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The EU gave Ukraine and Moldova candidacy for membership

Ukraine and Moldova are on a path to joining the EU, but it could take years or a decade.

EU, Ukraine and Moldova flags are seen in this illustration.
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  • Morgan Haefner
By Morgan Haefner

Deputy email editor


Good morning, Quartz readers!

Here’s what you need to know

The EU gave Ukraine and Moldova candidacy for membership. It could take years or as long as a decade for the processes to be finalized.

Germany declared a gas crisis. Europe’s largest economy feels the impact of Russia cutting supply, but it has yet to mandate rationing.

Toyota recalled its first fully electric SUVs. The fleet of 2,700 vehicles was meant to challenge Tesla’s EV market dominance. The Japanese car maker also halved its stake in Uber after the ride-sharing company sold its self-driving unit.

British Airways union workers voted to strike. The decision will likely exacerbate travel disruptions that are already hitting major European airports. Meanwhile, the UK rail workers strike rolled into its second day.

Asia’s second richest person celebrated his birthday with a philanthropic pledge. Gautam Adani’s $7.7 billion commitment to social causes is less than 10% of his net worth.

Australia’s mining industry is having its #MeToo moment. A state government investigation found mining giants failed to stamp out sexual harassment and abuse at their sites.

Aung San Suu Kyi was placed in solitary confinement. Myanmar’s democratically elected leader has been under arrest since the February 2021 military coup.

What to watch for

China’s “618” shopping festival was not really a festival at all, with muted sales signaling bleak times ahead for the world’s largest consumer market.

E-commerce giant JingDong saw its slowest sales growth ever for the 618 event, which runs from June 1 to 18. Year-over-year gains fell to 10.3%, far lower than last year’s 28%. And in an inauspicious prelude, Li Jiaqi, one of China’s biggest e-commerce influencers, suddenly disappeared after a livestream showed a symbol linked to the Tiananmen protests.

With China’s economy still recovering from zero-covid curbs and a tech crackdown that’s just showing signs of easing, it’s hard to say whether other sales extravaganzas around the globe will face the same fate. But Amazon already saw its sky-high pandemic sales fall back to Earth during last year’s Prime Day—and that was without the record-high inflation that’ll cloud this year’s July 12-13 event.

JetBlue is desperate to buy Spirit

Tale as old as time, tune as old as song—an attractive object, in this case Spirit Airlines, is being courted by two rivals. JetBlue is bigger and brawnier, but Frontier, honestly, is still a beast. This is business, not love, after all, and both airlines would get a whole lot out of a tie-up with Spirit.

A bar chart showing the market share of miles flown by passengers on US domestic flights, with American, Southwest, Delta, and United all at the top, then the possible merger between JetBlue and Spirit right below them, followed by the potential merger of Frontier and Spirit. Both would be several steps ahead of the left-out rival's current market share.

Negotiations are ongoing, but JetBlue is the more desperate suitor. The four biggest carriers—American, Southwest, Delta, and United—control two thirds of the market. After that, there’s a stark drop-off in market share among the regional and budget airlines. Buying Spirit would land JetBlue in the upper echelon (or at least, close to it), but if Frontier wins, JetBlue would have to watch as it soared right over its head. As such, it’s taking desperate measures to push the deal through.

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