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Daily News – 06.06.2007

EXME07 / 6.6


News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

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

06 / 06 / 07

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

La Commission européenne a annoncé tout un ensemble de mesures en matière d'asile : un livre vert pour engager un débat sur l'avenir du régime d'asile européen commun, une proposition de directive étendant la possibilité d'obtenir le statut de résident de longue durée aux bénéficiaires d'une protection internationale, ainsi qu'un rapport d'évaluation du système de Dublin.

The Common European Asylum System (CEAS), as defined in the Tampere and the Hague Programme, was intended to be built in two phases. The first one, comprising four main legal instruments, is now complete. According to the Hague Programme, the second phase instruments should be adopted by the end of 2010. Before coming forward with the new proposals, the Commission is launching, with the present Green Paper, a wide debate on the future architecture of the Common European Asylum System, inviting all relevant stakeholders to express their views and make constructive suggestions on the form the CEAS should take.

The conditions under which third-country nationals settled on a long-term basis in the Member States may acquire long-term residence status ("LTR status") are regulated in Council Directive 2003/109/EC of 25 November 2003 concerning the status of third-country nationals who are long-term residents ("LTR Directive"). Beneficiaries of international protection (i.e. refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection) are currently excluded from the scope of the LTR Directive. This proposal amends the LTR Directive in order to extend to them the possibility to obtain LTR status subject to the same conditions applicable to any other third-country nationals.

The European Commission has adopted a report on the evaluation of the Dublin system, which aims to determine which Member State is responsible for the examination of an asylum application lodged by a third-country national on the territory of one of the Member States, Norway or Iceland. Overall the system has been functioning generally well since 2003. Between September 2003 and December 2005, around 17,000 third-country nationals have been transferred from one Member State to another in view of having their asylum claim examined. At the same time, EURODAC has detected that around 12% of the asylum applications were in fact lodged by persons who already applied for asylum before.

II. Other news - Autres nouvelles

European Commission and Australian negotiators yesterday initialled a new bilateral agreement on trade in wine at a ceremony in Canberra. The initialling is the result of long and detailed negotiations to replace the current agreement, which dates from 1994. It must now be approved by the Council of Ministers and the Australian authorities, before being signed. The agreement safeguards the EU's wine labelling regime, gives full protection to EU geographical indications, including for wines intended to be exported, and includes a clear Australian commitment to protect EU traditional expressions. It will also provide for the phasing out by Australia of the use of a number of important EU names such as Champagne and Port within a year of the agreement coming into force.

Ce conseil des 27 ministres chargés des télécommunications devrait aboutir à l'adoption politique du règlement sur l'itinérance à l'intérieur de la Communauté; d'autres dossiers importants du domaine des télécommunications (i2010, RFID, ENISA) seront aussi à l’ordre du jour. La Commission européenne sera représentée par Mme Viviane Reding, la Commissaire chargée des télécommunications. "Puisque chaque mot du texte du règlement a été déjà approuvé et voté par le Parlement dans toutes les langues de l'Union il y a deux semaines, j'attends maintenant du Conseil qu'il fasse tout son possible pour que le règlement sur l'itinérance à l'intérieur de la Communauté soit publié dans les jours à venir", a-t-elle déclaré à la veille du Conseil.

  • Major disaster simulation exercise tests the response capabilities of eight EU countries

A large-scale multi-disaster simulation exercise, EULUX 2007, will take place in Luxembourg from 6 to 9 June. The exercise will test the disaster-response capabilities of eight European countries following a series of simulated incidents which will require international assistance through the Community mechanism for civil protection. EULUX 2007 is organised by Luxembourg together with Belgium, France, and Germany and is being held with the support of the European Commission, which manages the Community civil protection mechanism. The exercise will also involve civil protection teams or experts from Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland and Portugal. The Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC), the Commission's body for dealing with such disasters, will facilitate the coordination of the international teams as it would do in a real emergency. The European Commission will finance 75% of the eligible costs of the exercise. For more information: EULUX 2007 – - European civil protection –