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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 98-06-04

Midday Express: News from the EU Commission Spokesman's Briefings Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: EUROPA, the European Commission Server at <http://europa.eu.int>

MIDDAY EXPRESS

News from the Spokesman's midday briefing

Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi du Porte-Paroleb

04/06/98


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Commission and US government boost transatlantic anti-trust cooperation
  • [02] La Commission adopte la proposition relative à l'accord de coopération entre l'UE et le Canada dans le domaine de la concurrence
  • [03] La Commission a approuvé l'acquisition par Tech Data de Computer 2000
  • [04] Commission welcomes Japan's accession to the Revised 1958 UN-ECE in the automobile sector
  • [05] Yémen : la Commission approuve une aide alimentaire d'un montant de 1, 57 million d'Ecus
  • [06] Neil Kinnock urges better implementation of shipping safety standards

  • [01] Commission and US government boost transatlantic anti-trust cooperation

    (! embargo 8.30 pm !) The European Union (EU) and the Government of the United States (US) today signed a new Agreement which constitutes an important development in transatlantic competition relations. It represents a commitment on the part of the EU and the US to cooperate with respect to antitrust enforcement, rather than seeking to apply their antitrust laws extraterritorially. The Agreement known as the 1998 "positive comity" agreement was signed - with immediate effect - in Washington by the European Commissioner responsible for competition Karel Van Miert, the US Attorney General Janet Reno and the Federal Trade Commission Chairman Robert Pitofsky. The principle of "positive comity" provides that when a Party is adversely affected by anticompetitive behaviour occurring in the territory of the other Party, then it may request that other Party to take action. Mergers are not within the scope of the new Agreement due to EU and US merger legislation, which would not allow a deferral or suspension of action as envisaged by the Agreement.

    [02] La Commission adopte la proposition relative à l'accord de coopération entre l'UE et le Canada dans le domaine de la concurrence

    La Commission européenne a adopté une proposition de décision commune du Conseil des Ministres et de la Commission portant conclusion d'un accord entre l'Union européenne et le gouvernement du Canada relatif à l'application de leur droit de la concurrence. Le projet d'accord prévoit la notification des affaires dans lesquelles la Commission ou le Bureau canadien de la concurrence mènent une enquête et qui sont susceptibles d'affecter les intérêts importants de l'autre partie. Cette procédure permet de déceler dès le début les affaires qui présentent un intérêt commun. Lorsque des intérêts importants pour les deux parties entrent en jeu, celles-ci peuvent faire jouer les dispositions en matière de coopération ou de coordination de l'accord.

    [03] La Commission a approuvé l'acquisition par Tech Data de Computer 2000

    La Commission européenne a approuvé l'acquisition par Tech Data de Computer 2000. Tech Data est un des plus grands distributeurs en gros de matériels informatiques. Computer 2000 est aussi un grossiste de matériels informatiques actif en Europe. Ce marché est caractérisé par une croissance rapide. Les distributeurs y sont exposés à la concurrence des producteurs pratiquant également la distribution directe. La Commission a donc déclaré l'opération compatibles avec le marché commun.

    [04] Commission welcomes Japan's accession to the Revised 1958 UN-ECE in the automobile sector

    Sir Leon Brittan and Martin Bangemann, European Commissioners in charge of Common commercial policy and Industry, welcomed the Japanese Diet's (Parliament's) approval for Japan's accession to the Revised 1958 United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN-ECE) agreement in the Automobile Sector. This agreement establishes uniform technical regulations for motor vehicles, equipment and parts. It also sets up the conditions for reciprocal recognition of approvals of the basis of technical regulations. Mr Bangemann said : "Japan's accession to the Agreement represents a major step forward. With increasing globalisation in the automobile industry, international harmonisation in these fields is becoming ever more important. Japan's accession to the agreement will help to avoid parallel regulatory costs for manufacturers operating in international markets, and will benefit European and Japanese consumers alike. The more regulations that Japan takes over, the greater the benefit will be to all Contracting Parties." On 24 March 1998, the European Union acceded to the UN-ECE Agreement (see IP/98/271) and to 78 of the more than 100 regulations which have been adopted since the Agreement's creation.

    [05] Yémen : la Commission approuve une aide alimentaire d'un montant de 1, 57 million d'Ecus

    La Commission européenne a approuvé une aide alimentaire d'un montant de 1, 57 million d'Ecus en faveur de réfugiés et de ressortissants du Yémen. Cette aide, gérée par l'Office humanitaire de la Communauté européenne (ECHO), permettra à trois organisations non gouvernementales européennes d'exécuter un programme au cours des six mois à venir. Les projets soutenus par ECHO fourniront une aide aux réfugiés somaliens et érythréens ainsi qu'aux yéménites rapatriés de Somalie.

    [06] Neil Kinnock urges better implementation of shipping safety standards

    Neil Kinnock, European Commissioner responsible for Transport Policy, today said shipping organisations should concentrate on implementing existing safety standards rather than developing new regulations and urged the port authorities to develop inspection systems that target better the potential "problem ships". In a speech to the Quality Shipping Conference held in Lisbon to coincide with the Expo, whose theme is "The Oceans - A Heritage for the Future", Mr Kinnock said : "Part of the purpose of action in pursuit of quality should be to close the cost gap between responsible operators who comply with the rules and irresponsible companies with substandard operations - not by reducing the performance of the best, but by insisting by all legal means on better performance from those who are inferior". He added : "It is clear that if port State control were improved and better targeted - it would not only fulfil its purpose of identifying and penalising serious deficiencies, it would also provide a practical means of fostering higher standards". The Quality Shipping Conference is part of the campaign the Commission launched in 1997 to promote quality shipping in Europe to try and stem the loss of 1,000 lives and 230 vessels a year.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


    From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/
    © ECSC - EC - EAEC, Brussels-Luxembourg, 1995, 1996


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