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European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 05 /12/ 2017

Brussels, 5 December 2017

VAT: Commission welcomes agreement on simpler and more efficient rules for businesses that sell goods online

The Commission welcomes today's agreement on a series of measures to improve how VAT works for online companies in the EU. The new system will make it easier for consumers and businesses, in particular start-ups and SMEs, to buy and sell goods cross-border online. It will also help Member States to recoup the current estimated €5 billion of VAT lost on online sales every year. The agreement was reached by the Economic and Finance Ministers of EU Member States during their meeting in Brussels, only a year after the Commission made its ambitious proposals. Following the agreement, Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market,said: "This is a new step to boost e-commerce in Europe, a few days after reaching an agreement to end unjustified geo-blocking for consumers shopping online. Companies selling abroad online will deal with VAT in the same way as they do for sales in their own countries. This will also make public services more efficient and increase cooperation across borders." Following the agreement, Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs, said: "Brick by brick and piece by piece, a new VAT system is being built that is fit for purpose and within which internet companies operating across borders can thrive. At the same time, we are making sure that non-EU businesses do not get preferential treatment when selling to EU consumers - both directly and through online marketplaces. Today's agreement also bodes well for the more fundamental VAT reform in the EU that is so urgently needed." For more information please consult the press release and MEMO. (For more information: Vanessa Mock – Tel.: +32 229 56194; Patrick McCullough – Tel.: +32 229 87183)

 

L'Union européenne renforce son soutien en faveur de l'éducation pour tous à hauteur de 100 millions d'euros

Le commissaire pour la coopération internationale et le développement, Neven Mimica, a annoncé aujourd'hui la contribution additionnelle de l'UE de 100 millions d'euros pour réapprovisionner le Partenariat mondial pour l'éducation.Le nouveau financement s'ajoute aux 375 millions d'euros déjà attribués en 2014. Ce soutien aidera à assurer une éducation de qualité, inclusive et équitable, ainsi qu'à promouvoir des opportunités permanentes d'apprentissage pour tous. A cette occasion, le Commissaire Mimica a souligné ce moment décisif pour l'ensemble des partenaires et la nécessité de travailler ensemble pour inverser la tendance actuelle à la baisse de l'aide à l'éducation: "Notre action peut apporter un réel changement aux centaines de millions de filles et de garçons dans le monde n'allant pas à l'école. Les 100 millions d'euros supplémentaires annoncés aujourd'hui permettront à plus de 25 millions d'enfants de terminer leurs études primaires ou secondaires. J'appelle d'autres acteurs à se joindre et à être à la hauteur de notre ambition. Ce n'est seulement qu'ensemble que nous pouvons assurer une éducation de qualité pour tous les enfants marginalisés, y compris les plus pauvres, ceux qui se trouvent dans des situations d'urgence ou de conflit, les filles défavorisées et les enfants handicapés." L'effort de l'UE porte ses fruits. À ce jour, le soutien de l'UE au Partenariat mondial pour l'éducation a permis à 64 millions d'enfants supplémentaires d'être scolarisés en primaire en 2014 par rapport à 2002. Le nombre d'enfants achevant l'école primaire est également passé à 73% en 2014, contre 63% en 2002. Le communiqué de presse complet est disponible ici. (Pour plus d'informations: Carlos Martin Ruiz de Gordejuela – Tel.: +32 229 65355; Christina Wunder – Tel.: +32 229 92256)

 

MiFID II: Commission adopts equivalence decision for derivatives trading venues in the United States

The European Commission has today recognised some US trading venues authorised by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as eligible for compliance with the EU trading obligation for derivatives. A derivative is a financial contract linked to the fluctuation in the price of the underlying asset or basket of assets to which it refers. Today's decision will ensure that EU counterparties can continue to trade the most liquid derivatives instruments on US platforms. Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President in charge of Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union said: "It is important that European firms can continue trading in derivatives on US markets. This is an excellent example how a safe, yet global, trading environment can be ensured in a spirit of open cooperation." The CFTC is also working towards exempting certain EU-authorised trading venues from registration requirements in the US. This follows an agreement between the Commission and the CFTC on a common approach regarding certain derivatives trading platforms. It will enable EU platforms to offer trading services to US counterparties. See also the joint EU-CFTC announcement on mutual recognition of derivatives trading venues. Today's decision takes the form of an implementing act, and will enter into force on the day following its publication in the Official Journal of the EU. (For more information: Lucía Caudet - +32 229 56182; Letizia Lupini - +32 229 51958)

 

La ville française de Lyon récompensée par le Prix 2018 des villes les plus accessibles pour avoir placé l'accessibilité au cœur de sa vie urbaine

