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EXME 14 / 12.08
12 / 08 / 14
The European Commission is increasing its humanitarian aid to Iraq by an additional €5 million in response to the growing needs, bringing the overall funding for Iraq up to €17 million in 2014. The new funding will bring vital assistance to hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians trapped by the fighting. The Commission has repeatedly scaled up its humanitarian aid in Iraq this year and has a humanitarian office on the ground. Early action has enabled the Commission to provide more than one million displaced civilians with humanitarian assistance in 2014.
The European Commission is giving additional funding of €2.5 million to assist the most vulnerable people affected by the continuing fighting in Eastern Ukraine. This humanitarian aid is geared towards helping to register and relocate internally displaced people, provide shelter, food, water, healthcare, psycho-social assistance and protection in preparation for the coming winter.
The European Commission is moving today to introduce support measures for the EU peach & nectarine sectors, notably by increasing the volumes of fruit eligible for withdrawal operations and free distribution. These markets have been hard hit by unfavourable weather conditions, with additional pressure now resulting from the import ban introduced by Russia. Commenting on the move, EU Agriculture & Rural Development Commissioner Dacian Cioloș stated: “Following the recent decline in prices on the peach and nectarine markets, urgent action is needed to prop up the market and I intend to act immediately. I will be proposing today that the European Commission take immediate, retroactive measures aimed at reducing supply and promoting demand. I have been very clear that I would not hesitate to act and use the new, modernised CAP to provide timely, proportionate and market oriented assistance – this first measure today is a signal of intent. We are monitoring markets closely and I will not hesitate to do likewise to assist other sectors dependent on exports to Russia, should it be necessary.”
The European Commission has informed Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH) of its preliminary view that territorial restrictions on resale contained in BEH's electricity supply contracts with traders on the non-regulated Bulgarian wholesale electricity market may breach EU antitrust rules. Such restrictions limit purchasers' freedom to choose where to resell the electricity bought from BEH. The sending of a Statement of Objections does not prejudge the final outcome of the investigation.
The European Commission has proposed to provide Spain with €1,019,184 from the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) to help 300 workers made redundant in the metal sector in the Comunidad Valenciana region to find new jobs. EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion László Andor commented: "The one million euros from Europe's Globalisation Adjustment Fund the Commission has proposed demonstrate EU solidarity towards those who have lost their jobs as a consequence of the economic and financial crisis. The employment situation in Comunidad Valenciana is a matter of great concern but the region has made good use of the opportunities offered by the EGF, which I witnessed when visiting Valencia in March this year. I trust the concrete measures proposed today would help the redundant workers find suitable new jobs."
President Barroso made separate telephone calls yesterday to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Russian President Vladimir Putin regarding the situation in Ukraine, expressing the EU’s increasing concern regarding the humanitarian impact of the on-going conflict in eastern Ukraine, especially the civilian casualties. President Barroso called for the respect of international humanitarian law and for humanitarian organisations to be supported and facilitated in their present efforts to increase the assistance to all of the population in need.
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