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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 04-07-30

Midday Express: News from the EU Commission Spokesman's Briefings Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: EUROPA, the European Commission Server at <http://europa.eu.int>


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] Less air pollution from small petrol engines
  • [02] Espèces en danger : la Commission souhaite renforcer la protection des animaux et des plantes sauvages contre les pratiques commerciales internationales contraires au développement durable
  • [03] Commission approves Doughty Hanson acquisition of Belgian carpet maker Balta
  • [04] Estimation rapide - juillet 2004 : l'inflation de la zone euro estimée 2,4%
  • [05] July 2004 : the euro area Business Climate Indicator improved again
  • [06] July 2004 : small rebound of economic sentiment in the euro area, slight deterioration in the EU
  • [07] Lutte contre la pauvreté en Afrique : la Commission accorde plus de 165 millions d'€ en faveur du Ghana et de Madagascar
  • [08] Commission allocates €68 million in development aid from 2004-2007 to eight Overseas Countries and Territories
  • [09] The humanitarian crisis in Greater Darfur, Sudan - response of the European Commission - EU by far the biggest donor (udpdate)
  • [10] Quel est le poids des nanotechnologies en Europe ? La Commission lance une consultation ouverte
  • [11] Année européenne : 28 "champions olympiques de l'éducation" présents aux Jeux d'Athènes grâce l'Union Midday Express of 2004-07-30 Reference: MEX/04/0730 Date: 30/07/2004 EXME04/30.7

    MIDDAY EXPRESS

    News from the Press and Communication Directorate General's midday briefing

    Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi de la Direction Générale Presse etb

    Communication

    30/07/04


  • [01] Less air pollution from small petrol engines

    From August 1, only small petrol-fuelled machines - such as lawn movers, chainsaws or hedge trimmers - that meet strict limits for air pollution will be allowed on the market. A new Directive aims to gradually reduce harmful emissions over the next five years, with the first requirements effective from Sunday. The Directive is expected to significantly reduce air pollution. One hour use of a normal chainsaw equipped with a two-stroke engine emits as much hydrocarbons as driving a modern passenger car for 2, 000 km. In total, hydrocarbon emissions from these engines amount to nearly 1 million tonnes in the EU25 every year. Hydrocarbons contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, which is one of the key air pollutants in Europe, causing respiratory problems and limiting the growth of crops and vegetation in high concentrations. Small petrol-fuelled machines also produce significant pollution by nitrous gases, which impair breathing and lung functions, and carbon monoxide, which causes headache, nausea and unconsciousness. The new Directive on non-road mobile machinery (2002/88/EC) links type approval to compliance with new emission standards. Only engines that conform to the standards can be placed on the market six months later. The Directive differentiates between seven types of machinery - handheld and non-handheld, and depending on engine size - and sets limit values for carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, oxides of nitrogen and the sum of hydrocarbons and oxides of nitrogen. There are different deadlines, ranging from 1 August to 1 February 2009.

    [02] Espèces en danger : la Commission souhaite renforcer la protection des animaux et des plantes sauvages contre les pratiques commerciales internationales contraires au développement durable

    La Commission européenne a adopté une proposition visant renforcer les règles internationales relatives au commerce d'espèces rares telles que le grand requin blanc, le poisson Napoléon (très prisé pour les aquariums) et un bois tropical, le ramin. La proposition sera discutée lors de la 13ème conférence des parties la Convention sur le commerce international des espèces menacées d'extinction (CITES) qui sera organisée Bangkok du 2 au 14 octobre. La convention protège près de 33.000 animaux et plantes d'une surexploitation due au commerce international et veille ce que celui-ci respecte le développement durable. Certains pays souhaitent cependant assouplir les contrôles exercés sur des espèces telles que l'éléphant d'Afrique, le petit rorqual et le pygargue tête blanche. Les résultats de la conférence seront repris dans la législation de l'UE.

    [03] Commission approves Doughty Hanson acquisition of Belgian carpet maker Balta

    The European Commission has cleared, under the Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition by UK equity investment fund manager Doughty Hanson & Co Limited of Belgian carpet and other floor coverings maker Balta Industries N.V. (The operation, which was notified on 25 June, was examined under a simplified procedure for unproblematic mergers).

    [04] Estimation rapide - juillet 2004 : l'inflation de la zone euro estimée 2,4%

    Selon une estimation rapide publiée aujourd'hui par Eurostat, l'Office statistique des Communautés européennes, le taux d'inflation annuel de la zone euro s'établirait 2,4% en juillet 2004. En juin 2004, le taux était de 2,4%.

