italians (46%), the British (41%) and the French (40%), with the Germans (28%) and the Dutch (27%) taking a softer line. The southern EU states were the most likely to believe that EU countries should continue to progress towards “ever closer union”, with 56% of Spanish, 54% of Portuguese, and 47% of Italians backing this. However, 47% of British and 42% of Dutch adults said that “EU integration has gone too far and EU countries need to repatriate powers”. EU founding states France and Germany were evenly divided by comparison. Germans narrowly favour closer union (30% pro-integration vs 24% pro-repatriation), while the French are only just opposed to closer union (24% pro-integration vs 32% pro-repatriation).

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Freedom to conduct business means growth and jobs for Europe

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 5 agosto 2015

European UnionThe European Union has always sought to boost innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the region. However, entrepreneurs often face long and complicated administrative procedures, time consuming reporting obligations, and difficulties in accessing credit. The freedom to conduct business, one of the lesser-known rights of the EU’s Charter of Fundamental Rights, is explored in detail with examples how this right can also help boost growth and jobs, in this latest report of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA).“In an EU still reeling from the economic crisis, the freedom to conduct business is a key prerequisite for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth,” says FRA interim Director Constantinos Manolopoulos. “However, our report shows that across the Union significant barriers remain that hamper efforts to enhance entrepreneurship and economic growth in the EU.”The report examines the meaning of the right to freedom to conduct business. It addresses its scope under EU and national law. It also explores the practical application of this right for everyone and for specific population groups examining how barriers to judicial remedies impede the freedom to conduct business. At the same time the report also identifies promising practices in respect to this right. The research reveals that, while a number of initiatives related to the freedom to conduct business have been implemented at EU and national level, much remains to be done to realise the full potential of this right. This includes raising awareness about this right which is rarely referenced in economic policies and legal texts. The freedom to conduct a business is influenced by complex and time-consuming procedures, by difficulties to find financing, by barriers in accessing justice such as lengthy and costly litigation, and the lack of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms. Under-represented population groups including women, youths, migrants and people with disabilities face additional hurdles.
For example:Women are not adequately supported to balance family and work life as compared to men, when engaging in entrepreneurial activities.
Young entrepreneurs have limited exposure to and practical experience of the business environment. Many face difficulties navigating the complex systems and regulatory requirements associated with setting up business, not to mention start-up costs.
Migrants face additional obstacles to securing financial capital for starting a business, problems in recognising their qualifications, language barriers, limited knowledge of legal requirements and regulatory procedures, and in many cases cultural differences and discrimination.
People with disabilities may face limitations in terms of independence and infrastructure needed at the workplace. They often have difficulties securing adequate funding to start a business, or may also face uncertainty about the financial consequences of setting up a business.
However, the research also found that all Member States have taken steps to remove excessive regulation and alleviate the administrative burdens faced by entrepreneurs, particularly SMEs. This includes the increasing and widespread use of online tools and one-stop-shops for registration and information.
Significant efforts have also been made at EU and national level to promote entrepreneurship among under-represented groups. Nevertheless, the report finds that much more needs to be done to remove barriers specific to these groups.The adoption of a fundamental rights-based approach in respect to the freedom to conduct a business can contribute in measures to address austerity in times of economic crisis by boosting entrepreneurship and innovation.

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Fighting right-wing populism in Europe

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 19 luglio 2015

Fighting right wingsSkopje (Macedonia) 23 – 28 August 2015 The seminar will explore the socio-economic and political factors of Right-wing populism in Europe and the influence right-wing populist movements and parties have on the democratic culture as such. The group of participants coming from Greece, Germany, Macedonia and Italy will be involved in a simulation game which will tackle the sources, reasons, dynamics and effects of right-wing populism in contemporary Europe
The simulation game will then guide the group through the elaboration of possible strategies to deal with this issue at European level. CSDC is looking for three participants to take part in the Seminar and to be actively engaged in the simulation game “Fighting right-wing populism in Europe”.

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EUROSTAT: EU population up to 508.2 million at 1 January 2015

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 13 luglio 2015

European UnionOn 1 January 2015, the population of the European Union was estimated at 508.2 million, compared with 506.9 million on 1 January 2014. During the year 2014, 5.1 million babies were born in the EU, while 4.9 million persons died, meaning that the EU recorded a positive natural change of its population of 0.2 million, double that of 2013. The remainder of the change is driven mainly by net migration. Germany (81.2 million residents), France (66.4 million), the United Kingdom (64.8 million) and Italy (60.8 million) are the most populated EU Member States. Together, they are home to more than half of the EU population. These figures come from an article published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. Some other interesting facts and an infographic about EU population are also published on the Eurostat website.

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Free press and the flourishing of democracy: Joint WACC Europe-CEC statement on World Press Freedom Day

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 5 maggio 2015

World Press Freedom DayFor a generation, World Press Freedom Day has been celebrated around the world on 3 May as an opportunity to honour journalists who have died in the line of work, and also defend and work for press freedom. On this occasion, the Conference of European Churches (CEC) and the World Association for Christian Communication (Europe) (WACC Europe) join in these celebrations and express their commitment to a free press in Europe and beyond.Independent media representing a diversity of perspectives is essential for the flourishing of democracy. Transparency and flow of information provided by the press contributes to good governance, just electoral processes, and empowerment of people represented by democratic governments.Journalism also encourages essential debate across an increasing number of platforms. Social media and citizen journalism now join traditional outlets in investigating and analysing all facets of life. Many issues undertaken by journalists serve the upholding of human rights in both local and global contexts.The current situation in Europe is diverse and precarious. Some countries consistently demonstrate a high degree of press freedom, while others struggle with government interference in the media, the conglomeration of media outlets, and the manipulation of regulatory bodies. Some countries experience significant mergers, newsroom closures, and loss of media independence.On this day CEC and WACC Europe call for renewed commitment and action toward:Ensuring the personal safety of journalists working in areas of conflict and unres Promoting cultural and legislative environments where free and pluralistic press may flourish Encouraging press in Europe to use their freedom courageously and judiciously “The churches of Europe have a vital role to play in creating and sustaining democratic societies,” remarks CEC General Secretary Guy Liagre, “this includes promoting and protecting a free, independent, and pluralistic press.”Stephen Brown, president of WACC Europe, said, “Media pluralism and diversity are essential elements of press freedom and of democratic and representative societies, and we look to the European institutions to uphold and preserve such pluralism and diversity. “Freedom of expression and the right to information and communication are human rights and need to be recognized as such.” CEC and WACC Europe will continue to hold in prayer journalists in prison and facing challenges to their personal safety wherever they are for their commitment to the free exercise of their profession.

