It feels like a déjà vu. In a time when Covid-19 restrictions have been eased, the EU started the year with a meeting to discuss adopting a joint approach given the surge of infections in China after Beijing reversed its strict zero-Covid policies. Talks did not yield a binding result.
Europe in brief: Germany’s energy bailout, Austria’s Schengen veto, Spain to receive EU funding to strengthen health sector
The European Commission clears Germany’s bailout of gas giant Uniper. Austria’s Chancellor defends Schengen veto against Romania and Bulgaria. Spain receives EU aid to hire healthcare workers.
The US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was passed in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the public deficit and inflation. EU officials had initially welcomed this as a step in the right direction towards mitigating climate change. However, at the time they overlooked the protectionist aspects of the law.
Europe in brief: EU reforms carbon market, Doha brusquely rejects EU corruption accusations, Slovenia leads with ambitious targets in biodiversity protection
The EU has agreed on a reform of emissions trading, the key climate protection instrument. A week after the corruption scandal in the European Parliament, Qatar has issued a statement warning of possible negative repercussions for relations with the EU. At the UN’s Biodiversity Conference, Brussels joined forces to significantly increase funding to counteract biodiversity loss.
Almost seven years after submitting a formal application for EU membership, Bosnia and Herzegovina finally received the unanimous support of 27 EU heads of state and government to join the bloc. But now the Western Balkan country of 3.3 million people must deliver reforms.