Deadlock over UK’s Brexit bill, says EU’s Michel Barnier

Deadlock over UK’s Brexit bill, says EU’s Michel Barnier

The EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier says there has not been enough progress to move to the next stage of Brexit talks as the UK wants. He said there was “new momentum” in the process but there was still “deadlock” over how much the UK pays when it leaves, which he called “disturbing”. Brexit Secretary David Davis said he still hoped for the go-ahead for trade talks when EU leaders meet next week. The pair were speaking after the fifth round of Brexit talks in Brussels. Mr Barnier said: “I…

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European battery alliance launched in Brussels

European battery alliance launched in Brussels

The European Commission hosted auto, chemical and engineering executives in Brussels yesterday (11 October) to develop battery manufacturing in the EU to compete with Asian and US manufacturers. German chemical group BASF, automakers Renault and Daimler and engineering firm Siemens were among those invited to the gathering in Brussels yesterday (11 October). The initiative, which could lead to an Airbus-style consortium for battery production in Europe, was launched by Maroš Šefčovic, EU Commission Vice-President in charge of the Energy Union. “The lack of a domestic, European cell manufacturing base jeopardises…

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Brussels ducks Catalonia crisis mediation calls

Brussels ducks Catalonia crisis mediation calls

Analysts say political and legal obstacles block EU intervention. The European Commission has ducked an appeal by Catalan authorities for mediation in the latest sign of Brussels’ reluctance to intervene in the secession crisis. The commission said the conflict with Madrid must be resolved in “full respect of the Spanish constitutional order”, knocking back efforts by Carles Puigdemont, the Catalan president, to make the dispute a “European issue”. Analysts say the consistent line from Brussels reflects legal and political obstacles to its involvement in any battle between an EU member…

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EU invites ‘last dictator’ to Brussels summit

EU invites ‘last dictator’ to Brussels summit

The EU has invited Belarusian leader Aleksander Lukashenko to a summit in Brussels in a move deemed “scandalous” by some. If he comes to the so called Eastern Partnership summit on 24 November, it would be the first-ever visit to the EU capital of a man who is still often called Europe’s “last dictator”. Lukashenko’s 23-year rule has been marked by the murders and jailing of opposition leaders, rigged elections, and goon-squad beatings of peaceful protesters on the streets of Minsk. But a spokesman for European Council head Donald Tusk…

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