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Opublikowano 28-01-2020

Multilateral Investment Court: Overview of the reform proposals and prospects

28-01-2020

The Council of the European Union has authorised the European Commission to represent the EU and its Member States at the intergovernmental talks at the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), with a view to reforming the existing investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) system. The latter provides a procedural framework for disputes between international investors and hosting states, and relies on arbitration procedures. However, there have been growing concerns among states ...

The Council of the European Union has authorised the European Commission to represent the EU and its Member States at the intergovernmental talks at the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), with a view to reforming the existing investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) system. The latter provides a procedural framework for disputes between international investors and hosting states, and relies on arbitration procedures. However, there have been growing concerns among states and stakeholders about the system's reliance on arbitrators, given its lack of transparency, issues over the predictability and consistency of their decisions, and the excessive costs involved. UNCITRAL talks aim to address these concerns by reforming the system. The EU and its Member States support the establishment of a multilateral investment court (MIC), composed of a first instance and an appellate tribunal staffed by full-time adjudicators. UNCITRAL talks on ISDS reform started in 2017. In April 2019, the working group finalised the list of concerns regarding the current ISDS system and agreed that it was desirable to work on reforms. The states then tabled reform proposals that provided the framework for the discussions that started in October 2019. The proposals range from introducing binding rules for arbitrators to setting up formal investment courts comprised of first instance and appellate tribunals. All in all, the proposals reflect two distinct approaches. Some states back the creation of tools – such as a code of conduct and/or an advisory body for smaller economies and small and medium-sized enterprises – to complement the current system. Others favour fundamental changes through the creation of a two-court system with appointed members. The latest round of talks took place in January 2020, and another is scheduled for March/April 2020. Although states are eager to reform the ISDS system, the complexity of the issue is likely to require additional sessions before agreement can be reached.

The von der Leyen Commission's priorities for 2019-2024

28-01-2020

In her statements to the European Parliament in July and November 2019, as candidate for European Commission President and President-elect respectively, Ursula von der Leyen outlined the six political priorities that would shape the working programme of the European Commission over the next five years. While the former Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, had claimed to lead a 'political Commission', his successor, Ursula von der Leyen, has pledged to lead a 'geopolitical Commission'. Such ...

In her statements to the European Parliament in July and November 2019, as candidate for European Commission President and President-elect respectively, Ursula von der Leyen outlined the six political priorities that would shape the working programme of the European Commission over the next five years. While the former Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, had claimed to lead a 'political Commission', his successor, Ursula von der Leyen, has pledged to lead a 'geopolitical Commission'. Such a Commission will have a political agenda in which reinforcing the EU's role as a relevant international actor, and trying to shape a better global order through reinforcing multilateralism, is to become a key priority ('A stronger Europe in the world'). The other main political priorities of the Commission are brought together under five broad headings: 'A European Green Deal', 'A Europe fit for the digital age', 'An economy that works for people', 'A new push for European democracy', and 'Promoting the European way of life'. Together they define the framework within which the Commission will act in the coming five years. The structure and working methods announced by von der Leyen show that her Commission will differ from its predecessors in a number of ways.

Political institutions in Indonesia: Democracy, decentralisation, diversity

28-01-2020

Until his downfall in 1998, General Suharto ruled Indonesia with an iron fist. Since then, a series of reforms have transformed his authoritarian 'New Order' into the world's third largest democracy (and largest Muslim democracy). Indonesia has a presidential system in which a directly elected president serves as both head of state and of government. A maximum two-term limit on the presidency helps to ensure a peaceful alternation of power. Also directly elected, the House of Representatives (the ...

Until his downfall in 1998, General Suharto ruled Indonesia with an iron fist. Since then, a series of reforms have transformed his authoritarian 'New Order' into the world's third largest democracy (and largest Muslim democracy). Indonesia has a presidential system in which a directly elected president serves as both head of state and of government. A maximum two-term limit on the presidency helps to ensure a peaceful alternation of power. Also directly elected, the House of Representatives (the lower house of the bicameral People's Consultative Assembly) has asserted itself as a strong and independent institution. There are nine parliamentary parties, none of which holds a majority, obliging the government to seek support from a broad coalition. Despite the success of Indonesia's political reforms, its commitment to democratic values cannot be taken for granted. Although Indonesia has traditionally been a tolerant, multicultural society, a rising tide of Islamic populism threatens to disrupt the delicate balance between the country's Muslim majority and minorities such as Christians and Buddhists. The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has had some success in tackling endemic graft in the country's courts, local governments and Parliament; however, the latter recently voted to weaken the KPK's powers. While trust in democratic institutions declines, the military – whose commitment to democratic values has often been questionable – is becoming increasingly influential.

Opublikowano 27-01-2020

Single market, innovation and digital: Heading 1 of the 2021-2027 MFF

27-01-2020

The European Union's long-term budget, the multiannual financial framework (MFF), sets out the maximum annual amounts of spending for a seven-year period. It is structured around the EU's spending priorities, reflected in broad categories of expenditure or 'headings'. Heading 1 – Single market, innovation and digital – is one of the seven headings in the MFF proposed by the European Commission for the new 2021-2027 financial period. The heading covers spending in four policy areas: research and innovation ...