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European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 9 marzo 2015

commissione europeaIn the biggest movement of forcibly displaced people since World War II, tens of thousands of people are risking their lives, and dying, while trying to seek sanctuary in the EU. FRA’s latest Focus paper, presents different ways to improve and increase legal admissions to the EU.“Already this year over 370 people have died trying to find a better life by crossing the Mediterranean,” says FRA Director Morten Kjaerum. “A comprehensive set of different actions is needed to reduce the loss of lives at sea and the abuses carried out by human traffickers. As one of these actions, the EU and its Member States therefore need to do more to ensure legal options are on the table and more readily available to ensure more people can enjoy their right to asylum and come to the EU safely.”For the first time in the post-World War II era, in 2013 the number of refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced people worldwide has exceeded 50 million people. Many refugees are vulnerable to exploitation and abuse as the possibilities for people in need of protection to legally enter and stay in the EU are very limited.The FRA Focus paper “Legal entry channels to the EU for persons in need of international protection: a toolbox” presents a toolbox of possible schemes Member States could use to enable more people to reach the EU without resorting to smugglers. These include: refugee-related schemes, such as resettlement, humanitarian admissions, the issuance of humanitarian visas (either under Schengen or national law) and temporary protection;
regular mobility schemes such as those available to family members of people residing in the EU, students, migrant workers and other categories of people, which could be made more accessible to refugees staying in third countries.
The paper outlines the advantages as well as risks of legal entry and suggests possible ways to overcome these risks. Promising practices presented by FRA illustrate that several EU Member States as well as other countries have already put in place different legal entry schemes and programmes, which could be expanded and which could inspire other EU Member States to follow.
The paper also suggests that increasing legal avenues to reach the EU should be a core component of the European Commission’s future plan to combat human trafficking. Other suggestions include the need for the EU to: propose common approaches for legal entry; help exchange of promising practices among Member States; and financially contribute to national efforts to increase opportunities for legal entry.Overall, there is a clear need for EU institutions and Member States to increase the possibilities to reach the EU legally. Ultimately, this will help save lives and lessen the abuse that people trying to come to the EU suffer.

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Is Facebook about to commit a huge mistake?

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 25 novembre 2014

A woman uses an iPad with a Facebook app in this photo illustration in SofiaFacebook has recently announced that it intends to launch “Facebook At Work” in an attempt to respond the growing membership of LinkedIN and the popularity of file sharing and other office products produced by Microsoft and Google. But in doing so it could overstretch itself, invite retaliation and further lose credibility.Growing fears about the security of personal data on social networking sites has been fuelled by privacy breaches in recent years. But it is one thing to compromise data posted by individuals on sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, but quite another if breaches take place when their employer has posted the data or personal data is viewed in the workplace. The EU’s Data Protection Directive, for instance, places strict constraints on the exchange of personal data by companies – especially if this means transmission of such data to locations outside the European Union.The launch of “Facebook at Work” is a clear challenge to Facebook’s principal networking rivals and also companies providing a wide range of file-sharing and team working software . – including Google and Microsoft. Meeting such rivals head on in an increasing mature market could weaken everyone concerned., especially if it further sensitizes employers to the issues of workplace confidentiality and cthe ostly distractions of social networking – which can have such a big impact on productivity. Robin Chater, Founder of the new online business networking community ‘ButN’ welcomes this development. “ It will be interesting to see the heavyweights in the social networking market fighting it out for business users. Facebook can see how quickly LinkedIn is growing – in spite of its many critics – and think it can do better. But I am afraid neither organization really understands the business market like we do. butN has just completed its beta testing and we have extensively analyzed current offerings, so that we can provide something radically different. We also originate from the world’s leading employer organization – so we are insiders in the business networking market. “ The writing could be on the wall for Facebook if it ventures too far. For proof of this it is only necessary to look at “We Chat”, the Chinese social networking App launched in 2010 which claims to have over 600 million users (mainly in China). Although its owner Tencent Holdings wants it to become the largest networking site in the world recent reports suggest that it has overextended and is now losing members.The future of networking will not be through big communities – but via niche players like butN. butN aims its sites on two important groups – business travellers and networking within companies in order to forge connections across corporate functions and engender greater employee engagement. Both services can only be effectively developed from within the business community – which gives butN considerable edge.
ButN’s business model is also very different from any other networking organization as it will eventually be owned to a significant extent by its users who will benefit from any windfall that comes from its stock market launch or acquisition.
The butN networking approach differs significantly from most of its rivals by aiming to help business travellers achieve face-to-face contacts during their business trips. It was successfully beta tested in Australia and New Zealand in October and early November 2014 and is currently negotiating $10 million in venture capital and seeking additional crowd funding. However, 10% (rising to 20%) of all net profits generated will go back to its active users.butN is the networking arm of The Federation of International Employers (http://www.fedee.com)

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