Midday Express of 2013-07-16
European Commission - MEX/13/0716 16/07/2013
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EXME 13 / 16.07
16 / 07 / 13
On 17 July, the so-called CRD IV package which transposes -via a Regulation and a Directive- the new global standards on bank capital (the Basel III agreement) into EU law, (see MEMO/13/690) will enter into force. The new rules which will apply from 1 January 2014 tackle some of the vulnerabilities shown by the banking institutions during the crisis, namely the insufficient level of capital, both in quantity and in quality, resulting in the need for unprecedented support from national authorities. They set stronger prudential requirements for banks, requiring them to keep sufficient capital reserves and liquidity. This new framework will make EU banks more solid and will strengthen their capacity to adequately manage the risks linked to their activities, and absorb any losses they may incur in doing business. See also MEMO/13/679 on the overall banking union.
The European Commission has today adopted a Communication to propose key principles for financing poverty eradication and sustainable development after 2015, when the target date of the current Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), is reached. Although the emphasis of the Communication is on developing countries, its approach can be universally applicable, with principles to which every citizen could relate to. Welcoming the Communication, Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs said: “This is another big step towards putting in place the future post-2015 framework. In order to make progress in policy, we need to use all available resources and look at new, innovative and reliable ways to fund poverty eradication and achieve long term, sustainable development.” See also MEMO/13/688
President Barroso met today with the Prime Minister of Iceland, Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, to exchange views on the country's relations with the EU. "The Commission respects the decision of the government regarding the accession process. We look forward to clarity on the validity of Iceland's membership application after the parliamentary assessment on European Union accession, which will take place this autumn", stated President Barroso after their meeting.
The sixth South Africa-EU Summit will be held in Pretoria, South Africa, on Thursday 18 July 2013. The EU will be represented by the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, and the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy. The Republic of South Africa will be represented by President Jacob Zuma. Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs and Commissioner for Trade Karel De Gucht will also be attending the Summit. This year, it takes place on Nelson Mandela's International Day and will be the occasion for Presidents Barroso and Van Rompuy to pay tribute, together with President Zuma, to one of the greatest moral and political leaders of our time. See also MEMO/13/686
Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of Germanischer Lloyd by SDNV
The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the acquisition of Germanischer Lloyd SE of Germany by Stiftelsen Det Norske Veritas ("SDNV") of Norway. Both SDVN and Germanischer Lloyd provide testing, inspection and certification ("TIC") services and related consulting services in the maritime sector (also known as ship classification services), in the oil & gas sector, in the renewable energies sector and in the business assurance services sector. The parties' activities overlap in the provision of ship classification, wind turbine certification and TIC services in the oil & gas sector. The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would not raise competition concerns given the parties' generally moderate combined market positions resulting from the proposed transaction in ship classification and TIC services for the oil and gas industry, the presence of a number of strong players providing TIC services in the relevant sectors, the frequent and easy switching by customers between providers irrespective of the industry sector, and, with regard to wind turbine certification, the existence of large and sophisticated buyers. The operation was examined under the normal merger review procedure. More information will be available on the Commission's competition website, in the public case register under the case number M.6885 .
Euro area annual inflation was 1.6% in June 2013, up from 1.4% in May. A year earlier the rate was 2.4%. Monthly inflation was 0.1% in June 2013. European Union annual inflation was 1.7% in June 2013, up from 1.6% in May. A year earlier the rate was 2.5%. Monthly inflation was 0.1% in June 2013.
The first estimate for the euro area (EA17) trade in goods balance with the rest of the world in May 2013 gave a 15.2 billion euro surplus, compared with +6.6 bn in May 2012. The April 2013 balance was +14.1 bn, compared with +3.3 bn in April 2012. In May 2013 compared with April 2013, seasonally adjusted exports fell by 2.3% and imports by 2.2%. These data are released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. The first estimate for the May 2013 extra-EU271 trade balance was a 15.8 bn euro surplus, compared with -4.9 bn in May 2012. In April 2013 the balance was +8.8 bn, compared with -13.4 bn in April 2012. In May 2013 compared with April 2013, seasonally adjusted exports fell by 1.5% and imports by 2.1%.
Today 400 citizens in Heidelberg will come and share their opinions, comments, visions and questions about the future of Europe, the consequences of the economic crisis and their rights as EU citizens with Vice-President Reding and the Minister-President of Baden-Württemberg, Winfried Kretschmann. "We need a clear and ambitious vision for the future of our continent, for a strong and democratic Europe which is much more than just a large market with a stable currency. There is no alternative to Europe. Germany’s future lies in Europe." The dialogue will take place from 19:00-21:00 in the Halle O2 in Heidelberg and will be broadcast live on the Internet as a web stream . People across Europe can also use Twitter (# EUdeb8) to participate in the debate.