The European Union's long-term budget, the multiannual financial framework (MFF), sets out the maximum annual amounts of spending for a seven-year period. It is structured around the EU's spending priorities, reflected in broad categories of expenditure or 'headings'. Heading 1 – Single market, innovation and digital – is one of the seven headings in the MFF proposed by the European Commission for the new 2021-2027 financial period. The heading covers spending in four policy areas: research and innovation, European strategic investments, single market, and space. The Commission, with a view to matching the budget to the EU's political ambitions, is proposing an overall amount of €166.3 billion (in 2018 prices) for this heading, representing 14.7 % of the MFF proposal. However, the new Commission's six priorities for 2019-2024 could have a budgetary impact on this heading, in particular the support for investment in green technologies and a cleaner private and public transport, which are among the actions included in the European Green Deal, and efforts to enable Europe to make the most of the potential of the digital age. This briefing presents the structure and budget allocation of Heading 1 and compares it with the current MFF. It describes each policy cluster and compares the Commission's budgetary proposal with the European Parliament's negotiating position and the negotiating box presented by the Finnish Presidency in December 2019. It then explores some considerations that could contribute to the forthcoming budgetary negotiations on the 2021-2027 MFF.

Natural resources and environment: Heading 3 of the 2021-2027 MFF

27-01-2020

Dedicated to programmes and funds supporting agriculture and maritime policy, and environment and climate change, Heading 3 is the second biggest in terms of funding in the European Commission proposal on the future multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2021-2027. The two agricultural funds – the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) and the Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) – are the main financial instruments for the common agricultural policy (CAP). They will continue to ...

Dedicated to programmes and funds supporting agriculture and maritime policy, and environment and climate change, Heading 3 is the second biggest in terms of funding in the European Commission proposal on the future multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2021-2027. The two agricultural funds – the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) and the Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) – are the main financial instruments for the common agricultural policy (CAP). They will continue to absorb the greater part of the financial resources under this heading. However, the European Commission proposes an amount of €324 284 million to cover both funds, which is a decrease of around €60 000 million (or 15 %) compared to the current MFF (2014-2020), after deducing current United Kingdom (UK) spending. The proposed European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) would amount to €5 448 million, which is 13 % less than in the current MFF, after deducting current UK spending. In its November 2018 resolution on the European Commission proposals for the new MFF, the European Parliament, raised the budget for agricultural and maritime policy back to the level of the current MFF (2014-2020), to €391 198 million. Where the European Commission proposes €4 828 million for the Programme for Environment & Climate Action (LIFE) for 2021-2027, Parliament's resolution increased this amount considerably, requesting an allocation of €6 442 million. Parliament has also asked for a new Energy Transition Fund, with a budget of €4 800 million for 2021-2027, to address the negative socio-economic impact on workers and communities affected by the transition from a coal and carbon dependent economy to a low-carbon economy. The Council has not yet adopted a position on the MFF proposal and national positions are divergent. However, according to the 'negotiating box' proposed by the Finnish Council Presidency, under Heading 3, the cuts in the budget for agriculture would represent a reduction of 13 % in spending, compared to the current MFF.

FEMM Delegation to Croatia

15-01-2020

Briefing made up by the Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs of the EP to the attention of the FEMM Committee's delegation to Croatia in January 2020.

Briefing made up by the Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs of the EP to the attention of the FEMM Committee's delegation to Croatia in January 2020.

Opublikowano 24-01-2020

The 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework in figures

24-01-2020

The Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) sets the maximum level of resources (‘ceiling’) for each major category (‘heading’) of EU spending for a period of seven years. In addition to a financial plan, it sets the EU’s long-term priorities. With the 2014-2020 MFF nearing its end, the EU is now in negotiations on the next long-term budget. In May 2018, the European Commission presented a package of legislative proposals for the 2021-2027 MFF. Equivalent to 1.11 % of EU-27 gross national income (GNI ...

The Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) sets the maximum level of resources (‘ceiling’) for each major category (‘heading’) of EU spending for a period of seven years. In addition to a financial plan, it sets the EU’s long-term priorities. With the 2014-2020 MFF nearing its end, the EU is now in negotiations on the next long-term budget. In May 2018, the European Commission presented a package of legislative proposals for the 2021-2027 MFF. Equivalent to 1.11 % of EU-27 gross national income (GNI), it takes into account the initiatives to which the Member States committed in the Bratislava and Rome declarations, as well as the loss of a major contributor due to the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU. The European Parliament considers the proposal insufficient, given all commitments and priorities, and estimates that the MFF ceiling should amount to 1.3 % of EU-27 GNI. The Member States’ views on both the size and other aspects of the future MFF diverge, and the Council has not yet agreed its position. EU leaders are expected to take the next important decisions on the matter during the first half of 2020. The resources proposed for the 2021-2027 MFF are distributed across seven headings, representing the EU’s long-term priorities. They include spending programmes and funds that are the basis for the implementation of the EU budget. Our infographic provides a breakdown of the proposals for each of the seven headings, as well as an indication of the changes from the current MFF (2014-2027) represented by both the Commission's proposal and Parliament's position on that proposal.

