COVID-19 Key EU Developments Policy and Regulatory Update No 61 – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

European Union: COVID-19 Key EU Developments Policy and Regulatory Update No 61

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This regular alert covers the main regulatory developments in the EU related to the COVID-19 situation. It does not claim to provide an exhaustive overview of developments and does not contain any analysis or opinion.


Competition and State aid

  • European Commission releases State of the Union 2021 report, including COVID state aid
  • European Commission consults on availability of private short-term export credit insurance capacity for exports in light of economic impact of pandemic
  • The European Commission distributes pre-financing under the recovery and resilience plans to 3 other Member States
  • European Commission approves new and amended Member States’ measures to support economy

Trade / export controls

  • European Commission launches group of wise men on challenges facing customs union
  • European Union and ASEAN countries affirm strong trade and investment ties in most recent bilateral trade

Medicines and medical devices

  • The European Commission creates the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority

Cybersecurity, confidentiality and data protection

  • Publication of the EU digital COVID certificate of a third country Equivalence decision procedure
  • EXPH publishes a draft opinion on European solidarity in public health emergencies
  • European Commission publishes State of the Union 2021 report, including EU COVID digital certificate


State aid

European Commission publishes State of the Union 2021 report, including COVID-related state aid (see here)

On 15 September 2021, the Commission published the State of the Union 2021 report on the work and achievements of the Commission over the past year and its future objectives, in particular in the fight against the pandemic, which made 2020 one of the most difficult years in European history (for more details, see cybersecurity section below)

On the issue of the path to economic recovery, the State of the Union report notably cites the rapid adoption of the temporary state aid framework allowing Member States to exercise all the flexibility of EU rules. EU state aid to provide the necessary support to the economy during the pandemic, while maintaining a level playing field.

The report says that since March 2020, the Commission has taken more than 629 decisions approving more than € 3.08 trillion in aid related to COVID-19 across the EU.

European Commission consults on the availability of private short-term export credit insurance capacity for exports in light of the economic impact of the pandemic (see here)

On September 20, 2021, the Commission opened a public consultation to assess the availability of private short-term export credit insurance capacity for exports to all countries listed as “tradable risk countries” in the 2012 Communication on Short-Term Export Credit (“STEC”). . * Export credit insurance protects sellers against the risks associated with export credit used by foreign buyers to defer payment for goods and services.

As a reminder, under the STEC, trade within the EU and certain third countries listed in its annex with a maximum risk period of up to two years involves a transferable risk and, in principle, should not be insured by the state or state-backed insurers. Since private insurers can offer such insurance, the Commission considers that the State is not obliged to offer similar insurance.

However, with the COVID-19 epidemic, the Commission decided on March 27, 2020 to temporarily remove all countries from the list of marketable risk countries under STEC. This has enabled Member States to make public short-term export credit insurance available given the growing lack of private insurance capacity for exports to all countries in the current crisis.

Based on the results of the public consultation, the Commission will assess whether the current temporary deletion of all countries from the list of ‘tradable risk’ countries remains justified and should be extended after 31 December 2021.

With a view to establishing the current sufficiency of private capacity for insurance exports to these countries, the Commission is seeking comments from Member States, credit insurers and other interested parties on:

– Private credit insurance capacity, with a view to determining the availability of credit insurance from private insurers in all Member States in light of the pandemic.

– Activity of insurers acting on behalf or with the guarantee of the State or the State itself in the provision of short-term credit insurance for exports to all countries in view of the pandemic.

– Performance of the business sector across countries (eg forecast for 2022 in view of the pandemic, in particular on insolvencies).

The consultation is open for comments until October 8, 2021.

* The STEC is also under review and its public consultation closed on September 23, 2021. The adoption of the revised STEC is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2021. (see Jones Day COVID-19 Update # 57 of July 26, 2021 ).

To read the full article, click here

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

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