Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte leaves his house in Rome, on Friday. The prospect of an autumn election in Italy has receded for now. Photograph: EPA/Massimo Percossi

A successful populist is a master opportunist. But, as in chess, his success also owes something to his opponent’s missteps, his short-sightedness, hi(...)

EU commissioner Gunther Oettinger: the hint that Italians were not masters of their own fate was enough to spawn a hurricane of rage. Photograph: John Thys/Getty Images

‘The markets will teach the Italians to vote for the right thing,’ Günther Oettinger, the EU’s budget commissioner, is reported to have said on Tuesda(...)

On Wednesday budget commissioner Gunther Oettinger will set out his proposals for the next EU budget – running from the end of 2020 for seven years. Photograph: iStock

Once every seven years, the European Union plunges into the fraught process of negotiating an agreement, by unanimity, to set the union’s next multi-a(...)

Günther Oettinger said funding allocated to the State under a  plan for 2021 to 2017 could be front-loaded to the start of the period.

The payment of European Union funds to support investment in the State could be accelerated to help cope with the shock of a hard Brexit, according to(...)

Germany’s EU commissioner Günther Oettinger said EU financial reforms meant money could be redirected to ensure the transport of products from Irish ports to other EU ports. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

The European Union could fund new ways of connecting Irish and continental European ports if a “super-hard Brexit” cut off access to the UK, the EU bu(...)

The EU’s new top civil servant Martin Selmayr arrives for a meeting in Brussels, Belgium. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

The appointment last week of the EU’s new top civil servant by means that could best be described as sleight of hand has provoked uproar in the usuall(...)

Martin Selmayr: the European Commission’s new secretary general claimed recently to have 5m of books on Ireland on his shelves.  Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty

In a major reshuffle of the top ranks of the EU civil service, the European Commission has appointed Jean-Claude Juncker’s right-hand man as the organ(...)

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker  and EU commissioner Gunther Oettinger during  a joint press conference  in Brussels on Wednesday. Photograph: Getty Images

The EU faces hard budget choices in responding to Brexit and the ambition of embracing new spending priorities such as dealing with immigration, commo(...)

According to environmental pressure group, Transport & Environment (T&E), an internal VW document showed that the car firm was prepared to go much further than the Commission’s proposals, but chose not to

A leaked document, apparently from a senior Volkswagen lobbyist, seems to show that the company was prepared to accept tough targets for electric car (...)

Polish prime minister Beata Szydlo: said her government was open to discussions. Photograph: Balazs Mohai/EPA

Poland has been given a month to address the “grave concerns” of fellow EU member states over its controversial judicial reform. Although Polish pres(...)

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