Daily News 03 /11/ 2017


President Juncker to attend presentation by Luc Van den Brande of his report on outreach to citizens

President Jean-Claude Juncker will attend the presentation of the report prepared by his Special Adviser, Luc Van den Brande, on outreach towards citizens on 6 November from 16:00 to 16:45 at the European Commission Visitors’ Centre (Charlemagne – 170, Rue de la Loi). The report takes stock of the Commission’s communication outreach and includes concrete communication guidelines and recommendations. It looks at synergies with other European and national actors around promoting dialogue with the public and sets out a framework for a more citizen-focused Europe. The report also looks at the role of communication technologies and highlights the importance of engaging with Europe’s youth. It will contribute to the ongoing European debate triggered by the publication of the White Paper on the future of Europe as well as the recent State of the Union address by President Juncker. The report will be online as of 16:00 on 6 November. (For more information: Alexander Winterstein – Tel.: +32 229 93265)


EU supports rural electrification in Tanzania

During an official visit to Tanzania, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica signed a €50 million programme to support rural electrification in the country. The new financing agreement will support the access of Tanzanian citizens to affordable and sustainable energy through extending energy grids as well as expanding distribution networks. Commissioner Mimica said: “Our important programme worth €50 million will help accelerate the Tanzanian people’s access to modern energy. It will provide electricity to over 3600 villages in rural regions of Tanzania, essentially benefitting 1 million people. And this access to energy is vital: it will increase the quality of life in rural areas, improve health and educational services and bring clear benefits, particularly to women and children.” During visit to Tanzania, Commissioner Mimica met government representatives, international and national development partners, civil society and non-governmental organisations. Read the full press release here. (For more information: Carlos Martin Ruiz De Gordejuela – Tel.: +32 229 65322; Christina Wunder – Tel.: +32 229 92256)


Concentrations: la Commission autorise l’acquisition du contrôle conjoint de Groupe Pisto par CNP Assurances, Prédica et Macquarie

La Commission européenne a approuvé, en vertu du règlement européen sur les concentrations, l’acquisition du contrôle conjoint du Groupe Pisto, basé en France, par les sociétés françaises CNP Assurances et Prédica, et par la société australienne Macquarie. Groupe Pisto était précédemment contrôlé conjointement par Prédica et Macquarie. Groupe Pisto est actif dans la gestion d’installations de réception, de stockage et de transfert de produits pétroliers. CNP Assurances est active dans le secteur de l’assurance de personnes en France, notamment dans l’épargne-retraite et le risque prévoyance. Prédica fait partie du Groupe Crédit Agricole, qui fournit un large éventail de services bancaires et d’investissement. Macquarie fournit des services bancaires et financiers, ainsi que des services de conseil, d’investissement et de gestion de fonds. La Commission a conclu que la concentration envisagée ne soulèverait pas de problème de concurrence dans la mesure où les entreprises ne sont pas actives sur les mêmes marchés. L’opération a été examinée dans le cadre de la procédure simplifiée du contrôle des concentrations. De plus amples informations sont disponibles sur le site internet concurrence de la Commission, dans le registre public des affaires sous le numéro d’affaire M.8663. (For more information: Lucía Caudet – Tel.: +32 229 56182; Yizhou Ren – Tel.: +32 229 94889)

Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of Banque Internationale à Luxembourg by Legend Holdings Corporation

The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of Banque Internationale à Luxembourg (BIL) by Legend Holdings Corporation of China. BIL is a private banking group operating in retail, private and corporate banking, mainly active in Luxembourg. Legend Holdings is a diversified investment holding group listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange with a portfolio of strategic and financial investments. The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would raise no competition concerns because there are no horizontal overlaps or vertical relationships between the activities of the two companies. 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.8643. (For more information: Lucía Caudet – Tel.: +32 229 56182; Yizhou Ren – Tel.: +32 229 94889)




High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini travels to Washington, D.C. [* update on 03/11/17, 14:18]

On Monday 6 and Tuesday 7 November, the High Representative/Vice-President, Federica Mogherini will visit Washington D.C. to discuss EU-US bilateral relations as well as the latest developments on a number of foreign policy issues of common interest, including the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“Iran nuclear deal”), and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. She will meet with the Vice-President of the United States, Mike Pence, as well as with a number of leading members of the US Senate and the US House of Representative, including Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House of Representatives. The High Representative/Vice-President will also address the House of Representatives’ Republican Conference. The visit will also be an opportunity to meet with Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Yukiya Amano. Coverage will be available on EbS. For more information on EU-US relations, visit the website of the EU Delegation. (For more information: Catherine Ray – Tel.: + 32 229 69921; Adam Kaznowski – Tel: +32 229 89359)

European Commission present at the UN climate conference in Bonn

From 6 – 17 November, the 23rdConference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP23) takes place in Bonn, Germany under the presidency of Fiji. It will bring together ministers and government officials, as well as a wide range of representatives from civil society and business. The European Union will be represented by Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete and the Estonian Environment Minister Mr Siim Kiisler, as Estonia currently holds the presidency of the Council of the EU. Furthermore, Vice-President for Energy Union Maroš Šefčovic will attend the Climate Summit of local and regional leaders on 12 November, re-iterating the EU’s commitment within global initiatives of cities and local governments leading in the fight against climate change (for the launch of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy, of which he is the Co-Chair, see IP/16/2247). On 10 November, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Karmenu Vella will speak at the EU Ocean Day on the need for a combined agenda of oceans and climate change (for the EU’s Ocean and global actions strategy see IP/17/3603 and IP/16/3619) and on 11 November opens the Ocean Action Day under the Marrakech Partnership for Global Climate Action (GCA). During the conference, the EU will host more than 100 side events at the EU Pavilion in Bonn. These events, organised by a variety of countries and organisations from Europe and the rest of the world, will address a broad range of climate-related issues from the energy transition to the role of forests and oceans, climate finance, research and innovation and assessing climate risks. Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Kyoto Protocol meet once a year at high level to discuss how to take international climate action forward and adopt decisions to implement commitments made. This year, Parties will discuss important elements of the historic Paris Agreement and putting its plans into action by 2020. For more information consult the website of the UNFCCC. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen – Tel.: +32 229 56186; Nicole Bockstaller – Tel.: +32 229 52589)

