TOP STORY: EU beefs up ability to compete ahead of international discussions on rules
The Commission is living up to its word, and building up its ability to be assertive in international economic competition, says MERICS analyst, François Chimits.
A look at recent activity provides plenty of evidence. Proposals from the European Commission over the past few weeks include a tool to tackle the domestic impact of foreign subsidies, a methodology for monitoring foreign economic vulnerabilities, an update of its 2020 industrial policy with specific efforts in strategic sectors and a standardization strategy on key technologies, and a regulation on Artificial Intelligence barring uses “contravening the Union values or violating fundamental rights”. Meanwhile, the Portuguese presidency of the Council has declared it wants to agree the International Procurement Instrument (IPI) by year-end, allowing the EU to deny access to public procurement for firms from countries without reciprocal access to public tenders. The EU has even activated a rarely used Trade Barriers Regulation. This comes on top of dynamic and innovative use of traditional trade defense.