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EU trade agreements: delivering new opportunities in time of global economic uncertainties

Vlad Poptamas

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Photo source: inc.com
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Despite the difficult global economic climate, European companies have continued to make good use of the opportunities created by the European Union’s trade network – the largest in the world. In 2018 this network covered 31% of Europe’s trade exchanges, a figure that is set to rise significantly (to almost 40%) as more trade agreements enter into force, according to the European Commission’s annual report on the implementation of trade agreements released today. Overall, trade accounts for 35% of the EU’s gross domestic product (GDP).

In 2018 EU exports to and imports from trade agreement partners showed positive developments, with a continued growth of 2% and 4.6% respectively, with a strong performance of EU agri-food exports. The EU’s growing network of trade agreements is creating economic opportunities for workers across Europe, with over 36 million jobs being supported by exports to outside of the EU. The EU recorded a surplus of €84.6 billion in trade in goods with its trade agreement partners, compared to its overall trade deficit with the rest of the world of about €24.6 billion.

Commenting on the report, Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström said “Trade agreements create opportunities for European businesses to grow and hire more people. Today’s report shows that overall trade is up, and more of our global trade is covered by preferential deals than ever before. Our food and drink exports in particular are flourishing thanks to lower tariffs and legal protection abroad for artisanal EU products like Champagne and Feta. The report also provides evidence of how our focus on trade and sustainable development is bearing fruit. Furthermore, we have taken a number of unprecedented steps to enforce the commitments made by our trade partners in the last year, including notably on workers’ rights. There is still work to be done, of course. But by opening up this data to the wider public we hope to launch a wider discussion about how to make sure trade agreements benefit as many citizens as possible.”

Looking at specific sectors across agreements, the 2018 report shows:

  • EU agri-food exports to trade partners continued to grow with an overall increase of 2.2% compared to the previous year. Exports of agri-food products to South Korea also gained 4.8 %. Also noteworthy are agri-food exports to Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, which grew by 11% compared to 2017;
  • EU industrial goods exports also increased overall by 2%, with stronger growth among others for chemicals (2.5 %), mineral products (6 %) and base metals (4.4 %).

Looking for instance at one of the recent trade agreements, the report shows that in the first full calendar year (2018) of the EU-Canada trade agreement implementation:

  • bilateral trade in goods grew by 10.3% and the EU’s trade surplus with Canada increased by 60%;
  • EU goods exports to Canada rose by 15% (or €36 billion in extra export revenue), especially for sectors where import duties were previously high such as pharmaceuticals (up 29%), machinery (up 16%) or organic chemicals (up 77 %);
  • EU Agri-food exports to Canada (accounting for 9% of total EU exports) rose by 7%.

Moreover, following intensive discussions in the joint committees created under the different trade agreements, several partner countries lifted barriers to trade, thus allowing more EU companies to benefit fully from the opportunities these agreements offer. Danish and Dutch farmers, for example, will be able to export beef to South Korea, while Poland and Spain will be able to export poultry meat to South Africa.

The report investigates also the impact of the provisions included in the dedicated ‘Trade and Sustainable Development’ (TSD) chapters, which are part of all modern EU trade agreements. These chapters aim at engaging with trade partners to implement international rules on labour and the environment, as incorporated in multilateral environmental agreements or International Labour Organisation (ILO) conventions. Recent achievements ahead of the entry into force of the respective agreements include the ratification by Mexico and Vietnam of ILO Convention 98 on the rights to organise and collective bargaining. Additionally, the agreements with Vietnam, Japan, Singapore, Mercosur and Mexico include reinforced commitments to effectively implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

In 2018 and 2019, the EU also took several enforcement actions under its trade agreements, including in relation to labour standards. Among other examples, the EU requested a panel following South Korea’s failure to ratify ILO Conventions on workers’ rights, notably freedom of association and collective bargaining.

However, the report also highlights the need to increase efforts – together with Member States and stakeholders – to raise awareness of the opportunities trade agreements offer, as well as stepping up enforcement action so the agreements deliver the intended results.

The report will now be subject to discussion with the European Parliament and Member States’ representatives in the Council.

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B2B Press Releases

6500 make Malta AIBC Summit a huge success

Alexandru Marginean

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Europe’s premier AI & blockchain event praised by attendees as best show

 

Malta AI & Blockchain Summit came to a close on Saturday after three days of jam-packed conferences, workshops, and a busy expo floor.   More than 6500 attendees made AIBC Summit a massive success for the emerging tech sectors, and with Grammy Award-winning artist Akon wowing the crowds at the closing night, it was a star-studded close to the week.

