POLITICS & POLICY
Eu – Violations: Punitive actions
The European Commission declared that Italy, France and Portugal have violated EU rules on public spending by being in excessive imbalances and will therefore be closely controlled. In the case of Italy, the EU pointed out that the country’s government debt together with long-term unemployment are heavy burdens for growth prospects. If no improvements are shown, these countries together with Croatia and Bulgaria, risk EU’s punitive action well-known as “the corrective arm” which might include penalties.
Source: The Local, 8/03/2016
Ireland – Brexit: Irish contribution
Speaking at the Institute of International and European Affairs in Dublin, the head of the London-based think thank Mr. Grant, declared that Irish leaders can make a difference in June’s referendum concerning a potential Brexit. Indeed, he stated that if Irish people ask the UK to stay for economic reasons, floating voters could take into consideration their requests. According to Mr Grant, leaving the EU would be bad for the EU, the UK and Ireland. He described himself as being “pro-European, but non uncritical”. Nonetheless, he is pessimistic about the outcome.
Source: Irish Times, 9/03/2016
Netherlands – Social dumping: No more
The European Commission has published measures against ‘social dumping’, the mechanism through which companies exploit low-cost EU workers and manage to divert pay laws in other EU countries. After the Dutch scandal, where it was found out that Romanians have been paid below the Dutch minimum wage, Lodewijk Asscher, Dutch social affairs minister, has stressed the fact that regulations must be changed. The number of EU workers that were forced to travel to other EU countries for work-related reason has risen by 40% in the last two years. The proposal foresees that foreign workers will have to be paid same as locals.
“In leaving, there is some uncertainty and unless every country agrees unanimously to extend that two-year deadline (following a ‘no-to-stay’ vote) it means that after two years, if things are not settled, the treaty rights of people to move and live around the EU – some two million UK citizens – will be at risk (…) The leave campaign has got to face up to the reality that any restrictions they want to impose on EU citizens to come to Britain are going to be matched by restrictions on UK citizens elsewhere in the EU”.
David Lidington, British Europe Minister
Source: Portugal Resident, 8/03/2016
The average percentage that represents the gap between women and men incomes
Source: Spectator, 9/03/2016
The average price of a room in a shared house in the centre of Luxembourg
Source: Luxemburger Wort, 9/03/2016
Photo Credits CC: Foreign and Commonwealt