‘Eurocrats with a heart’ raise €150k for regions affected by the virus

‘Eurocrats with a heart’ raise €150k for regions affected by the virus

A group of self-proclaimed “faceless” EU civil servants have decided to put their hands in their pockets to build a European solidarity fund for people in COVID-hit regions like Spain and northern Italy. The grassroots movement was launched by a group of EU civil servants calling themselves “Eurocrats with a heart” – a tongue-in-cheek reference to the British tabloid press, which often depicts EU officials as “faceless bureaucrats”. By the start of this week, the movement had raised €150,000, contributed by about 800 people – all civil servants working in…

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Italy will provide further support to companies, including tax breaks, hybrid bonds

Italy will provide further support to companies, including tax breaks, hybrid bonds

Italy’s government is readying new measures to support companies struggling due to the coronavirus crisis, including tax incentives and hybrid bonds, and aims to access the European Recovery Fund in the second half of the year, Economy Minister Roberto Gualtieri said on Sunday (10 May). “The State has the duty to intervene to defend and support workers and firms. Nobody wants to state-direct the economy but interventions that protect and at the same time stimulate the productive system are needed,” Gualtieri told newspaper Il Messaggero in an interview. Italy, one…

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The Commission proposes a pan-European government to deal with “dirty money”

The Commission proposes a pan-European government to deal with “dirty money”

The European Commission outlined on Thursday (7 May) a series of proposals to bolster Europe’s flawed anti-money laundering system, including a new pan-European authority, following a series of major scandals. The Commission’s action plan includes a more harmonised set of rules and more powers and resources for national and European supervisors. They will be put forward within the next year. Europe has already revised its rules against money launderers and terrorist financing five times, almost at the same pace that the bloc’s banks were involved in scandals. The latest example…

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Fair increase in tax collection: how poor countries can deal with the coronavirus crisis

Fair increase in tax collection: how poor countries can deal with the coronavirus crisis

Governments need billions, if not trillions, of euros to tackle the impact of the coronavirus crisis. Many poor countries lack that money, and they need support in collecting more tax, and do so fairly, write Chiara Putaturo and Lis Cunha. Chiara Putaturo is EU Inequality and Tax Policy Advisor at Oxfam; Lis Cunha is EU policy officer at ActionAid International The coronavirus crisis is affecting us all, and it preys most on the vulnerable – on people in poverty, at home and around our world. Beyond the immediate health impact,…

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Germany agrees to more cash to shield workers, companies from coronavirus hit

Germany agrees to more cash to shield workers, companies from coronavirus hit

Germany’s coalition parties on Thursday (23 April) agreed to further measures worth some €10 billion to shield workers and companies from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The aid package includes higher state transfers for people in short-time work schemes, according to a document agreed by senior members of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling coalition. The parties agreed to temporarily lower the tax burden for the catering industry through a reduced VAT rate of 7% for food and to give tax relief for small companies by simplifying loss carry forward. The…

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Daniyar Abulgazin: the perfect accomplice and mastermind for Timur Kulibaev’s oil schemes

Daniyar Abulgazin: the perfect accomplice and mastermind for Timur Kulibaev’s oil schemes

With the oil demand historically low we don’t have to round the corners about our dearest oil suppliers. It is obvious that the once precious liquid is available in abundance and Europe has a wide choice of flavours. Thus we have a chance not to buy blindly our oil and gas from the shadowy corrupted regimes and ideological enemies. Let’s take a look at Kazakhstan. Majority of oil trade is in the hands of notorious ex-president son-in-law, Timur Kulibayev. But he never could accomplish it by himself. Nazarbayev is only…

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EU Commission will offer to “borrow” to finance the recovery plan: Dombrovskis

EU Commission will offer to “borrow” to finance the recovery plan: Dombrovskis

The EU executive will propose borrowing from the markets in order to finance a recovery plan that will come on top of the EU budget, the European Commission’s vice-president for the economy, Valdis Dombrovskis, told EU lawmakers on Monday (20 April). “We want to reinforce the financing capacity of the next MFF beyond what we have now,” Dombrovskis told MEPs, referring to the EU’s next seven-year budget, the so-called Multi-annual Financial Framework. “For this, we will be setting up an additional fund and indeed, it would be financed from borrowing…

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ESM CEO: Europe needs at least another 500 billion euros from EU institutions to recover

ESM CEO: Europe needs at least another 500 billion euros from EU institutions to recover

Europe will need at least another €500 billion from European Union institutions to finance its economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic, on top of the agreed half-a-trillion package, the head of the euro zone bailout fund said. In an interview with Italy’s Corriere della Sera paper, published on Sunday (19 April), European Stability Mechanism Managing Director Klaus Regling said the easiest way to organise such funds would be via the European Commission and the EU budget. “I would say that for the second phase we need at least another €500…

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UK faces 35% recession due to COVID-19 blockage

UK faces 35% recession due to COVID-19 blockage

The UK is expected to suffer a 35% drop in economic output as a result of the coronavirus lockdown measures, according to forecasts by the Office for Budgetary Responsibility (OBR) published on Tuesday (14 April). The OBR expects the UK economy to slump by 35% between March and June before recovering in the last six months of 2020, although it would still contract by 12.8% for the year as a whole. Unemployment is set to increase by more than 2 million to 10% in the second quarter, before gradually falling….

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France says future EU recovery fund will be € 500 billion funded through joint debt

France says future EU recovery fund will be € 500 billion funded through joint debt

European finance ministers have agreed to a post-crisis economic recovery plan worth €500 billion, which opens the door to jointly issued debt, France’s finance minister claimed on Thursday (9 April). Bruno Le Maire said after talks with his euro zone counterparts that European Union member states had agreed to mobilise €1 trillion to shore up the economy in response to the coronavirus crisis, in the most important economic plan in the EU’s history. Le Maire said on a call with reporters that the European Stability Mechanism will be activated with…

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