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European Commission - Daily News

Daily News 09 / 07 / 2019

Brussels, 9 July 2019

EU-Ukraine Summit: moving forward together in solidarity

The 21st EU-Ukraine Summit took place yesterday in Kyiv, reaffirming the strong partnership and shared commitment to a comprehensive reform agenda. President of the Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, who represented the European Union alongside European Council President, Donald Tusk, said: “The European Union's partnership with Ukraine is one of mutual solidarity and friendship. It is also one that is flourishing: we have achieved more progress together in the last five years than we did in the two decades before. Ukraine has taken up ambitious reform commitments. The EU, in turn, has provided Ukraine with unprecedented support, from financial and expert support, to autonomous trade measures, and almost 3 million visa-free visits to the EU for Ukrainian citizens to date. This, alongside continued unity on sanctions, shows the EU's commitment to Ukraine – one that remains unwavering.” The Summit recognised the substantial progress made by Ukraine in its reform process, which the European Union and European Financial Institutions have supported with over €15 billion since 2014. At the Summit, the Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Policy, Johannes Hahn, who participated at the summit alongside High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini, signed four programmes worth €109 million to further support decentralisation, the fight against corruption, the empowerment of civil society, and accountable and efficient governance in Ukraine. More information is available in a dedicated press release. In addition, to help mitigate the impact of Russia's destabilising actions in the Sea of Azov region, the European Union has mobilised €10 million, coming on top of existing measures, to support local economic diversification and small businesses, local civil society and citizens' involvement in decision-making, the improvement of community security and public safety. More information on this continued demonstration of EU solidarity with Ukraine in face of its continuous challenges is available in a press release and a factsheet. The European Union has also pledged an additional €17.7 million in humanitarian funding in response to the conflict in the east of Ukraine. A full summary of a summit focussed on tangible, continued EU support to Ukraine under its new President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, is available online. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Maja Kocijančič – Tel.: +32 229 86570; Adam Kaznowski – Tel.: +32 229 89359; Alceo Smerilli – Tel.: +32 229 64887)


Le plan Juncker soutient l'enseignement supérieur en Roumanie et les entrepreneurs sociaux en Italie

La Banque européenne d'investissement fournit un financement de 25 millions d'euros dans le cadre du plan Juncker pour moderniser l'Université polytechnique de Bucarest. Le prêt financera le développement du campus de l'université et modernisera les installations afin de soutenir les activités d'enseignement, d'apprentissage et de recherche. Plus de 5 000 étudiants et 273 employés bénéficieront du réaménagement du campus universitaire. Au cours de la mise en œuvre, le projet créera environ 1 000 emplois. Carlos Moedas, Commissaire européen en charge de la Recherche, de la Science et de l'Innovation, a déclaré: «La science et la recherche de qualité commencent par une éducation de qualité. Il s'agit d'un investissement dans les futurs chercheurs roumains, qui stimulera l'innovation et créera des emplois et la croissance. C'est un autre exemple du plan Juncker en action. » La BEI a également signé un accord de 50 millions d'euros, soutenu par le programme européen pour l'emploi et l'innovation sociale (EaSI) et le Fonds européen pour les investissements stratégiques (EFSI) du plan Juncker avec UniCredit pour soutenir les entrepreneurs sociaux en Italie. Le financement ciblera les micro-entreprises et les entreprises de taille intermédiaire, en mettant l'accent sur les femmes entrepreneurs, l'innovation et la lutte contre le changement climatique. Marianne Thyssen, Commissaire chargée de l'Emploi, des Affaires sociales, des Compétences et de la Mobilité des travailleurs, a déclaré: «Grâce au financement de l'UE dans le cadre de notre programme EaSI, Unicredit sera en mesure de soutenir l'entrepreneuriat social en Italie avec 50 millions d'euros. Le financement à impact social profitera aux PME, mais également à la société dans son ensemble. En aidant les entreprises sociales, nous montrons notre volonté de construire une Europe plus juste et de renforcer sa dimension sociale. » Les communiqués de presse sont disponibles ici. En juin 2019, le plan Juncker a mobilisé près de 410 milliards d'euros d'investissements supplémentaires, dont 2,8 milliards d'euros en Roumanie et 65,4 milliards d'euros en Italie. Le plan soutient actuellement 952 000 petites et moyennes entreprises en Europe. (Pour plus d'informations: Annika Breidthardt - Tél .: +32 229 56153; Enda McNamara - Tél .: +32 229 64976)


EU invests €35 million to develop Artificial Intelligence solutions for cancer prevention and treatment

