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Daily News – 06.12.2018

European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 06 / 12 / 2018

Brussels, 6 December 2018

Budget de l'UE pour 2019: croissance, solidarité et sécurité en Europe et au-delà - un accord provisoire a été dégagé

Le mardi 4 décembre, le Parlement européen et le Conseil, avec le soutien de la Commission, sont parvenus à un accord provisoire sur le budget 2019 de l'UE au cours d'un trilogue décisif. Cet accord devra être confirmé la semaine prochaine lors de la dernière session plénière du Parlement européen à Strasbourg de l'année. L'UE va continuer à investir dans la croissance et l'emploi, la recherche et l'innovation, les étudiants et les jeunes - les priorités de la Commission Juncker. Dans la continuité des propositions de la Commission, la gestion efficace de la migration et des frontières extérieures de l'Union restera également une priorité dans le budget 2019. M. Günther H. Oettinger, commissaire en charge du budget et des ressources humaines, a déclaré à cet égard: «Cet accord montre que lorsque nous sommes unis, nous pouvons apporter la valeur ajoutée que nos citoyens réclament. Le prochain objectif est notre budget à long terme au-delà de 2020 et j'espère que l'esprit constructif et l'engagement résolu dont ont fait preuve les trois institutions lors des négociations sur le budget 2019 seront toujours présents lors des discussions à venir. Nous devons placer au centre de nos préoccupations l'adoption, en temps utile, de ce budget à long terme, afin que nos scientifiques, nos étudiants, nos entreprises, nos agriculteurs et nos régions ne soient pas pénalisés.» Le budget de l'UE pour 2019 s'établit à 165,8 milliards d'euros en engagements (qui correspondent aux montants pouvant être convenus par voie contractuelle au cours d'une année donnée) et à 148,2 milliards d'euros en paiements (qui correspondent aux montants qui seront versés). Plus d'information sur les paramètres spécifiques de l'accord est disponible dans le communiqué de presse en ligne. (For more information: Alexander Winterstein - Tel.: +32 229 93265; Andreana Stankova – Tel.: +32 229 57857)

  

Digital Single Market: the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission agree on new rules for the .eu top-level domain

Yesterday the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission reached a political agreement on the revision of the Regulation concerning the .eu top-level domain. The new measures were proposed by the Commission in April 2018, as part of the Digital Single Market strategy, to simplify the existing legal framework on the .eu top-level domain and, amongst other changes, enable European/European Economic Area (EU/EEA) citizens to register for a .eu domain also outside of the EU, regardless of their country of residence. Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip and Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said: “The new rules on the .eu-top-level domain will enable us to cope more effectively with a fast-changing domain name market and will support better and more innovative services for EU citizens and businesses.  We are looking ahead to many more people and businesses using .eu to mark their European identity online in a way that exemplifies multilingualism, privacy protection, and security.”  The new rules also include an improved governance structure for the domain and a modernised legal framework that will enable it to adapt to rapid market changes. The .eu domain is currently managed by EURid, a private, independent, non-profit organisation that has operated the .eu under contract to the Commission since 2003. For more information see also the Impact assessment of the Regulation on the implementation and functioning of the .eu top-level domain name. (For more information: Nathalie Vandystadt - Tel.: +32 229 67083; Marietta Grammenou- Tel.: +32 229 83583; Joseph Waldstein – Tel.: +32 229 56184).

 

Commission and 35 partner countries establish €100 million partnership to boost research into rare diseases

As another manifestation of a Europe that protects its citizens, today the Commission and 35 partner countries establish a new research partnership on rare diseases. The partnership will give millions of Europeans suffering from one of the many rare diseases a new hope for improved diagnostics and better treatments and care. With a budget of over €100 million, half of which will come from the EU's research and innovation funding programme Horizon 2020 and half from the partner countries, the new European Joint Programme on Rare Diseases will aim to make sure that new treatments and diagnostic tools reach those who need them the most. Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “Patients with a rare disease often suffer unnecessarily and die prematurely. We need to do much more to develop effective treatments and improve diagnosis. This partnership shows how we can pool Horizon 2020 funding and resources from EU Member States and beyond in order to save lives and protect people.” Thepartnership comprises more than 130 entities from 35 countries and will be coordinated by the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research INSERM. The partnership will be officially launched on 1 January 2019 and will run over five years. More information can be found in a news alertand a factsheet(For more information: Lucía Caudet – Tel.: +32 229 56182; Mirna Talko - Tel.: +32 229 87278)

