June 21. 2024. 3:44

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Tesla: US beats EU in looming subsidy race

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In today’s news from the Capitals:

Amid growing concerns over a subsidy race between the US and Europe, Tesla has announced it will be backtracking on its investments in Germany due to higher subsidies in the US. In 2019, Tesla said it would build one of its major production sites in Grüne Heide in Germany, including a huge battery factory. Read more.



Greek Watergate: MEPs fume after receiving ‘provocative’ legal notice. A “warning letter” from the company allegedly behind the sale of the illegal Predator spyware has caused anger after it was sent to members of the European Parliament’s committee (PEGA) tasked with investigating its use in Europe. Read more.



Journalists’ ban adds to clouds over OSCE meeting. Journalists are now banned from attending the upcoming OSCE assembly in Vienna, in addition to growing woes which include a boycott by Ukraine and Lithuania over the attendance of Russia and unanswered calls to kick them out. Read more.



France eyes water restriction during winter drought. France is to adopt a series of water restriction measures and a major water plan, as it currently faces an unprecedented winter drought, Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion Minister Christophe Béchu announced in an interview on Wednesday. Read more.



Luxembourg sends Ukraine supplies despite empty stocks. Luxembourg, which has been sending supplies to Ukraine since the start of the war, is buying weapons from open markets to ensure it can keep delivering aid as it has already depleted its relatively limited military stockpiles. Read more.



Threats from Russia, disinformation rises in Sweden. Threats to Sweden’s security are increasing and are coming mainly from Russia amid a rise in disinformation campaigns, according to the latest report from the Swedish Security Services (Säpo) released Wednesday. Read more.



EU top diplomat calls Spanish left ‘naive’ over Ukraine war. The head of EU diplomacy and ex-minister for the ruling PSOE party (S&D), Josep Borrell, called the leftist Podemos party (EU Left) “naive” over their hopes to tackle the Ukranian conflict without weapons. For its part, Podemos insists that peace sooner or later will come and asks Borrell “how many deaths” he could accept by that time. Read more.

Spain will send the first shipment of Leopard tanks to Ukraine, with more to come. Spain will soon send the first shipment of six Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine and plans to send more German-made armoured vehicles of the same type in the near future, Defence Margarita Robles confirmed on Wednesday. Read more.



Meloni says Berlusconi weakens her image abroad ‘on purpose’. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has accused former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi of deliberately trying to damage her international profile by way of his controversial comments against Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Read more.



Putin’s claims ‘absolutely delusional’, says Portuguese FM. Russian President Vladimir Putin had made absolutely delusional claims about the war in Ukraine in his speech on Tuesday when he announced Moscow’s suspension of the nuclear arms control agreement, Portuguese Foreign Minister João Gomes Cravinho said in an interview. Read more.



Press reports: Greece to hold elections on 9 April. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is expected to announce national elections on 9 April, according to numerous reports in Greek mainstream media. Read more.



‘Bucharest Nine’ leaders assured eastern flank is key for NATO. US President Joe Biden and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg assured the leaders of the Bucharest Nine countries in Warsaw on Wednesday that reinforcing NATO’s Eastern flank is among the alliance’s priorities. Read more.



Czech opposition threatens to sue government if public media changes pass. The opposition party ANO (Renew) threatened the government with a lawsuit due to proposed changes in the selection of councillors of the two public broadcasting media – Czech Television and Czech Radio. Read more.



Hungarian FM only minister missing in support Ukraine video. Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó was the only EU foreign minister missing from a video ministers made in support of Ukraine as Russia’s war approaches its one-year mark, with one of his ministry’s state secretaries featuring instead. Read more.



Russia became Bulgaria’s largest importer in 2022. Russia was the largest importer in Bulgaria in the year of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, replacing Germany at the top spot among importers. Read more.



Croatia launches subscription to a novel €1 billion ‘popular bond’. On the so-called “popular bond,” a type of government debt instrument open to private individuals, was launched by the government Wednesday morning, meaning Croatians will have the opportunity to invest for the first time a minimum of €500, with a 3.25% minimum yield for the two-year paper maturing in 2025. Read more.



Slovenia looks into politicians exerting influence on police. A parliamentary inquiry to investigate suspected political influence by officeholders during the current and previous governments on the police and other independent state bodies was launched in parliament following a request from the ruling Freedom Movement. Read more.



Fulfilling criteria for EU membership is key, says Serbian FM. Joining the EU has been a strategic goal for the past two decades, and fulfilling the criteria for EU membership remains one of the key foreign affairs priorities, said Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dačić, adding that the status of Kosovo is the country’s number one security issue. Read more.



Albanian PM: No economic benefits from Chinese cooperation. Prime Minister Edi Rama said there had been no economic benefits from China’s 17+1 economic cooperation bloc with Eastern European nations but said Albania would remain in the group to maintain dialogue with Beijing. Read more.


  • EU: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen meets with Italian President Sergio Mattarella in Palermo;
  • Vice President Vĕra Jourová delivers an address via video message at UNESCO Global Conference on Regulating Digital Platforms for Information as a Public Good; Visits the newsroom of Russian independent journalists and Netflix Europe Middle East and Africa headquarter in Amsterdam;
  • Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis on official visit to Sofia; Holds meetings with President Rumen Radev, Prime Minister Galab Donev, Finance Minister Rositza Velkova-Zheleva, Governor of Bulgarian National Bank Dimitar Radev;
  • Vice President Dubravka Šuica delivers speech via video message for the International Fair on Innovation and Technologies at the Citizen’s Service;
  • Vice President Margaritis Schinas and Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson participate in the 2nd European Conference on Border Management;
  • Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni participates in the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meetings in Bengaluru, India;
  • Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski meets US Secretary for Agriculture Tom Vilsack in Washington;
  • ECB publishes its financial statements for 2022;
  • EU Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation holds press conference on inquiry on alleged war crimes in Ukraine;
  • Austria: OSCE’s 323-member parliamentary assembly holds regular session to discuss security;
  • Estonia: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on official visit;
  • Romania: President Klaus Iohannis hosts Moldovan President Maia Sandu;
  • Cyprus: President-elect Nikos Christodoulides meets Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar;
  • UN: Security Council meeting on UN-EU cooperation;


[Edited by Sarantis Michalopoulos, Vlad Makszimov, Daniel Eck, Zoran Radosavljevic, Alice Taylor, Sofia Stuart Leeson, Sofia Mandilara]