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And says it's not liable for illegal aid

EU okays Alitalia successor

Milan - EU competition regulators on Friday gave the green light to a slimmed down successor to Alitalia and said the new state-owned airline was not liable for repaying 900 million euros ($1.1 billion) in illegal state aid received by its predecessor

Over summer

EU countries clear plan to ease cross-border tourism

Brussels - European Union countries agreed on Friday to an easing of travel restrictions over summer that will allow fully vaccinated tourists to avoid tests or quarantines and broaden the list of EU regions from which it is safe to travel. Ambassadors from the 27 EU member states approved a modified European Commission proposal that people who have been fully vaccinated for 14 days should be able to travel freely from one EU country to another

Column

Carbon pricing - markets, taxes or regulation?

London - The cost of EU emissions allowances has doubled over the last two years, which is likely to renew debate over the relative merits of market-based and tax-based approaches to pricing carbon dioxide emissions

But concerns over vaccine hesitancy

EU eyes 'Vaxproof' document to revive travel

Brussels - The European Commission is working on a vaccine certificate, dubbed 'Vaxproof', that could help restore cross-border travel, EU officials said, but the plan is dividing EU nations. The issue has been discussed for months but has led to no compromise because of fears over vaccine hesitancy and privacy. The EU executive Commission is working on a system for mutual recognition in all 27 EU countries of a certificate proving the holder has been vaccinated

Erdogan tells EU's Michel progress needed on Turkey-EU ties

Greek-Turkish tensions rise in crisis over eastern Mediterranean

Istanbul - A Turkish ship set sail on Monday to carry out seismic surveys in the eastern Mediterranean, prompting Greece to issue a furious new demand for European Union sanctions on Ankara in a row over offshore exploration rights. France expressed its concern after the Turkish vessel, the "Oruc Reis", began its voyage

To boost economy

UK mulls Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge

London - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson launched a review aimed at improving transport links across the UK, including a possible bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland, as part of a plan to boost the pandemic-hit economy and strengthen ties between its member nations. The study will consider air links within the country, road and rail links in Scotland, the Welsh rail network

Recovery Fund

Spain faces unusual problem: how to spend billions in crisis funds

Madrid - After securing a generous portion of European Union recovery funds for the coronavirus crisis, Spain faces an unlikely problem - how to make use of all the money, government sources told: "This is not a crisis of dough (money), it is a crisis of ideas," one of the sources said, referring to concrete investment projects to help the economy out of a record recession. In a country that has not managed to approve a full-year budget since 2016

Interpol report

Crime networks profit from China plastic trash import ban

Shanghai - Criminal networks are smuggling plastic trash from the West to illegal recycling plants in Asia, profiting from a 2018 ban on waste imports in China where the bulk of used plastic was previously processed, Interpol said on Friday. The decline in the number of legal export channels for millions of tonnes of waste has "opened the door to illegal business opportunities," the police organisation said in a report

Clashes in the country

Bolivia protests rattle political truce as military mobilized

La Paz - Bolivia's government said on Monday it had ordered police and military to protect key installations and the transport of medical oxygen after clashes broke out over protests and roadblocks by opposition supporters demanding a quick election. Tensions are brewing as the South American nation heads for a key presidential election on Oct. 18, which has been delayed due to COVID-19

Obstacles to the intra-European alliance

EU expected to veto Fincantieri's Chantiers bid due to lack of concessions

Milano - Italian shipyard Fincantieri has not offered any concessions to head off EU antitrust concerns about its planned bid for France’s Chantiers de l’Atlantique, giving regulators no choice but to block the deal, people familiar with the matter said last week. A veto by European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager would deal a serious blow to Italy