 

Helping Santa: Safe products under the tree

On the day of Saint Nicolas and less than two weeks before Christmas, Commissioner Jourová presented the results of an action focused on testing toys and Christmas lights. The tests show that almost 90% of toys tested in the EU did not show any chemical risks and about 80 % of Christmas lights were safe. "We all want the holidays to be safe for our children and family. In the EU, we value the safety of consumers and we have one of the highest safety standards in the world. Thanks to the Rapid Alert System, all products that are not safe are swiftly removed from the market. I also would like to see our package of improvements of consumer rights that we call the New Deal for Consumers adopted early next year", saidVěra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality. Through the Rapid Alert System, authorities across the EU are exchanging alerts daily to make sure that products sold in the EU follow the necessary safety regulation and do not pose a risk to consumers. Pictures of dangerous products recently taken off the market can be found here. The Commissioner also raised awareness on the risks consumers run when contracting loans that might seem appealing and reminded them of their rights in these situations. Finally, consumers can use the online dispute resolution (ODR) platform, in case they have a problem with a product purchased online and when the trader is not respecting their rights.  Commissioner Jourová's declaration and video footage are available online. More about EU consumer rights in context of the #EUandME campaign is available here. (For more information: Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253; Mélanie Voin – Tel.:+32 229 5865)

 

EU agricultural outlook: Changing consumer habits to shape agricultural markets by 2030

The Commission published today in the framework of the 2018 EU Agricultural Outlook Conference projections for the European agricultural markets to 2030 for a wide range of agri-food products, including meat, arable crops, milk and dairy products, and fruit and vegetables. The evolution of agricultural income and the environmental aspects of EU agriculture are also covered, as well as a special focus on the organic production of each sector. The reports conclude among other findings that consumers will become more demanding towards food, its sourcing, and its impact on the environment and climate change. This may result in higher production costs for producers but will also be an opportunity to differentiate their products, adding value while working on their climatic and environmental impact. This will be reflected in alternative production systems, such as local, organic or other certified products being increasingly in demand. In addition to the sectoral outlook reports, the Commission has also made available a new interactive tool with many valuable statistics about agriculture in the EU. It covers among other topics farming income support, environment and climate action, organic production and jobs and growth in rural areas. Interesting facts can be found, for example: EU agri-food exports almost doubled over the last 10 years, agriculture represents 13.5% of total employment in rural areas in 2016 or the share of agricultural land used for organic farming in the EU is 6.7%. More information about the interactive dashboards is online. The outlook reports are all published on this webpage and their presentations at the EU 2018 Agricultural Outlook Conference will be webstreamed here. A summary of their conclusions is available here. (For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tél.: + 32 229 56185; Clémence Robin - Tél.: +32 229 52509)

 

European Institute of Innovation and Technology selects Knowledge and Innovation Communities in Manufacturing and Urban Mobility 

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology(EIT) has announced the winning teams selected to set up EIT Manufacturing and EIT Urban Mobility, two new pan-European Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) bringing together leading organisations from the business, education, research and public sectors. The mission of EIT Manufacturing is to help the manufacturing sector to become more competitive, sustainable and productive. EIT Urban Mobility will help to ensure a greener, more inclusive, safer and smarter urban mobility system. Tibor Navracsics, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, responsible for the EIT, welcomed the announcement: "I am very pleased to see two new EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities selected. The EIT's unique, education-focused approach to boosting innovation will now create even more opportunities for talented entrepreneurs and students across the EU. This is essential for us to find innovative solutions to the pressing challenges of added value manufacturing and urban mobility – and help us build a resilient, competitive Europe. The winning teams were selected following an invitation to submit proposals, launched in January 2018, and a thorough evaluation of the proposals by independent experts and the EIT Governing Board. The EIT will provide each of the winning partnerships with a start-up grant of up to EUR 4 million to ensure that they become operational as soon as possible. The EIT is an independent EU body set up to boost innovation and entrepreneurship across Europe. EIT Manufacturing and EIT Urban Mobility join six existing Knowledge and Innovation Communities in the areas of climate (EIT Climate-KIC), digitisation (EIT Digital), energy (EIT InnoEnergy), health (EIT Health), raw materials (EIT Raw Materials) and food (EIT Food). A full EIT press release is available online. More information on the winning partnerships can be found here(For more information: Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel.: +32 229 67083; Joseph Waldstein - Tel.: +32 229 56184)

