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EXME 12 / 03.07
Midday Express of 2012-07-03
News from the European Commission's Midday Briefing
Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Commission européenne
The European Commission and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy have today outlined the way forward for the EU's constructive engagement in the Arctic. The Arctic region is a vital component of the Earth's environment, affected hard by climate change, with severe consequences to its ecosystem and traditional livelihoods of its inhabitants. At the same time, the retreating ice and the technological progress are opening up new economic opportunities in the region such as shipping, mining, energy extraction and fishing. While beneficial for the global economy, these activities also call for a prudent approach: further repercussions for the fragile Arctic can be expected if top environmental standards are not met.
The European Commission’s Sustainable Urban Mobility campaign was launched today and represents a three-year initiative aiming to support sustainable urban mobility campaigners in 31 countries. Activities began today with the opening of a registration system to support outstanding actions for fostering positive change in attitudes and behaviour.
As the holiday season begins, passengers leaving from European airports should be confident about their rights in case of flight delays, cancellation or lost luggage. Tomorrow, at 28 airports across Europe, European Consumer Centres (ECC-Net) will be at hand to offer advice to European citizens about their air passenger rights. The ECC-Net offers citizens free advice about their rights when travelling and shopping across borders. They can also help them solve problems with traders in another EU country (plus Iceland and Norway) when things go wrong.
The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Talaris Topco of the UK by Glory of Japan. Both companies develop and produce cash handling machines. The Commission concluded that the proposed transaction would not raise competition concerns as a number of strong competitors will remain active on the markets concerned.
The European Commission has cleared the proposed acquisition of Cable & Wireless Worldwide Plc ("CWW") by Vodafone Group Plc under the EU Merger Regulation. Both companies provide fixed and mobile telecommunications services in the European Economic Area (EEA). The Commission concluded that the transaction would raise no competition concerns, as the parties' activities are largely complementary. CWW's main activity is related to fixed telecoms, whereas Vodafone is mainly active in mobile telecoms.
In May 2012, compared with April 2012, the industrial producer price index fell by 0.5% in the euro area (EA17) and by 0.7% in the EU272. In April prices rose by 0.1% in the euro area and remained stable in the EU27. In May 2012 compared with May 2011, industrial producer prices gained 2.3% in the euro area and 2.4% in the EU27.
Merger: Commission clears acquisition of agribusiness Viterra by commodities trading and mining company Glencore
The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the acquisition of Viterra Inc. by Glencore International plc. Viterra is a global agribusiness active in grain handling and marketing, food processing and the sale of agriproducts. Through its grain handling and marketing operations Viterra accumulates, stores, transports and markets grains, oilseeds and special crops. Glencore is a commodities trading and mining company active in the supply of metals, energy products, agricultural products and associated services to industrial customers worldwide. Through its agricultural products business, Glencore originates and markets different grains and oilseeds, oilseed meals, edible oils, biodiesel, cotton and sugar. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Mergers: Commission clears the creation of a JV between KPN Group Belgium, De Persgroep and Roularta Media Group
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of joint control by the Belgian groups KPN Group Belgium, De Persgroep and Roularta Media Group, of the undertaking Hawaii NV, a newly created company constituting a joint venture. KPN GB is mainly active as a provider of mobile telephony services in Belgium, under its principal brand BASE. De Persgroep is a Belgian family-owned media company, active as newspaper and magazine publisher in Belgium and the Netherlands. Roularta is magazine publisher in Belgium, France, the Netherlands and Germany and owner of TV channels in Belgium. Hawaii NV is a platform provider of content and telecommunication services, offering mobile devices users access to mobile telecommunication and mobile content services. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Commission clears acquisition of internet retailer HSE24 Beteiligungs business by the investment fund manager Providence Equity Partners VI International
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control by Providence Equity Partners VI International LP (''PEP'') of the undertaking HSE24 Beteiligungs GmbH (''HSE24''). PEP is managing and controlling investment funds. HSE24 is operating home and teleshopping broadcasters and related Internet retail offerings. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Commission clears the acquisition of MW Power by Metso Power
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of sole control of the whole of MW Power Oy ("MW Power", Finland) by Metso Power Oy ("Metso Power", Finland). Metso Power is active in the production of large and extra-large biomass boiler plants and boiler systems for the paper and pulp industry. MW Power designs, manufactures, markets and sells medium- and small scale heat and power plants, focusing mainly on renewable fuel solutions. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Commission clears acquisition of Tokmanni by Nordic Capital
The European Commission has granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation to the acquisition of Tokmanni of Finland by Nordic Capital, based in Jersey. Tokmanni is a discount retailer for the sale of everyday consumer goods, both food and non-food products. Nordic Capital is one of the active funds in the private equity house Nordic Capital Group. The portfolio companies of Nordic Capital Group are active in diverse areas (such as offshore energy services, IT services, etc.) mainly in Northern Europe. The operation was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.
Consumer Product Safety – a common objective
A Trilateral EU-China-US Consumer Product Safety Summit took place on 28-29 June in the United States with the participation of the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, John Dalli, and his counterparts from the US and China. This was the third time that the EU, China and the US have met in this trilateral format at such a high level to discuss non-food consumer product safety issues and the approach is yielding positive results. Since the start of this trilateral cooperation, four years ago, the three partners have laid down excellent foundations for collaboration in the area of consumer product safety. During last week's Summit, participants took stock of the achievements, discussed how to take this cooperation forward and debated several new initiatives. While bilateral mechanisms are in place, the tri-lateral meetings are a symbol of the commitment to the collaboration between the three parties at the highest level. The main topic of the summit was: "Product safety surveillance from factory to front door: a cooperative effort". Commissioner Dalli and his US and Chinese counterparts issued a joint statement outlining how they will further enhance regulatory cooperation and promote cooperation on "seamless surveillance". The concept of seamless surveillance links product safety controls along the product supply chain by enhancing cooperation between product safety authorities in countries of origin and countries where the products are sold. The joint statement also highlights some specific actions which will help implement the trilateral cooperation, including on product traceability, better information exchange between regulators and to continue disseminating product safety information to industry stakeholders. With the globalisation of supply chains international cooperation has become essential to ensure the safety of consumers in the EU. This trilateral cooperation is serving to build mutual trust and to promote better coordinated responses to product safety challenges. To see statement: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/docs/trilateral_product_safety_en.pdf
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