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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 09-01-16

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] EU Commissioner Michel meets South African President Motlanthe
  • [02] Le Royaume-Uni confirme son soutien aux efforts de l'Union européenne pour renforcer la sécurité juridique du commerce international
  • [03] European Border Breaker Awards: de jeunes artistes européens récompensés lors du Festival EuroSonic Noorderslag, Groningue (Pays- Bas)
  • [04] A strategic milestone for the modernisation of air traffic management
  • [05] Urban Atlas: Europe's eye in the sky provides cities with tools for smart development
  • [06] Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner to visit Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan
  • [07] Euro area external trade deficit 7.0 bn euro
  • [08] Commission clears acquisition of Volgo-Balt by Jysk
  • [09] Commissioner Joe Borg visits Tromsø
  • [10] Report on weights and dimensions of heavy commercial vehicles published
  • [11] Iraq Provincial Elections – Commission deploys electoral experts
  • [12] Louis Michel "shocked and dismayed" about the Israeli shelling of UN headquarters in Gaza
  • [13] Marché laitier: la Commission propose des mesures complémentaires d'aide au secteur
  • [14] EU prepares WTO action over US trade sanction law
  • [15] Autre matériel diffusé Midday Express of 2009-01-16 Reference: MEX/09/0116 Date: 16/01/2009 EXME09 / 16.01

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

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

    16/01/09


  • [01] EU Commissioner Michel meets South African President Motlanthe

    Commencing his visit to South Africa to attend the SA EU Ministerial Troika meeting, the European Union's Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid, Louis Michel, took the opportunity to meet with the President of the Republic of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe.

    [02] Le Royaume-Uni confirme son soutien aux efforts de l'Union européenne pour renforcer la sécurité juridique du commerce international

    Suivant une décision de la Commission du 22 décembre 2008, publiée hier, le Royaume-Uni participe au règlement concernant la loi applicable aux contrats (connu sous le nom "Rome I"). En matière de justice civile, il s'agit de la première application d'une disposition du Traité qui permet cet Etat membre de décider de sa participation un instrument communautaire seulement après la négociation et l'adoption de celui-ci. Le règlement "Rome I", adopté par le Parlement européen et le Conseil le 17 juin dernier, vise assurer que les tribunaux de tous les Etats membres appliquent la même loi en cas de litige portant sur un contrat international, facilitant ainsi la reconnaissance mutuelle des décisions de justice dans l'Union européenne.

    [03] European Border Breaker Awards: de jeunes artistes européens récompensés lors du Festival EuroSonic Noorderslag, Groningue (Pays- Bas)

    Les European Border Breaker Awards (EBBA) 2009 ont été décernés devant 1 200 spectateurs lors d’un spectacle télévisé grandiose l’occasion de la soirée d’inauguration du Festival EuroSonic Noorderslag, Groningen (Pays-Bas), en présence du commissaire européen Ján Figel' et de nombreuses autres personnalités. Cinq des dix lauréats ainsi que deux invités spéciaux – Gabriel Rios et le «Rhythm & Blues Orchestra» de Jools Holland – se sont produits en direct lors de ce spectacle, qui sera bientôt retransmis dans toute l’Europe.

    [04] A strategic milestone for the modernisation of air traffic management

    Today, the European Commission agreed on new rules for the use of data link in air traffic management (ATM) systems in Europe. Data link technology revolutionizes communications between air traffic controllers and pilots through supplementing voice communications with an air-ground data link. The set of common technical and procedural rules adopted today are essential to modernize air traffic management systems within the Single European Sky.

    [05] Urban Atlas: Europe's eye in the sky provides cities with tools for smart development

    What do Prague, Leipzig, Cork, Ljepaja, Poznan, Nice, Glasgow, Venice or Gozo have in common? Whether big or small, European cities need reliable and comparable urban planning information for safe, sustainable and prosperous development. This year, for the first time, 185 cities from all 27 EU Member States, will benefit from the "Urban Atlas", which has been produced by the European Commission and Member States with the support of European space technology. Compiled from thousands of satellite photographs, the Urban Atlas provides detailed and cost-effective digital mapping, ensuring that city planners have the most up-to-date and accurate data available on land use and land cover. The Urban Atlas will enable urban planners to better assess risks and opportunities, ranging from threat of flooding and impact of climate change, to identifying new infrastructure and public transport needs. All cities in the EU will be covered by the Urban Atlas by 2011.

    [06] Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner to visit Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan

    Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, Benita Ferrero-Waldner will be traveling to Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan from 19-22 January. During her visit the Commissioner will discuss proposals to substantially upgrade the level of political engagement with the EU's Eastern neighbours in a new Eastern Partnership (EaP) . Implementation of each country's European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) Action will also be discussed. In Georgia the Commissioner will discuss implementation of the up to €500 million pledged to re-launch the economy and resettle IDPs following last summer's conflict. In Armenia and Azerbaijan she will urge renewed efforts to find a settlement for Nagorny Karabakh.

    [07] Euro area external trade deficit 7.0 bn euro

    The first estimate for the euro area (EA15) trade balance with the rest of the world in November 2008 gave a € 7.0 billion deficit, compared with € +2.3 billion in November 2007. The October 2008 balance was € +0.5 billion, compared with € +4.2 billion in October 2007. In November 2008 compared with October 2008, seasonally adjusted exports fell by 4.7% and imports by 2.5%. The first estimate for the November 2008 extra-EU27 trade balance was a deficit of € 23.8 billion euro, compared with € -17.0 billion in November 2007. In October 2008, the balance was € -17.2 billion, compared with € -15.3 billion in October 2007. In November 2008 compared with October 2008, seasonally adjusted exports fell by 5.7% and imports by 3.2%. These data are released by Eurostat.