À l'occasion de la Journée européenne des personnes handicapées, la Commission européenne a annoncé aujourd'hui qu'elle décernait le Prix des villes les plus accessibles (Access City Award) à la ville française de Lyon, récompensant cette dernière pour son accessibilité inclusive et universelle.En remettant le prix, Marianne Thyssen, membre de la Commission chargée de l'emploi, des affaires sociales, des compétences et de la mobilité, a déclaré: «Cette Commission est pleinement résolue àplacer le citoyen au premier plan et à faire de l'inclusion sociale une priorité essentielle de l'UE. Enproclamant le socle européen des droits sociaux le 17 novembre, le Parlement européen, le Conseil etla Commission européenne ont convenu qu'une Europe sociale et inclusive était la voie à suivre.Améliorer l'accessibilité de nos villes et de nos sociétés aux personnes handicapées est dès lors unenécessité absolue. Je tiens à remercier la ville de Lyon, ainsi que toutes les autres villes qui ontparticipé à ce concours, des efforts accomplis pour y parvenir. J'espère que les réalisations de ces villesseront source d'inspiration pour de nombreuses autres et pour toutes les autorités régionales etnationales.»À Lyon, les bus publics sont accessibles à 100% et l'accès à la culture pour tous est par ailleursgaranti au moyen d'équipements accessibles présents dans les bibliothèques, tels que des liseuses, deslecteurs de livres audio et des loupes d'écran. La ville a aussi développé des outils numériques destinésaux personnes handicapées. La Commission européenne a décerné les deuxième et troisième prix, respectivement, à la ville de Ljubljana, en Slovénie, et à la ville de Luxembourg, au Luxembourg. Enfin, la ville de Viborg au Danemark a reçu une mention spéciale. Plus d'information sur le Prix des villes les plus accessibles et les gagnants de l'édition 2018 est disponible dans ce communiqué de presse. (Pour plus d'informations: Christian Wigand– Tel.: +32 229 62253; Sara Soumillion – Tel.: + 32 229 67094)

 

Commissioner Jourová addresses the 4th meeting of the High Level Group on combating Racism, Xenophobia and other forms of Intolerance

This afternoon Commissioner Jourová addresses the 4th meeting of the EU High Level Group on Combating Racism, Xenophobia and other forms of intolerance dedicated to the prevention and responses to racism against minorities.  Ahead of the meeting, Commissioner Jourová said: "Minorities still experience racism and harassment, including online, on a daily basis. We set up two years ago the Code of Conduct to combat online hate speech, but the work is not over. I welcome the new guidance we prepared in consultation with the High Level group on hate speech recording, as well as the guidelines to better train police forces and judges to deal with hate crime." At the meeting, Commissioner Jourová will call on national authorities to fully transpose and enforce the Framework Decision on combating racism and the Victims' Rights Directive. According to the upcoming EU Agency for Fundamental Rights' EU Minorities and Discrimination Survey, Roma, sub-Saharan Africans and North Africans continue to suffer high levels of hate-motivated harassment in their daily lives. This survey will be presented tomorrow at the conference "Reality bites: Experiences of immigrants and minorities in the EU".  More information on the High Level group can be found online. (For more information: Christian Wigand – tel.: +32 229 62253; Mélanie Voin – Tel.: +32 229 58659)

 

Entrepreneurship key for disadvantaged persons to integrate into the labour market, joint Commission-OECD report shows

Policy measures that facilitate entrepreneurship among disadvantaged groups are key to tackle social exclusion and help boosting jobs, indicates the publication 'The Missing Entrepreneurs 2017', a joint report by the European Commission and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published today. Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Marianne Thyssen, said: "Europe has been on the path to recovery for a while now since the crisis, but we must make sure this recovery is inclusive and leaves no one behind. This report shows again that entrepreneurship and self-employment are great means to include disadvantaged groups, and as policy makers we need to give them the necessary tools, such as access to finance, the possibility to develop the right skills and the occasions to form the necessary entrepreneurial networks." Particularly women, young people, migrants, the unemployed and seniors still face several barriers to starting their own business. For instance, in 2016, only about 10% of working women were self-employed, compared to 17.5% of men. And even though they overall show a broad interest in self-employment, only 4.1% of working young people (15-24 years old) were self-employed.Many EU Member States are therefore actively introducing new policies and programmes to support business creation and self-employment for disadvantaged social groups. An example is the SELFIEmployment initiative for young entrepreneurs in Italy, in particular young people who are not in education, employment or training. The initiative is supported by the EU Youth Guarantee and provides training and coaching on business plan development, followed by credit and mentoring in a second phase.In Germany, the project Business Creation for Female Migrants is supporting women from all ethnic backgrounds with mentoring, individual business consultations, workshops, and networking activities. And in 2016, the European Investment Fund and the Co-operative Bank of Karditsa in Greece signed the first guarantee agreement to improve access to credit for micro-enterprises under the EU Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI). More information will be made available here. (For more information: Christian Wigand– Tel.: +32 229 62253; Sara Soumillion – Tel.: + 32 229 67094)

