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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 07-03-30

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] Commission provides Russia with veterinary information on Poland and residues
  • [02] L'UE signe le nouveau traité des Nations unies sur les droits des personnes handicapées
  • [03] New map shows solar electricity potential of European regions
  • [04] Recherche énergétique européenne : inauguration en Espagne de la première centrale solaire concentration destinée l'exploitation commerciale en Europe
  • [05] Commission clears acquisition of STV by Shell and Coller
  • [06] Cohesion policy 2007-2013 : Greece is the second Member State to have its plan and priorities agreed with the Commission
  • [07] Taxation du tabac : la Commission lance une consultation publique
  • [08] Direct Taxation : Commission requests Ireland to end discriminatory taxation of income sourced in the United Kingdom and asks the United Kingdom for information about similar rules applied in its territory
  • [09] Dans son rapport annuel sur l'économie numérique, la Commission indique que les TIC drainent 50% de la croissance de l'UE
  • [10] March 2007 : Business Climate Indicator for the euro area remains stable
  • [11] Flash estimate - March 2007 : Euro area inflation estimated at 1.9%
  • [12] March 2007 : Economic sentiment strengthens further in both the EU and the euro area
  • [13] Février 2007 : le chômage en baisse 7,3% dans la zone euro ; baisse 7,4% dans l'UE27
  • [14] Günter Verheugen visits China to launch partnership agreement
  • [15] Benita Ferrero-Waldner se rend au Liechtenstein et en Suisse l'occasion de l'inauguration de la délégation de l'Union européenne Berne
  • [16] Autre matériel diffusé Midday Express of 2007-03-30 Reference: MEX/07/0330 Date: 30/03/2007 EXME07 / 30.3

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

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

    30/03/07


  • [01] Commission provides Russia with veterinary information on Poland and residues

    The European Commission sent last night comprehensive replies to the reports by the Russian authorities on their recent veterinary and phyto- sanitary inspections in Poland. The Commission is convinced that all the questions raised by Russia have been addressed in a way which should enable the lifting of the Russian ban on Polish meat and plant exports, and hopes that the ongoing consultations between the EU and Russia will result in a swift resolution of the issue and an end to the Russian embargo. Regarding the Russian request for information on veterinary residue monitoring in the EU, the European Commission has now received from all 27 EU Member States their 2007 residue monitoring plans and 2006 monitoring results in draft form, and will forward these to the Russian authorities. Member States and third countries exporting to the EU are required to provide these plans to the Commission every year by 31 March, and subsequently the draft plans will be finalised and approved by the Commission. Commissioner Kyprianou is expected to meet with Russian Agriculture Minister Alexei Gordeyev in mid- April in order to discuss how EU-Russian Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary (SPS) relations can proceed in a way which is satisfactory for all involved.

    [02] L'UE signe le nouveau traité des Nations unies sur les droits des personnes handicapées

    L'Union européenne apposera aujourd'hui sa signature au bas d'un nouveau traité des Nations unies sur les droits des personnes handicapées, lors de la première journée ouverte la signature New York. C'est la première fois que l'UE signera une convention essentielle des Nations unies en matière de droits de l'homme. Cette convention, qui concerne les droits des personnes handicapées, vise garantir que ces personnes jouissent de droits de l'homme et de libertés fondamentales sur la base de l'égalité avec les autres. Elle garantira une protection 50 millions de citoyens de l'UE et 650 millions de personnes handicapées dans le monde.

    [03] New map shows solar electricity potential of European regions

    A new map published by the European Commission shows the photovoltaic solar energy potential of different parts of Europe. Photovoltaic Solar Cells convert sunlight directly into electricity. In addition the interactive on- line Photovoltaic Geographical Information System (PVGIS), developed by the Commission's in-house scientific service, DG Joint Research Centre, allows users to estimate solar energy performance at any given location in Europe. The information in the map shows that an identical solar system will generate twice as much energy in sunny areas of Europe, such as Malta and Southern Spain, than in areas such as Scotland or Northern Scandinavia. These tools are invaluable as the EU seeks to increase the share of renewable energies in its consumption to 20% in 2020.

