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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 06-10-09

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] Biggest ever EU investment kick-off at European week of regions and cities in Brussels
  • [02] Commission re-submits proposals on GMOs to Council
  • [03] Espaces sans tabac : Markos Kyprianou se rĂ©jouit du projet de dĂ©cret français
  • [04] Commission clears acquisition of Dorna by Bridgepoint
  • [05] Commission clears acquisition of Aleris by TPG
  • [06] Commission clears acquisition of Aereo by Cinven
  • [07] Fossil Fuels Forum meets for the second time to discuss security of supply
  • [08] Janez Potočnik visits Croatia and Serbia
  • [09] Joe Borg calls on international action to protect bluefin tuna
  • [10] Joe Borg visits the Genoa International Boat Show
  • [11] Autre matĂ©riel diffusĂ© Midday Express of 2006-10-09 Reference: MEX/06/1009 Date: 09/10/2006 EXME06 / 9.10

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

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

    09/10/06


  • [01] Biggest ever EU investment kick-off at European week of regions and cities in Brussels

    (! embargo 16h00 !) The President of the European Commission, JosĂ© Manuel Barroso, addressed today in Brussels the opening session of the 4th OPEN DAYS European Week of Regions and Cities. Between 9 and 12 October, the European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Ms Danuta HĂŒbner, and the President of the Committee of the Regions, Michel Delebarre, will welcome close to 4000 participants from 30 European countries. Under the headline "Investing in Europe's Regions and Cities-Public and Private Partners for Growth and Jobs" they will discuss modern regional development strategies. The event kicks off the preparation of about 300 regional development programmes for the period 2007-2013, worth €500 billion from EU, national, regional and private sources. This represents the biggest investment ever made by the EU budget.

    [02] Commission re-submits proposals on GMOs to Council

    The European Commission decided today to re-submit to the EU Council of Ministers proposals to lift the ban imposed by Austria on the marketing of two authorised genetically modified maize varieties, MON810 and T25. Austria introduced these bans under Directive 90/220/EEC in 1999 and 2000 respectively. The Council can either adopt or reject the proposals with a qualified majority. If no decision is taken after three months, the files return to the Commission which can then adopt them. If adopted Austria would have to repeal its national ban at the latest 20 days after it is formally notified of this decision. A further six bans were invoked by other Member States around the same time to ban the marketing of another GM maize variety (Bt176) and two oilseed rape varieties (Ms1Rf1 and Topas). The Scientific Committees reviewed all information submitted by these Member States as justification for their bans. In all cases, their scientific assessment was that this information provided no new elements of risk. This is why the Commission took the view that these safeguard clauses were not justified under EU law and submitted proposals to the Council of Ministers, in June 2005, to withdraw these bans. The Council disagreed with the Commission and voted against these proposals. In view of the Council position, the Commission decided to re-consult the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), a body composed of independent scientists, for a further opinion on the information provided by Austria to justify the bans. EFSA again concluded that this information did not constitute new elements of risk. The Commission is also considering the other six bans in light of the fact that the GMO products in question are no longer to be marketed and cultivated in the EU. This has effectively rendered the corresponding safeguard clauses for these products obsolete.

    [03] Espaces sans tabac : Markos Kyprianou se réjouit du projet de décret français

    Le Commissaire europĂ©en Ă la SantĂ© et Ă la Protection des Consommateurs, Markos Kyprianou, se rĂ©jouit de la dĂ©cision du gouvernement Français d'interdire de fumer dans tous les lieux publics, bars et restaurants compris, d'ici janvier 2008. "Je tiens Ă fĂ©liciter chaleureusement le Premier Ministre Dominique de Villepin et le Ministre de la SantĂ© Xavier Bertrand pour leur dĂ©cision d'interdire de fumer dans tous les lieux publics d'ici janvier 2008. Avec cette mesure, la France se replace dans le peloton de tĂȘte de la lutte europĂ©enne contre le tabagisme, et j'espĂšre que tous les Ă©tats membres de l'UE qui hĂ©sitent encore auront le courage de faire de mĂȘme. La Commission europĂ©enne apportera sa contribution au dĂ©bat sur les espaces sans tabac avec un livre vert vers la fin de l'annĂ©e." Le Livre vert en prĂ©paration envisage de lancer une consultation des Etats membres, du Parlement europĂ©en et du public sur la meilleure façon de contrer le tabagisme passif et examinera les diffĂ©rentes options envisageables.

