Ambassador Jean De Ruyt is a senior public policy advisor in Covington’s EU public policy team. Ambassador De Ruyt, a non-lawyer, is among the most experienced diplomats in Europe. Most recently, he served as the Permanent Representative of Belgium to the European Union and was chair of the Committee of Permanent Representatives during the 2010 Belgian Presidency of the Council.
Ambassador De Ruyt works with Covington’s transatlantic government affairs team, which includes experienced lawyers as well as former senior policymakers. The team advises clients on a range of European public affairs issues, including the EU policy-making processes, functioning of the European institutions, development of EU legislation and accession of new EU members. Ambassador De Ruyt has particular expertise in the workings of the EU Council and EU institutions more broadly, transatlantic relations and United Nations development policy.
Building a “Capital Markets Union” for the 28 EU Member States was presented as one of the main priorities of Jean-Claude Juncker when he was appointed President of the European Commission last year. He saw it, together with his 315 Billion Euros investment plan, as part of his most important policy goal: to help boost … Continue Reading
According to the European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Věra Jourová, the EU and the US have finalized the EU-US Umbrella Agreement (for the press release, see here; a reportedly near-final draft of the agreement can be read here). This is a remarkable breakthrough after the first calls for such an agreement back in … Continue Reading
According to the European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Věra Jourová, the EU and the US have finalized the EU-US Umbrella Agreement (for the press release, see here). This is a remarkable breakthrough after the first calls for such an agreement back in March 2009, when the European Parliament called for an “EU … Continue Reading
After 17 hours of uninterrupted negotiations, the European Council reached, minutes before the opening of the European markets, on Monday July 13, an agreement to launch negotiations for a third bailout program for Greece. Despite the loss of trust in the country’s leaders, despite a referendum in which more than 61 % rejected the reform … Continue Reading
The latest chapter of the Greek crisis, which started with the electoral victory of the left wing Syriza party in January 2015, is reaching its close. The final deadline for reaching an agreement in principle to negotiate a new bailout has been set for Sunday, 12 July by the European Council. This last chance given … Continue Reading
1. Digital Single Market Policy Almost two years after the European Commission presented its proposal on a telecoms single market (Connected Continent), on 30 June, the three EU institutions finalized negotiations on two important issues: roaming charges and net neutrality. All other elements of the package will be discussed as part of the new Digital … Continue Reading
Background On April 14, 2015, the Committee on International Trade (INTA) of the European Parliament adopted amendments (by 22 votes to 16, and 2 abstentions) on the European Commission’s proposal for an EU conflict minerals regime published in March 2014. The INTA vote followed a compromise reached among three of the main political groups of … Continue Reading
The “Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank” (AIIB) was launched by China in 2013. It only became headlined in the world press this month when the United States publicly criticized Britain for announcing its participation. Indeed, soon after Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, stated that the UK would be among the “founding members” of AIIB, the … Continue Reading
Early 2013, when the US and the EU agreed to launch negotiations for a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, the “investment” dimension did not attract much attention. Those who do not like transatlantic deals chose first to try to mobilize European public opinion around the traditional stumbling blocks in the EU – US agenda: the … Continue Reading
On January 25, 2012, the European Commission presented a proposal for a “Regulation on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data”, the “Data Protection Regulation” (DPR). The Commissioner in charge of justice at the time, Viviane Reding, aware of the complexity of … Continue Reading
Jean Claude Juncker, the new President of the European Commission whose term started on 1 November, wanted his institution to become more “political”. This wish was fulfilled earlier than he expected. The same week, the world press published a detailed inquiry by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, on extraordinary tax breaks offered by the … Continue Reading
The new European Commission presided by Jean Claude Juncker was confirmed by the European Parliament on October 22 with 423 votes (on 751) and will start functioning as foreseen, from November 1. Juncker presented his new team on September 10, “ in common accord” with the Council of Ministers, representing the Member States, but the … Continue Reading
Jean Claude Juncker, the former Prime Minister of Luxemburg elected as President of the European Commission in July, presented his new team on September 10. It took him the whole summer to accommodate the often excessive or contradictory wishes of the EU Member States. But his biggest challenge was to find a substantive portfolio for … Continue Reading