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European Law Monitor NewsNext Lisbon strategy cycle to speed up national reforms

 

"The new three-year cycle of the Lisbon strategy will focus on national reforms
to make Europe a key player in the global economy".
      
EU ministers responsible for economic and financial affairs mapped out the new three-year cycle of the Lisbon strategy for growth and jobs at their meeting in Brussels on 13 November. The Council underlined the need to focus on implementation and delivery of economic reforms in Europe to take full advantage of globalisation.

The Council welcomed the Commission communication "The European Interest: Succeeding in the age of globalisation", which stresses that the Lisbon strategy for growth and jobs is a key instrument for the long-term success and modernisation of the European economy.

Ministers therefore underlined the importance of the implementation reports of the National Reform Programmes (NRP) presented by Member States in the autumn of 2007 as well as the revision of the programmes in 2008.

More information:
Council press release (pdf)
Commission communication : Succeeding in the age of globalisation (pdf)
Council webcast of press conference

  

Convergence on VAT package and car taxation


EU finance ministers paved the way for a compromise on a comprehensive VAT package to be finalised at their next meeting in December. The new legislation will in particular shift the place of VAT taxation from where a service originates to where it is consumed. A "one-stop" scheme will be available for cross-border businesses to fulfill their VAT obligations in one single country.

EU ministers also looked at the possible extension of derogations to VAT rates in five member states which were allowed to keep lower VAT rates in specific sectors after joining the EU in 2004. Finally, the issue of car taxation was discussed with a view to using fiscal incentives to reduce CO2 emissions.

More information:
Council press release (pdf) (pp. 15-17)
Commission website: How VAT works
Council webcast of press conference

  

Reviewing the additional financing of Galileo


EU finance ministers also reviewed the financial options for Galileo, the EU´s global satellite navigation system which has experienced delays in its deployment and exploitation phases.

Member states remain committed to the project but have yet to decide where to find the €2.4 billion of additional costs. Options include a strictly limited revision of the EU´s 2007-13 financial framework or a more targeted reshuffling of one of its headings. The issue will be at the heart of the 2008 budget negotiations with the European Parliament.

More information:
Council press release (pdf) (p. 18)
Commission website: Galileo news
Council webcast of press conference