April 17, 2020 update
• EP Policy department briefing 17 April 2020 – The ECB’s Monetary Policy Response to the COVID-19 Crisis.
• European Commission statement – The European Commission welcomes today’s votes by the European Parliament, which allow for the rapid implementation of a number of Commission proposals to tackle the coronavirus crisis. The votes today allow for an unprecedented redirection of cohesion policy funds to address the effects of the public health crisis (CRII+ Initiative); an additional €3.08 billion of EU funds for healthcare (the Emergency Support Instrument) and emergency medical capacity (rescEU); additional funding for the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control; and a number of other support measures.
• EP approves €3 billion to support EU healthcare sector – More tests, help for doctors and nurses to care for the sick: Parliament approved €3.08 billion in EU aid.
• EP calls for massive recovery package and Coronavirus Solidarity Fund – MEPs want to see a massive recovery package to support the European economy after the COVID-19 crisis, including recovery bonds guaranteed by the EU budget.
• State Aid to Hungary – The European Commission approved an additional State aid scheme aimed at supporting the economy in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak.
• Europol: Viral marketing – Counterfeits in the time of pandemic – New Europol report on who are the counterfeiters and how they are trying to profit from COVID-19.
• EIB and EUSP joint initiative – The EIB and the European Startup Prize (EUSP) join forces to help smaller, sustainable mobility companies recover from the COVID-19 economic crisis.
April 16, 2020 update
• DG TRADE Frequently Asked Question – on Export requirements for personal protective equipment.
• FAO statement – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the African Union commit to safeguarding food security amid crisis.
• ECB release – ECB Banking Supervision provides temporary relief for capital requirements for market risk.
• Centre for Data Innovation on addressing disinformation – Online Platforms’ Actions Against COVID-19 Disinformation Show Co-Regulatory Approach Works.
• EUvsDisinfo – Vaccine Hesitancy and Pro-Kremlin Opportunism
• Guidance on the implementation of relevant EU provisions in the area of asylum and return procedures and on resettlement – The guidance deals with asylum procedures and resettlement and return operations.
• European Commission President von der Leyen outlines EU budget as Marshall Plan for Europe’s recovery – Reviewing the unprecedented measures taken by the EU to protect people’s livelihoods, the President highlighted that “Europe has done more in the last four weeks than it did in the first four years of the last crisis”.
• European Commission adopts additional measures to support the agri-food sector – The measures will increase the cash flow of farmers and reduce the administrative burden both for national and regional authorities and for farmers in these particularly challenging times.
• Statement by ECB President Christine Lagarde – In the euro area, we have taken decisive action to mitigate the impact of the crisis over recent weeks. However, a global challenge of this nature also needs to be met with global solutions.
• Eurostat release – Industrial production down by 0.1% in euro area.
• EASA release – List of airports located in affected areas with high risk of transmission of the CoViD-19 infection.
April 15, 2020 update
• EU Council: Health Ministers remain cautious in de-escalation of mitigation measures – Return to normality will require significant efforts while de-escalation of measures will depend on epidemiological situation and capacity of the national health system in each Member State.
• EESC report – Introduction of specific measures for addressing the COVID-19 crisis.
• EP AGRI Committee’s statement – MEPs call for robust actions to help EU farmers deal with the COVID-19 crisis.
• EU approach for efficient contact tracing apps to support gradual lifting of confinement measures – EU Member States, supported by the Commission, adopted an EU toolbox to use mobile applications for efficient contact tracing and warning in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
• European roadmap shows path towards common lifting of containment measures – A European roadmap to phase-out the containment measures due to the coronavirus outbreak.
• EEAS to create a Taskforce to facilitate information exchange among EU’s armed forces – The will provide a centralised point for the MSs to share – through an online platform – requests, best practices and other relevant information in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
• EU Guidelines on COVID-19 in vitro diagnostic tests and their performance – The guidance aims to support Member States in effectively using testing tools in the context of their national strategies and during the different stages of the pandemic, including when phasing out confinement measures.
