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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 97-09-29

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

29/09/97


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Jacques Santer: "La coopération au développement permet de réduire les risques et d'exploiter les potentialités de la mondialisation"
  • [02] João de Deus Pinheiro: "Future EU/ACP relations will be more political and more differentiated"
  • [03] Commission clears acquisition of Polish packaging company by Frantschach and MMP
  • [04] Commission intends to clear Whitbread's standard pub leases
  • [05] A balanced and sustainable development of tourism at the service of employment
  • [06] Padraig Flynn says that racism in the workplace is on the increase
  • [07] Sir Leon Brittan calls for a global partnership between the EU and Japan

  • [01] Jacques Santer: "La coopération au développement permet de réduire les risques et d'exploiter les potentialités de la mondialisation"

    Le Président de la Commission européenne, Jacques Santer, a souligné aujourd'hui à Bruxelles que la coopération au développement devient, dans le nouveau contexte mondial, "un moyen de gérer dans une relation de partenariat la mondialisation, d'en réduire les risques et d'en exploiter les potentialités". S'adressant aux participants à une conférence sur le Livre vert sur l'avenir des relations entre l'Union européenne et les pays ACP, M. Santer a ajouté que "le système de régulation internationale ne progresse que lentement, alors que la globalisation, aidée par la révolution technologique, est extrêmement rapide. Les ajustements nécessaires sont souvent politiquement difficiles et socialement douloureux. (...) Un véritable partenariat fondé sur des engagements mutuels doit permettre d'aborder ces questions en toute franchise et dans la transparence."

    [02] João de Deus Pinheiro: "Future EU/ACP relations will be more political and more differentiated"

    The European Development Commissioner, João de Deus Pinheiro, today said that consultations on the future of European Union and ACP countries' relations have shown the need to give it "a more marked political dimension by conducting a more effective and more detailed dialogue on political matters". He also stressed the need to introduce the principle of differentiation and to support actively the regional integration efforts in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific. Mr Pinheiro was speaking in Brussels at the opening of a two-day conference on the future of EU/ACP relations. He announced that, on the basis of the consultations held so far, the European Commission would present to the EU Member States by November 1997 political guidelines for the future relations with the ACP countries. Negotiations between EU and ACP should start before the end of 1998.

    [03] Commission clears acquisition of Polish packaging company by Frantschach and MMP

    The European Commission has authorised the acquisition of the Polish based company Zaklady Celulozy i Papieru w Swiecie "Celuloza" S.A. ("Swiecie") by Frantschach AG ("Frantschach") and Mondi Minorco Paper SA ("MMP"). Frantschach, which is partly owned by Anglo American Corporation of South Africa Ltd. ("Anglo American") is active in the production of cellulose, paper and carton, as well as the wholesaling of paper and wood. MMP is the holding company for the participations of Anlgo American in the cellulose and paper industry outside of South Africa. Swiecie produces cellulose, sack paper, packaging materials, carton. The operation does not create or strengthen a dominant position.

    [04] Commission intends to clear Whitbread's standard pub leases

    The European Commission intends to grant a retroactive - back to 1990 - exemption to the standard pub leases used by Whitbread PLC (Whitbread), the UK's third biggest brewer. Through the publication of its initial views (see OJ C 294 of 27 September), the Commission however invites all interested third parties within one months time to submit their observations before deciding on the issue. This provisional conclusion follows an examination by the Commission services of the way in which Whitbread has operated the contractual agreements with its lessees. The Commission has found that, on average, the lessees which are tied to Whitbread pay more for their beer purchases than individual operators who buy the same beer from the same brewer (so-called free traders). However, the Whitbread lessees benefit, inter alia, from lower rents, professional assistance, capital investment and bulk purchasing rebates that are not readily available to these free traders and that compensate more or less for the price differential. In those circumstances, the Commission considers that the tied lessees can compete on a level-playing field with their "free trading" competitors, and that an exemption consequently seems acceptable.

    [05] A balanced and sustainable development of tourism at the service of employment

    In a message on "World Tourism Day 1997", Commissioner Christos Papoutsis, responsible for Tourism, says that "the further expansion of tourism and its contribution to growth and employment will be boosted by the social, cultural and industrial changes which are affecting our society". He further says that "tourism merits broader recognition on the political agenda", which could be achieved through "improved cooperation between the private and the public sectors at the various administrative levels of competence". Mr Papoutsis underlines that "we should be conscious of the social recognition which tourism can get if we can exploit its full potential for job creation". He finally stresses that "the challenges of quality and competitiveness which tourism has to face must be addressed urgently" and that the European Commission "will continue working in order to promote the competitiveness of Europe's tourism industry which is a necessary precondition to create new and sustainable jobs across the European Union."

    [06] Padraig Flynn says that racism in the workplace is on the increase

    Speaking today at a conference in Lyon, Employment and Social Affairs Commissioner Padraig Flynn, said that ethnic minority communities still face disproportionately high levels of unemployment. "Large numbers of people continue to face discrimination even when they get to the interview stage... When people from the ethnic minority communities do gain employment, they are often markedly under-represented in positions of responsibility." The Commissioner's message to business is that diversity makes good business sense. "By recruiting and promoting employees from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds, companies draw on the broad and diverse skills base demanded by today's fast-changing, highly-competitive global markets. Respecting and nurturing the people within your company is the way to get the skilled, flexible and creative workforce that you need." Mr Flynn said that we should not forget that "equal access to employment and to promotion within a job is a right to everyone, not a privilege to be given to the token few."

    [07] Sir Leon Brittan calls for a global partnership between the EU and Japan

    The European Union (EU) and Japan should build on their present good relations to establish a more dynamic, global partnership, said Sir Leon Brittan, Vice President of the European Commission, in a speech in Tokyo today. Speaking at the National Press Club, at the start of the EU-Japan Cooperation Week, Sir Leon argued that the EU and Japan share wide ranging common interests and should work more closely together internationally in both political and economic affairs.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


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


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