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In today’s news from the Capitals:
European Union member states seek to study the financial and legal consequences of making Catalan, Basque, and Galician official EU languages, making it unlikely for the bloc to speedily reach a decision, as initially hoped for by Spain. Read more.
Kosovo rejects EU compromise proposal in Belgrade-Pristina talks. Another round of talks between the leaders of Serbia and Kosovo on normalising ties failed to make a breakthrough on Thursday after Pristina rejected an EU compromise proposal it said favoured Belgrade’s line. Read more.
E-fuels for new combustion cars must be 100% climate neutral: EU Commission draft. E-fuels must be climate-neutral for new vehicles with combustion engines to be sold after 2035, according to a new draft regulation – which resolves an internal dispute within the EU Commission – seen by Euractiv. Read more.
German Greens to focus on security business in bid for centre. In a major shift in tone, the German Greens will focus their campaign on themes such as security and boosting business alongside classic green topics as they seek to portray themselves as the pragmatic party of government and win back voters. Read more.
French government sides with EU Commission on wolf protection status review. France’s five-year plan for wolves from 2024, due to be formally presented by the government next week and seen by Euractiv on Thursday, sides with the European Commission in calling for a review of the animal’s protection status and seeks to give more support to farmers. Read more.
Transit clash with Italy: Vienna not worried. An Austrian ban on lorries from Italy has sparked outrage in Rome, prompting threats that the Italian government will go to Luxembourg to sue the Austrian government at the EU top court. Read more.
What Belgium’s EU Council presidency should focus on: report. Belgium should use its upcoming Council Presidency to focus on policy coherence for key areas such as development, trade, and migration, according to the 2023 Belgian development cooperation report, which was published by CNCD-11.11.11 – an NGO – which was presented to the press on Thursday. Read more.
Dutch to donate DNA kits to Ukraine in bid to identify kidnapped children. The Netherlands will donate DNA test kits to Ukraine in order to aid the country in identifying children kidnapped by Russia, outgoing Foreign Minister Hanke Bruins Slot (CDA/EPP) announced on Thursday. Read more.
ROME | BUDAPEST
Italy looks to Hungary to solve birth rate crisis. Italy will look to Hungary – a ‘perfect example’ of how to use investment to solve the birth rate problem – to raise its currently low birth rate, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said at the Budapest Democratic Summit on Thursday, where she met with her political ally and Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orban. Read more.
Spain’s Supreme Court dismisses appeals against Catalan separatists pardons. Spain’s Supreme Court on Friday rejected appeals filed by the far-right VOX party and centre-liberal Ciudadanos (Citizens) against the pardons granted by the government to two prominent Catalan separatists directly involved in the October 2017 secessionist attempt in Catalonia. Read more.
Portuguese government favours European Central Bank’s decision to stop rate hikes Portugal’s government took a positive view on Thursday of the European Central Bank’s (ECB) outlook for inflation to be close to 3% by 2024 and maintained its critical stance on successive interest rate hikes. Read more.
German MP: Polish society shouldn’t be influenced by PiS’ anti-German attitude. Polish election campaigns are fraught with resentment, but hopefully, the anti-German rhetoric will not affect Polish society, German SPD MP Sebastian Hartmann said about the campaign led by Poland’s ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party. Read more.
Czech military chief: Arms support for Kyiv not over. The West must prepare for a lengthy war in Ukraine and deal with an increasingly hostile Russia even after it is over, Czechia’s Chief of General Staff Karel Řehka said. Read more.
Slovakia’s likely future coalition wants to build a new nuclear reactor. Almost all political parties that have a chance at being in Slovakia’s government after the snap election on 30 September wish to build a new nuclear power reactor, a new analysis reads. Read more.
NEWS FROM THE BALKANS
Romanian MEP proposes EU mechanism for Ukrainian grain imports. Romanian Social Democratic MEP Victor Negrescu proposes setting up an EU transit mechanism for Ukrainian grain imports, while Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu has asked his agriculture minister, Florin Barbu, to prepare for the European Commission’s forthcoming decision on grain from Ukraine. Read more.
Russophiles from around the world gather in Bulgaria. Russophiles from around the world will gather for the first international Russophile Forum near the Bulgarian town of Kalofer, despite Russia declaring Bulgaria an enemy state as it continues to wage war in Ukraine. Read more.
Albanian draft gambling law divides ruling party, opposition equally. Attempts by the Albanian government to reintroduce online gambling have been met with resistance from members of its own ruling Socialist Party and the opposition Democratic Party. Read more.
- EU: Eurogroup convenes to discuss Commission’s interim forecasts, ECB monetary policy; Agenda highlights include evaluation of progress on European Stability Mechanism treaty ratification, and more;
- Informal meeting of economic and financial affairs ministers takes places in Santiago de Compostela, Spain; Agenda focuses on strategic autonomy and strengthening international economic cooperation, especially with Latin America and Caribbean region;
- Commission President Ursula von der Leyen visits Merck KGaA Research Center for electronic applications, together with Minister – President of the Federal State of Hessen Boris Rhein, in Darmstadt, Germany;
- Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides holds videoconference with representatives of the Pharmaceutical Group of the EU (PGEU) to discuss legislation revision; Holds videoconference with Minister of Healthcare of Ukraine Viktor Liashko;
- Budget and Administration Commissioner Johannes Hahn delivers keynote speech at the Skopje Economic and Finance Forum 2023, in North Macedonia;
- Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius participates in high level working group on Environmental Consequences of War in Ukraine;
- Cuba: G77 plus China summit on science, technology and development, UN chief Antonio Guterres expected to attend;
[Edited by Charles Szumski, Daniel Eck, Zoran Radosavljevic, Alice Taylor, Sofia Stuart Leeson, Sofia Mandilara]