• France starts taxing tech giants from 2019

    France starts taxing tech giants from 2019

    France would introduce its own tax on the large internet and technology companies from 1 January, the finance minister Le Maire said today. Ten day earlier the French's govenment warned it would start taxing Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, the big US technology companies known as GAFA, if European Union finance ministers failed to agree on a bloc-wide digital tax next year. Le Maire said he hoped the new tax would raise €500 million in 2019.

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  • Kosovo lawmakers approve army

    Kosovo lawmakers approve army

    Decision promts sharp criticism from NATO, UN; Serbia threatens military action

    Kosovo's parliament on Friday approved three draft laws on the Kosovo Security Force (KSF) expanding its competences and creating a legal base for its transformation into a regular army with 5,000 troop, plus 3,000 reservists. The three draft laws concern one directly on the Kosovo Security Force, KSF, another on a Ministry of Defence and a third on service in the KSF.

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  • Another day of protests in Hungary against 'slave' labor law

    Another day of protests in Hungary against 'slave' labor law

    A few thousand demonstrators gathered in freezing temperatures outside Hungary's state broadcaster Monday night in a fifth day of protests against the right-wing government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban. The protests were sparked by a new labor law that in essence enables the return of a six-day work week, if an employee agrees, with overtime payments potentially unpaid for up to three years. But the demands of protesters have expanded to include cleaning up state corruption, creating an independent judiciary and ensuring neutral state media.

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  • France starts taxing tech giants from 2019

    France starts taxing tech giants from 2019

    France would introduce its own tax on the large internet and technology companies from 1 January, the finance minister Le Maire said today. Ten day earlier the French's govenment warned it would start taxing Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, the big US technology companies known as GAFA, if European Union finance ministers failed to agree on a bloc-wide digital tax next year. Le Maire said he hoped the new tax would raise €500 million in 2019.

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  • EU greenlights €1.75bn plan for microelectronics

    EU greenlights €1.75bn plan for microelectronics

    France, Germany, Italy and Britain secured EU approval on Tuesday for research and innovation in microelectronics, aimed at encouraging investments in internet-connected devices. As the European Commission stated, the four Member States will provide in the coming years up to €1.75bn in funding for the project that aims to unlock an additional €6bn in private investment. More specifically, France has sought approval to grant aid provide funding of up to €355m, Germany up to €820m, Italy up to €524m and the UK up to €48m.

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  • Guess fined for blocking cross-border sales in Europe

    Guess fined for blocking cross-border sales in Europe

    European Union antitrust regulators fined US clothing brand Guess almost €40m (€39 821 000, to be exact) on Monday for using restrictions that prevented retailers from selling and advertising its products across borders, blocking this way e-commerce in the EU. The penalty comes after in June 2017 the European Commission opened a formal inquiry into the cross-border online sales practices of 1,900 companies as part of a crackdown against geo-blocking in the EU.

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  • Dutch PM warns against possible Nexit

    Dutch PM warns against possible Nexit

    Dutch PM Mark Rutte warned the Netherlands on Monday against copying Brexit 'chaos', news wires reported. "I compare the Netherlands to a fragile vase, held by its 17 million citizens," Rutte said in a full-page advert, printed in the popular daily tabloid Algemeen Dagblad. In order to preserve this 'vase', "compromises often have to be made in which difficult problems are solved in a sensible way," he added.

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  • Russia deploys fighter jets to Crimea

    Russia deploys fighter jets to Crimea

    Russia’s Ministry of Defence announced on Monday it was deploying more than 10 Sukhoi SU-27 and SU-30 fighter jets to Crimea. The move follows Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's allegation Ukraine was preparing “a provocation” near Crimea before the end of the year, news wires reported.

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  • Ukraine establishes independent Orthodox church

    Ukraine establishes independent Orthodox church

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has announced the creation of an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, marking a historic split from Russia. The newly formed community combines the current Kiev Patriarchate, the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church (UAOC) and willing bishops from the Moscow Patriarchate and is expected to receive independence from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, the Istanbul-based institution considered the so-called "first among equals" of leaders of the world's Orthodox Churches.

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  • 'Yellow vest' protests: fewer demonstrators, less violence

    'Yellow vest' protests: fewer demonstrators, less violence

    The 'gilets jaunes' (yellow vest) protesters took to the streets in France on Saturday, for the fifth week of protests that have brought Paris and other cities to a standstill, but the number of demonstrators this time was significantly smaller than in previous weekends. There were 33,500 protesters in France - 2,200 in Paris, particularly - as of Saturday afternoon. At the same time last Saturday, they were 77,000 total across the whole country and 10,000 in its capital.

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