The summit attracted over 150 quality exhibitors, resulting in high energy on the expo floor which lasted long into the day, while 700 investors brought opportunity to delegates looking to forge solid business relationships.

Eman Pulis commented, “The show has been a tremendous success for all involved, and a truly global affair as well.   We were encouraged to see so many delegates from Asian countries present, including Thailand, Korea, the Philippines, Japan and China. This absolutely validates our decision to co-locate our show to Manila in June 2020, and we’re looking forward to building new partnerships between east and west next year.”

Across two days of unmissable conference content, a number of well known faces took to the stage, including Bobby Lee, Craig Wright, Mati Greenspan, David Orban and Akon, who spoke about bringing Africa into the blockchain world with his Akoin token.  The AIBC workshops also drew significant interest, with key figures speaking out on a plethora of industry hot topics.

Another notable triumph for the summit was the Start-Up Pitch event which saw Photocert beat off more than 100 other entrants to take home the prize, gaining valuable time with investors and an array of valuable extras to help them take their business to the next level.

Eman Pulis concluded, “It’s been such an amazing week, with so many luminaries from the emerging tech sectors taking to our conference stage and bringing the community together for the future.  Last year we were talking about theory, and in 2019 we’ve been talking about implementation.  I’m sure 2020 will be full of success stories from all our valued exhibitors and partners, across the world.”

The AIBC team are now looking ahead to next year’s expansion to the eastern hemisphere, with the next summit already locked in for June 8th and 9th in Manila, the Philippines, running alongside SiGMA Group’s other events for the iGaming and medical cannabis sectors.

About AIBC:

Malta AI & Blockchain Summit is a bi-annual expo covering topics relating to the global sectors for blockchain, AI, Big Data, IoT, and Quantum technologies.  The event includes conferences hosted by globally renowned speakers, workshops for industry learning and discussion, an exhibit space accommodating more than 400 brands and much more.

The first Malta Blockchain Summit took place in November 2018 at the Intercontinental Hotel in St Julians, Malta, attracting 8,500 attendees from over 80 countries worldwide, with 300 sponsors and exhibitors, 200 speakers, and No. 1 AI VIP (Sophia the world’s first robot citizen). With strong support from the Maltese government, the event has quickly established itself as one of the world’s leading destinations for the growing sectors of AI, Blockchain and DLT, IoT, and other vertical industries. At the 2018 event the Maltese government introduced 3 new bills to support the growth of the sector and promoting Malta as the “Blockchain Island”.

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Asia

ITES, A Gathering Place of World-class Brands to Lead the Smart Factory Revolution

Alexandru Marginean

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

The 21st Shenzhen International Machinery Manufacturing Industry Exhibition is scheduled to take place in Shenzhen World Exhibition & Convention Center (SW) on March 30th to April 2nd, 2020. Benefit from the venue superior location, supply chain capabilities, and strong economic strength, ITES has attracted numerous exhibitors and visitors from home and abroad.

 

The show will cover 240,000 square meters of exhibition area. It is expected to feature more than 1,200 local and international exhibitors, showcasing 8 theme sectors. Among the 8 themes, industrial automation and machine tool areas will be the key highlight overall exhibition, with four dedicated exhibition pavilions. As China smart manufacturing has been facing unprecedented development opportunities, there is an uncommon chance for all industrial manufacturers and suppliers. Because most enterprises should improve their manufacturing techniques and explore China’s market urgently due to this situation, China market will be an important development target for multitudinous industrial leaders.

ITES 2020 has the total usage of 12 exhibition halls that showcases the entire industrial machinery chain:

  • Metal Cutting Machine Tool (Hall 5/7) — featuring Mazak, Makino, Haas, Hurco, Doosan, Hwacheon, Fanuc, Beijing Jingdiao, Brother, Taikan, and more.
  • Metal Forming Machine Tool (Hall 6/8) — featuring Trumpf, Amada, Bystronic, Yawei, JFY, Accurpress, Tailift, LFK, BLM, Han’s Laser, Penta Laser, Lead Laser, and more.
  • Additive Manufacturing Technology (Hall 4) — featuring 3D Systems, Stratasys, Envision Tec, EOS, OPM, Creaform, UnionTech, HP, RATC, PATEO, Shining 3D, HBD, Sunshine, TMP 3D, Scantech, and more.
  • Tools & Industrial Consumable (Hall 1/2) — featuring Sandvik, Iscar, Horn, Kennametal, Big DaiShowa Seiki, Speed Leopard, Pokolm, CB-Ceratizit, YG, and more.
  • Industrial Measurement & Digital Manufacturing (Hall 3) — featuring Hexagon, Zeiss, Mitutoyo, Leader, Faro, Serein, NANO, Wekma, T-King, AEH,Lead, Dantsin, and more.
  • Industrial Supply (Hall 4) — featuring TaiRiSheng, Billion Technology, Jiaye Precision Metal, FIYTA, SEIKO, EVA, Kong Ngai, BaoSteel, ASSAB, Scana, SSAB, and more.
  • Robotics & Smart Factory (Hall 9/10/11) — featuring Fanuc, Yaskawa, Kawasaki, Nachi, Universal Robot, Mitsubishi, Siemens, B&R Automation, Beckhoff, Keyence, SKF, NSK, THK, IKO, and more.
  • Industrial Service (Hall 12)

