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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 08-10-28

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] Fostering "green" energy technologies: Leading EU research institutes launch the European Energy Research Alliance
  • [02] State aid: Commission approves German support scheme for financial institutions
  • [03] GÉANT Network Connects Pakistan to 100 million researchers in Europe and Asia
  • [04] Mergers: Commission opens consultations on review of Merger Regulation
  • [05] New EU-Australia Partnership Framework to be endorsed during the EU- Australia Troika meeting in Paris
  • [06] Danuta Hübner participe la Conférence des Présidents des Régions ultrapériphériques en Guyane
  • [07] European Commission launches new Citizens' Energy Forum to work for more choice and better deals for EU energy consumers
  • [08] Future challenges for EU health, consumer and food policies to be discussed at high level conference
  • [09] Autre matériel diffusé Midday Express of 2008-10-28 Reference: MEX/08/1028 Date: 28/10/2008 EXME08 / 28.10

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

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

    28/10/08


  • [01] Fostering "green" energy technologies: Leading EU research institutes launch the European Energy Research Alliance

    EU Commissioners for Research and Energy, Janez Potočnik and Andris Piebalgs welcomed today the initiative of leading research institutes in the European Union (EU) to found the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA). The Alliance is going to expand and optimise EU energy research capabilities through the sharing of world-class national facilities and the joint realisation of national and European programmes. This new Research Alliance will be a key actor of the EU Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET Plan) and will contribute to accelerate the development of new low carbon technologies for EU to move toward a low carbon economy.

    [02] State aid: Commission approves German support scheme for financial institutions

    The European Commission has approved, under EC Treaty state aid rules, a German rescue package intended to stabilise financial markets by providing capital and guarantees to eligible financial institutions. Following close cooperation with the German authorities and the submission of a comprehensive set of commitments to ring-fence the application of the measures, the Commission found the scheme to be in line with its Guidance Communication on state aid to overcome the current financial crisis (see IP/08/1495). The package constitutes an adequate means to remedy a serious disturbance in the German economy while avoiding undue distortions of competition and is therefore compatible with Article 87.3.b. of the EC Treaty. In particular, the package provides for non discriminatory access, is limited in time and scope and foresees adequate safeguards to minimise distortions of competition.

    [03] GÉANT Network Connects Pakistan to 100 million researchers in Europe and Asia

    Scientists and researchers in Pakistan can now connect with their colleagues across the globe, thanks to a new high speed computer network link, made possible by GÉANT, the advanced pan-European backbone network, and TEIN, the Asian equivalent to GÉANT. <a href="http://www.geant.net/">GÉANT was launched in 2000 by the European Commission and the Member States as a jointly funded initiative to upgrade Europe’s research and education networking infrastructure. The EU-funded Trans-Eurasia Information Network (TEIN) and the US National Science Foundation (NSF) today agreed to link with the Pakistan Education Research Network (<a href="http://www.pern.edu.pk/">PERN). TEIN and GÉANT together serve close to 100 million researchers in Europe and Asia enabling ground-breaking research collaboration in fields such as climate change, radio astronomy and biotechnology.

    [04] Mergers: Commission opens consultations on review of Merger Regulation

    The European Commission has launched a public consultation on the functioning of the EC Merger Regulation (Council Regulation 139/2004), which sets out the rules for merger control in the European Economic Area (EEA). The purpose of the review is to evaluate how the rules on jurisdictional thresholds and referral mechanisms have worked in practice during the fours years the Regulation has been applied. Based on the response to the consultation, the Commission's own experience in applying the Regulation and feedback from national competition authorities, the Commission will prepare a report to the EU Council of Ministers by July 2009. The Commission welcomes comments to the consultation up to 1st December 2008.

    [05] New EU-Australia Partnership Framework to be endorsed during the EU- Australia Troika meeting in Paris

    On 29 October the European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, Benita Ferrero-Waldner, will participate in the EU- Australia Foreign Ministers' Troika meeting in Paris. The Troika will meet with Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith to take stock of EU- Australia relations and to formally endorse the new EU-Australia Partnership Framework, which will form the basis of the bilateral relationship for the years to come.

    [06] Danuta Hübner participe la Conférence des Présidents des Régions ultrapériphériques en Guyane

    Danuta Hübner, Commissaire responsable de la politique régionale, participe du 27 au 29 octobre la Conférence des Présidents des Régions ultrapériphériques (RUP) en Guyane française. Sous la présidence de M. Antoine Karam, le président du Conseil régional de Guyane, cet événement intervient quelques jours après l'adoption d’une nouvelle communication de la Commission, qui marque un changement d'approche de l'Union européenne: loin de l’image de "régions problèmes", les RUP disposent de nombreux atouts qu'il convient de mettre en valeur.

    [07] European Commission launches new Citizens' Energy Forum to work for more choice and better deals for EU energy consumers

    EU Consumer Commissioner Meglena Kuneva and the Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs opened, today in London, the first ever meeting of a new Citizens' Energy Forum, a platform designed to implement and enforce consumer rights on the energy market across the EU. The aim of the forum is to tackle consumer problems and propose practical solutions so that current EU-wide consumer rights exist in practice and not only on paper and improve regulatory conditions in the retail markets. The Forum brings together national consumer organisations, industry, national regulators, and government authorities to work on key issues such as switching energy suppliers, user-friendly billing, smart metering or protecting vulnerable groups.

    [08] Future challenges for EU health, consumer and food policies to be discussed at high level conference

    European Consumer Commissioner Meglena Kuneva and Health Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou will deliver key-note speeches at a 2-day conference entitled "Delivering for Tomorrow's European Consumers", which opens in Brussels tomorrow. The conference, which will be attended by over 500 stakeholders and high-level experts, including former Portuguese Prime Minister Francisco Pinto Balsemão, former Prime Minister of Hungary Peter Medgyessy, and former European Parliament President Pat Cox, will look at the main challenges and drivers for EU consumer and health policy over the next 10 years. It is the concluding event of a 2-year reflection process which looked at the tasks and opportunities that lie ahead for the next Commission (2009-2014) in terms of consumer, health and food safety policy. The conference will take place in the Charlemagne Building in Brussels. Registration is now closed, but web-streaming will be available via the conference website. For more information, see: <a href="http://www.sanco- tomorrow.eu">http://www.sanco-tomorrow.eu <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/future_challenges/future_challenges_en.htm">http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/future_challenges/future_challenges_en.htm

    [09] Autre matériel diffusé

    • Memo on Energy for the Future of Europe: The Strategic Energy Technology (SET) Plan

    • Memo on State aid: what is possible under EU rules – an overview (see also MEMO/08/660)

    • Memo on State aid: frequently asked questions concerning EU rules (see also MEMO/08/ 659 on specific aid regimes)

    • Speech by Commissioner Potočnik 'SET Plan – towards a new carbon energy', Paris

    • Speech by Commissioner Kroes 'Preserving the competitiveness of European industry – the contribution of state aid policy', Brussels – EMBARGO 13h15

    A disposition au secrétariat de Jonathan Todd (BERL 03/315):

    Notification préalable d'une opération de concentration :

    MidAmerican / Constellation 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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