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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 08-01-04

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>


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Commission announces €30 million for joint research programming in metrology and the Baltic ecosystem
  • [02] Slovenia: Official Launch of the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue
  • [03] Safety of humanitarian aid workers following recent events in Burundi and Somalia
  • [04] Flash estimate – December 2007
  • [05] Rediffusion
  • [06] Telecoms: Commission supports new efforts of the Belgian telecoms regulator to enhance competition in the broadband market and asks for speedy and effective action
  • [07] Commission sees need for a stronger more consumer-friendly Single Market for Online Music, Films and Games in Europe
  • [08] Cypriots and Maltese quickly starting to use the euro
  • [09] From Afghanistan to Uganda: Commission earmarks nearly €370 million in aid to humanitarian hotspots around the globe for 2008
  • [10] Commission on Kenyan elections Midday Express of 2008-01-04 Reference: MEX/08/0104 Date: 04/01/2008 EXME08 / 04.01

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

    Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Communicationb

    04/01/08


  • [01] Commission announces €30 million for joint research programming in metrology and the Baltic ecosystem

    The Commission announced that it will contribute 30 € million to two new and important joint programming activities involving a substantial number of Member States (MS). These activities will ultimately result in a considerable number of MS organising joint calls in the areas of metrology and the Baltic sea. These actions, known as ERANet-Plus and developed under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), will help to structure the European Research Area and enhance the scale of Europe's common research efforts. iMERA-Plus, bringing together 32 national metrology institutions, will receive €21m from FP7, with Member States contributing a further €42 to carry out research into precise and reliable measurements. The European Commission will also allocate €9 million to BONUS+, a research programme to develop an ecosystem-based approach to management of the Baltic Sea, which will involve 8 Member States that border the Baltic, and Russia. The countries concerned will contribute a further €18.7 million.

    [02] Slovenia: Official Launch of the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue

    The European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008 will be launched in Ljubljana on 8 January by the Commission President José Manuel Barroso and the Slovene Prime Minister Janez Janša. This will be preceded on 7 January by a conference, also in Ljubljana, entitled "Intercultural Dialogue as the Fundamental Value of the EU" in the presence of Commissioners Ján Figel' and Jánez Potočnik. The events in Ljubljana kick off a multitude of activities across Europe, and throughout the year, which will emphasise interaction of cultures, deepening of relations between nationalities and religions, and promoting through dialogue a strengthening of understanding, tolerance, solidarity and a sense of common destiny among EU citizens from all walks of life.

    [03] Safety of humanitarian aid workers following recent events in Burundi and Somalia

    Louis Michel, the European Commissioner For Development and Humanitarian Aid, has reiterated his concern for the safety of humanitarian aid workers, following recent events in Burundi and Somalia.

    [04] Flash estimate – December 2007

    Euro area annual inflation is expected to be 3.1% in December 2007 according to a flash estimate issued today by Eurostat. It was 3.1% in November.

    [05] Rediffusion

    [06] Telecoms: Commission supports new efforts of the Belgian telecoms regulator to enhance competition in the broadband market and asks for speedy and effective action

    The Commission has today recognised the recent efforts made by the Belgian telecoms regulator, IBPT (Institut Belge des services postaux et des télécommunications) to enhance broadband competition in the Belgian market by making the regulation more effective. In a letter sent today, the Commission asks IBPT to reinforce the provisions allowing new entrants to use the local network of the historical incumbent operator to provide broadband services to end users (local loop unbundling) with a view to promoting sustainable infrastructure-based competition. The Commission also asks the Belgian telecoms regulator to closely examine the level of competition for broadband services in the end-user market.

    [07] Commission sees need for a stronger more consumer-friendly Single Market for Online Music, Films and Games in Europe

    The European Commission has decided today to give a new boost to Europe's online content sector. EU citizens should be able to enjoy easier and faster access to a rich variety of music, TV programmes, films or games via the Internet, mobile phones or other devices. The Commission therefore encourages the content industry, telecoms companies and Internet service providers to work closely together to make available more content online, while at the same time ensuring a robust protection of intellectual property rights. The Commission also wants to facilitate copyright licences for online content covering the territory of several or all of the EU Member States. According to Commission studies, a truly Single Market without borders for Creative Online Content could strengthen considerably the competitiveness of Europe's music, film and games industry and allow retail revenues of the sector to quadruple by 2010 if clear and consumer- friendly measures are taken by industry and public authorities (see IP/07/95).

    [08] Cypriots and Maltese quickly starting to use the euro

    Cyprus and Malta adopted the euro on 1 January. All available evidence suggests that the changeover operation is proceeding very smoothly and without any noteworthy incidents. On 2 January, a significant number of cash transactions were already carried out in euro in both countries, and around 40% of citizens had only or mostly euro cash in their wallets and purses.

    [09] From Afghanistan to Uganda: Commission earmarks nearly €370 million in aid to humanitarian hotspots around the globe for 2008

    The European Commission has earmarked €369.6 million in humanitarian aid to meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable victims of humanitarian crises around the globe. A series of humanitarian aid decisions has been launched to provide food assistance (€160 million) and humanitarian aid to people in need in Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan (€25 million), Colombia (€12 million), as well as the following African countries: Burundi and Tanzania (€20 million), Chad (€17 million), Democratic Republic of Congo (€30 million), Liberia (€15.6 million), Sudan (€70 million) and Uganda (€12 million). €8 million is being provided for a dedicated humanitarian air transport service (ECHO Flight). EU Member States have already approved the Commission proposals for these aid plans and they are now being submitted to the European Parliament for scrutiny.

    [10] Commission on Kenyan elections

    The European Commission notes with satisfaction the high turn-out at the elections, which shows that Kenyians are eager to consolidate and participate in the democratic process. Kenyans have clearly wanted to use their vote to have their say in the country's future. The Commission is pleased how they have organized the preparations for the elections and have participated in the elections. From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/

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