    [04] Recherche énergétique européenne : inauguration en Espagne de la première centrale solaire concentration destinée l'exploitation commerciale en Europe

    La ville de Séville, dans le sud de l’Espagne, accueillera la première centrale solaire concentration destinée l'exploitation commerciale en Europe. La centrale, inaugurée aujourd'hui, a bénéficié d’un cofinancement de l'Union européenne. D'une capacité de 11 MW, elle doit produire 23 GWh d'électricité par an – de quoi répondre aux besoins d'une population de 10.000 habitants. Cette production d'électricité solaire évitera le rejet dans l'atmosphère de près de 16 000 tonnes de CO² par an.

    [05] Commission clears acquisition of STV by Shell and Coller

    The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of joint control of Shell Technology Ventures Fund 1 B.V, currently wholly owned by Shell Technology Ventures (STV) of the Netherlands by Coller Capital (Coller) of Luxemburg and STV, controlled by Royal Dutch Shell plc (Shell) of the Netherlands. STV is an oil and technology venture. Shell is a global group of oil, gas and petrochemical companies. Coller is a private equity investments company. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

    [06] Cohesion policy 2007-2013 : Greece is the second Member State to have its plan and priorities agreed with the Commission

    European Regional policy Commissioner Danuta Hübner, visiting Greece, and Vladimír `pidla, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and equal Opportunities, congratulated the Greek authorities for being the second Member State to agree officially with the European Commission the national plan and priorities for Cohesion policy 2007-2013. Greece sent its National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) to the European Commission on 26 January 2007. The document lays out how EU cohesion policy will be used to deliver growth and jobs in the new programming period 2007-2013.

    [07] Taxation du tabac : la Commission lance une consultation publique

    La Commission européenne lance actuellement une consultation en ligne qui devrait lui permettre de connaître l'opinion des intéressés quant l'actuelle législation communautaire en matière de taxation du tabac et aux modifications envisageables cet égard. Les règles de l'Union européenne régissant le tabac doivent garantir le bon fonctionnement du marché intérieur sans méconnaître l'objectif visé par l'UE, qui est de dissuader les gens de fumer. Il convient de moderniser les règles existantes et de les rendre plus transparentes et plus simples. La consultation est dans l'intérêt de toutes les parties prenantes, c'est- - dire les entreprises spécialisées dans la fabrication et la distribution de produits du tabac, les organisations de santé publique, les administrations, les organisations non gouvernementales, les associations de consommateurs, etc. La Commission prendra en compte leurs avis et leurs points de vues dans la proposition qu'elle doit présenter la fin de l'année. Les intéressés sont invités faire parvenir leurs observations d'ici au 1er juin 2007.

    [08] Direct Taxation : Commission requests Ireland to end discriminatory taxation of income sourced in the United Kingdom and asks the United Kingdom for information about similar rules applied in its territory

    By a reasoned opinion under Article 226 of the EC Treaty, the European Commission has formally requested Ireland to amend its legislation concerning remittance base taxation. Ireland normally does not tax income received by non-domiciled persons from money invested abroad if the interest is left on the foreign bank account. The Irish legislation excludes from this rule income sourced in the UK and thus treats such income less favourably than income arising elsewhere in the EU. The Commission considers that this is contrary to the EC Treaty and to the EEA Agreement, as it restricts the free movement of capital. If Ireland does not reply satisfactorily to the reasoned opinion within two months the Commission may refer the matter to the European Court of Justice. At the same time the European Commission has decided to send a request for information in the form of a letter of formal notice to the United Kingdom about similar remittance base taxation rules, which in turn appear to discriminate against income sourced in Ireland.

    [09] Dans son rapport annuel sur l'économie numérique, la Commission indique que les TIC drainent 50% de la croissance de l'UE

    Les investissements publics et privés dans les technologies de l'information et de la communication (TIC) portent leurs fruits, comme l'indique la Commission européenne dans son rapport annuel d'avancement de l'initiative i2010, le volet numérique de la stratégie pour la croissance et l'emploi. La technologie alimente l'innovation et la productivité, et alors que l'Europe progresse vers une économie fondée sur la connaissance, on observe des signes annonciateurs d'un changement fondamental sur les marchés et dans le comportement des utilisateurs.

