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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 98-11-13

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

13/11/98


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Encourager la création et la transmission d'entreprises : la Commission lance une nouvelle action "capital d'amorçage"
  • [02] Ralentissement de la croissance du commerce en juillet
  • [03] Information Society-Forum : Moving public administrations closer to the citizens in the digital age
  • [04] Yves-Thibault de Silguy : "EMU affects British business"
  • [05] Franz Fischler : "Farmer Associations should support Agenda 2000 proposals"

  • [01] Encourager la création et la transmission d'entreprises : la Commission lance une nouvelle action "capital d'amorçage"

    A l'initiative de Christos Papoutsis, Commissaire européen en charge de la politique des entreprises, la Commission a lancé une nouvelle action "capital d'amorçage" baptisée CREA (Capital Risque pour les Entreprises en phase d'Amorçage). Dotée d'un budget global de 8 millions d'Ecus pour la période 1998-2000, CREA vise à stimuler l'offre de financement en fonds propres ou quasi fonds propres pour la création et la transmission de petites entreprises innovantes ayant un potentiel de croissance et de création d'emplois. Elle assiste ainsi les fonds de capital d'amorçage et organisations similaires dès leurs premières années d'activité. Elle vise également à établir, à l'échelle de l'Union européenne, un réseau pour les fonds de capital d'amorçage et leurs gestionnaires et à stimuler un échange des meilleures pratiques et de la formation. Cette nouvelle action inclura également la prise de participation pour le transfert de propriété des petites entreprises et entreprises artisanales.

    [02] Ralentissement de la croissance du commerce en juillet

    (! embargo 12h !) La zone euro (Etats membres participant à l'Union économique et monétaire) a enregistré un excédent commercial de 13,1 milliards d'Ecus avec le reste du monde au mois de juillet de cette année. Ceci correspond à un excédent total de 45,9 milliards pour les sept premiers mois de 1998 - en baisse de 3,3 milliards par rapport à la même période de l'année dernière. Les échanges extra-Union européenne ont dégagé un excédent de 7,8 milliards d'Ecus en juillet. Cependant cet excédent était de seulement 8,6 milliards pour les sept premiers mois, alors qu'il avait atteint 26,0 milliards de janvier à juillet 1997. Ces chiffres sont publiés aujourd'hui par Eurostat, l'Office statistique des Communautés européennes à Luxembourg.

    [03] Information Society-Forum : Moving public administrations closer to the citizens in the digital age

    In a declaration adopted today in the Vienna Information Society-Forum, a group established in 1995 (see IP 95/729) and including representatives of users, social groups, industry and European institutions, made a number of recommendations on the communication between public administrations and the citizens in the digital age. In an "Informed Democracy", new applications of telematics should facilitate better decision-making and create more effective and coherent links between national administrations, and between them and European institutions. Easy physical communication should be accompanied by a guaranteed right of access for all people to public information. The Forum recommends that governments establish rules for accessing public information as far as possible without charge and for exploiting new services derived from that access. These rules should assure secure communications between the citizen and public administrations through adequate data protection, authentication and electronic signature systems. The forum proposes that governments and the European Union should promote best practices and public/private partnership for supplying public information. Commissioner Martin Bangemann said at the Forum's Meeting : "If used in an intelligent manner information Technology will indeed bring administrations closer to the citizens. Next month the Commission will publish a green paper containing our contibution to the discussion on how this goal can be achived for the best of our citizens and Europe's economy".

    [04] Yves-Thibault de Silguy : "EMU affects British business"

    Speaking in Wirral at the 5th EuroWirral Conference, Yves-Thibault de Silguy, Member of the European Commission responsible for economic, monetary and financial affairs, underlined the impact of EMU for British business. In particular, he said : "Whatever the UK decides, there is no doubt about the arrival of the euro on the first of January 1999. And there is no uncertainty about the timing of the introduction of euro bank notes and coins in 2002. The British government is right to stress that UK firms will need to be as ready to meet these challenges as their competitors in the euro zone." "I can understand however that the absence of a firm date makes business planning more difficult. And I am not surprised when British businessmen tell me that uncertainty over the timing is holding up their investment decisions. Against this background, I warmly welcome the recent announcement of the government's intention to publish an indicative national changeover plan in early 1999. I hope that this will provide the necessary concrete details for business to make preparations on a basis of certainty." "The network of Regional Euro Fora is providing valuable support to the local business communities throughout the country. I particularly welcome the dynamic approach of the Forum in the North West and its effective cooperation with the Euro Information Centre in Liverpool under the auspices of the Commission's representation in the UK".

    [05] Franz Fischler : "Farmer Associations should support Agenda 2000 proposals"

    Speaking to the presidium of the COPA/COGECA in Brussels today, European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Franz Fischler, stressed the responsibility of farmers associations towards farmers regarding the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) as proposed in the Agenda 2000. "The Council needs the support and the backing of these associations to adopt courageous and farsighted decisions", emphasised Mr Fischler. Addressing the issue of the future financing of the CAP, Mr Fischler pointed at the three options put forward by the Commission. "The option that Member States should cofinance the direct payments for farmers might lead to a change in Member States' evaluation of the reform proposals and thus complicate the decision making process of the Agenda 2000. Secondly, cofinancing would reduce the agricultural budget, which will question the ceiling of the agriculture-guideline. Regarding enlargment of the European Union this would be a burden for the CAP". Mere cosmetic reforms of the CAP will not solve problems nor improve competitiveness of European agricultural goods, but will lead to new stocks and surpluses, complicate agricultural policy and ruin opportunities for the future of European farmers.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


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


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