 

State aid: Commission approves prolongation of Greek bank guarantee scheme

The European Commission has authorised the prolongation of the Greek guarantee scheme for credit institutions until 31 May 2019 under EU State aid rules. The liquidity situation of the Greek banks is gradually improving, but challenges still remain. In this context, the Commission has found that the prolongation of the guarantee scheme is in line with EU State aid rules, i.e. the 2013 Banking Communication, in particular because the prolonged measure is targeted, proportionate and limited in time and scope. The Commission is authorising guarantee schemes on banks' liabilities for successive periods of six months in order to be able to monitor developments and adjust conditions accordingly. The scheme is available for banks with no capital shortfall. The Greek guarantee scheme was initially approved in November 2008. The authorisation of the scheme was prolonged several times, the last time in June 2018. The Commission has approved similar schemes in several other Member States. More information is available on the Commission's competition website, in the public case register under the case number SA.52444. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Giulia Astuti - Tel.: +32 229 55344)

 

State aid: Commission approves prolongation of Polish bank guarantee scheme

The European Commission has authorised under EU State aid rules a prolongation of the liquidity guarantee scheme for Polish banks until 31 May 2019. Should the need arise, the scheme would provide State guarantees on liquidity for different types of solvent credit institutions in Poland. The Commission found the prolongation to be in line with its 2013 Banking Communication, because it is well targeted, proportionate and limited in time and scope. The scheme was initially approved in September 2009 and has been prolonged several times, the last time in July 2018. The Commission is authorising guarantee schemes on banks' liabilities for successive periods of up to six months in order to be able to monitor developments and adjust conditions accordingly. More information will be available on the Commission's competition website, in the public case register, under the case number SA.52481. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Giulia Astuti - Tel.: +32 229 55344)

 

Concentrations: La Commission autorise l'acquisition du contrôle conjoint de treize parcs photovoltaïques par Engie, Prédica et Omnes Capital

La Commission européenne a autorisé, en vertu du règlement européen sur les concentrations, l'acquisition de treize parcs photovoltaïques par Futures Energies Investissements Holdings 2, contrôlée conjointement par Engie, Prédica Prévoyance Dialogue du Crédit Agricole ("Prédica") et Omnes Capital, toutes des sociétés basées en France, dans le cadre du projet Equinox VIII A. Les treize parcs photovoltaïques sont situés en France et sont actuellement contrôlés par trois sociétés différentes. Engie est active dans les secteurs du gaz, de l'électricité et des services énergétiques. Prédica est active dans le secteur de l'assurance et fait partie du Groupe Crédit Agricole. Omnes Capital est une société de gestion d'actifs indépendante. La Commission a conclu que la concentration envisagée ne souleverait pas de problèmes de concurrence en raison des chevauchements limités entre les activités des entreprises concernées au niveau de la production, de la fourniture en gros et au détail d'électricité, ainsi que du développement de parcs photovoltaïques. L'opération a été examinée en vertu de la procédure simplifiée de contrôle des concentrations. De plus amples informations sont disponibles sur le site internet concurrence de la Commission, dans le registre public des affaires sous le numéro d'affaire M.9181. (Pour plus d'informations: Ricardo Cardoso – Tél.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni - Tél.: +32 229 90526)

 

Concentrations: La Commission autorise l'acquisition du contrôle conjoint de quatre parcs éoliens par Engie, Prédica et Omnes Capital