    [10] March 2007 : Business Climate Indicator for the euro area remains stable

    After an increase in February, the Business Climate Indicator (BCI) for the euro area remained stable in March. Despite a small deceleration in industrial production growth in January 2007, the high level of the BCI points to strong industrial production growth in the first quarter of 2007. The stabilisation of the BCI is the net effect of a worsening in managers' assessment of their stocks of finished products and of the production trend observed in recent months and improvements in managers' views on total order books and in their production expectations for the months ahead. Meanwhile, managers' assessment of export order books remained stable.

    [11] Flash estimate - March 2007 : Euro area inflation estimated at 1.9%

    Euro area annual inflation is expected to be 1.9% in March 2007 according to a flash estimate issued by Eurostat. It was 1.8% in February. Euro area inflation is measured by the Monetary Union Index of Consumer Prices (MUICP). To compute the MUICP flash estimates, Eurostat uses early price information relating to the reference month from Member States for which data are available as well as early information about energy prices. The flash estimation procedure for the MUICP combines historical information with partial information on price developments in the most recent months to give a total index for the euro area. No detailed breakdown is available. Experience has shown the procedure to be reliable (16 times exactly anticipating the inflation rate and 8 times differing by 0.1 over the last two years). Further information can be found in Eurostat News Release 113/2001 of 5 November 2001.

    [12] March 2007 : Economic sentiment strengthens further in both the EU and the euro area

    The Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) continued to increase in both the EU and the euro area in March. The indicator increased by 1.8 points in the EU and by 1.5 points in the euro area, to 113.8 and 111.2 respectively.

    [13] Février 2007 : le chômage en baisse 7,3% dans la zone euro ; baisse 7,4% dans l'UE27

    Dans la zone euro (ZE13), le taux de chômage corrigé des variations saisonnières, s'est élevé 7,3% en février 2007, contre 7,4% en janvier. Il était de 8,2% en février 2006. Dans l'UE27, le taux de chômage s'est élevé 7,4% en février 2007, contre 7,5% en janvier. Il était de 8,2% en février 2006. En février 2007, les taux les plus bas ont été enregistrés au Danemark (3,4%) et aux Pays-Bas (3,5%). Les taux de chômage les plus élevés ont été observés en Pologne (11,8%) et en Slovaquie (11,0%). Ces chiffres sont publiés par Eurostat.

    [14] Günter Verheugen visits China to launch partnership agreement

    European Commission Vice-President Günter Verheugen, responsible for enterprise and industry policy, will be visiting Beijing from 01-04 of April to deepen the EU-China economic relations. The visit of Mr. Verheugen follows the publication of the Commission communication on the EU-China relations at the end of last year. In January 2007 both sides agreed to launch negotiations on the establishment of a new Partnership and Cooperation Agreement.

    [15] Benita Ferrero-Waldner se rend au Liechtenstein et en Suisse l'occasion de l'inauguration de la délégation de l'Union européenne Berne

    Les 2 et 3 avril 2007, Mme Benita Ferrero-Waldner, membre de la Commission européenne chargé des relations extérieures et de la politique de voisinage, effectuera sa première visite officielle en Suisse et au Liechtenstein. Au cours des discussions, les relations bilatérales, l'élargissement de l'Union européenne et des questions de politique internationale seront abordées. L'inauguration de la délégation de la Commission Berne, le 3 avril, revêtira une importance particulière. La délégation contribuera, dans une large mesure, approfondir des relations déj caractérisées par leur qualité et leur diversité.

    [16] Autre matériel diffusé

    Speech by Neelie Kroes : "More competition and greater energy security in the Single European Market for electricity and gas" at High-Level Workshop on Energy Organised By German Presidency (Berlin)

    Speech by President José Manuel Barroso : "We are all new Europeans now" at Seimas (29/03, Vilnius)

    Speech by Danuta Hübner : "Growth and competitiveness in Europe: a case for a strong cohesion policy" at Conference organised by ELIAMEP, Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (29/03, Athens)

    Speech by Andris Piebalgs : "The internal energy market must benefit each and every EU citizen" at high-level workshop on Completion of the Single European Market for Electricity and Gas (29/3, Berlin)

    Calendrier du 2 au 15 avril 2007

    Top News from the European Commission du 2 April - 29 avril 2007 From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/


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