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EXME 10 / 26.03
Midday Express of 2010-03-26
News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing
Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Communication
Commission participates in Earth Hour – raising awareness about energy saving
Today and tomorrow, the European Commission is taking part in the Earth Hour initiative, launched three years ago by the Worldwide Fund for Nature to raise awareness about saving energy. The Commission will turn off all internal and external lights (except security lighting) in all buildings in Brussels and Luxembourg on Friday 26 March from 20.30 to 21.30. On Saturday 27 March the Commission will also take part in the hour of darkness at the same time. The Commission and other EU Institutions are not only taking part as a symbolic gesture, but also as a call to change behaviour. The Commission publishes several pages of information on its Intracomm site to help its staff do all they can to save energy in the office.
Commission clears acquisition of Wild Group by KKR and Dr. Wild
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of joint control of the food flavourings business of the Wild Group by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co of the USA and Dr. Hans-Peter Wild, shareholder of the Wild Group of Germany. KKR is active in asset management and private equity investment. Wild Group produces natural ingredients for the food and beverage industry. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Commission clears acquisition of Ambea by Triton Fund
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control of Ambea AB of Sweden by Triton Fund III of Channel Islands. Triton is a private equity investment fund. Ambea is a provider of healthcare services active in Sweden, Finland and Norway. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Commission clears acquisition of Goupe Proclif by Ramsay and Predica
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of joint control of Groupe Proclif of France by Ramsay Health Care of Australia and Predica of France. Ramsay is active in operation of private hospitals and day surgery facilities in Australia, Indonesia and the United Kingdom. Predica is a company of insurance and financial services. Groupe Proclif is active in operation of private hospital services in France. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Siim Kallas, European Commission Vice-President responsible for Transport, welcomed as "a major step forwards", the preliminary agreement reached today by EU and US negotiators on a 'second-stage' Open Skies aviation agreement. "A process has been agreed towards the further expansion and consolidation of the transatlantic aviation market. Both sides have agreed to increase regulatory co-operation, and remove the barriers to market access that have been holding back the development of the world’s most important aviation markets. Building on the success of the 2007 EU-US Open Skies Agreement, this draft deal represents a significant breakthrough in the process of normalising the global airline industry". In economic terms, the creation of a full EU-US Open Aviation Area has been estimated to be worth up to 12 billion euro in economic benefits and up to 80.000 new jobs. Negotiators also made significant progress in agreeing a new framework for jointly addressing the environmental effects of aviation, as well as advances in the areas of security, competition, and social matters. Vice-President Kallas will submit the draft agreement for approval to the Transport Council in June under the Spanish Presidency.
European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and European Commission Vice-President Catherine Ashton has today presented her draft proposals on the organisation and functioning of the European External Action Service (EEAS). The proposals come following extensive consultations with the European Commission, European Union Member States and the European Parliament.
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