EXME 11 / 25.11
Midday Express of 2011-11-25
News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing
Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Communication
Progress reports published today on the Single European Sky – far-reaching proposals to put in place a pan-European air traffic management system by 2030 – "set alarm bells ringing." "There is a genuine risk that we will lag behind and find ourselves unable to satisfy the rising demands of air travel, which is set to nearly double by 2030", said European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport. "2012 is a make or break year for the Single European Sky and there is a lot at stake. Despite efforts that have been made, the Commission's "traffic light" assessment shows a large majority of Member States in the orange or red zones and at risk of not meeting critical targets for 2012" (see "traffic light" tables attached).
The European Commission has published today a regulation harmonising qualification and medical requirements for pilots. This regulation will enable pilots holding a licence issued in one Member State to fly throughout the European Union without needing to fulfil any additional technical or medical requirements. The rules are based on international aviation safety standards set out in the Chicago Convention.
Four out of ten EU citizens think that the EU needs better tools to fight organised crime, terrorism and extremism, according to a Eurobarometer poll released today by the European Commission. Today, the Commission also published the first report on the Internal Security Strategy launched last year, outlining issues that need to be given further attention and taking stock of progress made.
On Monday 28 November, in Lisbon, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Maria Damanaki, will present a new maritime strategy for growth and jobs in the Atlantic Ocean area, just adopted by the European Commission. The strategy identifies challenges and opportunities in the region and takes stock of existing initiatives that can support growth and job creation. The strategy will be implemented through an Action Plan in 2013. The Commission calls on stakeholders to help design concrete projects which would be able to benefit from EU funding. The Commission will facilitate the development of this Action Plan through a series of workshops and discussion groups that will be open to a wide array of participants - the 'Atlantic Forum'. The new strategy is developed under the EU's Integrated Maritime Policy and follows similar strategies for the Baltic, the Arctic and the Mediterranean areas. Commissioner Damanaki will present the strategy at the high-level Lisbon Atlantic Conference and Stakeholder Day, on 28-29 November, where a first discussion will take place.
Fisheries: Commission proposes reduced fishing opportunities for the Black Sea for 2012
The European Commission has presented its proposal for fishing opportunities for fish stocks in the Black Sea for 2012. Only two Member states are concerned by the proposals: Bulgaria and Romania. The Commission proposes to cut the EU quota for turbot by 15%, to 74 tonnes. For sprat, the Commission proposes to keep the EU quota unchanged, at 11,475 tonnes. The EU quota for turbot is divided evenly between Bulgaria and Romania. For sprat, Bulgaria and Romania's national quotas are set at 70 and 30 % of the total EU quota, respectively. The proposal takes into consideration the advice by the Commission's Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) and will be discussed by EU member states ministers at the December Fisheries Council.
The USA remained the EU's largest trading partner for both goods and services at the end of the first half of 2011. However, there has been a steady decline in the share of the USA in total EU27 trade in goods over the last decade. While in 2000, the USA accounted for 28% of total EU27 exports and 21% of imports, by 2010 these shares had fallen to 18% and 11% respectively. After a significant decrease in 2009, the value of EU27 trade in goods with the USA partially recovered in 2010: exports rose to 242 billion euro in 2010 compared with 206 bn in 2009 and 250 bn in 2008, and imports to 170 bn compared with 159 bn in 2009 and 187 bn in 2008. This recovery continued in the first half of 2011, with EU27 exports to the USA increasing to 129 bn compared with 114 bn in the same period of 2010 and imports rising to 94 bn compared with 83 bn. As a result, the EU27 trade surplus with the USA increased from 31 bn in the first half of 2010 to 35 bn in the same period of 2011.
In 2010, EU27 external trade in services recovered compared with 2009 to reach levels equal or above those of 2008. EU27 exports of services to the rest of the word rose by 11%, from 484 billion euro in 2009 to 539 bn in 2010, and EU27 imports increased by 9%, from 416 bn to 454 bn. As a result, EU27 trade in services recorded a higher surplus of +85 bn in 2010, compared with +67 bn in 2009 and +71 bn in 2008. The surplus in 2010 was mainly due to surpluses in "other business services", which includes miscellaneous business, professional & technical services (+40 bn euro in 2010 compared with +33 bn in 2009), financial services (+27 bn compared with +26 bn), computer & information services (+23 bn compared with +19 bn) and transportation (+20 bn in both 2010 and 2009), partly offset by deficits in travel (-14 bn compared with -17 bn) and royalties and licence fees (-12 bn compared with -13 bn). In 2010, the EU27 recorded relatively stable or slightly higher surpluses in trade in services compared with 2009 with all its main partners. The highest surpluses were observed with the EFTA countries (+27 bn euro), Russia (+9 bn), China (+6 bn), Japan (+5 bn), Brazil and Canada (both +4 bn). Among the main partners, the only deficit was recorded with the USA (-4 bn).
Energy: 66 Million Euro for a new round of "Intelligent Energy" projects
The European Commission's Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI) has released today the selection results for the 2011 call for project proposals under the Intelligent Energy - Europe (IEE) programme. Notifications are underway to open negotiations with the 54 projects which were selected from over 340 proposals to receive a share of the 66 Million Euro available under this year's call. These 54 multi-national projects were tabled by over 600 organisations across Europe. They focus on energy efficiency, renewable energy sources, clean transport and mobilising local energy investments. The IEE programme is a key contributor to the EU 20/20/20 energy targets. For more information on the IEE programme and for the list of 54 projects selected for funding in 2011 visit: http://ec.europa.eu/intelligentenergy
Commission clears the creation of a offshore wind farm project development joint venture
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the proposed acquisition of joint control of a newly-created joint venture by German company Hochtief Solutions AG and private equity fund Ventizz Capital Fund. The joint venture will be active in the project development for offshore wind farms primarily in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. Hochtief is active in a number of different business areas like real estate, energy and infrastructure, international projects, and engineering solutions. Ventizz is a private equity fund investing in high tech companies primarily in the German-speaking regions. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Autre matériel diffusé :
• Statement by the High Representative / Vice President Catherine Ashton, Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development, and Cecilia Malmström, EU Commissioner for Home Affairs, on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 25 November 2011 - rediffusion
• Discours de Commissaire Barnier devant les commissions du Parlement italien: "La régulation financière et l'Acte pour le marché unique : deux outils au service de la renaissance du projet européen" - rediffusion