 

Le commissaire Navracsics clôt le premier séminaire sur les projets Erasmus+ en faveur de modes de vie sains

Tibor Navracsics, commissaire à l'éducation, la culture, la jeunesse et au sport, a retrouvé aujourd'hui, lors d'un séminaire à Bruxelles, les représentants des États membres et des organisations sportives ainsi que 39 représentants du programme Erasmus+ pour discuter avec eux des éléments clés de l'appel de Tartu. Signé en septembre 2017 avec le commissaire Andriukaitis, en charge la santé et de la sécurité alimentaire, et le commissaire Hogan, responsable de l'agriculture et du développement rural, cet appel comprend 15 engagements liés à divers domaines, tels que le sport, l'alimentation, la santé, l'innovation et la recherche, ayant pour objectif la promotion de modes de vie sains. En amont du séminaire, le Commissaire Navracsics a déclaré: « Pour promouvoir efficacement des modes de vie sains, nous devons travailler ensemble dans des domaines politiques tels que le sport, l'éducation, l'agriculture, le marketing alimentaire et l'innovation. Nous sommes heureux que cette réunion nous permette de faire un pas important pour donner suite à nos engagements ». La réunion d'aujourd'hui est la première ayant pour thème « Encourager la participation aux activités physiques et sportives » organisée dans le cadre du plan de travail actuel de l'UE sur le sport. Elle donne à ses participants la possibilité de partager des expériences réussies, d'assurer des synergies entre différents projets et d'encourager les parties prenantes à tirer le meilleur parti des opportunités contenues dans le programme Erasmus+ pour promouvoir l'activité physique. (Plus d'informations: Nathalie Vandystadt - Tél .: +32 229 67083, Joseph Waldstein - Tél .: +32 229 56184).

 

La Commission approuve une nouvelle indication géographique protégée de Hongrie

La Commission européenne a approuvé la demande d'inscription du  «Makói petrezselyemgyökér» dans le registre des indications géographiques protégées (IGP). Le «Makói petrezselyemgyökér» est une racine de persil, d'apparence similaire à une carotte mais en blanc. Elle est cultivée dans le sud de la Hongrie dans la région de Makó, renommée depuis longtemps pour sa culture maraîchère. La production et de la demande de persil de Makó ont décollé au milieu et à la deuxième moitié du XIXe siècle. Les producteurs de Makó ont obtenu, grâce à leur travail de perfectionnement, une variété de persil en harmonie avec les conditions environnementales qui est celle toujours cultivée de nos jours et dont la spécificité tient principalement à son exceptionnelle durée de conservation. Cette nouvelle appellation va rejoindre plus de 1415 produits déjà protégés dont la liste est disponible dans la base de données DOOR. Pour plus d'informations, voir aussi les pages sur la politique de qualité. (pour plus d'information: Daniel Rosario – Tel: +32 2 29 56185; Clémence Robin – Tel: +32 229 52 509)

 

Commission ready to work further to build a better governance in the EU telecoms market  

Yesterday the Ministers in charge of Transport, Telecommunications and Energy issues have adopted a general approach on the role of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC Regulation). As part of its Electronic Communications Code proposal, the Commission proposed to reinforce the Agency in order to ensure consistent and predictable application of the rules throughout the Digital Single Market, limiting current fragmentation and inconsistencies. Both Vice-President for Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip and Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel were participating in the Council meeting. Vice president Ansip and Commissioner Gabriel said: "There is a general acknowledgment that BEREC would play a more prominent role in ensuring a consistent application of the Code of communications. Therefore we regret that the Council decided to revert to the old structure of BEREC. The good thing is that we can now proceed with the trilogues in negotiating the Electronic Communications Code. We still trust that in these final negotiations we will all agree to equip BEREC with the necessary tools to play a leading role in fostering the digital single market throughout the EU." The ministers at the Council discussed other key digital and telecoms files, including progress made in designing the future telecom rules, comprising a better coordination of radio spectrum waves. An overview of the Digital Single Market is available in the state of play factsheet; additional factsheets on the need for investment in new networks can be found here and for a better coordination of radio spectrum waves here. The recording of yesterday's press conference following the Council is available here. (For more information: Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel.: +32 229 67083; Inga Höglund - Tel.: +32 229 50698)