    [04] Commission clears acquisition of Dorna by Bridgepoint

    The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control of Dorna Sports, S. L. (Dorna) of Spain by Bridgepoint Capital Group Limited (Bridgepoint) of the UK. Bridgepoint is a private equity company. Dorna organises and manages the commercial rights associated with several motorcycle race series, namely the FIM Moto GP, the Supercross World Championship, the Spanish Road Racing Championship and the British Superbike Championship. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

    [05] Commission clears acquisition of Aleris by TPG

    The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of joint control of Aleris International, Inc. (Aleris) of the US by TPG Advisors IV, Inc. (TPG IV) and TPG Advisors V, Inc. (TPG V), both of the US. TPG IV and TPG V are private equity funds with investments in a number of diverse portfolio companies. Aleris is active in the recycling and processing of aluminium into aluminium alloys, primarily in the US, but also in Europe. Aleris is also involved in the purchase of aluminium scrap in Europe. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

    [06] Commission clears acquisition of Aereo by Cinven

    The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control of Aero Invest 1 S.p.A. (Aereo) of Italy by Cinven Limited of the UK. Cinven is a private equity investment company. Aero indirectly controls Avio S.p.A (Avio), which in turn controls a group of companies operating in the aerospace and defence industry. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

    [07] Fossil Fuels Forum meets for the second time to discuss security of supply

    (! embargo 18h00 !) Security of supply of fossil fuels and other related issues identified in the European Commission's recent Green paper on a "European Strategy for Sustainable, Competitive and Secure Energy" : these were some of the subjects that were discussed at the second meeting of the Fossil Fuels Forum in Berlin today. The Forum is an important initiative of the Commission to improve communication and exchange of information on fossil fuels with Member States, stakeholders and energy experts.

    [08] Janez Potočnik visits Croatia and Serbia

    Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for Science and Research, will today start a two day visit to Croatia and Serbia. The Commission is co- organising with the two countries a workshop commemorating the 150th anniversary of the birth of Nikola Tesla, inventor, physicist and engineer, whose work formed the basis of modern electric power systems. Mr Potočnik will participate in the workshop in both venues and will encourage participation in the framework programme and call for increased emphasis on innovation. While in the region, Commissioner Potočnik will meet with the Prime Ministers and science ministers of both countries to encourage the governments there to use the possibilities for cooperation with European researchers to strengthen their own science base, thereby aiding their economic and social development.

    [09] Joe Borg calls on international action to protect bluefin tuna

    Joe Borg, European Commissioner for Fisheries and Maritime Affairs, called on 7Â October for urgent cooperation and action from all Parties concerned in taking the necessary measures to give bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic the protection it needs. This follows a warning by scientists yesterday evening that fishing pressure on bluefin tuna must be substantially cut if a collapse of both the fishery and the stock is to be avoided. At the end of its meeting from 2 to 6 October, in Madrid, the standing committee on research and statistics of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT), has recommended a reduction in fishing mortality (measure of fish killed by fishing). It estimates that at present fishing effort is more than three times the level that would provide optimum returns. Commissioner Borg said: "Scientists' findings have confirmed the fear that I have expressed on several occasions that the fishing effort was too high for the fishing possibilities. We need to maintain blue fin tuna fishing at sustainable levels and the Commission will continue to play a leading role in the international endeavours to protect bluefin tuna. Success, however, will depend on all interested Parties working together at the forthcoming ICCAT meeting in Dubrovnik, in November, to adopt a packet of measures aimed at initiating stock recovery and at effectively combating illegal fishing activities which currently threaten the future of the bluefin tuna fishery." Mr Borg added that the multi-annual management programme must cover this stock from the fishery to the market and that we must have a comprehensive approach in ICCAT management. The Commission will now study the scientific advice very carefully and will consult with the Member States and other ICCAT interested Parties.

    [10] Joe Borg visits the Genoa International Boat Show

    This evening, European Commissioner for Fisheries and Maritime Affairs, Joe Borg, will travel to Genoa, where he will be the guest of the European Union Recreational Marine Industry Group (EURMIG) at the annual Genoa International Boat Show. EURMIG was launched in February 2004 as the European branch of the International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) to represent boat builders, retailers, service providers, and charter and marina operators working in the recreational sector. Tuesday's programme will start with a meeting with the Women's International Shipping and Trading Association (WISTA), an organisation representing women occupying managerial positions in the maritime transportation business and related trades worldwide. In July WISTA, in collaboration with the Italian Shipowners' Confederation (CONFITARMA), organised a conference in Rome on the Commission's Green Paper on a future Maritime Policy for the European Union. Commissioner Borg will then tour the Boat Show before taking part in a round table discussion with representatives of the recreational marine industry?. The Commissioner will outline the progress with the Green Paper consultation, and encourage those present to contribute fully to the process. He will particularly highlight the benefits which an industry dominated by small and medium-sized enterprises may draw from strategies presented in the Green Paper, especially through the encouragement of maritime clusters, public investment in Research and Development and improved maritime governance. During the morning, Mr Borg will also meet the Italian Minister for Agriculture, Forests and Development, Paolo de Castro. Their discussions will cover a number of topics, including the measures proposed by the Commission to ensure sustainable fisheries in the Mediterranean.

    [11] Autre matériel diffusé

    Note on the Ecofin Council (10/10, Luxembourg)

    Speech by Jacques Barrot : "European forward thinking in the transport White Paper Review - Keep Europe Moving" at 13th ITS World Congress (London)

    Speech by Charlie McCreevy : "Building an EU Integrated Market in a Globalised World" at World Congress of Financial Executives (Berlin) From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/


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