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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 97-12-16

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>

MIDDAY EXPRESS

News from the Spokesman's midday briefing

Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi du Porte-Paroleb

16/12/97


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] La Commission a décidé de renvoyer partiellement l'acquisition de Redland par Lafarge aux autorités françaises et britanniques
  • [02] La Commission approuve une aide en faveur des quartiers défavorisés de Bastia en Corse
  • [03] EU structural funds to support SMEs' in England
  • [04] La Commission présente une proposition de directive pour la protection des inventions techniques (modèles d'utilité)
  • [05] Mario Monti welcomes Council adoption of Directive on the establishment of lawyers
  • [06] Libre circulation des travailleurs: la Commission saisit la Cour de Justice au sujet de la situation des professeurs de langues étrangers en Italie
  • [07] Commission to bring infringement proceedings against 14 Member States in the social field
  • [08] Commission presents report on environmental indicators and green national accounting
  • [09] Commission condemns killing of refugees in Rwanda
  • [10] Anita Gradin: "Increasingly prominent role for the Third Pillar in the European debate"

  • [01] La Commission a décidé de renvoyer partiellement l'acquisition de Redland par Lafarge aux autorités françaises et britanniques

    La Commission européenne a renvoyé le projet d'acquisition du groupe britannique Redland par le groupe français Lafarge aux autorités françaises et britanniques compétentes, pour examen de certains marchés dans le secteur des matériaux de construction. Pour ce qui concerne la partie dont elle a conservé l'instruction, la Commission a approuvé la concentration. En effet, la concentration ne crée ni ne renforce de position dominante sur aucun marché autre que ceux faisant l'objet des demandes de renvoi. Dans son examen, la Commission a notamment pris en compte les conséquences de l'opération au regard des relations verticales entre les produits situés en amont (granulats et ciment), et ceux situés en aval (béton prêt à l'emploi et tuiles en béton), ainsi que la puissance globale de la nouvelle entité.

    [02] La Commission approuve une aide en faveur des quartiers défavorisés de Bastia en Corse

    Le ville de Bastia, sur la côte nord-est de l'"Ile de Beauté", recevra une aide de 3,5 millions d'Ecus au titre des Fonds Structurels de l'Union européenne pour lutter contre l'exclusion sociale et le chômage dans les quartiers du sud et du vieux centre. La Commission européenne vient en effet d'approuver un programme Urban destiné à réhabiliter les quartiers en crise de cette ville. Les actions développées dans le programme devrait générer quelque 250 emplois, favoriser la création d'une dizaine de nouveaux commerces et activités artisanales et renforcer la vie associative.

    [03] EU structural funds to support SMEs' in England

    The international trading performance of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the weaker regions of England is to be given a much needed boost through the "SME England" Initiative of the European Structural Funds. This extra contribution of almost ECU 49 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and European Social Fund (ESF) is designed to complement the substantial European aid already available to SMEs in these regions through mainstream European programmes. The potential impact of SME England is estimated to be an increase in SME turnover accounted for by international trade of up to ECU 670 million. This volume of new business could create as many as 3,500 additional jobs over the next four years in the weaker regions of England. It is imperative that as many of the eligible SMEs as possible grasp the opportunity offered by the SME England programmes.

    [04] La Commission présente une proposition de directive pour la protection des inventions techniques (modèles d'utilité)

    La Commission européenne vient d'adopter une proposition de directive relative au rapprochement des régimes juridiques de protection des inventions techniques par le modèle d'utilité. La protection des inventions par le modèle d'utilité n'existe à l'heure actuelle qu'au niveau national. Or les régimes nationaux présentent en la matière des différences importantes qui rendent très difficile en pratique l'application transfrontalière de ces droits de protection. Cette situation n'est pas compatible avec les objectifs du marché unique. D'une part, elle conduit à créer des distorsions de concurrence entre les opérateurs. D'autre part, l'absence de transparence ne facilite pas la libre circulation des marchandises entre les Etats membres. Selon la proposition de la Commission, la protection serait limitée à 10 ans et couvrirait les nouveaux produits et procédés, à l'exclusion notamment de la matière biologique et chimique. Cette proposition fait suite à la vaste consultation engagée par la Commission depuis 1995 avec l'ensemble des milieux concernés sur la nécessité d'une initiative communautaire dans ce domaine.

    [05] Mario Monti welcomes Council adoption of Directive on the establishment of lawyers

    The adoption of the Directive concerning the establishment of lawyers by the European Union's Council of Ministers on 27 November has been welcomed by Single Market Commissioner Mario Monti. The Directive will enable lawyers to practise permanently and without restriction, under their original professional title, in another Member State on the same basis as the host country's own lawyers. Lawyers who are fully qualified in one Member State will simply have to register with the bar or other competent authority in the host Member State on the basis of their registration in the home Member State. The Directive will also make it easier to acquire the professional title of the host Member State, which will have to take account of the professional experience gained within its territory. The Directive is due to be implemented by 27 November 1999. Adoption by the Council follows adoption of the Directive by the European Parliament at its November plenary session.

