Thursday, 8 August 2013

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Lib Dems set to officially endorse in/out referendum and Treaty change to secure single market safe
Open Europe Blog

Between a rock and a hard place: Is Spain breaching EU law by making life difficult for Gibraltarians?
Open Europe Blog

IMF takes a more critical line on Greece 
Open Europe Blog

Daily Press Summary

Spanish Prime Minister’s office contradicts Downing Street over easing of border controls in Gibraltar
Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday had a telephone conversation with his Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy over the latest Gibraltar dispute. Downing Street described the conversation as “constructive”, after Rajoy committed to easing the recently imposed onerous border controls. However, a statement from Rajoy’s office made no mention of such an agreement and instead blamed the Gibraltarian authorities for the tensions. The statement also claimed that the “developments in border controls” were due to Spanish efforts to crack down on smuggling, and were in compliance with the Schengen Agreement. Open Europe’s blog post looking at whether the controls were acceptable under EU free movement laws was cited by the BBC’s Europe editor Gavin Hewitt.
Telegraph Independent Guardian Times Express Expansión El Pais La Vanguardia BBC blogs: Hewitt

New data released this morning by the Greek national statistics office ELSTAT show that total unemployment in Greece reached 27.6% in May, up from 27% in April, and youth unemployment reached 64.9%.
ELSTAT press release

El País reports that 5,069 Spanish companies declared themselves insolvent in the first half of 2013 – a 22.5% increase compared to the same period of 2012.
El País

A new Forsa poll for Stern and RTL puts Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU on 40%, the SPD on 23%, the Greens on 14%, Die Linke on 7%, the FDP on 5%, the Pirate Party and the anti-euro Alternative für Deutschland on 3%. 

Portuguese Deputy Treasury Minister Joaquim Pais Jorge has resigned after only five weeks in the job, following allegations that he was involved in attempting to sell derivative contracts, aimed at removing government debt from official government accounting, to the previous Portuguese government while employed at Citigroup.
Le Monde Bloomberg Diário Económico FT

The European Commission has offered to mediate in a Franco-German dispute over Mercedes-Benz cars, following the French authorities’ decision to ban the sale of most of Daimler’s new model Mercedes cars because they use a coolant that does not comply with EU rules,EUobserver reports.

The Mail reports that campaign group Business for Britain will present a manifesto calling for the UK to leave the EU’s single market altogether and only remain a member of a customs union – a similar trading relationship to that which Turkey has with the EU.
Open Europe research: Trading Places Mail

James Forsyth notes in the Spectator that various environmental NGOs, such as the European Environmental Bureau, are relying on the EU to stop fracking – a move which could threaten shale gas exploration in Britain and other member states. 
No link

The Times’ Economics Editor Sam Fleming argues that things might be looking up for the eurozone, noting, “If America’s economic comeback can be sustained it will help to lift the bedraggled European economy, which remains deeply reliant on its US partner. The two sides cannot afford to squander the current opportunity presented by the transatlantic trade deal.” 
Times: Fleming

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney warned yesterday that the UK cannot rely on exports to boost economic growth, particularly because its largest trading partner, the eurozone, is still moving “sideways”.

The Czech Republic’s technocratic government led by Jirí Rusnok yesterday lost a vote of confidence with only 93 out of 193 MPs supporting the government. The negative outcome of the vote makes new elections more likely.
Les Echos Süddeutsche FT

Handeslblatt reports that, since only 40% of Latvians are in favour of joining the euro, the Latvian government has decided to launch an ‘educational campaign’ on the single currency ahead of the country’s euro entry next year.
No link

The Italian Senate’s Immunities Committee has begun debating whether to eject Silvio Berlusconi from parliament as a result of his tax fraud conviction. The final vote is not expected at least until late September. 
Repubblica Corriere della Sera

Cyprus, Greece and Israel yesterday signed an agreement to link their electricity grids via underwater cables – a project which is part of the EU’s Projects of Common Interest plan.
Cyprus Mail Kathimerini

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