The Euro Economy

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Days after the UK wrapped up the “Stoptober” campaign to end tobacco consumption, France – still known in some quarters as “Europe’s chimney” – launched Mois Sans Tabac to encourage citizens to quit smoking and bring down national smoking rates from current levels. Tobacco use in the country is still unacceptably high, hovering around 30%… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith

Anti-austerity protests (c) cosmo_71 via Flickr As the second round of EU-Ecuador trade negotiations wrapped up on a positive note in March, Ecuador expects to have the bilateral trade agreement finally signed by mid-2014. But can the EU take more from Ecuador than just bananas and shrimp? Witnessing the damaging effects of European austerity on… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith

Ecuador: Bananas over trade

International trade talks are usually so jargon-filled that it can make your head spin and very few can actually make sense over what this gobbledygook entails for a country’s economy. It’s therefore easy to get lost in translation when you read about TRIPs and TRIMs during TPP and TTIP negotiations. And when ordinary people don’t… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith

While Ukraine’s European fate may be dominating the headlines as tens of thousands of pro-European demonstrators flood Kiev’s public spaces, a deeper source of tension looms beneath the surface, largely outside the eye of the non-financial media. At the heart of the tensions are accusations by the EU’s competition authorities that Gazprom has abused its… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith

The Nations In Between

Ex-USSR states are still getting caught between Brussels and the Kremlin. Twenty years on from the breaking up of the Soviet Union, political and economic pressures are forcing ex-bloc members to decide: return to their old superpower master Russia, or turn to the west and democratise for a future in the EU. It’s a process… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith

Conservative politicians are bringing the UK into disrepute with an attitude towards the EU’s human rights law which could spell a “political disaster.” This was the opinion expressed by the EU’s most senior judge, Dean Spielmann, who has spoken out against Tory threats to leave the European convention. Certain senior Conservative MPs, including home secretary… » read more

Posted by Meredith Smith