Brussels, 25 September 2020
COMMISSION ISSUES NEW MIGRATION AND ASYLUM PACT
The Commission unveiled its proposal for new Migration and Asylum Pact, built on three pillars: i) stronger trust fostered by better and more effective procedures, ii) fair sharing of responsibility and solidarity among Member States, and iii) tailor-made and mutually beneficial partnership with third countries. However, for the majority of groups in the European Parliament, the Pact is unsatisfactory: some demand compulsory relocation of refugees; others want a firmer stance on irregular arrivals. It will now be for the European Parliament and Council to examine and adopt the proposal before a new EU asylum and migration policy applies.
EU DOUBLES DOWN ON ITS DIGITAL AMBITIONS WITH NEW DIGITAL FINANCE PACKAGE
The European Commission revealed its ambitious digital finance package to boost Europe’s financial competitiveness and innovation. The package includes strategies for Digital Finance and Retail Payments as well as two legislative proposals: the ‘Regulation on Markets in Crypto Assets’ (MiCA) and the ‘Digital Operational Resilience Act’ (DORA). The aim of the package is to strike a balance between stimulating innovation and competition on the one hand, and preserving financial stability and safeguarding cybersecurity and privacy on the other. The co-legislators will begin negotiations on MiCA and DORA in the next few weeks.
EU COUNTRIES’ CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE IS NOT ENOUGH
In its updated risk assessment, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) finds that Member States have not done enough to reduce or control exposure to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the ECDC calls on capitals to step up their efforts, paying particular attention to the protection of medically vulnerable individuals and healthcare workers. In addition, the report emphasises the need to prepare for a scenario of widespread transmission in the coming week and thus provides guidelines for the implementation of non-pharmaceutical interventions against COVID-19 (e.g. testing strategies, contact tracing, quarantine).
COMMISSION ACTION PLAN SETS OUT 16 ACTIONS TO STRENGTHEN EU CAPITAL MARKETS
The Commission presented its Capital Markets Union (CMU) new action plan, which aims to complete the project that began in 2015. In particular, the Commission commits to 16 actions, both legislative and non-legislative, to be put forward between Q1 2021 and Q3 2023, to achieve three objectives: i) supporting a green, digital, inclusive and resilient economic recovery by making financing more accessible to European companies; ii) making the EU an even safer place for individuals to save and invest long-term; iii) integrating national capital markets into a genuine single market, including further supervisory harmonisation.
HEARINGS OF NEW COMMISSIONER-DESIGNATES BROUGHT FORWARD TO NEXT WEEK
The European Parliament announced this week that the hearings of the new Commissioners-designate for Financial Services and Trade, Mairead McGuinness and Valdis Dombrovskis, respectively, have been brought forward from 12 October to 2 October. Mrs McGuinness will be heard by the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee (ECON) from 9.00 to 12.00 whilst Mr Dombrovskis will answer questions from the International Trade Committee (INTA) from 13.00 to 16.00. Then, on 5 October the Conference of Committee Chairs will assess the outcome of the two hearings and forward its conclusions to the Conference of Presidents. The vote by the Plenary is scheduled for 7 October.
COMING UP NEXT WEEK
• 28 September: Video conference of transport ministers. On the agenda: COVID-19 contingency plan for the freight sector.
• 29 September: Competitiveness Council (research and innovation). On the agenda: Horizon Europe, future research and innovation missions.
• 29 September: Informal meeting of development ministers.
• 30 September – 1 October: Informal meeting of environment ministers.
• 1 – 2 October: Special European Council. On the agenda: China, Turkey, Belarus, Single Market, industrial policy and digital transition.
Karl Isaksson, Managing Partner Brussels, Kreab
Kreab • Tel: +32 2 737 6900 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.kreab.com/brussels • Twitter: @KreabEU.