Insights | EU Insight May 11, 2018


EU Insight May 11, 2018


US President Donald Trump announced that the US would immediately withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and would re-impose US sanctions against Iran. The sanctions will be implemented in two phases to allow US and foreign companies to make the necessary preparations in 90 days and 180 days respectively. In a joint statement, France, Germany and the UK regretted President Trump’s decision, urging all sides to remain committed to the full implementation of the deal. Equally, the Commission’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Federica Mogherini stated that the EU will remain committed to the deal as long as Iran continues to fully implement the JCPOA.


The Commission outlined plans to evaluate current EU legislation on the circular economy to improve the development of more durable, reusable and repairable products. The published roadmap will look at whether the current legislation is complete in terms of product groups. It will examine products that currently do not have any specific EU policies, but high circular economic potential, such as textiles, construction products, cosmetics, food and drink, and furniture. Industry has until 4 June to send in their feedback on the roadmap. A public consultation will launch in the summer and the work is due to be completed in the autumn.


The Commission opened a review of the EU’s compliance with the Aarhus Convention on access to environmental justice after rejecting the UN panel’s findings that it prevents the public from challenging the decisions of EU institutions. In a roadmap, the Commission maintains its argument that the panel does not recognize that the EU system of remedies is already complete. The UN demands allowing citizens to take their cases directly to the EU Court of Justice which would, according to the Commission, have significant consequences for the judicial system of the EU. The Commission started a public consultation on the issue.


On Europe Day, the Commission launched an online public consultation addressed to all Europeans, asking them what direction they want the EU to take in the future. The aim of the consultation is to engage citizens in the conversation on the Future of Europe. The consultation, part of the broader Future of Europe debate launched with the Commission’s White Paper in March 2017, was prepared by a panel of 96 citizens from 27 Member States, who came together to decide what questions to put to their fellow Europeans. 


The Commission and the European External Action Service published a Report which concluded that the EU and Tunisia have developed much closer relations, and stepped up their cooperation in the various fields covered by the Privileged Partnership. The Report highlights the intense high-level exchanges, dialogue and cooperation on key issues such as youth employability and reforms, consolidating democracy and promoting good governance (in which Tunisian civil society continues to play a central role), the response to common security challenges, and the coordinated management of migration.


  • 14 May: General Affairs Council (Art. 50). On the agenda: completion of work on withdrawal issues to finalise the draft withdrawal agreement; discussions on the EU’s future relationship with the UK.
  • 14 May: General Affairs Council. On the agenda: multiannual financial framework (MFF) after 2020; preparations for the next European Council; rule of law in Poland.
  • 14 May: EU-Algeria Association Council. On the agenda: implementation of the Algerian Constitution, governance and civil society; support for diversification of the Algerian economy and trade relations; dialogue on migration and mobility.
  • 15 May: EU-Cuba Joint Council meeting. On the agenda: implementation of the Political Dialogue and Cooperation Agreement.
  • 15 May: EU-Tunisia Association Council. On the agenda: democratic transition; economic reforms and trade relations; significant bilateral cooperation, including the EU-Tunisia Youth Partnership; issues of migration and mobility.
  • 15 May: European Union Military Committee (EUMC), EU Chiefs of Defence. On the agenda: EU-NATO cooperation; EU-UN partnership; EU Global strategy.
  • 17 May: EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia. On the agenda: EU commitment of belonging to the European family; common challenges including security, migration, and geopolitical developments.
  • 17 May: The Commission to present its Third mobility package. A number of transport related legislative proposals.


Karl Isaksson, Managing Partner Brussels, Kreab


Kreab • Tel: +32 2 737 6900 • • Twitter: @KreabEU.


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