- Supply chains: directive with loopholes
- Data Act: the next big data debate
- Commission warns of cybersecurity dependencies
- US imposes sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG
- Gas boycott hits Russia much harder than Germany
- Grid operators delay capacity market debate
- EU court rejects damages claim by UPS for billions
- Opinion: new EU rules as opportunity for cleaned-up supply chains
This evening, the EU heads of state and government are meeting in person. Council President Charles Michel had invited them to a special summit at short notice – extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. The heads of state and government need to talk, and they want to send a signal of unity. The shock at Vladimir Putin’s actions and, perhaps even more so, at his rhetoric, runs deep.
Whether the special summit will only be a discussion or whether further sanctions will be introduced depends, according to reports, on Putin: If he escalates the conflict further, the EU and its allies will initiate the more far-reaching punitive measures. The first sanctions package was agreed upon by EU ambassadors on Wednesday: for the first time, two members of Putin’s inner circle of leaders, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Anton Vaino, chairman of the presidential administration, are also affected.
There are many indications that an attack is imminent. Eighty percent of the troops massed around Ukraine are in attack positions, according to a US representative from the Department of Defense. In Ukraine itself, a state of emergency has been in effect throughout the country since midnight, and parliament confirmed the move proposed by President Volodymyr Selenskyj.
The Data Act, which the EU Commission officially proposed yesterday, is also geopolitical. Here, too, it’s about dependencies and disputes. And not least, the big question of who has access to our data. Here, Falk Steiner has done some digging for you.
It took a long time, but yesterday the EU Commission presented its draft for the long-awaited supply chain law. For industry, this clearly goes too far. However, the proposal also offers loopholes, as Charlotte Wirth shows.
Supply chains: a directive with loopholes
After a delay of almost two years, the Commission presented its supply chain legislation yesterday. As Europe.Table reported, Commissioners Thierry Breton and Didier Reynders were ultimately able to agree on a compromise. SMEs are not directly covered by the directive, but the rules apply to the entire supply chain. Reynders spoke of an “ambitious and forward-looking” proposal that could also be implemented by the companies concerned.
The law applies to companies with 500 or more employees and annual net sales of €150 million. This affects around 13,000 companies in the EU. They must identify, minimize, and remedy any actual and potential adverse impacts on human rights and the environment. This applies not only to the company’s performance per se, but equally to subsidiaries and any partners with whom the company has a “lasting business relationship.” In other words, relationships that are intensive or long-lasting and where the partner does not merely play a minor role in the supply chain.
This is where the first loophole is hidden, fears Anna Cavazzini, a member of the Green Party. In the future, companies could change their suppliers more often in order to evade the rules. For the Commission, on the other hand, this differentiation is necessary: After all, there are large companies that work with hundreds of suppliers. The wording ensures that companies can meet their obligations in practice, according to an EU official.