Post Tagged with: "EU"

Broadband chart, European Commission, Fixed Broadband Prices in Europe 2016, p. 40 https://ec.europa.eu/digital-single-market/en/news/fixed-broadband-prices-europe-2016

European Commission Backed Study Confirms Canada Among the Most Expensive for Broadband Internet Access

The European Commission has released a new study it commissioned on broadband pricing in Europe and several other leading countries. It confirms yet again what Canadian consumers have long suspected: Canada is among the most expensive countries in the developed economy world for broadband Internet services. The study, which provides data on the 2016 retail pricing for consumers throughout the EU, Canada, the U.S., Japan, South Korea, Norway, and Iceland, found Canadians consistently face some of the most expensive pricing regardless of speed or whether the packages include local telephone and television services. The survey was conducted over a two-week period in October 2016 and included retail pricing for five major Canadian ISPs: Bell, Shaw, Rogers, Videotron, and Telus. The data includes procedures to account for one-off fees and other discounts.

Read more ›

September 26, 2017 5 comments News
EU-Canada signing ceremony by European Union http://tvnewsroom.consilium.europa.eu/event/eu-canada/eu-canada-signing-ceremony#/gallery/0

Canada – European Union Data Sharing Agreement Sent to EU Court of Justice for Review

Earlier this year, Canada and the European Union announced that they had reached agreement on sharing airline passenger name record data. The data shared includes names, addresses, and credit card numbers of airline passengers. The agreement was signed in June (video of the signing here), but approval from the European Parliament was required. In light of growing privacy concerns, that approval has proven more difficult to obtain than previously anticipated.

Rather than simply grant approval, the European Parliament has narrowly voted to send the agreement to the European Court of Justice for review to ensure that it is compliant with European law including EU treaties and the European Charter of Rights and Freedoms (the final vote was 383 to 271 with 47 abstentions). The resolution notes that the European Data Protection Supervisor (effectively the Privacy Commissioner for the EU) issued an opinion in September 2013 that questioned the necessity and proportionality of agreements to transfer passenger information between jurisdictions. The EDPS opinion features an extensive review of the agreement and raises pointed questions about specific provisions along with numerous recommendations for reform.

The decision means that the Canada – EU data sharing agreement will be delayed by at least one to three years while the court conducts its review. The review will raise several important privacy issues including the effectiveness of exchanging passenger information in combating terrorism and the state of Canadian privacy law. The European Court of Justice has already struck down the European Data Retention Directive, suggesting that this agreement could also face tough scrutiny.

Read more ›

December 3, 2014 Comments are Disabled News
PM Harper visits Brussels to conclude Canada-EU Trade Negotiations by Stephen Harper (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/gLRSYL

Did Canada Cave on the Pharmaceutical Patent ISDS Issue in CETA?: Still No Text, But Official Comments Suggests It Did

For the second time in less than a year, Canada and the EU have announced that they reached agreement on the Canada – EU Trade Agreement.  Back in October 2013, there was an announcement of an agreement “in principle”.  The announcement did not include a release of the text and the parties said there was still further work to be done on drafting and legal analysis. Yesterday, brought another announcement of an agreement on the text. Once again, the announcement did not include a release of the text and the parties said there was still further work to be done on legal review and translation into 23 languages.

Given the agreement is 1,500 pages, the additional work is expected to take a considerable amount of time. While government ministers claimed that CETA “is ready for debate and ratification”, the reality is that there cannot be a meaningful, informed debate without the actual text. Releasing it for full study and comment is the essential next step.

Analysis without the text is difficult, however, the combination of prior leaks and media reports indicate that Canada caved on its concerns regarding the potential replication of Eli Lilly-style pharmaceutical patent lawsuits.

Read more ›

August 6, 2014 4 comments News

European Union Set To Provide 80 Billion Euro Boost to Open Access

Reports indicate that the European Union is set to provide an 80 billion euro boost to open access by making open access publishing the norm for its Horizon 2020 research program.

Read more ›

May 22, 2012 Comments are Disabled Must Reads

What the Government Won’t Tell You Today About the Canada – EU Trade Agreement

The government is launching an all-out blitz on the proposed Canada – European Union Trade Agreement today with no less than 18 events planned across the country featuring 16 cabinet ministers and parliamentary secretaries. The speeches will emphasize the benefits of the proposed agreement to many areas of the economy, yet what is most noteworthy is what won’t be discussed. Industry Minister Christian Paradis is speaking, but he won’t be discussing copyright, patents, pharmaceuticals, or cultural policy as his speech will emphasize the pork industry. Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore won’t be talking about culture either as his speech is slated to focus on fish and seafood. And Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq is missing from the slate altogether.

The reason for the omissions are essential to understanding one of the primary sticking points with CETA. While the government says the deal is 75% completed, negotiators have consistently indicated that they left the toughest issues to the end. Those include rules of origin, agriculture, immigration and visa issues, and intellectual property.

The CETA intellectual property chapter leaked in 2010, revealing that the EU is seeking a complete overhaul of Canada’s IP laws. Initial demands on copyright included:

Read more ›

April 27, 2012 10 comments News