• OECD report – Tax and Fiscal Policy in Response to the Coronavirus Crisis : Strengthening Confidence and Resilience.
• EP Policy Department Briefing 15 April 2020 – EU/EA measures to mitigate the economic, financial and social effects of coronavirus – A state of play.
• ECB communication – To reporting agents on the collection of statistical information in the context of COVID-19.
• EP CULT Committee: Erasmus+ students during Covid-19: MEPs call for more support and clarity – The 165 000 current Erasmus+ exchange students and 5000 EU volunteers need reassurance that they will be reimbursed and retain their status.
• European Data Protection Board’s letter – Letter concerning the European Commission’s draft Guidance on apps supporting the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
• Amnesty International statement – Guidelines for protecting the rights of women and girls during the Covid-19 pandemic
• Navigating the ‘Infodemic’: How People in Six Countries Access and Rate News and Information about Coronavirus – A report by Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.
• EPRS briefing – Impact of the coronavirus crisis on climate action and the European Green Deal.
April 14, 2020 update
• United Nations Information Service on COVID-19 and Misinformation – As the world fights the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, the most challenging crisis we have faced since the Second World War, we are also seeing another epidemic, a dangerous epidemic of misinformation.
• Statement by UN Secretary-General on the WHO – Now is the time for unity and for the international community to work together in solidarity to stop this virus and its shattering consequences.
• EU Education ministers discussed the challenges of the distance learning – They exchanged on practices of distance learning possibilities and relating issues, such as organizing virtual learning and teaching, upgrading the existing IT systems, etc.
• EU Council statement – EU Council approves financial assistance for EU fishermen to help tackle the negative impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on the fishery and aquaculture sector
• New regulation to adjust the export authorisation scheme – European Commission narrows down export authorisation requirements to protective masks only and extends geographical and humanitarian exemptions.
• €2.7 billion from the EU budget to support the EU healthcare sector – The European Union’s Emergency Support Instrument will be used together with other EU tools, for example the rescEU medical stockpile, which is in parallel being increased by €300 million in addition to the initially proposed allocation of €80 million.
• Joint Statement by the EU High Representative and Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs – Canada and the EU are working intensively together to address the significant consular, public health and economic challenges of the COVID-19 crisis.
• Waste management in the context of the coronavirus crisis – This document provides guidance with a view to ensuring a high level of protection of human health and the environment, while preventing and reducing disruptions in the provision of proper waste management services.
• EUROPOL: Corona crimes – Multi-million face mask scam foiled by police across Europe.
• Council of Europe and UNHCR statement – The Council of Europe and UNHCR support Member States in bringing refugee health workers into the COVID-19 response.
• WEF: COVID-19 and nature are linked. So should be the recovery – The COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder of our dysfunctional relationship with nature. Studies show deforestation and loss of wildlife cause increases in infectious diseases.
April 13, 2020 update
• UNESCO: During this coronavirus pandemic, ‘fake news’ is putting lives at risk – Unreliable and false information is spreading around the world to such an extent, that some commentators are now referring to the new avalanche of misinformation that i’s accompanied the COVID-19 pandemic as a ‘disinfodemic’. The UN educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, is leading efforts to counter falsehoods and promote the facts about the virus.
• WHO; On collaboration on COVID-19 vaccine development – Expert group forms to collaborate on vaccine development.
• WHO Director-General’s remarks – Control measures can only be lifted if the right public health measures are in place, including significant capacity for contact tracing.
April 11, 2020 update
• Guidance on regulatory requirements in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic – The European Commission, EMA and the European medicines regulatory network have developed a question-and-answer (Q&A) document to provide guidance to stakeholders on adaptations to the regulatory framework to address challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, with a particular focus on crucial medicines for use in COVID-19 patients.
• Apple and Google partner on COVID-19 contact tracing technology – Google and Apple are announcing a joint effort to enable the use of Bluetooth technology to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus, with user privacy and security central to the design.