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European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 11 / 02 / 2015

Brussels, 11 February 2015

Road Safety: Cross-border enforcement of traffic rules will be possible in all EU Member States

Today the European Parliament will vote on the Commission's updated rules to tackle traffic offences committed abroad. These rules allow Member States to exchange information in order to identify EU drivers who commit traffic offences abroad, including the four "big killers" that cause 75% of road fatalities: speeding, running traffic lights, failure to use seatbelts and drink driving. These rules will apply to all Member States. There won't be any opt outs. Commissioner Bulc said: "Today's vote marks an important step towards a more effective enforcement of traffic rules across the EU, preventing European citizens from becoming victims of reckless drivers who do not respect traffic rules. Cross-border enforcement of traffic rules could save up to 400 lives a year, which is why a uniform enforcement across the EU is vital." (for more information: Jakub Adamowicz – Tel.: +32 229 50595; Joshua Salsby – Tel.: +32 229 72459).

112 Day: Member States must do better to locate emergency callers to save lives

In 2014, Member States made no progress in spotting precisely where people who dial the EU-wide 112-emergency number are located when they place the call. And several minutes have to pass, in many EU countries, before emergency services actually receive this information. These are the main findings of a report published today by the European Commission on the occasion of the 112 Day. The Commission is calling on Member States to step up efforts and is providing support: it contributed to an analysis prepared by the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations for national administrations to improve caller location. Moreover, it will soon launch a pilot project analysing how data on caller location is submitted from smartphones to 112 emergency call centres. The aim is to speed up emergency services' response time and save lives. Full text; EU rules on 112. (for more information: Mina Andreeva - Tel.: +32 229 91382; Marie Frenay - Tel.: +32 229 64532)

Appointment of a Director in DG Environment Strategy Directorate

On Tuesday 10 February, the Commission appointed Ms Astrid Schomaker to the position of Director in the Strategy Directorate of DG Environment. Ms Schomaker, a German national, is currently Head of Unit for Marine Environment and Water Industry in the same DG. A lawyer by training, Ms Schomaker has been working for the European Commission since 1992, first in the area of international relations, dealing with the United States, Japan and the Andean Community respectively. She joined DG Environment in 2004 and has held several positions as Head of Unit in this Directorate General, covering a variety of environmental policy aspects. (for more information: Jakub Adamowicz – Tel.: +32 229 50595; Andreana Stankova – Tel.: +32 229 57857)

EUROSTAT: Foreign Direct Investment stocks at the end of 2013; EU was a net investor in the rest of the world; The United States, by far the main partner of the EU

Data on FDI stocks help to quantify the impact of globalisation and provide a measurement of longstanding economic links between countries. They measure the accumulated value of all FDI carried out in the past. At the end of 2013, the European Union (EU) held Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) stocks of €4 900 billion in the rest of the world, while stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU amounted to €3 778 bn, meaning that the EU held a net investment position vis-a-vis the rest of the world. Special purpose entities (SPEs) resident in the EU played a significant role in both outward and inward FDI. At the end of 2013, they accounted for 55% of the FDI stocks held by the EU abroad and for 70% of the FDI stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU. A press release is available online. (for more information: Annika BreidthardtTel.: +32 229 56153; Audrey AugierTel.: +32 229 71607)



Statement by High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica and Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides on Dr. Denis Mukwege in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)

"Following information pointing to a new attempt on the life of Dr. Mukwege, we want to restate the European Union's unconditional support for the Panzi Hospital and the life-saving work of Dr. Mukwege for the women and children - victims of sexual violence. Dr. Mukwege is a man of outstanding bravery, a recent winner of the Sakharov Price, who supports the victims of one of the most despicable forms of violence. We urge the authorities in the DRC to fulfil their responsibility to guarantee his personal security and to allow the Panzi Hospital to continue serving its patients in the best possible way." The statement is also available here. (for more information: Catherine Ray – Tel.: +32 229 69921; Irina Novakova, +32 2 295 75 17; Sharon Zarb - Tel.: +32 229 92256)



Commissioner Creţu visits Paris

Today Corina Creţu, Commissioner for Regional Policy, together with Harlem Désir, French Secretary of State for European Union affairs and Sylvia Pinel, French Minister for Housing, Territorial Equality and Rurality, is participating in a seminar on the benefits of Cohesion Policy for innovation and competitiveness of SMEs. Tomorrow, she will visit two EU-funded projects in the Ile-de-France region; the "Pôle Mécatronique", a SMEs incubator in the field of high technology and intelligence located in a disadvantaged area of Ile-de-France, as well as "Juliette", a cluster of laboratories and SMEs specialised in robotics. (for more information: Jakub Adamowicz – Tel.: +32 229 50595; Sophie Dupin de Saint-Cyr – Tel.: +32 229 56169)


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