EXME 10 / 16.06
Midday Express of 2010-06-16
News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing
Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Communication
Events in Spring 2010 have exposed the urgency of addressing the fiscal challenge in the euro area and the EU. Sovereign risk premia increased to unprecedented levels in Member States with perceived high budgetary and macro-financial risks. The 2010 Report on Public Finances in EMU presents recent budgetary developments, reports developments in budgetary surveillance and draws lessons for debt reduction strategies. It also investigates the link between macro-financial and budgetary risks.
Today, the Commission decided to provide emergency funding of €5 million to assist the vulnerable victims of the serious violence involving the Kyrgyz and Uzbek communities in Kyrgyzstan which erupted on 10 June. The allocated funding will be used to provide emergency medical support, food, water, shelter, non-food items, protection and psychosocial assistance to the victims.
EU Member States have widely diverging interpretations of the so called Qualification Directive, which sets minimum standards for identification of people in need of international protection. In a follow-up report of the Directive, the European Commission identifies deficiencies in certain provisions as well as several issues of incomplete and/or incorrect transposition by EU Member States. Those deficiencies have led to lower protection standards than those established by the Directive, as well as disparities among Member States both in the granting of protection and in the form of the protection granted.
More than just a web chat - interactive online debate with Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn on 17 June transforming Europe into an "Innovation Union"
Research Innovation and Science Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn will take part in a live, web streamed debate with stakeholders and the public on Thursday 17 June, 10h00-11h00 CET. Unlike during a "traditional" webchat, the Commissioner will be present online in sound and vision. She will set out her vision for the Innovation Union Strategy that she will be presenting in the autumn, as a flagship Europe 2020 initiative. She will then put three questions to online participants. What kind of Europe would you like to see in 2020? What scientific, economic and social progress do we need? How do we make that progress happen? The ideas put forward will feed into the Innovation Union Strategy. There will be interpretation in nine EU languages. More details and instructions on how to take part via the Commissioner's website at: http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/geoghegan-quinn/index_en.htm
New Commission analysis looks at the impact of recession on agriculture trade
The global economic and financial crisis that emerged in 2008 had a dramatic impact on world trade in goods and services. Although world agricultural trade was relatively less affected, it still fell by 13% in value and 3% in volume in 2009. This was also an exceptional year for EU agricultural trade, as it reversed the growth pattern of the previous years, with a decline both in imports and exports. This is the conclusion of the latest MAP (Monitoring Agri-trade Policy) published by the Commission's Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development. Although it is impossible to precisely disentangle all the factors contributing to the contraction in trade, there is no doubt that the crisis had a strong impact, although the severe decline in international commodity prices and exchange rate fluctuations also played a role. The MAP is available at http://ec.europa.eu/agriculture/publi/map/index_en.htm
Euro area annual inflation was 1.6% in May 2010, up from 1.5% in April. A year earlier the rate was 0.0%. Monthly inflation was 0.1% in May 2010. EU annual inflation was 2.0% in May 2010, unchanged compared with April. A year earlier the rate was 0.8%. Monthly inflation was 0.2% in May 2010. These figures come from Eurostat.
Hourly labour costs in the euro area (EA16) rose by 2.1% in the year up to the first quarter of 2010, compared with 1.7% for the previous quarter. In the EU27, the annual rise was 2.2% up to the first quarter of 2010, compared with 2.0% for the previous quarter. The two main components of labour costs are wages & salaries and non-wage costs. In the euro area, wages & salaries per hour worked grew by 2.0% in the year up to the first quarter of 2010, and the non-wage component by 2.1%, compared with 1.6% and 2.0% respectively for the fourth quarter of 2009. In the EU27, hourly wages & salaries rose by 2.3% and the non-wage component by 1.9% in the year up to the first quarter of 2010, compared with 1.9% and 2.5% respectively for the previous quarter. The breakdown by economic activity shows that in the euro area hourly labour costs rose by 1.8% in industry, 2.1% in construction and 2.2% in services in the year up to the first quarter of 2010. In the EU27, labour costs per hour grew by 1.8% in industry, 1.4% in construction and 2.5% in services. These figures are published by Eurostat.
The European Commission today assessed the action taken by Belgium, the Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Slovenia and Slovakia in response to the Council recommendations of 2 December 2009 relating to the correction of their respective excessive government deficits. The Commission concluded that the authorities have acted in accordance with the recommendations.
La Commission européenne a conclu aujourd'hui à l'existence de déficits excessifs à Chypre, au Danemark et en Finlande et recommandé au Conseil des échéances pour leur correction. Ces initiatives prises en vertu de l'article 126, paragraphes 5 à 7, du traité font suite aux rapports qu’elle a remis le 12 mai conformément à l'article 126, paragraphe 3.
Aujourd'hui, la Commission européenne a adopté le projet d'accord avec les États-Unis relatif au programme de surveillance du financement du terrorisme (TFTP). Cet accord comporte des garanties assurant la protection des données des citoyens européens tout en permettant aux services répressifs des États Unis et de l'UE de faire usage d'un outil primordial dans la lutte contre le terrorisme. Il appartient à présent au Conseil d'adopter l'accord, qui nécessitera l'approbation du Parlement européen avant de pouvoir entrer en vigueur.
The European Commission today launched a dialogue on visa-free travel with the Republic of Moldova. The aim of the dialogue is to examine the relevant conditions for visa-free travel of Moldovan citizens to the EU as a long-term goal.
The High Level Group on Milk, set up last October in the wake of last year's dairy crisis, has finalised the report on its deliberations, including recommendations to the Commission on seven issues. These include an invitation to come forward with concrete moves to enhance the use of written contracts in the dairy supply chain and to consider proposals to increase the collective bargaining power of dairy producers.
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