    [06] Libre circulation des travailleurs: la Commission saisit la Cour de Justice au sujet de la situation des professeurs de langues étrangers en Italie

    La Commission européenne a décidé d'intenter une action devant la Cour européenne de Justice au sujet des droits des professeurs de langues étrangers dans les universités italiennes. La Commission estime que la législation en vigueur en Italie est discriminatoire à l'égard des ressortissants non italiens de l'Union européenne (UE), car elle ne prend pas suffisamment en compte leurs droits acquis au moment du recrutement. Cette pratique constitue une violation du principe de la libre circulation des travailleurs. L'affaire concerne un groupe de ressortissants non italiens de l'UE, recrutés comme professeurs de langues étrangères par les universités italiennes dans les années 1980 et au début des années 1990. Conformément au droit italien en vigueur à l'époque, ces travailleurs ont reçu des contrats temporaires qui n'étaient pas renouvelables au-delà de six ans. Mais la Cour de Justice a décidé dans deux arrêts préliminaires (en 1989 et en 1993 respectivement) qu'une telle restriction de la durée des contrats d'emploi pour des professeurs de langues était discriminatoire et contraire au Traité CE. L'Italie a modifié sa législation en 1995 en offrant des contrats à durée indéterminée aux professeurs de langues étrangers. Toutefois, la Commission considère que certains aspects de la nouvelle législation violent toujours l'Article 48 du Traité CE relatif à la libre circulation des travailleurs.

    [07] Commission to bring infringement proceedings against 14 Member States in the social field

    All European Union (EU) Member States, with the exception of Sweden, will be the subject of infringement proceedings brought by the European Commission under Article 169 of the Treaty on the EU for the late transposition of EU Social Policy Directives into national law. The Directives concerned are: Protection of Young People at Work (94/33/EC); European Works Councils (94/45/EC); Working Time (93/104/EC); Equal Treatment for Men and Women in Occupational Social Security Schemes (96/97/EC) and Biological Agents at Work (95/30/EC).

    [08] Commission presents report on environmental indicators and green national accounting

    Achieving sustainable development needs better availability of data and better interactions between the economy and the environment. This is the main conclusion of a progress report the European Commission has transmitted to the Environment Council for discussion today, based on the Commission communication from 1994 on Environmental Indicators and Green National Accounting. The report further states that the pursuit of sustainable development, beyond the usual model looking exclusively at economic growth, requires a better integration of economic, environmental and social concerns and policies. Formulation, policy making and communication of environmental issues to the public would be strongly facilitated and improved with a sound basis of integrated data on economy and environment, showing in particular the environmental consequences of economic activity and the economic back-lashes of environmental degradation. "Knowledge and proper analysis of environmental indicators and green national accounting could also be highly relevant when the Commission before June 1998 draws up its strategy on how to integrate environmental protection requirements into the European Union's policies and activities, in particular with a view to promoting sustainable development as decided by the European Council in December 1997", said Environment Commissioner Ritt Bjerregaard.

    [09] Commission condemns killing of refugees in Rwanda

    The European Commission expressed yesterday serious concern for the pattern of military attacks carried out in Rwanda against refugees and displaced camps. Condemning the killing of hundreds of Tutsi refugees in the camp of Mudende, at the end of last week, Emma Bonino, Commissioner for humanitarian aid, called such military actions against defenceless civilians, "a shameful and barbarous act of cowardice".

    [10] Anita Gradin: "Increasingly prominent role for the Third Pillar in the European debate"

    During today's annual debate on the Third Pillar in the European Parliament, Anita Gradin, responsible for Justice and Home Affairs within the European Commission, summoned up the developments in this area during 1997. "The Third Pillar is playing an increasingly prominent role in the European debate, and rightly so", she stated. Not only are matters dealt with under the Third Pillar of great concern to European Union citizens. They will also be an important part of the enlargement process. In addition, preparations for the entering into force of the Amsterdam Treaty are under way, raising cooperation in the field of Justice and Home Affairs area to a new level. In the meantime, the Commissioner pointed out, a number of initiatives have been taken under the Maastricht Treaty this year. Examples are the proposals on temporary protection, on a convention for admission rules and on recognition and enforcement of judgements in civil matters. The Commission has also taken active part in implementing the action plan against organised crime and in initiating the joint action against synthetic drugs. Trafficking in humans has been high on the agenda and so has cooperation with third countries in the fight against drugs. Two new programmes, Falcone and Odysseus, have been proposed for cooperation in the judicial area and a lot of efforts have been put into implementing the multiannual programmes Sherlock, Grotius, Oisin and Stop.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


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


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