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The number of new investment projects mediated by CzechInvest is continually growing. As indicated by the latest statistics, the agency attracted 350 new investments to the Czech Republic in 2012, surpassing the record set in 2011. These new investments will bring more than CZK 26 billion to the country and create more than 12,000 new jobs.
The Commission has today decided to make Mr Jerzy Bogdan PLEWA Director General of the Agriculture and Rural Development Directorate-General (DG AGRI). The appointment takes effect on 16 April 2013. Mr Plewa, who is 58 and a Polish national, is currently Deputy Director-General in DG AGRI, responsible for Rural Development and Sustainability Policy. Before that he was Deputy Director-General in charge of international affairs in DG AGRI.
Vice-President of the European Commission, EU Justice Commissioner
The 2013 EU Justice Scoreboard
Press Conference /Brussels
27 March 2013
Effective Justice Systems and Economic Growth
I am here today to present a new tool that the Commission has just adopted. The EU Justice Scoreboard is designed to promote effective justice systems in Europe. By improving the justice system we also want to contribute to restoring growth in Europe.
Vice-President and Commissioner for Transport
Reducing serious injuries: the way forward to make Europe’s roads safer
Road Transport Safety Conference on Serious Injuries/Dublin
28 March 2013
Minister, ladies and gentlemen
Thank you for inviting me to Dublin to speak at today’s conference.
I would like to commend the Irish EU Presidency for selecting serious road traffic injuries as one of its transport policy priorities.
Vindin is planning several wind parks near Vaasa in an investment worth about EUR 250 million.
The Swedish wind energy company Vindin is planning to invest about EUR 250 million in wind parks located near Vaasa in western Finland. According to Vindin’s CEO Anders Lyberg, the investment may consist of more than two or three wind parks because new partners are now interested in the project. Vindin would sell the electricity it produces in Finland first to Nord Pool and then to the company’s owners.
With the forecast for expenditure on CAP Direct Payments & Market measures for 2014 higher than the provisional ceiling for 2014 agreed by EU heads of government1, the European Commission has tabled a proposal for "Financial Discipline" to ensure that spending remains within budget limits.
The Commission takes note of temporary restrictions on the free movement of capital, including capital controls, imposed by the Republic of Cyprus as part of a series of measures to prevent the significant risk of uncontrollable outflow of deposits which would lead to the collapse of the credit institutions and to the immediate risk of complete destabilisation of the financial system of Cyprus.
New regulations define the minimum requirements for energy efficiency during renovation and alteration work.
Finland’s Ministry of the Environment issued new regulations on 27.2.2013 for improving the energy efficiency of buildings during renovation and alteration works. The regulations will come into effect on 1.6.2013 for buildings in public use and on 1.9.2013 for other buildings.
An extra EURO 11.2 billion is required for the EU budget to reimburse beneficiaries of EU funded programmes completed across Europe in 2012 as well as to honour the Cohesion Policy claims that will fall due in 2013.
The European Commission has finalised a series of measures to promote regional cooperation between Western Balkan countries totalling €272.75 million for the period 2012-2013.
"These funds are good news as regional cooperation is a central element of the EU's efforts to bring forward the reform process of the countries in the Western Balkans and help the region achieve economic prosperity and political stability", said European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle.
In March the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) decreased in both the euro area and the EU, putting on hold the recovery that had started in November of last year. Sentiment declined by 1.1 points in the euro area (to 90.0) and by 0.6 points in the EU (to 91.4).
Euro area developments
Finnish companies St1, Green Fuel Nordic, Vapo, Fortum and UPM are planning new biorefineries for the production of biofuels for traffic.
The EU’s Renewable Energy Directive, which requires that renewable energy should account for at least 10% of the energy used in traffic by 2020, is creating a boom in biorefinery projects in Finland. There are currently more than EUR 1 billion worth of biorefinery projects underway or planned in Finland.
The President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy and the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, spoke by telephone today following the postponement of the 21st Summit between Japan and the European Union (EU).
Vice-President of the European Commission
More interactivity, more involvement, more collaboration: improving digital competence
Digital Competence Day /Brussels
26 March 2013
Ladies and gentlemen, dear colleagues
I am delighted to be with you here today to open the Commission's first Digital Competence Day and to be in the company of the pioneers and leaders in this important domain.
Acquisitions by Richter Industries and Surfactor are expected to boost turnover by EUR 50 million.
Two German family-owned companies, Richter Industries and Surfactor, have invested in Finnish factories and engineering expertise during the past year. The acquisitions are expected to bring the two companies about EUR 50 million in turnover in the coming years.
The EU and Japan today officially launched the negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The aim is for a comprehensive agreement in goods, services and investment eliminating tariffs, non-tariff barriers and covering other trade-related issues, such as public procurement, regulatory issues, competition, and sustainable development.
The first round of negotiations will be held in Brussels from 15 to 19 April 2013.
Bristol, Brussels, Glasgow and Ljubljana have been chosen as the four finalists to proceed to the next stage of the European Green Capital 2015 Award organised by the European Commission. The European Green Capital Award is an annual prize that goes to one city every year, singling out its environmental performance.
Bristol, Brussels, Glasgow and Ljubljana have been shortlisted from 8 entries across Europe. An independent panel of 12 experts assessed each entry on the basis of 12 indicators:
• Local contribution to global climate change
The European Commission has today adopted a Green Paper that launches a three-month public consultation on how to foster the supply of long-term financing and how to improve and diversify the system of financial intermediation for long-term investment in Europe. Long-term investment represents spending that enhances the productive capacity of the economy. This can include energy, transport and communication infrastructures, industrial and service facilities, climate change and eco-innovation technologies, as well as education and research and development.
The EU needs to attract talented non-EU students and researchers who can contribute to our growth and competitiveness with their knowledge and skills. Moving to Europe temporarily is an opportunity embraced by over 200.000 students and researchers from outside the EU every year. However, far too many of them have to face unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles.
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“The European Commission is working hard to facilitate a solution to help Cyprus.
We recognise the progress now being made by the Cypriot government towards a solution which can pave the way for an agreement on a financial assistance programme for Cyprus. Intensive work and contacts will continue in the coming hours.
Over the last decade, EU27 trade in goods with Japan has been characterised by a fall in the share of Japan, particularly significant in the case of imports, and by a marked reduction in the EU27 trade deficit with Japan.
The European Commission has just made payments to Austria, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Romania, Spain and Sweden from the European Globalisation adjustment Fund (EGF). The total amount of €24.2 million will help 5,271 workers in those countries back into employment, following their dismissals in a wide variety of sectors including automotive, motorcycles, mobile phones, metal products, electronic equipment and social work activities.
If the EU is to meet its energy policy targets, it must take society with it, says the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) in an opinion that calls for the establishment of a European Energy Dialogue.
The opinion, which was handed to Günther Oettinger, EU Commissioner in charge of energy at the EESC's plenary session yesterday, had been drawn up by Richard Adams (United Kingdom, Various Interests Group) at the request of the European Commission.
The success of the European project depends on effective participation of all local, regional and civil society players in policy design and implementation and efficient coordination at all levels of governance; this was the main recurring message in yesterday’s EESC plenary debates with the president of the Committee of the Regions (CoR), Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso.
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