vendredi 26 juin 2009

This week in the European Union

Today @ 17:25 CET
EUOBSERVER / WEEKLY AGENDA (29 June - 6 July) - This week, Sweden takes over the rotating EU presidency from the Czech Republic for six months. Meanwhile, the German Constitutional Court is to announce its verdict on whether the Lisbon Treaty is compatible with German law.
The Swedish EU presidency will start on Wednesday (1 July) and last until 31 December. The full European Commission is to travel to Stockholm to meet with the Swedish government for the occasion.

Sweden will take over the EU presidency from the Czech Republic on 1 July (Photo: Swedish government website)
Stockholm has already indicated it expects a "difficult" six-month term, notably due to institutional uncertainties in the EU.
The newly elected European Parliament is still taking shape, while it is not yet clear whether it will vote later in July to support Jose Manuel Barroso as European Commission president for a second time.
Sweden would prefer to see Mr Barroso re-appointed so that it has a clear and strong working partner in the commission from mid-July, rather than having to wait until some time in the autumn.
But disagreements among political parties in the parliament make it unclear whether the issue will be put to vote in mid-July. Talks with the Swedish presidency on this are to continue on 6 July.
Adding to the institutional imbroglio is the question mark still hanging over the EU's Lisbon Treaty with four member states not having completed ratification of the document yet. Ireland is to vote for a second time, probably on 2 October.
Meanwhile, the German Constitutional Court is to rule on Tuesday (30 June) on whether the treaty is in line with German law.
Besides Ireland and Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic are the two other member states where ratification of the document has yet to be finalised.

Turkey to open taxation chapter
On the last day of the Czech EU presidency, 30 June, the EU will hold an accession conference with EU candidate Turkey where a new chapter, on taxation, of Ankara's accession negotiations is expected to be opened.
Turkey has been an official EU candidate since 1999 and began accession negotiations with the bloc in October 2005. If opened, the taxation chapter will be the 11th of Turkey's 35-chapter accession package to be opened so far, with just one successfully closed.

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