 

Mergers: Commission clears the creation of a joint venture by innogy and EEX

The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the creation of a joint venture by innogy AG, controlled by RWE AG, and European Energy Exchange AG, controlled by Deutsche Börse AG, all of Germany. The joint venture will develop and operate an online price comparison and intermediary platform for German retail energy suppliers in the business-to-business segment. innogy is a European energy company active in infrastructure, supply and renewable energy. The RWE group is active in generation, transport, trading and supply of electricity and gas as well as water and district heating. European Energy Exchange develops and operates exchanges for energy and commodity products. The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would raise no competition concerns given the joint venture's limited activities in the EEA. The transaction was examined under the simplified merger review procedure. More information is available on the Commission's competition website, in the public case register under the case number M.8691. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Sarantopoulou - Tel.: +32 229 13740)

 

Eurostat: Octobre 2017 comparé à septembre 2017 - Le volume des ventes du commerce de détail en baisse de 1,1% dans la zone euro: En baisse de 0,5% dans l'UE28

En octobre 2017 par rapport à septembre 2017, le volume des ventes du commerce de détail corrigé des variations saisonnières a diminué de 1,1% dans la zone euro (ZE19) et de 0,5% dans l'UE28, selon les estimations d'Eurostat, l'office statistique de l'Union européenne. En septembre, le commerce de détail avait progressé de 0,8% dans la zone euro et de 0,2% dans l'UE28. En octobre 2017 par rapport à octobre 2016, l'indice des ventes de détail s'est accru de 0,4% dans la zone euro et de 0,9% dans l'UE28. Un communiqué de presse est disponible ici. (Pour plus d'information: Daniel Rosario – Tel.: + 32 229 56185; Kinga Malinowska - Tel.: +32 229 51383)

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

Nine historical sites selected for the European Heritage Label

Ahead of the launch of the European Year of Cultural Heritage in 2018 at the European Culture Forum in Milan, nine sites celebrating or symbolising the fight for European ideals, values, history and integration have been selected to receive the European Heritage LabelLeipzig's Musical Heritage Sites (Germany); the Dohány Street Synagogue Complex (Hungary); Fort Cadine (Italy); Javorca Church (Slovenia); the former Natzweiler concentration camp and its satellite camps (France and Germany);  the Sighet Memorial (Romania); the Bois du Cazier (Belgium); the Village of Schengen (Luxembourg) and the Maastricht Treaty (The Netherlands). Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics, said: "The European Union is built on the values of peace, freedom, tolerance and solidarity. These values must not be taken for granted; we have to work for them every day. All the sites on the European Heritage Label list promote these values and remind us of all those who fought to establish and preserve them. I look forward to celebrating the nine sites that will be added to the list during the European Year of Cultural Heritage in 2018." An independent panel set up by the Commission selected the new sites from 25 candidates preselected by participating Member States. This brings to 38 the number of sites which have been chosen to receive the Label. The Commission will formally designate the sites in February 2018, and an award ceremony will be held in March 2018. More information about the nine sites is available online. (Further information: Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel. +32 229 67083; Joseph Waldstein – Tel. +32 229 56184)

 

Commissioner King in Berlin

Today, Commissioner for the Security Union Julian King is in Berlin, Germany where he will meet Federal Minister of the Interior Thomas de Maizière to discuss issues related to security, anti-radicalisation, information exchange and the interoperability of information systems. Commissioner King will then meet Hans-Georg Maassen, President of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution. This morning, the Commissioner participated in an event organised by the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum, where he spoke at a panel discussion on "What Kind of Union? The Future of the European Project". The event can be watched online. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Katarzyna Kolanko – Tel.: +32 229 63444)

 

Vice-President Katainen in Helsinki to attend Finland's centenary celebrations

European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, visits Helsinki, Finland from Tuesday 5 to Thursday 7 December to attend celebrations marking Finland's 100th year of independence. On Tuesday 5 December he attends the centenary celebratory plenary session at the Parliament of Finland; delivers a keynote speech at the Future of Europe Youth Convention, organised by Finnish Youth Cooperation organisation Allianssi; meets Mr Ilkka Suominen, honorary Chairman of the National Coalition Party; and Mr Mika Ihamuotila, Executive Chairman of Marimekko. He attends the Independence Day reception of the National Coalition Party. On Wednesday 6 December, Finland's Independence Day, Vice-President Katainen attends the Independence Day Reception of the President of the Republic of Finland. (For more information contact Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 229 58615; Siobhán Millbright – Tel.: +32 229 57361)

 

Upcoming events of the European Commission (ex-Top News)

MEX/17/5128


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