EU Council and council of the EU Press

19 May: Remarks by President Charles Michel after his meeting in Belgrade with President Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

Thank you, dear President Vučić, thank you my dear friend Aleksandar. Thank you for your warm welcome and thank you for your great hospitality. Let me congratulate you again on your re-election.

My first message today is to reaffirm our full commitment to Serbia’s accession negotiations to the European Union. In June, we will organise a meeting of the 27 EU leaders with the leaders of the Western Balkans. We want to enhance our dialogue and deepen our cooperation to promote peace, stability, and security.

Russia’s war against Ukraine has sent shockwaves …

19 May: Customs: Provisional agreement reached on EU single window which will make customs clearance easier and faster

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

Today, the Council and the European Parliament reached a provisional agreement on a single window for customs which sets the appropriate conditions for digital collaboration between customs and partner competent authorities. The aim is to make international trade easier, shorten customs clearance times and reduce the risk of fraud. It will also help reduce the administrative burden for traders.

Efficient customs clearance and controls are essential to allow trade to flow smoothly while also protecting EU citizens, businesses and the environment. Once fully implemented, businesses will no longer have to submit documents …

19 May: Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on the alignment of certain countries concerning restrictive measures against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

On 21 April 2022 the Council adopted Decision (CFSP) 2022/6611 amending Council Decision (CFSP) 2016/849.

The Decision amends the lists of natural and legal persons, entities and bodies subject to restrictive measures as set out in Annex II and Annex III to Decision (CFSP) 2016/849 by adding eight individuals and four entities to Annex II and Annex III.

The Candidate Countries North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania2, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the …

19 May: Gas storage: Council and Parliament reach a provisional agreement

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

An important step to improve EU security of supply in the context of the war in Ukraine was taken today with the provisional political agreement reached between the Council and the European Parliament on the legislation on gas storage. The proposed regulation aims to ensure that storage capacities in the EU are filled before the winter season and can be shared between member states in a spirit of solidarity.

The co-legislators agreed during inter-institutional negotiations that underground gas storage on member states’ territory should be filled to at least 80% of their …

18 May: Meeting of the members of the European Council with Western Balkans leaders – Brussels, 23 June 2022

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

The six leaders of the Western Balkans will be invited to meet with the members of the European Council ahead of the June European Council.

This EU-Western Balkans leaders’ meeting will take place on Thursday 23 June 2022 in the morning in Brussels in the premises of the European Council.

The aim of the meeting is to promote enhanced EU-Western Balkans engagement.…

18 May: Joint press release by the Eurogroup President, Paschal Donohoe, and Finance Minister Sigrid Kaag following their meeting in The Hague

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

Minister of Finance Sigrid Kaag and the President of the Eurogroup, Paschal Donohoe, met in The Hague on Wednesday. They discussed the economic situation in the Netherlands, Ireland and the euro area as a whole. Their exchange focused in particular on the Banking Union and the future of European fiscal rules, as enshrined in the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP). The appointment of a new director of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) was also on the agenda. The Netherlands has nominated former State Secretary for Finance and former executive director at the …

18 May: President of the Eurogroup, Paschal Donohoe, travels to the Netherlands and attends G7 Finance Ministers meeting

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

Minister Donohoe, in his role as President of Eurogroup, will meet the Dutch Minister for Finance and First Deputy Prime Minister, Sigrid Kaag, in The Hague on Wednesday. They will discuss the economic situation in the euro area and the Netherlands, and the importance of coordinated economic and fiscal policies in responding to the impacts of the war in Ukraine. The importance of coordination has been demonstrated by the EU’s successful response to the economic impacts of the pandemic. In addition, their meeting will focus on the EU’s Banking Union, for which …

16 May: Joint declaration following the third EU-Canada Joint Ministerial Committee meeting

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

The European Union and Canada published a joint declaration following the third EU-Canada Joint Ministerial Committee meeting.

The High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice President of the Commission (HR/VP), Josep Borrell, and Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mélanie Joly, met today in Brussels for the Third Joint Ministerial Committee (JMC) under the EU–Canada Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA). Recalling the EU-Canada Summit Joint Statement of June 2021, the Joint Ministerial Committee reviewed and charted the way ahead in the EU–Canada relationship, which represents a force for stability…

16 May: International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, 17 May 2022: Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the European Union

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

On the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT), the European Union reaffirms its strong commitment to respect, protect and fulfil the full and equal enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons.

Across the world, over 2 billion people live in countries where homosexuality is illegal, while death penalty is retained as a legal punishment for consensual same sex relationships in 11 jurisdictions.

Over the last 10 years, we have seen signs of progress worldwide. Yet, discrimination and exclusion because of sexual …

16 May: Cyber-attacks: Council extends sanctions regime until 18 May 2025

(Source: Council of the EU and European Council)

The Council today decided to prolong the framework for restrictive measures against cyber-attacks threatening the EU and its member states for a further three years, until 18 May 2025.

This framework allows the EU to impose targeted restrictive measures on persons or entities involved in cyber-attacks which cause a significant impact, and constitute an external threat to the EU or its member states. Restrictive measures can also be imposed in response to cyber-attacks against third states or international organisations where such measures are considered necessary to achieve the objectives of the Common …