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European Commission Spokesman's Briefing for 00-06-09

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>

MIDDAY EXPRESS

News from the Spokesman's midday briefing

Nouvelles du rendez-vous de midi du Service Presse et Communicationb

09/06/2000


CONTENTS / CONTENU

  • [01] President Prodi meets Dutch Nobel Prize winner t'Hooft
  • [02] EU will pay farmers who were affected by unauthorised GMOs in rapeseed
  • [03] Commission clears Johnson & Johnson venture with Mercury Asset Management
  • [04] Premier rapport européen sur la qualité de l'éducation scolaire
  • [05] Euro-zone and EU15 GDP grew by 0.7%; +3.2% compared to the first quarter 1999
  • [06] Loyola de Palacio se félicite de l'accord sur les relations entre le Parlement et la Commission
  • [07] Anna Diamantopoulou : "UN world women's conference must not fail"
  • [08] Frits Bolkestein outlines objectives for single European capital market
  • [09] Press conference with Erkki Liikanen and Steve Ballmer

  • [01] President Prodi meets Dutch Nobel Prize winner t'Hooft

    Today at 15h00, the President of the European Commission, Romano Prodi, meets Gerardus t'Hooft, one of the two European winners of the Nobel Prize in 1999. Professor t'Hooft, one of the world's leading physicists, is coming to Brussels to launch, together with Research Commissioner Philippe Busquin, a new batch of 167 training networks for young scientists from all over Europe. These networks, supported by the Commission through the Research Framework Programme, allow young researchers the chance to work and train with experienced scientists. The Commission will provide support through these networks for 4000 person-years of training to some of Europe's most talented young scientists over the next four years. Professor Gerardus t'Hooft, who is himself a partner in one of the new networks, will give a plenary lecture on the research that led to his award.

    [02] EU will pay farmers who were affected by unauthorised GMOs in rapeseed

    The Cereals Management Committee of the European Union has approved today a European Commission's proposal to allow farmers who had to destroy colza plants containing unauthorised GMOs to receive the payments they are entitled to under existing rules for traditional area payments. This payment is not an emergency aid but derogation from the existing rules under the arable crops support regime. The crop should have been maintained under normal growth conditions until flowering or until the 30 June for the farmers to receive the usual payment.

    [03] Commission clears Johnson & Johnson venture with Mercury Asset Management

    The European Commission has approved a joint venture between Johnson & Johnson and Mercury Asset Management Limited, part of the Merril Lynch group. The joint venture company - Agora Healthcare Services Limited - will be active in the provision of specialist IT healthcare management services.

    [04] Premier rapport européen sur la qualité de l'éducation scolaire

    Mme Viviane Reding, Commissaire européenne responsable de l'Education et de la Culture, a remis hier aux ministres de l'Education des Quinze le premier rapport européen sur la qualité de l'éducation scolaire. Les comparaisons entre les Etats portent sur 16 critères qui concernent l'acquis des élèves dans des matières importantes comme la lecture ou les mathématiques, les taux de réussite, la participation des acteurs du système à son évaluation et les ressources mises à disposition. Ce rapport sur la qualité ne préfigure pas une harmonisation des systèmes éducatifs des Etats membres. Il a pour objectif de donner des outils aux décideurs du monde de l'éducation pour les aider dans la définition de leurs priorités et d'encourager les échanges de bonnes pratiques à l'intérieur de l'espace européen de l'éducation et de la formation.

    [05] Euro-zone and EU15 GDP grew by 0.7%; +3.2% compared to the first quarter 1999

    (! embargo 12 am !) Euro-zone and EU15 GDP both grew by 0.7% during the first quarter of 2000, compared to the fourth quarter of 1999, according to first estimates from Eurostat. These figures follow a rise of 0.8% for both the euro-zone and the EU15 in the fourth quarter of 1999. An acceleration was recorded in gross fixed capital formation in the euro-zone (+2.1%) and in the EU15 (+2.0%). Conversely, the growth in households final consumption expenditure stalled (0.0% in the euro-zone and +0.1% in the EU15). Exports (+3.2% for the euro-zone and EU15) as well as imports (+3.2% for the euro- zone and +3.0% for the EU15) accelerated.

    [06] Loyola de Palacio se félicite de l'accord sur les relations entre le Parlement et la Commission

    Loyola de Palacio, vice-présidente de la Commission européenne en charge des Relations avec le Parlement européen, a fait part de sa grande satisfaction après l'accord de la Conférence des Présidents du Parlement européen sur le projet d'Accord-cadre entre la Commission et le Parlement. "Je crois sincèrement que les deux institutions en sortent renforcées", a-t- elle déclaré à l'issue de la réunion qu'elle a eue ce jour avec Romano Prodi, président de la Commission, et la Conférence des Présidents. "Cet accord représente plus qu'un ensemble de règles pratiques : il s'agit d'un instrument qui permettra tant à la Commission qu'au Parlement de développer leurs prérogatives respectives dans un climat de confiance mutuelle et de collaboration plus étroite."

    [07] Anna Diamantopoulou : "UN world women's conference must not fail"

    Speaking during the critical closing phase of the UN "Beijing +5" world women's conference in New York where work is continuing feverishly on a final text for the close on Friday, Anna Diamantopoulou, European Commissioner for Employment and Social Policy said : "We need to find a final agreement, in particular to avoid disaffection with globalisation in the post-Seattle period. However, the Beijing Platform for Action of course remains our bottom line. Good progress has been made in the talks so far but, whatever the final result, the EU which is ahead of the field must make its own position crystal clear."

    [08] Frits Bolkestein outlines objectives for single European capital market

    In a time of rapid and unparalleled change in financial markets the European Commission must "strive to find the balance between over and under- regulation", Internal Market Commissioner Frits Bolkestein said in a speech today. Speaking in Lucerne on "Visions for the European financial markets" he said the EU Member States at the Lisbon summit had set the objective of fully integrated securities and capital markets by 2005 and an integrated risk capital chain by 2003, and that those dates must be respected. To achieve that timetable he outlined a series of measures that the Commission would soon be introducing to increase the access to capital for European companies, promote greater investor participation in markets and guarantee an efficient, fair, stable and transparent trading environment. In the longer term, the Commissioner said the European Union would need to develop a leaner regulatory approach to keep pace with the fast-moving financial world. "We need to have mechanisms to lay down rapidly more precise, common technical rules based on this legislation," he said.

    [09] Press conference with Erkki Liikanen and Steve Ballmer

    Today, Erkki Liikanen, European Commissioner responsible for Enterprise and Information Society, and Steve Ballmer, President and CEO of Microsoft will give a press briefing immediately following the opening session of the European Business Summit, which begins at 14.00 hrs. The venue is Hotel Sheraton, Place Rogier, Brussels. Please consult the web-site of the European Business Summit, www.ebsummit.org, for further information regarding accreditation, etc.

    MIDDAY EXPRESS


    From EUROPA, the European Commission Server at http://europa.eu.int/
    © ECSC - EC - EAEC, Brussels-Luxembourg, 1995, 1996


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