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Daily News – 02.03.2015

European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 02 / 03/ 2015

Brussels, 02 March 2015

EUROSTAT: Europe 2020 Strategy - How is the European Union progressing towards its Europe 2020 targets?

The Europe 2020 strategy, adopted by the European Council in June 2010, aims at establishing a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy with high levels of employment, productivity and social cohesion. The key objectives of the strategy are expressed in the form of five ambitious targets in the areas of employment, research & development (R&D), climate change & energy, education and poverty reduction, to be reached by 2020. These have been translated into national targets in order to reflect the situation and possibilities of each Member State to contribute to the common goal. A set of nine headline indicators and four sub-indicators, compiled by Eurostat, give an overview of how far or close the EU is from reaching its overall targets. Today Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, publishes the 2015 edition of the publication “Smarter, greener, more inclusive?”, which provides past trends and latest statistics useful to support the Europe 2020 strategy and to back up the monitoring towards its headline targets. A press release is available online. (for more information, please get in touch with the Spokesperson's Service of the European Commission)          

EUROSTAT: January 2015 - Euro area unemployment rate at 11.2%; EU28 at 9.8%

The euro area (EA19) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 11.2% in January 2015, down from 11.3% in December 2014, and from 11.8% in January 2014. This is the lowest rate recorded in the euro area since April 2012. The EU28 unemployment rate was 9.8% in January 2015, down from 9.9% in December 2014 and from 10.6% in January 2014. These figures are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. Eurostat estimates that 23.815 million men and women in the EU28, of whom 18.059 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in January 2015. Compared with December 2014, the number of persons unemployed decreased by 156 000 in the EU28 and by 140 000 in the euro area. Compared with January 2014, unemployment fell by 1.820 million in the EU28 and by 896 000 in the euro area. A press release is available online. (for more information: Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253)

EUROSTAT: Flash estimate - February 2015; Euro area annual inflation up to -0.3%

Euro area annual inflation is expected to be -0.3% in February 2015, up from -0.6% in January, according to a flash estimate from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. Looking at the main components of euro area inflation, services is expected to have the highest annual rate in February (1.1%, compared with 1.0% in January), followed by food, alcohol & tobacco (0.5%, compared with -0.1% in January), non-energy industrial goods (-0.2%, compared with -0.1% in January) and energy (-7.9%, compared with -9.3% in January). A press release is available online. (for more information: Annikky Lamp – Tel.: +32 229 56151)

Aides d’État: La Commission autorise le régime d'aides fiscales favorisant les investissements productifs outre-mer

La Commission européenne a constaté qu’un régime d’aides régionales destiné à promouvoir les investissements dans les régions ultrapériphériques françaises est conforme aux règles communautaires sur les aides d’État. La Commission a estimé que le régime en cause favorise le développement des régions ultrapériphériques françaises, sans fausser indûment la concurrence au sein du marché intérieur. Le régime inclut des mesures d’aide fiscale en faveur des investissements dans les entreprises situées dans l’une des sept régions ultrapériphériques françaises (la Guadeloupe, la Guyane française, la Martinique, la Réunion, Mayotte, Saint-Barthélemy et Saint-Martin). La Commission reconnaît la gravité des handicaps structurels auxquels sont confrontées les entreprises situées dans ces régions et, en particulier, le fait que les entreprises de ces territoires ont des difficultés à accéder aux marchés des capitaux afin d’obtenir des financements pour le développement de leurs activités et de réaliser les investissements dont ils ont besoin. Par conséquent, les régions ultrapériphériques bénéficient d’une aide régionale spécifique dans le Traité sur le fonctionnement de l’Union européenne (articles 349 et 107 (3) (a) TFUE). Le régime d'aides fiscales à l'investissement outre-mer sera en vigueur jusqu’à la fin de 2017. Les autorités françaises effectueront une évaluation de l’efficacité de ce régime avant la fin de 2017. La version non confidentielle de la décision temporaire sera publiée sous le numéro SA.38536 dans le registre des aides d'État figurant sur le site internet de la DG Concurrence , dès que tous les problèmes de confidentialité auront été résolus. Le bulletin d'information électronique State Aid Weekly e-News fournit la liste des dernières décisions relatives aux aides d'État publiées au Journal officiel et sur l'internet. (for more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Yizhou Ren – Tel.: +32 229 94889)




