Midday Express of 2011-11-08
European Commission - MEX/11/1108 08/11/2011
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EXME 11 / 08.11
Midday Express of 2011-11-08
News from the Communication Directorate General's midday briefing
Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Communication
Today the European Commission has approved a programme aimed at improving living conditions for the poor and stimulating job creation in rural areas in Egypt by supporting the development of agricultural Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
La Commission européenne a adopté aujourd'hui le programme d'action annuel complémentaire en faveur de l'Algérie, incluant un programme d'appui en faveur de la jeunesse - avec une priorité particulière accordée à l'employabilité des jeunes pour un montant de 23,5 millions d'EUR.
The European Commission has awarded grants to support initiatives aimed at tackling violence and intolerance in sport, and to strengthen the way sport is run in Europe. Twelve trans-national projects have received grants ranging from €125 000 to €200 000 (details below) as part of a package of 'preparatory actions' intended to pave the way for the launch of an EU sub-programme for sport, which would also support grassroots campaigns to promote physical activity, social inclusion through sport, and the fight against doping.
Conference examines role of sport agents
Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou will open the EU Conference on Sports Agents which takes place in Brussels on 9-10 November. The event focuses on how agents operate in European football and other major team sports, and will address issues such as lack of transparency in player transfers and exploitation of young sportspeople. One option under consideration is whether sport agents should be regulated through bodies such as the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), which sets business standards in 31 countries. The conference will also take stock of developments in sport since the Commission published its independent study on football agents in the European Union in November 2009. Among those participating will be Ivo Belet, co-author of the European Parliament report on the future of European football, representatives of FIFA and UEFA, the world and European football governing bodies, the European Football Agents Associations, the European Professional Football Leagues, European Club Association (representing nearly 200 top football teams), the International Federation of Professional Footballers (FIFPro), EU Athletes (the European Elite Athletes Association), the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), and the European Rugby Federation (FIRA-AER). The event, which is open to media, takes place at the Hotel Husa President Park in Brussels. To find out more: Study on Sports Agents http://ec.europa.eu/sport/news/study-on-sports-agents-in-the-european-union-english-translation_en.htm
EU Globalisation Fund pays €15.3 million to help 2 194 redundant workers in Austria and the Netherlands
The European Commission has made payments to Austria and the Netherlands from the European Globalisation adjustment Fund (EGF). The total amount of €15.3 million will help 2 194 dismissed workers back into employment, following their redundancies in three sectors: manufacturing of electronic equipment and of basic metals, as well as the printing industry. €9.5 million will help 430 dismissed workers in Austria, of whom 356 are from 54 basic metal manufacturers located in the regions of Steiermark and Niederösterreich, and 74 are former workers of Austria Technologie & Systemtechnik Aktiengesellschaft (AT & S), a leading printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturer. The redundancies resulted from the impact of the financial and economic crisis on the basic metal sector and from the relocation of Austrian PCB production to Shanghai. €5.8 million will help 1 764 dismissed workers from 101 Dutch enterprises in the printing sector. The dismissals are a consequence of the financial and economic crisis which resulted in a substantial decrease in demand for various types of printed media material such as newspapers, professional magazines, etc. These payments follow approval by the Budgetary Authority - the European Parliament and the Council - on 27 September 2011. The relevant proposals were made by the Commission on 10 and 28 June 2011. For more information see also: IP/11/696 as regards Steiermark-Niederösterreich and AT&S; and IP/11/795 regarding the Dutch cases: Noord Brabant; Overijssel; Zuid Holland and Utrecht; and Noord Holland and Flevoland.
EU space policy at the service of the European citizen
Europe needs the space technology as space applications are vital to preserve for the environment, the security, the mobility, and the industrial innovation. A program such a Galileo EGNOS will not only boost growth and competitiveness also brings many advantages in the daily life of citizens. It is important to promote a wide debate among decision-makers, stakeholders and citizens on the future of the European Space policy. This is the aim of the two-days conference "A Space Policy for Society and Citizens," which will be held in the Parliament Hemicycle in Brussels on November 8th and 9th. The presidents of the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission will open the conference. European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, responsible of Industry and Entrepreneurship, will open the plenary session with the participation of the Head of the European Space Agency and the corporate leaders of Astrium, Thales Alenia Space, OHB, Arianespace and Finmeccanica. Conference website , Galileo , GMES
Commissioner Damanaki at Waste Free Ocean event in Oostende harbour
Today, 8 November, Belgian fishermen will be collecting plastic and other marine litter in the Oostende harbour, as part of an event organized in the framework of the European Waste Free Oceans initiative. Maria Damanaki, European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, will be present and take the opportunity to renew her commitment to support innovative solutions for the issue of marine litter and encourage this European initiative, which brings together industry, scientists and fishermen with the aim of reducing floating marine debris on Europe’s coastlines. The initiative aims at engaging Europe’s fishing community in cleaning up floating marine debris and bring it back to land for recycling and sorting. Commissioner Damanaki said: "There will be a multiple benefit from initiatives like these. On the one hand, we will have a visible result in terms of decontamination of ours seas and beaches. Much of the litter collected will be recyclable, so this will also have an extra benefit for the economy. On the other hand, fishermen will be able to engage in an alternative activity which will bring them additional income, especially during the time periods when they stop fishing." The event is open to the press. More information: Waste Free Oceans
Commissioner Johannes Hahn signs action plan for strategic reorientation of regional funds to support growth in Italy
Commissioner for Regional Policy Johannes Hahn and the Italian minister for Regional Affairs Raffaele Fitto have signed on Monday 7 November the action plan to improve and speed up the uptake of structural funds. This plan follows the commitments made by the Italian government on 26 October to improve the use of the structural funds to create growth and jobs. The plan will concentrate resources on key domains: education, broadband, employment, and transport networks. This will be done through a revision of existing programmes. Moreover, Italy intends to propose a reduction of the national co-financing of cohesion programmes. The national resources which will be made available will be allocated to finance major investment in networks, particularly in railways in the South of Italy. An Action Group between the Italian authorities and the Commission is established to determine the exact resources needed to carry through these changes.
Today, the Steering Group of the pilot European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing agreed on joint actions in response to the societal challenge of an ageing European population. The Group is made up of people from the health and social sectors, businesses, civil society to public authorities. In today’s Strategic Implementation Plan, the Group sets out priority actions to meet the challenge of ageing through innovation. The overarching objective is to ensure that the average European citizen has two more active and healthy years to live by 2020. The implementation plan is the first step towards that objective, and focuses on three main areas of life events: prevention, care and cure, and independent living. Five specific actions, ready to be launched next year, have been determined:
The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition by the Danish dairy cooperative Arla Food amba ("Arla") of German dairy producer Allgäuland-Käsereien GmbH, AL Dienstleistungs-GmbH and their subsidiaries (collectively "Allgäuland"). The Commission found that the merged entity will continue to be constrained by a number of credible competitors in the markets concerned.
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