THREE CLEAN ENERGY PACKAGE FILES ENDORSED BY THE COUNCIL
Transport ministers agreed on a final endorsement of three files under the Clean Energy Package: the Renewable Energy Directive, the Governance Regulation and the Energy Efficiency Directive. The dossiers reflect the new targets which state that by 2030, the EU will have to get 32% of its energy from renewable sources and reach an energy efficiency headline target of 32.5%. The three legislative texts are scheduled to be published in the Official Journal of the EU on 21 December. All three files will enter into force on the third day after their publication.
EUROGROUP STRIKES DEAL ON ESM REFORM AHEAD OF DECEMBER EURO SUMMIT
At the Eurogroup meeting, Finance Ministers reached an agreement on two elements relating to deepening of the Economic and Monetary Union; the draft terms of reference of the common backstop to the Single Resolution Fund (SRF) to be introduced before 2024 if sufficient progress on risk-reduction has been achieved, and a term sheet on the ESM reform. The ESM will provide the backstop to the SRF in the form of a revolving credit line aligned with the SRF target level but capped in nominal terms. The agreement will be presented at the Euro Summit on 14 December.
2019 EU BUDGET PENDING FORMAL APPROVAL BY CO-LEGISLATORS NEXT WEEK
The European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the 2019 EU budget. The budget is set at €165.8 billion in commitments and €148.2 billion in payment credits, with priorities being given to investment in growth and jobs, research and innovation, effective migration management and external borders. The agreement is based on the premise that the UK will continue to contribute to the EU budget until the end of 2020, as per the Withdrawal Agreement deal. The European Parliament and the Council are expected to formally approve the agreed text next week in Plenary and the General Affairs Council, respectively.
EU REGULATORS MAKE THE .EU DOMAIN BETTER FIT FOR A MODERN WORLD
The European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission agreed on the new rules for the .eu top level domain (TLD). Under the new rules, the .eu TLD will fit better in a fast-changing domain name market and support more innovative services to EU citizens and businesses. The agreement will also extend the eligibility criteria to EU citizens residing outside the EU to register the domain. The .eu domain is currently managed by EURid, a private, independent, non-profit organisation that has operated the .eu under contract to the Commission since 2003.
COMMISSION PUSHES FOR STRENGTHENING INTERNATIONAL ROLE OF EURO
The European Commission published a non-binding Communication outlining its ambitions for strengthening the role and use of the euro in the global economy. The Commission recommends a series of actions that include: (i) extending the scope of derivative contracts covered by clearing obligations under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR); (ii) pushing for full implementation of the Benchmarks Regulation; and (iii) suggesting new measures to facilitate the cross-border use of payment solutions. The Commission will now launch consultations on such actions and will assess progress on all euro enhancing policies by summer 2019.
COMING UP NEXT WEEK
• 10 December: EU-Kyrgyzstan Cooperation Council. On the agenda: EU-Kyrgyz Republic partnership and cooperation.
• 10 December: Foreign Affairs Council. On the agenda: Current affairs, Iran, Western Balkans, Ukraine, Venezuela, EU-African Union cooperation.
• 11 December: General Affairs Council. On the agenda: MFF 2021-2027, European Council, rule of law in Poland and EU values in Hungary, subsidiarity.
• 11 December: UK House of Commons. On the agenda: ‘meaningful vote’ on the Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration for the future EU-UK relation.
• 13-14 December: European Council. On the agenda: MFF 2021-2027, single market, migration, external relations, fighting disinformation.
• 14 December: Euro Summit. On the agenda: ESM reform, budgetary instruments for the euro area, way forward on the banking union.
Karl Isaksson, Managing Partner Brussels, Kreab