 

About ITES

ITES 2020 is a professional exhibition of large-scale in the field of manufacturing in South China. Since its establishment in 2000, it has developed into an international professional exhibition authorized by the International Exhibition Industry Association (UFI) through the professional and internationalized operation. Also, it is an industrial brand exhibition certified by BPA International Media Certification Body.

With 20 years of development in Shenzhen, ITES exhibition has been developed into a professional exhibition in technology and manufacturing industry in China. It has become an effective platform for professionals from 3C products, automobile, precision parts manufacturing, mold, medical equipment, new energy, and office equipment industries.

From March 30th to April 2nd, 2020, ITES Exhibition will be held at Shenzhen World Exhibition & Convention Center (SW), with a scale of 240,000 square meters. It will focus on digital, intelligent, personalized and innovative technologies and solutions for different industries.

 

 

Contact: Talina Zeng

Email: info@simmtime.com

Tel: +86-755-23940012

Web: www.simmtime.com

Visitor Registration

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B2B Press Releases

Stan Group Launched Buy-a-Brick to Reward Staff Members Through Revenue Sharing

Alexandru Marginean

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Pexels & AlexM
Reading Time: 2 minutes

An innovative staff incentive programme leveraging blockchain and real estate tokenization technology

Stan Group (Holdings) Limited (“Stan Group”) announced the launch of Buy-a-Brick, an innovative employee incentive and recognition programme that applies blockchain technology and real estate tokenization to enable Stan Group employees to generate wealth alongside Stan Group.

Committed to driving corporate innovation, Stan Group has pioneered the application of real estate tokenization to employee incentive and recognition. Buy-a-Brick is designed to motivate staff engagement in innovation, cultivate intrapreneurship and recognize staff for the efforts. Unlike other conventional revenue-sharing models, Buy-a-Brick provides employees with the opportunity to share the future capital gain of a building, without making any monetary contribution. A “Brick” is a digital token stored on the blockchain, which represents a smart contract for a selected building. By participating in Buy-a-Brick, if the property selected is sold and profit is made on the sale of that property, the brick holders will be entitled to share the profit made.

“We are thrilled to launch Buy-a-Brick for internal staff as it redefines staff appreciation. I believe every one of our staff members plays an integral role in the Group’s success and should be able to reap the reward and share the value created,” said Stan Tang, Chairman of Stan Group. “The launch of Buy-a-Brick has cemented the leading position of Stan Group in corporate innovation and entrepreneurship. Buy-a-Brick started with a dream, through matching the idea with resources within our business ecosystem, it is now a reality. I hope to ignite innovation and initiate change within and outside the Group, and shape a better future for entrepreneurs and all.”

Buy-a-Brick is the newest addition to the existing Stan Group credit system, where employees earn points with innovative business pitches, business referral, attending design thinking and other talent development workshops, etc. There are two types of points, namely Credit Point and Shared Value Point. With Credit Point, employees can redeem vouchers, hotel stay, and even an extra day off. On the other hand, the new Shared Value Points can be used to redeem a “Brick” at Buy-a-Brick.

About Stan Group

Stan Group (Holdings) Limited (“Stan Group” or “the Group”) is a leading conglomerate rooted in property with a wide array of diverse businesses. Committed to sustainable business development and social investment, the Group manages a HK$60 billion real estate portfolio in strategic partnership with the Tang Shing-bor family and operates more than 40 respected brands across five business pillars: property, hospitality, communication services, financial services and The STILE, innovative businesses with social purposes. Dedicated to innovation, collaboration, human focus and entrepreneurship, the Group’s core values empower it to achieve the vision of driving the vibrancy of society, and the mission of creating shared value (CSV) for shareholders, business partners, customers, employees and the community at large.

 

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