La Commission européenne a autorisé, en vertu du règlement européen sur les concentrations, l'acquisition de quatre parcs éoliens par Futures Energies Investissements Holdings 2 contrôlée conjointement par Engie, Prédica Prévoyance Dialogue du Crédit Agricole ("Prédica") et Omnes Capital, toutes des sociétés basées en France. Les quatre parcs éoliens sont situés en France et sont actuellement contrôlés par Engie. Engie est active dans les secteurs du gaz, de l'électricité et des services énergétiques. Prédica est active dans le secteur de l'assurance et fait partie du Groupe Crédit Agricole. Omnes Capital est une société de gestion d'actifs indépendante. La Commission a conclu que la concentration envisagée ne souleverait pas de problèmes de concurrence en raison des chevauchements limités entre les activités des entreprises concernées au niveau de la production, de la fourniture en gros et au détail d'électricité, ainsi que du développement de parcs éoliens. L'opération a été examinée en vertu de la procédure simplifiée de contrôle des concentrations. De plus amples informations sont disponibles sur le site internet concurrence de la Commission, dans le registre public des affaires sous le numéro d'affaire M.9184.(Pour plus d'informations: Ricardo Cardoso – Tél.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni - Tél.: +32 229 90526)

 

Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of part of Oerlikon by Dana

The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of GrazianoFairfield AG, controlled by OC Oerlikon Corporation AG, both of Switzerland, by Dana Incorporated of the US. GrazianoFairfield is a provider of gear, drive and shifting solutions for mobile vehicles and industrial equipment. Dana is a global supplier of driveline, sealing and thermal-management products to manufacturers of light, commercial and off-highway vehicles as well as gearboxes, hydraulic products and drive shafts for industrial stationary equipment. The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would raise no competition concerns given the companies' moderate market positions and limited overlap resulting from the proposed transaction. The transaction was examined under the simplified merger review procedure. More information is available on the Commission's competition website, in the public case register under the case number M.9124.(For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni - Tel.: +32 229 90526)

 

Eurostat: Nombre record de plus d'un milliard de passagers aériens transportés en 2017

En 2017, 1 043 millions de passagers ont voyagé par avion dans l'Union européenne (UE), soit une hausse de 7% par rapport à 2016 et de 39% par rapport à 2009. Sur cette période, le transport aérien de passagers n'a pas cessé de croître dans l'UE. En 2017, le transport intra-UE représentait quasiment la moitié (47%) du transport aérien total de passagers dans l'UE et le transport extra-UE un peu plus du tiers (36%), tandis que le transport national comptait pour moins d'un passager sur cinq (17%). Un communiqué de presse est disponible ici. (Pour plus d'informations: Enrico Brivio – Tel.: +32 229 56172;Stephan Meder – Tel.: +32 229 1 39 17)

 

 

STATEMENTS

 

 

Joint statement by First Vice-President Timmermans and Commissioner Jourová welcoming the Council Declaration on the fight against Antisemitism

Today the Council unanimously adopted a declaration on the fight against antisemitism and the development of a common security approach to better protect Jewish communities and institutions. First-Vice President Frans Timmermans and Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourová welcomed this declaration in a joint statement: "In times of growing antisemitic hatred, the unanimous adoption of the Declaration on the fight against Antisemitism by the 28 EU Member States sends an important signal to the Jewish community; the EU and each of its Member States stand by their side to guarantee their safety and well-being. We will combine our efforts at European and national level to ensure that Jewish Europeans can build a common future for themselves and their children in Europe, together with all Europeans. (…) The European Commission stands firm against any form of Antisemitism, and will continue working hand-in-hand with Member States on this important issue." The full statement will be available here. (For more information: Christian Wigand- Tel.: +32 229 62253; Mélanie Voin – Tel.: +32 229 58659; Tim McPhie – Tel.: +32 229 58602)

 


ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

 

Commissioner Hahn in Vienna for the Business Forum and Annual Conference of the Eastern Partnership promoting stronger economies and societies

Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn is in Vienna, Austria today and tomorrow to participate at the 5th Eastern Partnership (EaP) Business Forum followed by the Eastern Partnership's Annual Conference on 7 December. Organised by the Commission and the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, the two events will bring together high level representatives from the EU and the six Eastern Partners - ArmeniaAzerbaijanBelarusGeorgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine to help promote socio-economic development across the region. Ahead of the visit commissioner Hahn said: "The Eastern Partnership Business Forum and Annual Conference are a great opportunity to highlight our joint achievements to date in the framework of the Eastern Partnership and its 20 Deliverables for 2020. Building on this, the EU will drive forward reforms to ensure the right business environment for small and medium-sized enterprises and create further opportunities for young people to study, work, and participate fully in society." More information is available here. Commissioner's speech at the Business Forum was published here. Dedicated factsheets on EU support to Youth in the EaP and EU support to SMEs in the region also available online. (For more information: Maja Kocijancic – Tel.: + 32 229 86570; Alceo Smerilli - Tel.: +32 229 64887)

 

Commissioner Moscovici in Lisbon today to take part in a Citizens' Dialogue

Commissioner Moscovici travels to Lisbon today where he will take part in a Citizens' Dialogue at the Lisbon School of Economics and Management with the Prime Minister of Portugal, António Costa. (For more information: Annika Breidthardt – Tel.: +32 229-56153; Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 229 58615; Enda McNamara – Tel.: +32 229 64976; Patrick McCullough – Tel.: +32 229 87183)

 

Commissioner Vestager to hold a Citizens' Dialogue in Denmark

Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager travels to Slagelse, Denmark to hold a Citizens' Dialogue at 17.15 CET. She will be on stage with Ms StineBosse, President of the European Movement Denmark, answering questions from the audience about the EU and future challenges. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni - Tel.: +32 229 90526)

 

Commissioner Vella in Bucharest to discuss Circular Economy opportunities

Commissioner Karmenu Vella, responsible for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, is in Bucharest today on a second event of the series of ‘Virtuous Circles' missions. The missions to 12 EU Member States are organised to bring them closer to the 2020 target of 50% recycling of municipal waste after a Commission report from autumn this year identified them at risk of missing the target. Commissioner Vella said: “My visit to Bucharest is to emphasise that a structural reform of the waste management system will accelerate Romania's transition towards a more competitive circular economy. This is not something for the environment ministry and the waste agencies only. It is important to recognise that there are also significant business and employment opportunities in the good application of these polices, next to the clear environmental benefits”. The Commissioner will highlight that the Commission is there to help Member States by offering technical assistance, structural fund support and support in the exchange of best practices. The aim of the ‘Virtuous Circles' missions is to share ideas and working methods on how to break away from linear “extract-produce-consumer-throw away” models and improve the implementation of EU rules on waste on the ground. The waste legislation forms the core of Europe's transition to the Circular Economy strategy proposed by the Juncker Commission, and is an opportunity for growth, jobs and improving resource efficiency. The visit comes ahead of the Romanian Presidency of the European Council. It will allow Romania to showcase that the country is committed to advancing the sustainable development agenda, namely by bringing more attention to the implementation of environmental legislation. More information is available online. (For more information: Enrico Brivio – Tel.: + 32 229 56172; Daniela Stoycheva - Tel.: +32 229 53664)

 

Commissioner Crețu in Portugal to discuss the future Cohesion Policy

This afternoon until Friday, Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Crețu is in Lisbon, Portugal. Today, the Commissioner will participate in a hearing on the post-2020 Cohesion Policy in the Portuguese National Parliament. Tomorrow, Commissioner Crețu will meet Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa and Minister of Planning and Infrastructure Pedro Marques, with whom she will participate in an event on the reprogramming of Portugal's 2014-2020 Cohesion Policy programmes. "Portugal has reaped the fruits of the more than 100 billion euro of Cohesion Policy funds invested in the country since its accession to the EU. The country has made spectacular progress. Now we are looking ahead and my visit to Portugal will focus on to make the best use of EU funds to support Portugal's growth strategy still in the current budget period, and after 2020," said Commissioner Crețu. (For more information: Christian Spahr – Tel.: +32 2 295 00 55; Sophie Dupin de Saint-Cyr – Tel.: +32 229 56169)

 

 

 

Upcoming events of the European Commission (ex-Top News)

MEX/18/6702