An important number of new legal provisions and regulations which directly concern the citizens entered into force at the end of 2016 or will enter into force in 2017. So, here's our non-exhaustive summary, the main changes that are you need to know about.
On the occasion of the 15th Greater Region Summit held in Arlon on 20 December 2016 , the Greater Region's statistics offices published the 11th edition of 'Statistiques en bref'. And on 1 January 2017 the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg resumed the presidency of this vast cross-border area.
So, get set. Ready. Start off into the winter sales which take place from 30 December 2016 until 28 January 2017. Hunt down good deals and special offers in shops throughout the Grand Duchy, to find some post-Christmas bargains!
The reference budget drafted by Statec is presented through goods and services baskets which are particular to different aspects of life. It includes all expenditures considered by the different baskets, including long-term investments (e.g. purchase of furniture or electrical appliances). It is not to be confounded with the actually available budget.
The main theme of the exposition - 'Connecting Minds, Creating the Future' - highlights the power of collaboration and partnerships in building a better world. The design and construction of the pavilion, the time scale and the private partners were presented on 19 December 2016.
The unemployment rate of residents is currently at its lowest level since 2012, at 6.2%. That's 0.5% lower than in November 2015. Proportionately, there are slightly more unemployed men than unemployed women. The over-50s are more affected, as are people with a 'lower' level of education.
The Berenberg Bank and the Lisbon Council have just published the 6th edition of the study on the adjustment and overall health of the economies of the EU-28 countries, called Euro Plus Monitor 2016. The study analyses and ranks the countries on a scale of virtue ranging from 0 (the worst performance) to 10 (the best), basing its analysis on two composite indexes.
At the end of November each year, the Ombuds-Comité fir d'Rechter vum Kand (committee for children's rights, ORK) presents it annual report. In the 2016 edition, the main part of the report is entitled 'Being different is normal - children with specific needs'.
STATEC, the national institute for statistics and economic studies in the Grand Duchy, has just published a study entitled 'La journée d’un résident' setting out the results of a survey on use of time carried out in 2014. The aim is twofold: to give a faithful image of the everyday occupations of the Grand Duchy's residents over 10 years old, and to make it possible to study the quality of life of individuals. The study was carried out using a sample of more than 2,000 people.
The 2016 competitiveness report, published on 8 December, puts the Grand Duchy in 7th place on the list of all the countries in the European Union. In this 2016 edition, most of the indicators are green and growth is tending towards a qualitative logic. Compared with its neighbours, only the Netherlands are ahead of the Grand Duchy, ranking third in the general list.
Since 2010, the practice of telework has clearly been increasing in the country: +3.1% in 5 years. That means that 6.1% of the active population were working at least 8 hours per week from their home in 2015. Suffice to say that the European average lies around 3%.
GfK, a company that specialises in market and consumer studies, has just updated its study on purchasing power in Europe. The Purchasing Power Europe 2016 study measures purchasing power per inhabitant in 42 countries, after deducting taxes and social charges, and including all benefits received from the State.
The objectives of this report are to evaluate how different countries of the world: develop; attract; retain talents in their territory. A study that makes sense to the extent that the talents of a country are resources every economy and every business needs to grow and create sustainable added value.
At the end of 2016, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) published the new edition of its report entitled 'Measuring the information society'. The report analyses the introduction of information and communication technologies (ICT) in 175 countries and the potential for ICT-related development.
In the night of Monday 28 to Tuesday 29 November 2016, temperatures finally sank below -7°C in the Grand Duchy. That means that the weather conditions were suitable for harvesting a wine rarity in the Grand Duchy, and indeed anywhere in the world - ice wine.
In the Grand Duchy, St Nicholas' feast day is a firmly rooted tradition, and one that is just as important as Christmas. And quite rightly: children at fundamental school are the only ones in Europe to have the day off on 6 December, so that they can take full advantage of Niklosdag (St Nicholas' feast day).
There are few areas of the food and drink sector as dependent on the weather as vine-growing and wine production. Seasons that are too wet or too dry can quickly ruin a year's vintage, in addition to all the other factors involved in producing wine. And 2016 has been particularly difficult, with a spring — and an early summer — that were far too wet. Thank goodness the months of August and September came to the rescue.
Of the fifty short and full-length films selected - including four Luxembourgish productions –, three Luxembourgish productions received an award at the French-language Cinema Trophies award ceremony on Saturday, 3 December 2016. A splendid performance that deserves to be highlighted.
Since 1 December 2016, the rules on parental leave have changed. The reform introduces, among other things, a flexibilisation of the periods of leave which on one hand meets the needs of working parents and on the other, the needs of employers.
With the entry into force on Thursday 1 December 2016 of the Law of 3 November 2016 on the reform of parental leave, the social parametres have been updated by the Inspectorate General of the Social Security (Inspection générale de la sécurité sociale, IGSS) to reflect the changes introduced by this law.