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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 06-03-29

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>


CONTENTS / CONTENU

[I] Résultats de la Commission de ce jour - Outcome of today's Commission meeting

  • [01] Commission imposes €24 million fine on Tomra group for abuse of dominant position
  • [02] Commission clears Cargill's takeover of DFI
  • [II] Other news - Autres nouvelles

  • [03] Grippe aviaire : la Commission ouvre la possibilité d'attribuer des aides communautaires au secteur des œufs et volailles
  • [04] "HELP - For a life without tobacco" : Commissioners breath tested for carbon monoxide
  • [05] La Commission autorise l'acquisition de BNL par BNP Paribas
  • [06] Statement of Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy Benita Ferrero-Waldner on the results of the Israeli elections
  • [07] Zambia : Commission provides €2.2 million in humanitarian aid
  • [08] Measuring migration in Europe - the importance of a sound statistical base
  • [09] Autre matériel diffusé Midday Express of 2006-03-29 Reference: MEX/06/0329 Date: 29/03/2006 EXME06 / 29.3

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Press and Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

    Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Presse etb

    Communication

    29/03/06


  • [I] Résultats de la Commission de ce jour - Outcome of today's Commission meeting

    [01] Commission imposes €24 million fine on Tomra group for abuse of dominant position

    The European Commission has imposed a fine of €24 million on Norwegian group Tomra for violating EC Treaty competition rules on the abuse of a dominant position (Article 82). The Commission has found that Tomra abused its dominant position on the market for the supply of machines, usually installed in retail outlets, for the collection of used drink containers in return for a deposit, in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden. The Commission concluded that Tomra's practices, consisting of a system of exclusivity agreements, quantity commitments and loyalty-inducing discounts, restricted or at least delayed the market entry of other manufacturers. This constitutes a serious abuse of its dominant position. A lack of competition on a market can give rise to customers paying higher prices for the products concerned and to customers being offered less innovative products.

    [02] Commission clears Cargill's takeover of DFI

    The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of the food ingredients business of Germany's Degussa AG by the US-based Cargill group. The Commission was initially concerned about horizontal overlaps of the parties' activities on the markets for lecithin and therefore opened a detailed inquiry (see IP/05/1602). However, the in-depth investigation has shown that the new entity would continue to face sufficient competition. Thus, the Commission has now concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area or a significant part of it.

    [II] Other news - Autres nouvelles

    [03] Grippe aviaire : la Commission ouvre la possibilité d'attribuer des aides communautaires au secteur des œufs et volailles

    La Commission européenne a présenté une proposition visant permettre une participation du budget de l'UE au coût des mesures de soutien du marché dans le secteur des œufs et volailles. Depuis le début de la récente crise de la grippe aviaire, la consommation de volailles et d'œufs a diminué de manière spectaculaire dans un certain nombre d'Etats membres entraînant une forte baisse des prix. La réglementation qui régit actuellement le marché des œufs et volailles autorise l'UE cofinancer des mesures de compensation uniquement en cas d'apparition de la grippe aviaire dans une exploitation ou de restriction du transport des animaux imposée l'éleveur par instruction vétérinaire. Il n'existe donc aucune possibilité d'octroi d'une aide communautaire afin de répondre aux problèmes du marché résultant d'une diminution des ventes due une perte de confiance des consommateurs. En raison de la gravité de la crise actuelle du marché, la Commission propose maintenant le cofinancement hauteur de 50% du coût des mesures de soutien du marché en réponse la baisse de la consommation et des prix des œufs et volailles. La proposition qui sera transmise au Parlement européen et au Conseil devrait être adoptée d'ici la fin avril. Après l'adoption de la base juridique, les Etats membres devront soumettre leurs propositions de mesures l'approbation de la Commission.