€30.5 billion worth of EU development cooperation to come on stream following entry into force of 11th European Development Fund

The 11th European Development Fund (EDF) came into force today.  In a joint statement issued by High Representative / Vice-President Federica Mogherini and Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica, this event was highlighted as a cornerstone of the EU's international cooperation and development policy that concretely implements the EU's partnership and dialogue with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries under the ACP-EU Cotonou Agreement.  The EDF also covers cooperation with the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) as laid down in the Overseas Association Decision. (for more information: Catherine Ray – Tel.: +32 229 69921; Sharon Zarb – Tel.: +32 229 92256)

Vice-President Ansip and Commissioner Oettinger to Barcelona for the Mobile World Congress

On 2 and 3 March, Vice-President Ansip and Commissioner Oettinger will discuss EU digital priorities at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. On 2 March, Vice-President Ansip will deliver a keynote speech (16.00-17.00) on "Extending the Digital Agenda in the Developed World" (it will be available here). He will participate in the CEO/Ministerial roundtable on eGovernment and Digital Inclusion. At the margins of this roundtable, he will meetRicardo Berzoini, Brazilian Minister for Communications, Ed Vaizey, British Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy, and Anne Bouverot, Director-General of GSMA. On 3 March, he will meet Victor Calvo-Sotelo, Spanish Secretary of State for Telecommunications, Tom Wheeler, Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Hans Vestberg, CEO of Ericsson, Glenn Lurie, President and CEO of AT&T Mobility and he will visit various stands, including the EU 5G Research Stand showcasing cutting-edge research projects. On 3 March, Commissioner Oettinger willpresent the EU vision for 5G along with executives of European top technology companies during a press conference (13:30-14:00). This ambitious strategy will give the EU a strong voice in the next phase of 5G discussions at the global level that should lead to international agreements, including on standards. Commissioner Oettinger will also deliver a keynote speech (9.15-10.30) on "The Road to 5G" (it will be available here), participate in a CEO roundtable (with, among others, Michel Combes, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent, Hans Vestberg, President & CEO of Ericsson, Marco Patuano, CEO of Telecom Italia), meet Victor Calvo-Sotelo, Spanish Secretary of State for Telecommunications, and Ricardo Berzoini, Brazilian Minister for Communications. He will visit the EU 5G Research Stand showcasing cutting-edge research projects. On 2 March, Commissioner Oettinger will meetStéphane Richard, Chairman & CEO of Orange, Vittorio Colao, CEO of Vodafone, César Alierta, Chairman & CEO of Telefonica and Tim Hoettges, CEO of Deutsche Telekom. (for more information: Mina Andreeva - Tel.: +32 229 91382; Marie Frenay - Tel.: +32 229 64532)

Commissioner Mimica attends high-level event on women's empowerment and sustainable development

On Monday 2 March, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica will take part in a high-level event in Riga to debate possible solutions for ensuring women’s equal rights and access to the market in partner countries, as well as the economic resources needed for unlocking women’s potential (a factsheet on the EU's work in gender equality worldwide is available online). The event, which is one of the flagship events of the European Year for Development (EYD2015) and is jointly organised with the Latvian Presidency of the EU Council, takes place in the thematic month dedicated to women and girls during the EYD2015, and a few days ahead of International Women’s Day on March 8. Speaking ahead of the Conference, Commissioner Mimica said: “Development simply cannot happen if half of the world’s population is left behind. And the reality is that women and girls in developing countries continue to suffer severely from discrimination; lacking access to the most basic services like health, water and sanitation, or proper nutrition." More information is available online. (for more information: Catherine Ray – Tel.: +32 229 69921; Sharon Zarb – Tel.: +32 229 92256)

Conference: EU mobilises efforts to end Ebola and alleviate its impact

While international efforts have reduced the number of Ebola infections in recent months, it is critical to maintain the momentum to prevent a sharp increase in new cases. This is why the high-level international conference “Ebola: from emergency to recovery” is taking place on Tuesday 3 March in the Egmont Palace in Brussels under the patronage of the EU. It will be co-chaired by the European Union, the Presidents of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, the United Nations, the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). EbS will be covering the event. More information on the EU response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. (for more information: Catherine Ray – Tel.: +32 229 69921; Irina Novakova – Tel.: +32 229 57517; Sharon Zarb – Tel.: +32 229 92256)



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