Financing the EU's administration: Heading 7 of the 2021-2027 MFF

24-01-2020

In May 2018, the European Commission published its proposal for the EU's long-term budget for 2021-2027, known as the multiannual financial framework (MFF). The proposed next MFF is structured in 7 headings, encompassing 17 policy clusters. The Commission has proposed a total budget of €1 134 583 million in current prices. The vast majority of these funds – over 93 % – is dedicated to a variety of EU programmes, and is invested primarily in Member States, as well as partially in partner countries ...

In May 2018, the European Commission published its proposal for the EU's long-term budget for 2021-2027, known as the multiannual financial framework (MFF). The proposed next MFF is structured in 7 headings, encompassing 17 policy clusters. The Commission has proposed a total budget of €1 134 583 million in current prices. The vast majority of these funds – over 93 % – is dedicated to a variety of EU programmes, and is invested primarily in Member States, as well as partially in partner countries as external spending. The remaining funds cover the administrative expenses of the EU, an underlying cost of all EU activities. In the current MFF for 2014-2020, Heading 5 covers administration, while in the proposed 2021-2027 MFF, administrative costs will be funded under Heading 7, entitled 'European public administration'. While in other policy areas there is more significant restructuring, the heading that covers EU administrative costs is comparable to that of the current MFF in size and structure. In its proposal for the future Heading 7, the Commission upholds its view that, to ensure the smooth functioning of the Union, the EU budget must finance its administration adequately, particularly in view of the fact that the EU civil service has undergone two successive and substantial reforms within a short time frame, in 2004 and 2014. The Commission proposal aims to ensure that the EU can rely on a highly qualified administrative service, which respects a geographical and gender balance. The proposal has been backed by the European Parliament. On the other hand, in its first draft 'negotiating box' including figures from December 2019, the Council proposed a 2.6 % cut to the allocations in the Commission proposal and Parliament's position.

Brexit: The final countdown [What Think Tanks are thinking]

24-01-2020

It is now clear that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union on 31 January 2020. It will do so on the basis of the revised Withdrawal Agreement negotiated between the EU-27 and the UK by Boris Johnson after he became Prime Minister last year. Both sides will then start negotiations on future relations, including on trade, which will run during the transitional period, currently due to end on 31 December 2020. The UK government has said it will set out its hopes for the future partnership ...

It is now clear that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union on 31 January 2020. It will do so on the basis of the revised Withdrawal Agreement negotiated between the EU-27 and the UK by Boris Johnson after he became Prime Minister last year. Both sides will then start negotiations on future relations, including on trade, which will run during the transitional period, currently due to end on 31 December 2020. The UK government has said it will set out its hopes for the future partnership after Brexit has happened. This note offers links to recent commentaries, studies and reports from international think tanks on numerous challenges facing the UK, EU and their future ties after their divorce.

Opublikowano 23-01-2020

The European Union and Holocaust remembrance

23-01-2020

The term Holocaust refers to the mass murder of 6 million European Jews, Roma and other persecuted groups, whom the Nazi regime and its collaborators sought to annihilate. The expropriation, state-sponsored discrimination and persecution of the Jews by the Nazi regime began in 1933, followed by pogroms and their mass incarceration in concentration camps. Ultimately, this policy was extended to all Nazi-controlled European territories and countries during World War II, culminating in mass summary ...

The term Holocaust refers to the mass murder of 6 million European Jews, Roma and other persecuted groups, whom the Nazi regime and its collaborators sought to annihilate. The expropriation, state-sponsored discrimination and persecution of the Jews by the Nazi regime began in 1933, followed by pogroms and their mass incarceration in concentration camps. Ultimately, this policy was extended to all Nazi-controlled European territories and countries during World War II, culminating in mass summary executions ('Holocaust by Bullets') and extermination in death camps. The perpetrators were prosecuted at the Nuremberg trials in 1945-1946; however, the tribunal preferred to indict them on charges of crimes against humanity rather than genocide. It was not until 2005, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz that a United Nations resolution designated 27 January the day for international commemoration of the Holocaust, to be known as 'International Holocaust Remembrance Day'. In the European Union, numerous programmes seek to preserve the memory of these tragic events in the history of the continent. Since 1995, the European Parliament has adopted resolutions drawing attention to the obligation to remember not only through commemorations but also through education. In November 2018, the EU became a permanent international partner of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA). This is a further updated version of a briefing from January 2018.

Planowane wydarzenia

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29-01-2020
The Future of Artificial Intelligence for Europe
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30-01-2020
‘Sidetracked’ - A dystopian Brexit novel: David Harley in conversation
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Infografiki

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