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European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 10 / 08 / 2016

Brussels, 10 August 2016

Energy Union: EU invests 187.5 million Euro in first gas pipeline between Estonia and Finland

The EU is investing and supporting infrastructure that is needed to unite the energy markets. Today, the European Commission has allocated €187.5 million for the construction of the Balticconnector, the first Estonia-Finland gas pipeline. The Balticconnector will end the gas isolation of Finland and develop the Baltic regional gas market. It contributes to solidarity and security of supply in the entire Baltic region. Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete said: "Diversifying energy sources and routes, and uniting the energy markets, is at the heart of the Energy Union. This is key to ensuring secure, affordable and sustainable energy for all EU citizens. What the Commission has started with the Poland-Lithuania pipeline (GIPL) we are now pursuing with the support to Balticconnector – promoting a chain of projects that will end the gas isolation of north-Eastern Europe and develop the Baltic regional energy market". The EU’s financial support to the Balticconnector comes from the Connecting Europe Facility program and corresponds to 75% of the needed funding. The pipeline will be constructed jointly by Baltic Connector Oy (Finland) and Elering AS (Estonia) and it will include Finnish onshore (22 km) and offshore (80 km) sections, as well as an Estonian onshore (50 km) one. The pipeline is expected to be operational by December 2019. Till 2020 a total of €5.35 billion is allocated to European priority projects under Connecting Europe. When completed, the projects will ensure significant benefits for at least two Member States, enhance security of supply, contribute to market integration and further competition as well as reduce CO2 emissions. Find the list of all projects receiving EU support under Connecting Europe. And see MEMO/15/5845 on ending the energy isolation in the Baltics. Furthermore, the Investment Plan for Europe (EFSI) has already boosted infrastructure investment in the energy sector. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen - Tel.: +32 229 56186 - Nicole Bockstaller – Tel.: +32 229 5258)

 

Energy Union: EU funds a new 140 km electricity line in Bulgaria
The Commission considers energy infrastructure projects in Bulgaria and its neighbouring member states a priority for the Energy Union. Today,the European Commission has allocated €29.9 million to the construction of a new 140 km electricity line between Dobrudja and Burgas in Bulgaria.By transmitting wind and photovoltaic energy, the power line will integrate renewables in the electricity market. The European support will also enhance the capacity of the Bulgarian electricity grid and strengthen its resilience. The electricity line is a “project of common interest” and it belongs to the so-called 'Black Sea Corridor' project cluster: three electricity lines which will reinforce the electricity transmission corridor along the Romanian and Bulgarian coast, as well as between the rest of Europe and Turkey. The EU support in Bulgaria will contribute to reinforce security of electricity supply, integrate renewable energy in the electricity market, and to increase future power exchanges, in view of the expected wind power from Greece and photovoltaic energy from South Bulgaria. Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete said: "The new Bulgarian line will increase the power exchanges in the area, and will allow the transmission of a new wave of clean energy from South-Eastern Europe. This in line with the Energy Union strategy, which aims at securing and integrating energy markets while ensuring sustainable energy for citizens and enterprises". The EU support to the new Bulgarian electricity line corresponds to 50% of the needed funding. The new electricity line will be constructed by the Bulgarian Transmission System Operator (TSO) Elektroenegrien Sistemen Operator EAD and it is expected to be operational by 2022. Till 2020 a total of €5.35 billion is allocated to European priority projects under the Connecting Europe Facility. When completed, the projects will ensure significant benefits for at least two Member States, enhance security of supply, contribute to market integration and further competition as well as reduce CO2 emissions. Find the list of all projects receiving EU support under Connecting Europe. Furthermore, the Investment Plan for Europe (EFSI) has already boosted infrastructure investment in the energy sector. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen - Tel.: +32 229 56186 - Nicole Bockstaller – Tel.: +32 229 5258)

 

Estonia is the 17th Member State to participate in EU regulation supporting international couples

Today the Commission has confirmed Estonia's decision to join the 16 countries already participating in EU rules allowing international couples to choose which country's law applies to their divorce. The Rome III Regulation aims to give couples legal certainty, prevent a "rush to court" and "forum shopping" practices in divorce cases, and avoid costly proceedings, both financially and emotionally. Thanks to this Regulation, international couples are able to agree in advance which law would apply in the event of their divorce or legal separation. In case they cannot agree, judges have a common formula for deciding which country's law applies. Věra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality said: "Every year there are around 100,000 international divorces in the EU. The Rome III Regulation protects international couples from complicated, lengthy and painful procedures. I congratulate Estonia on taking this step to make life simpler for their citizens and others across the EU – especially at a time that can be very difficult for any parents and children involved." The Rome III Regulation, in place since June 2012, marked the first time ever that EU Member States decided to proceed the ‘enhanced cooperation’ procedure (IP/10/347). Initially, there were 14 Member States participating in this cooperation, with Greece and Lithuania joining since (IP/12/1231 and IP/13/975). Enhanced cooperation – introduced by the Treaty of Nice in 2001–allows a group of at least nine Member States to implement measures if the 28 Member States do not reach an agreement together. More information can be found online. (For more information:Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel.: +32 229 67083; Sara Soumillion – Tel.: +32 229 67094)

 

 

 

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