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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 97-11-07

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

07/11/97


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] La Commission autorise une fusion dans les services d'agences de voyage au Danemark
  • [02] Commission clears the acquisition of joint control of the Swedish furniture company Apax Industri
  • [03] New programming cycle launched as Tacis shifts focus to investment promotion - Tacis Annual Report 1996
  • [04] Employment and Tourism Conference in Luxembourg finds that a concerted European Union policy can create new jobs
  • [05] Mario Monti: "We need to enhance consumer confidence in mortgage credit services offered across frontiers"

  • [01] La Commission autorise une fusion dans les services d'agences de voyage au Danemark

    La Commission européenne a décidé de donner son approbation à une opération par laquelle les deux compagnies danoises Maersk Air A/S et DFDS A/S acquièreront le contrôle conjoint d'une nouvelle entreprise commune au sein de laquelle elles fusionneront leurs activités existantes d'agences de voyage, essentiellement les ventes de voyages d'affaires au Danemark. Etant donné la part qui sera détenue par l'entreprise commune sur les marchés de voyage concernés et l'existance de concurrents importants, la Commission considère que la concentration proposée ne créera ni ne renforcera une position dominante qui aurait comme conséquence de faire obstacle de façon significative à une concurrence effective dans l'Espace Economique Européen ou dans une portion majeure de cette région.

    [02] Commission clears the acquisition of joint control of the Swedish furniture company Apax Industri

    The European Commission has approved the acquisition of joint control by Nordic Capital Svenska AB and Skandia Investment AB of the Apax Industri Group which is active in manufacturing of beds and upholstered furniture. Its main markets are Sweden and Denmark. The operation is mainly a financial transaction, since none of the investors behind Nordic Capital has existing interests in the business activities of the joint venture. There is therefore no addition in market shares in any markets as a result of this operation. Accordingly, the operation does not create or strenghten a dominant position in any market.

    [03] New programming cycle launched as Tacis shifts focus to investment promotion - Tacis Annual Report 1996

    The Tacis Annual Report 1996 highlights some of the ways in which the European Union's Tacis programme continues to develop to support the economic reform process in the countries of the former Soviet union. Though know-how transfer remains to meet key needs in the NIS, Tacis will build upon the progress in recent years by expanding its activities that focus on investment promotion. The Tacis Programme plays a key role in consolidating the evolving relationship between the EU, its Member States and the New Independent States. The process of concluding Partnership and Cooperation Agreements with Tacis partner countries continued during the year. Ten are now signed, with nine Interim Agreements already in operation to bring into force the aspects of trade cooperation set out in the PCAs. In numerical terms, 1996 saw a total of ECU 536 million committed for the Tacis Programme, including ECU 11 million for the Tacis Democracy Programme. The total funding commitment over the first six years of the Programme's life, 1991-1996, now stands at ECU 2,804.37 million. During 1996, the Tacis Programme launched projects and contracted funds with a value of ECU 454.5 million, a decrease of nearly 14 per cent on 1995 figures. It paid out ECU 376 million, a small increase over 1995's figures.

    [04] Employment and Tourism Conference in Luxembourg finds that a concerted European Union policy can create new jobs

    Tourism Commissioner Christos Papoutsis expressed satisfaction with the main findings of the above conference, which concluded on 5 November 1997 and showed just how far the coordination of European Union (EU) action in the field of tourism may boost employment. Moreover, the findings indicate that it is only through alliances and partnerships with industries such as tourism, that job creation can be on track from words and intentions to real action." The focus of the conference was put on enhancing a European model of tourism development, by: Improving skills and promoting the professions within tourism, creating optimal synergy effects of resources available to tourism development at local, national and EU level. Moreover, the way to strengthen competitiveness, improve the quality of the offer and thus maintain and create jobs, goes for example through organising flexible schemes of worker mobility in conjunction with a more structured social dialogue, developing clear career perspectives in the industry and mutual recognition of qualifications at EU level. Examples and evidence were presented showing that these strategies actually work and give results.

    [05] Mario Monti: "We need to enhance consumer confidence in mortgage credit services offered across frontiers"

    "Even if the basic framework for the Single Market for mortgage credit was put in place in 1989, the market for these services is still not completely open within the European Union" stressed today Financial Services Commissioner Mario Monti addressing the European Mortgage Federation. Financing techniques of mortgage institutions vary from country to country due to cultural and historical factors. Such differences in practices and mortgage credit instruments can give rise to conflicts between important aspects of national legislation in different countries, mainly with respect to taxation, pricing rules and consumer protection. "We will challenge each and every restriction which cannot be justified by a 'general good' reason", assured Mr Monti. Following the introduction of the single currency, competition between mortgage institutions will become increasingly intense as it will become easier to compare mortgage products and foreign exchange risk will be removed. However, "there is clearly a need to enhance consumer confidence in services offered across frontiers". If consumers are to have confidence in cross-border mortgage credit, they need high quality information and redress procedures. "We have established a dialogue between the financial industry and consumer representatives on consumer information and redress procedures. But if this dialogue does not produce satisfactory voluntary agreements, the European Commission will not hesitate to propose binding legislation to protect consumers' interests" warned Mr Monti.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


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


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