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European Union: Proposal to Prohibit Proprietary Trading by Banks

(Feb. 4, 2014) On January 29, 2014, the European Commission adopted a proposal to prohibit proprietary trading by banks, that is, trading by a bank on its own account in order to make a profit for the bank. If adopted, the legislation would ban banks from investing their own funds rather than those of their […]

European Union: New Recommendations to Prevent Radicalization

(Jan. 29, 2014) On January 15, 2014, the European Commission adopted a new communication designed to improve the European Union’s (EU) response to terrorist attacks by minimizing radicalization and thus reducing the risk of violent extremist acts and strengthening the measures undertaken by the Member States. (Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the […]

European Union: New Measures Adopted on Shale Gas Initiative

(Jan. 29, 2014) In January 2014, the European Commission put forward three measures to tackle the issue of hydrocarbon extraction by means of hydraulic fracturing. The Commission’s initiative was in response to calls for action raised by interested parties, the related industries, the public, and local and national authorities in a public consultation initiated by […]

European Union: New Rules on the Generalized System of Preferences

(Jan. 16, 2014) On January 1, 2015, a revised Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) came into force in the European Union. The GSP, originally established in 1971, basically determines which countries will pay less or no duty when exporting their products to the EU. (European Commission, Memo, Revised EU Trade Scheme to Help Developing Countries […]

European Union: New Rules Proposed to Fight Tax Evasion

(Dec. 13, 2013) Tax evasion is a serious issue across the European Union; the European Commission estimates that the EU Member States lose close to one trillion euros in revenues annually due to tax evasion and tax avoidance. On November 25, 2013, in an effort to combat this problem, the Commission adopted a proposal to […]

European Union: New Proposed Rules on Misappropriation of Trade Secrets

(Dec. 6, 2013) On November 28, 2013, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a new directive on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use, and disclosure. Trade secrets, otherwise known as “confidential business information” or “undisclosed information,” are used by a large number of companies to […]

European Union: European Citizens Demand Ban on Animal Experimentation

(Nov. 12, 2013) A European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) recently met the threshold of being signed by one million European Union citizens. The ECI is a request that the EU take action to discontinue the use of animals in scientific experimentation. (Third Successful Citizen’s Petition Calls for End to Animal Testing, EUR ACTIV (Oct. 31, 2013).) […]

Canada; European Union: Trade Agreement

(Oct. 22, 2013) On October 18, 2013, after lengthy negotiations between the European Union Commissioner on Trade, Karel De Gutch, and the Canadian Trade Minister, Ed Fast, the EU and Canada reached a political accord on signing a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). (Press Release, European Commission, EU and Canada Conclude Negotiations on a […]

European Union; China; World Trade Organization: EU Deems Anti-Dumping Duties on Steel imports from China Discriminatory

(Sept. 13, 2013) On August 16, 2013, the European Union (EU) requested that the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva decide on a dispute between the EU and China arising from anti-dumping duties imposed by China on imports of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes (HP-SSST) from the EU. The tubes are used mainly in super […]

European Union: Stricter Penalties for Insider Trading Proposed by the Parliament

(Sept. 13, 2013) On September 10, 2013, the European Parliament endorsed a draft Regulation on Insider Dealing and Market Manipulation. 659 Members voted in favor, with 20 voting against and 28 abstentions. (Tougher Sanctions for Financial Markets Manipulation, EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT/NEWS (Sept. 9, 2013).) The initial proposal, which was drafted in 2011 by the European Commission, […]