    [04] "HELP - For a life without tobacco" : Commissioners breath tested for carbon monoxide

    European Health and Consumer Protection Commissioner Markos Kyprianou and several other Commissioners today had their breath tested for carbon monoxide (CO), a toxic gas produced by tobacco smoke, to launch the next phase of the EU anti-smoking campaign "HELP - For a life without tobacco". The Commissioners had their breath tested for carbon monoxide in one of the 25 "HELP" tents decorated in the colours of each Member State set up in front of the Commission's Berlaymont headquarters. They each received a certificate with the results of the tests, along with some advice on the risks of passive smoking. Carbon monoxide is a highly toxic polluting gas linked to combustion, which is one of the most dangerous components of cigarette smoke. High levels of carbon monoxide are associated with reduced cardiac efficiency, an increased risk of blood clots and disruption of the development of the foetus in pregnant women. From March to November 2006, the HELP campaign will be on tour across Europe at more than 100 national events. "HELP" tents will be on display during these events, welcoming European citizens to get their breath tested and advising them on tobacco prevention, passive smoking and how to quit. More than 50,000 carbon monoxide tests will be carried out.

    [05] La Commission autorise l'acquisition de BNL par BNP Paribas

    La Commission européenne a autorisé, en application du règlement sur les concentrations de l'UE, le projet d'acquisition du groupe bancaire italien Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL) par BNP Paribas (BNPP). La Commission a conclu que l'opération n'aurait pas pour conséquence d'entraver de manière significative une concurrence effective dans l'Espace Economique Européen ou une partie substantielle de celui-ci.

    [06] Statement of Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy Benita Ferrero-Waldner on the results of the Israeli elections

    "These Israeli elections are important for Israel, for the Middle East and for Europe. The EU looks forward to working with the government that emerges from the new Knesset. Israel and Europe share many goals and values. I am confident that we shall continue building the partnership we have with Israel, together with the new administration. Taken together with the recent Palestinian elections, the vote in Israel will have a shaping influence on the prospects for moving towards a peaceful resolution to the Israeli Palestinian conflict. The EU as a member of the Quartet stands ready to work with the new Israeli Government to promote security and peace for Israelis and Palestinians alike. We remain profoundly saddened by the illness of Prime Minister Sharon. Our thoughts and prayers go to him and his family."

    [07] Zambia : Commission provides €2.2 million in humanitarian aid

    The European Commission has allocated €2.2 million to reduce the cumulative effects of drought and HIV/AIDS on vulnerable people in Zambia. Up to two million people face food shortages in the country’s drought- affected southern and western regions. Commission-funded humanitarian operations in Zambia specifically aim to prevent the situation of vulnerable groups, like households headed by children or grandparents, deteriorating further. This will be achieved through financing concrete measures such as the provision of lightweight water pumps that have been specially adapted to help households with planting and harvesting.

    [08] Measuring migration in Europe - the importance of a sound statistical base

    The proposal for a Regulation on Community Statistics on Migration and International Protection is currently going through the legislative process, with negotiations well advanced. For the purposes of this Regulation it is important to have a clear idea of the situation with regard to migration statistics in each Member State. This was the reason for the creation of the THESIM project "Towards Harmonised European Statistics on International Migration", supported by the Research Framework Programme, with the co- operation of Eurostat and the Justice, Freedom and Security Directorate- General of the European Commission. The THESIM project looked at the accuracy and comparability of data on migration across Europe. It found that data currently available in the field of international migration and asylum are not reliable enough for policy -making. However, THESIM suggests that solutions can be found for each member state to improve the quality and accuracy of the data collected in view of the forthcoming Regulation. The results of the project will be presented at a press conference on 30 March at 10h30 in Residence Palace, rue de la Loi 155. During the press conference some of the last figures on the size of the foreign populations, the migration flows and asylum statistics in the 25 Member States will be presented. The THESIM project has already held 25 national meetings and produced 25 country reports on issues such as international migration, asylum, residence permits and naturalisation of citizens. All meetings were organised with help of the National Statistics Offices of the member states and the National Contact Points of the European Migration Network.

    [09] Autre matériel diffusé

    Questions et réponses concernant la campagne "HELP – Pour une vie sans tabac" sur le monoxyde de carbone

    Classical swine fever : movement restrictions on pigs in North-Rhine Westphalia

    Discours de M. Joaquín Almunia : "Le Marché et la Patrie" Sciences-Po (28/03, Paris)

    Speech by Stavros Dimas : "The role of the EU in protecting our own and the world's biodiversity" at Convention on Biological Diversity (28/03, Curitiba, Brazil)

    Discours de M. Franco M. Frattini : "Strategia dell'Europa per contrastare le nuove minacce alla sicurezza" au Parlement européen (28/03) 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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