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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 99-01-29

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

29/01/99


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Mario Monti obtains from banks data on conversion fees and commitment to transparency
  • [02] Forum européen sur l'aménagement du territoire (Bruxelles, 2 et 3 février 1999)
  • [03] Entry into force of Europe Agreement with Slovenia

  • [01] Mario Monti obtains from banks data on conversion fees and commitment to transparency

    European Commissioner for Financial services, Mario Monti, yesterday met the President of the European Banking Federation, Maurizio Sella, and today the President of the Savings Banking Federation, René Barberye. In response to Mr Monti's letter of 12 January, they provided a first set of data on conversion and cross-border payment fees. Mr Monti welcomed the prompt response and took note of the Presidents' assessment that data reveal a declining trend of fees. "People are entitled to know precisely how much they are being charged and why", said Mr Monti. "Moreover, banks must move to improve the efficiency of their payment systems so as to cut transfer costs over time", added Mr Monti. "I am pleased with the undertakings I have received from the European Federations and I will closely monitor developments in the marketplace. In particular they have committed themselves to continue to make public detailed information comparing the level of charges before and after the introduction of the euro, together with a clear explanation of the new basis on which charges are levied for exchanging banknotes and for money transfers. In this way, people will be able to compare and choose the best offer, and so promote competition. I have also encouraged banks to improve the efficiency of their payment systems so as to cut costs over time. They have reassured me on their intention. For my part, I intend to examine in a Communication what remains to be done to improve the functioning of retail payments systems in the Single Market."

    [02] Forum européen sur l'aménagement du territoire (Bruxelles, 2 et 3 février 1999)

    La Commission européenne organise les 2 et 3 février 1999 à Bruxelles un Forum européen sur l'aménagement du territoire, visant à promouvoir l'idée d'un développement équilibré et durable du territoire européen en examinant le passage entre principes et mise en pratique. Ce Forum regroupera la Commissaire, Monika Wulf-Mathies, des ministres de l'Union européenne et de pays avoisinants, ainsi que de nombreux acteurs du développement territorial en Europe, tant au niveau européen que national ou régional. Il constitue le point d'orgue et la synthèse d'une série de huit séminaires transnationaux sur l'aménagement du territoire organisés par la Commission tout au long de 1998, et il s'inscrit comme une étape importante de la série des débats, au niveau européen, national ou régional, qui ont été lancés par la présentation du premier projet de Schéma de Développement de l'Espace Communautaire (SDEC) en 1997 à Noordwijk (Pays-Bas). Et surtout, il se place dans la perspective de la présentation du SDEC aux ministres européens de l'aménagement du territoire à Potsdam en mai 1999.

    [03] Entry into force of Europe Agreement with Slovenia

    On 1 February 1999, the Europe Agreement with Slovenia will enter into force. The Agreement was signed on 10 June 1996, and has now completed the ratification procedure. The Europe Agreement is one of the key elements of the pre-accession strategy and will significantly broaden and deepen the already close cooperation that exists between the European Union (EU) and Slovenia. The Agreement will provide a key institutional framework to support Slovenia's integration into the EU. Its entry into force will be followed by the first Association Council under the Agreement, to be held in Brussels on 23 February 1999. The first Association Committee is planned to be held in Ljubljana on 25 March 1999.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


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


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