    [08] Commission clears acquisition of Volgo-Balt by Jysk

    The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control of Volgo-Balt Transport Holding Limited (Volgo-Balt) of Cyprus by Jysk Stålindustrie ApS (Jysk) of Denmark. Jysk is a holding company belonging to Universal Cargo Logistics Holding B.V. (UCLH) of The Netherlands. UCLH provides sea port and stevedoring services in Russia. Volgo-Balt is active in the transportation of dry cargo by sea around Europe and North Africa, and by inland waterways in Russia, where it also transports oil. It also provides tourism and passenger services in Russia. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

    [09] Commissioner Joe Borg visits Tromsø

    European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Joe Borg travels to Norway tomorrow, where he will be attending the 2009 Arctic Frontiers Conference in Tromsø. Mr Borg will arrive in Tromsø late Saturday, and on Sunday he will have time to visit the Norwegian national programme for breeding Atlantic cod to learn about recent developments in their research. On Monday morning, following the formal opening of the conference proceedings, the Commissioner will address a panel session on 'The Age of the Arctic: New opportunities and challenges'. Other speakers will be the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Jonas Gahr Støre and Russian Deputy Minister for Natural Resources Mr Stanislav Ananyev. Commissioner Borg's intervention will focus on the Arctic dimension of the European Union's Maritime Policy. The Commission published a Communication on The European Union and the Arctic Region last November, outlining its proposals for a systematic and coordinated response to the rapidly emerging challenges of the region. Arctic Frontiers is an independent network and a meeting place for pan-Arctic issues established in 2006, which brings together public institutions and private companies concerned with the future of the region.

    [10] Report on weights and dimensions of heavy commercial vehicles published

    A report prepared by a consortium led by Transport & Mobility Leuven (Belgium) and also composed by TNO (Netherlands), Laboratoire Central des Ponts et Chaussées (France) and RWTH Aachen University (Germany) on the conclusions of a study on "Effect of adapting the rules on weights and dimensions of heavy commercial vehicles as established within Directive 96/53/EC" and financed by the European Commission has been released today. The study assesses positive and negative implications of a possible revision of the rules in force on weights and dimensions of heavy commercial vehicles and will be one of the pieces of information that the Commission is assembling before taking a decision on whether or not to proceed with a revision to the current Directive. Whilst adequate time will be allotted for stakeholders to comment, it is necessary that the Commission undertakes further analysis during the course of 2009. Link to view the report: <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/transport/strategies/studies/strategies_en.htm">http://ec.europa.eu/transport/strategies/studies/strategies_en.htm

    [11] Iraq Provincial Elections – Commission deploys electoral experts

    In reply to an invitation from the Independent Electoral Commission in Iraq (IHEC) and in order to further contribute to enhancing transparency and confidence in the electoral process in the country, the European Commission has deployed two electoral experts to Baghdad in the framework of the 2009 provincial elections, scheduled to be held on 31 January 2009. The mandate of the electoral experts is to provide inputs for confidence-enhancing steps, during and after the elections. They will undertake a detailed analysis on the ongoing electoral process in Iraq and report to relevant electoral stakeholders in Iraq and to the European Union institutions. Public statements from the experts about the election are not foreseen. The deployment of the electoral experts is financed by the EIDHR (European Instrument for Human rights and Democracy). This electoral assistance is a natural follow up to the Commission’s support to the political process in Iraq since 2005, to which the Commission has been one of the major international donors with more than €80 million.

    Rediffusion

    [12] Louis Michel "shocked and dismayed" about the Israeli shelling of UN headquarters in Gaza

    European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid Louis Michel has expressed his complete "shock and dismay" at the shelling of the United Nations' compound in Gaza earlier today.

    [13] Marché laitier: la Commission propose des mesures complémentaires d'aide au secteur

    À la suite de la récente chute des prix du lait et des produits laitiers, Mme Mariann Fischer Boel, commissaire chargée de l’agriculture, s'est engagée aujourd'hui introduire de nouvelles mesures de soutien du marché. La semaine prochaine, la Commission réintroduira les restitutions l'exportation pour le beurre, le fromage ainsi que le lait entier et écrémé en poudre. Lorsque l'achat l'intervention de beurre et de lait écrémé en poudre débutera en mars, la Commission s'engage, si nécessaire, acheter davantage que les quantités prédéterminées par les appels d'offres réguliers. En novembre, elle a réintroduit le stockage privé du beurre, applicable partir du 1er janvier 2009, y compris pour la production du mois de décembre. Celui-ci est donc intervenu plus tôt que d'habitude.

    [14] EU prepares WTO action over US trade sanction law

    Today, in a clear attempt to escalate the EU-US hormones dispute the outgoing US has decided to suspend the so called "carousel" trade sanctions legislation and thereby allow the US to revise, every six months, the list of goods subject to sanction. It is more punitive than the current measure which imposes duties of 100% on certain products. The value of the sanctions amounts to 116.8M € on a fixed list of goods. It is clear that exporters will face increased uncertainty as their goods could be subject to tough duties at short notice. The trade implications of this measure will be significant.

    [15] Autre matériel diffusé

    • Memo on Preparation Agriculture/Fisheries Council of January 2009

    • Opening Speech by Commissioner Fischer Boel at the Grüne Woche, Berlin

    • Calendrier hebdomadaire du 19 au 25 janvier

    • Top News from the European Commission

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

    Notification préalable d'une opération de concentration :

    Mubadala/Rolls-Royce /JV

    Johnson & Johnson Consumer France / Vania – Laboratoires Polivé From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/


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