    [05] July 2004 : the euro area Business Climate Indicator improved again

    Following the increase of June, the Business Climate Indicator for the euro area increased again by 0.16 of a point in July reaching a value of 0.58. It is the highest value since March 2001. This favourable development in the BCI was mainly driven by a more positive assessment made by managers in industry on questions concerning export and total order books, as well as their opinions about production trend in the recent past. Only production expectations had a marginal negative impact. Opinions about stocks of finished products remained steady.

    [06] July 2004 : small rebound of economic sentiment in the euro area, slight deterioration in the EU

    The economic sentiment indicator (ESI) for the euro area edged up by 0.4 points in July. This small improvement comes after an equivalent small deterioration in June. The ESI has been hovering around its long-term average of 100 since April. Following its small upturn in May and an equally small decline in June, economic sentiment in the EU experienced a small setback. As in the case of the euro area, the EU-wide ESI has remained more or less steady during the past four months. The different development of the ESI in the two areas was almost entirely due to confidence in the retail sector. While the latter improved in the euro area, it worsened in the EU. Almost all other components of the ESI developed in identical ways in both areas. In particular, industrial confidence and consumer confidence remained unchanged, while construction confidence deteriorated slightly. Confidence in the services sector improved marginally in the euro area and remained unchanged in the EU.

    [07] Lutte contre la pauvreté en Afrique : la Commission accorde plus de 165 millions d'€ en faveur du Ghana et de Madagascar

    La Commission européenne a approuvé des programmes au Ghana et Madagascar, d'un montant de 165 millions d'€, dans le cadre de son engagement lutter contre la pauvreté et promouvoir le développement économique en Afrique. Au Ghana, ces ressources permettront l'Etat d'augmenter ses dépenses en faveur de la réduction de la pauvreté, tandis que dans le sud de Madagascar, la Commission financera un programme de développement rural mis en oeuvre par des organisations locales, ainsi qu'un programme parallèle de réfection des routes, en vue de contribuer la relance de l'économie locale.

    [08] Commission allocates €68 million in development aid from 2004-2007 to eight Overseas Countries and Territories

    The European Commission has allocated €68 million from the European Development Fund (EDF) to development aid to eight Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT) : Anguilla, Falkland Islands, French Polynesia, Montserrat, New Caledonia, Pitcairn, St. Helena and dependencies, and Turks and Caicos. The main objective of the aid is to support the economic and social development of the OCTs. A strong emphasis will be put on developing the tourism sector, an important potential source of income for the local economies.

    [09] The humanitarian crisis in Greater Darfur, Sudan - response of the European Commission - EU by far the biggest donor (udpdate)

    The European Commission is extremely concerned about the magnitude of the humanitarian crisis in the Greater Darfur region of Sudan, where a violent conflict has been raging since early 2003. The ceasefire signed in N'Djamena on 8 April is clearly a welcome development, particularly insofar as it commits the parties to allow fast and unrestricted humanitarian access and to facilitate delivery of humanitarian assistance in accordance with international humanitarian law and principles. However, there is a long way to go before durable stability and, eventually, peace can be re- established. In the meantime, protection remains a top priority and daunting humanitarian needs in all sectors will have to be addressed.

    [10] Quel est le poids des nanotechnologies en Europe ? La Commission lance une consultation ouverte

    La Commission européenne lance une vaste consultation autour de la communication "Vers une stratégie européenne en faveur des nanotechnologies" dans laquelle elle propose une approche intégrée et responsable du développement des nanosciences et des nanotechnologies en Europe. Toutes les personnes intéressées sont invitées y prendre part, soit en s'adressant directement par écrit la Commission avant le 30 septembre 2004 (rtd-nano-strategy@cec.eu.int), soit en répondant un questionnaire en ligne (<a href="http://www.nanoforum.org">http://www.nanoforum.org). Cette consultation sera une source d’inspiration pour de futures initiatives en Europe ; on prêtera également attention aux applications et aux conséquences de ces technologies dans le monde. Certains voient dans les nanotechnologies le possible point de départ d'une prochaine révolution industrielle.

    [11] Année européenne : 28 "champions olympiques de l'éducation" présents aux Jeux d'Athènes grâce l'Union

    Dans le cadre de l'année européenne de l'éducation par le sport 2004 (AEES 2004), la Commission européenne et le Comité d'organisation des Jeux olympiques d'Athènes (ATHOC) lancent une action dont le but est de récompenser des jeunes sportifs ayant réussi concilier sport de haut niveau et cursus scolaire. 28 jeunes seront ainsi "Champions olympiques de l'éducation" compter du 11 août prochain. From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/

    Midday Express: News from the EU Commission Spokesman's Briefings Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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