2021 April

30 Apr: GDP down by 0.6% in the euro area and by 0.4% in the EU

Source: Eurostat

Preliminary flash estimate for the first quarter of 2021

GDP down by 0.6% in the euro area and by 0.4% in the EU

-1.8% and -1.7% respectively compared with the first quarter of 2020

In the first quarter 2021, seasonally adjusted GDP decreased by 0.6% in the euro area and by 0.4% in the EU, compared with the previous quarter, according to a preliminary flash estimate published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. These declines follow falls in the fourth quarter of 2020 (-0.7% in the euro area and -0.5% in the EU) after a …

30 Apr: Eurostat : Euro area annual inflation up to 1.6%

Source: Eurostat

Flash estimate – April 2021

Euro area annual inflation up to 1.6%

Euro area annual inflation is expected to be 1.6% in April 2021, up from 1.3% in March according to a flash estimate from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

Looking at the main components of euro area inflation, energy is expected to have the highest annual rate in April (10.3%, compared with 4.3% in March), followed by services (0.9%, compared with 1.3% in March), food, alcohol & tobacco (0.7%, compared with 1.1% in March) and non-energy industrial goods (0.5%, compared with 0.3% in March).…

30 Apr: Eurostat : Euro area unemployment at 8.1%

Source: Eurostat

March 2021

Euro area unemployment at 8.1%

EU at 7.3%

In March 2021, the euro area seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 8.1%, down from 8.2% in February 2021 and up from 7.1% in March 2020. The EU unemployment rate was 7.3% in March 2021, also down from 7.4% in February 2021 and up from 6.4% in March 2020. These figures are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

Eurostat estimates that 15.520 million men and women in the EU, of whom 13.166 million in the euro area, were unemployed in March 2021. Compared with February 2021, …

30 Apr: ECB appoints Irene Heemskerk as head of its climate change centre

Source: EU Central Bank

  • Irene Heemskerk will start on 15 June 2021
  • Head of climate change centre will report to President Lagarde
  • Climate change centre will shape and steer ECB’s climate agenda

The Executive Board of the European Central Bank (ECB) has appointed Irene Heemskerk as head of the ECB’s climate change centre as of 15 June 2021.

The ECB launched its climate change centre earlier this year to shape and steer its climate agenda internally and externally, building on the expertise of all teams already working on climate-related topics at the bank.

“The climate change centre will focus the …

30 Apr: New EU cybersecurity strategy is step forward, says EESC

Source: European Economic and Social Committee

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) welcomes the proposed new package of EU cybersecurity measures but points to weaknesses in addressing Europe’s huge cyber skills gap. Critical entities also need streamlining, simplification and clearer application guidelines, in the EESC’s view.

Overall, the EESC hails the new EU cybersecurity strategy as a positive step towards protecting governments, people and businesses from cyber threats, and safeguarding economic growth – an area where the EU appears to be highly vulnerable, with the economic impact of cybercrime estimated at 0.84% of GDP, compared to 0.78% in North …

30 Apr: Zambia: H.E. President Edgar C. Lungu receives European Ambassadors

Source: EEAS

Today the President of the Republic, H.E. Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu received the European Union’s Ambassador to the Republic of Zambia and COMESA, H.E. Jacek Jankowski together with the Ambassadors of EU Member States (Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Sweden). The meeting was a follow-up to the recent Zambia-EU political dialogue held at ministerial level.

The EU Ambassadors seized this occasion to announce that the European Union will deploy an Election Observation Mission to Zambia. Ambassador Jankowski explained: “The EU Election Observation Mission, scheduled to deploy in early July, will be a highly visible

30 Apr: Ugandan women’s rights defender Rita Aciro wins EU Human Rights Defenders’ Award 2021

Source: EEAS

The award, which was presented during a ceremony on 29th April at the residence of the Ambassador of Germany in Kampala, is given annually by the European Union and Norway to recognise an outstanding contribution by a human rights defender in Uganda.

Women’s rights defender Rita Aciro has been named as the winner of the EU Human Rights Defenders’ Award 2021. The award, which was presented during a ceremony on 29th April at the residence of the Ambassador of Germany in Kampala, is given annually by the European Union and Norway to recognise an outstanding contribution by a …

30 Apr: The future of the Western Balkans lies within the European Union

Source: EEAS

The Western Balkan partners are at the heart of Europe. They are geographically surrounded by EU Member States and as High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell said “the European Union is completely committed to the European perspective of the entire Western Balkans”.

Promoting security, prosperity and freedom across the whole of the European continent is a task the EU and the region share. EU representatives stressed that the Union and the region need to advance together.

Together against COVID-19

The EU has stood firmly with the Western Balkans in combatting COVID-19 since its outbreak. The EU has provided very substantial …

30 Apr: The European Union and Ministry of Social Development celebrate Ramadan with Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza

Source: EEAS

The European Union and the Palestinian Ministry of Social Development (MoSD) celebrate Ramadan with the most vulnerable Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. They visited Beit al-Ajdad elderly home in Jericho yesterday, and scheduled to organise a similar event in Gaza next week.  The visits mark the start of the joint Ramadan events for vulnerable Palestinian families.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Iftars could not be organised this year. Instead, around 650 food and hygiene parcels will be distributed to 530 families and 16 care centres and shelters hosting elderly, orphans and people with disability in the West …

30 Apr: Russia: EU Presidents condemn Russian sanctions against EU nationals

Source: EU Consilium

Joint statement by the Presidents of the European Council, Commission and Parliament on the imposition of restrictive measures on eight EU nationals by Russia.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms today’s decision of the Russian authorities to ban eight European Union nationals from entering the Russian territory. This includes the President of the European Parliament David Sassoli, Vice President of the European Commission Věra Jourová, as well as six EU Member States’ officials. This action is unacceptable, lacks any legal justification and is entirely groundless. It targets the European Union directly, not only the individuals concerned.…