Today the European Commission launched a call for proposals with €35 million available aimed to support  the development of analysis of health images for cancer diagnostics based on Artificial Intelligence, as well as other tools and analytics focused on the prevention, prediction and treatment of the most common forms of cancer. The call is part of the Horizon 2020 programme, through which the Commission is investing a total of €177 million on the 'Digital Transformation of Health and Care' and 'Trusted digital solutions and Cybersecurity in Health and Care'. Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis, said: "Working together across silos will boost our capacity to better help the patients by sharing and interpreting technological advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment prediction across the EU." Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel, added: "Today's investment confirms our strong support in advanced technologies that will shape the future of the health sector in the European Union. Together with Member States, we must put in place a framework that balances individual concerns and health system constraints, while unleashing innovation in healthcare for the benefit of all Europeans.” Furthermore, Commissioner Gabriel will convene tomorrow the second high-level roundtable that brings together representatives of the European Commission, the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical technology industries and the civil society. During the event she will discuss  the roadmap set out in theCommunication on the digital transformation of health and care, adopted in April 2018, as well as other key topics, such as the next steps on the recently adopted Recommendation on the interoperability of electronic health records systems, artificial intelligence and high-performance computing. She will also highlight the importance of taking forward the exchange of health data across borders and addressing the relevant privacy and data protection aspects. Further information about transformation of healthcare in the Digital Single Market here and about the recently launched Commission work on major research and innovation missions, among them against cancer, here. (For more Information: Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel. +32 229 67083; Anca Paduraru – Tel. +32 229 91269; Marietta Grammenou – Tel.: +32 229 83583; Aikaterini Apostola – Tel. +32 229 87624)


Antitrust: Commission fines Sanrio €6.2 million for restricting cross-border sales of merchandising products featuring Hello Kitty characters

The European Commission has fined Sanrio €6.2 million for banning traders from selling licensed merchandise to other countries within the EEA. This restriction concerned products featuring Hello Kitty or other characters owned by Sanrio. Sanrio Company, Ltd. is a Japanese company that designs, licenses, produces and sells products featuring Hello Kitty and other popular characters. Sanrio also holds the intellectual property rights to the “Mr. Men” and “Little Miss” series of animated characters. In June 2017, the Commission opened an antitrust investigation and has found that Sanrio's non-exclusive licensing agreements breached EU competition rules: (a) Sanrio imposed a number ofdirect measures restricting out-of-territory sales by licensees, such as clauses explicitly prohibiting these sales, obligations to refer orders for out-of-territory sales to Sanrio and limitations to the languages used on the merchandising products. (b) Sanrio also implemented a series of measures as an indirect way to encourage compliance with the out-of-territory restrictions. The Commission has concluded that Sanrio's illegal practices, which were in force for approximately 11 years, partitioned the Single Market and prevented licensees in Europe from selling products cross-border, to the ultimate detriment of European consumers. Sanrio cooperated with the Commission beyond its legal obligation to do so. Therefore, the Commission granted Sanrio a 40% fine reduction in return for this cooperation. Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: "Today's decision confirms that traders who sell licensed products cannot be prevented from selling products in a different country. This leads to less choice and potentially higher prices for consumers and is against EU antitrust rules. Consumers, whether they are buying a Hello Kitty mug or a Chococat toy, can now take full advantage of one of the main benefits of the Single Market: the ability to shop around Europe for the best deals." The full press release is available online in EN, FR, DE, IT. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni - Tel.: +32 229 90526)


Eurostat: Une nouvelle publication numérique - Les Européens en mouvement – Statistiques sur la mobilité des personnes en Europe

Saviez-vous que parmi le demi-milliard de personnes vivant dans l'UE, 8% n'ont pas la nationalité de leur pays de résidence? De plus, 1,3 million d'Européens vivent dans un pays mais travaillent dans un autre et 1,7 million d'étudiants européens étudient à l'étranger. Dans l'Europe d'aujourd'hui, les citoyens se déplacent plus que jamais, que ce soit pour des raisons de migration, d'éducation, de travail ou tourisme. Eurostat a publié les derniers chiffres sur la mobilité des personnes en Europe dans la nouvelle publication numérique "People on the move - statistiques sur la mobilité en Europe". Plus d'information est disponible en ligne. (Pour plus d'information: Christian Wigand – Tél.: +32 229 62253; Mélanie Voin – Tél.: +32 229 58659)




Commissioner Avramopoulos in Kenya

Tomorrow, Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos will be in Nairobi, Kenya, where he will participate in the opening session of the African Regional High-Level Conference on Counter-Terrorism and the Prevention of Violent Extremism Conducive to Terrorism, together with President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta, Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres and Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat. He will also meet Under-Secretary-General of the UN Counter-Terrorism Vladimir Ivanovich Voronkov. Discussions will focus on efforts to respond, prevent and counter terrorism in Africa, lessons learned and the role of the international community to support these aims. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Markus Lammert – Tel.: +32 229 58602)


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


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