High-level conference to boost investment in clean energy transition

Significant investment is needed in the energy sector to help the EU achieve its ambitious climate change targets, which were agreed as part of the Paris Agreement. The EU has committed to cut CO2 emissions by at least 40% by 2030 while modernising its economy and creating jobs and economic growth for all European citizens. The European Commission wants to keep the European Union competitive as the clean energy transition is changing the global energy markets. The Clean Energy for All Europeans package presented by the Commission in November 2016 aims at setting the legal framework to make this transformation possible. To boost investment in clean energy, the European Parliament and European Commission will host a high-level conference in Brussels on 7 November. Together with the European Parliament President Tajani, ITRE Chair MEP Buzek, EIB President Hoyer and the Governor of California Jerry Brown, Commission Vice-President Katainen and Commissioner Arias Cañete will open the conference. Vice-President Šefčovic and Commissioners Oettinger and Bulc will also participate in high-level roundtables. Main focus: best ways to finance the transition from carbon to more sustainable energy sources. Estimates show that to reach the EU 2030 energy and climate targets, about €379 billion investments are needed annually over the 2021–2030 period, mostly in energy efficiency, renewable energy generation and infrastructure. Bringing together political leaders, policy makers, the investor community, energy market participants and other stakeholders, the conference will discuss how multiple stakeholders can act together, and how best to foster investment in the energy transition. See a detailed agenda of the event or follow live. At 10:45 a joint press conference with EP President Tajani, Californian Governor Jerry Brown and Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Arias Cañete is foreseen. Journalists that already hold a permanent media accreditation with the European Parliament will be able to access the event. For those not holding a permanent media accreditation, requests to media.accreditation@europarl.europa.eu. Follow on Twitter: #CleanEnergyEU. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen – Tel.: +32 229 56186; Nicole Bockstaller – Tel.: +32 229 52589)

European visionary research in focus: Vice-President Ansip participates in the Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) Flagships event in Brussels 

Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip will participate on Monday in an event on the progress and future of FET Flagships. The FET Flagships are large-scale research initiatives running over ten years with a total budget for each flagship of around €1 billion, bringing together partners from the scientific community and industry. Two flagships have been launched in 2013: one on Graphene, which aims at taking this carbon-based and ultra-thin 2D material with extraordinary properties from the laboratories to the market, with new products and applications; and the Human Brain Project, which aims at understanding the brain and creating synergies between neuroscience and computing. A third flagship on Quantum technologies was announced in 2016 and is about to start, building on the final report of the expert group on quantum that will be officially presented on Monday. Ahead of the event, Vice-President Ansip said: “Europe needs such ambitious projects to be at the forefront of science and technology, to bring new medical treatments, safer transport, cybersecurity and many more benefits to people. Stepping up investments in research and innovation is essential for the future of Europe. Vice-President Ansip will speak at 11:00 CET, his speech will be published here. See also his recent blog post on quantum. One of the other highlights of the event is the keynote speech by Nobel Prize laureate, physicist Sir Konstantin Novoselov at 10:45 CET. Journalists can register for the event via email or follow the debates live here. (For more information: Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 229 58615; Inga Höglund – Tel.: +32 229 50698)

Vice-President Dombrovskis in Riga, Latvia

Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President for the Euro and Social Dialogue, also in charge of Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union, is in Riga for a European Semester visit and a Citizens’ Dialogue on 3 November. Vice-President Dombrovskis’ visit also includes several bilateral meetings, including with representatives of the Latvian Academy of Sciences and representatives of the Association of Latvia’s Seven Largest Cities. On Friday, the Vice-President will give an opening speech on “Deepening of the Economic and Monetary Union – its impact on Latvia’s Competitiveness” at the BA School of Business and Finance and participate in a Citizens’ Dialogue on “Strengthening Economic and Monetary Union, competitiveness and the future of Europe“, in the framework of the European Semester in Riga. (For more information: Annika Breidthardt – Tel.: +32 229 56153; Juliana Dahl – Tel.: +32 229 64976)


Commission takes its innovation policy to Web Summit in Lisbon next week

Since the beginning of the mandate, the Juncker Commission has been working hard to give Europe’s many innovative entrepreneurs every opportunity to become world leading companies. Against this backdrop, Commissioners Navracsics, Vestager, Moedas and King will participate in various activities at the Web Summit, one of the world’s largest technology conferences taking place in Lisbon on 6-9 November. On Monday evening at 19.40, Commissioner Vestager gives an on-stage interview on “fair play and tech”. On Tuesday morning, Commissioners Vestager and Moedas will join the European Commission #InvestEU stand at the summit and promote the EU Women Innovators Prize which is awarded to four outstanding women every year on 8 March. They will also participate in a Facebook Live chat on women investors at 9.00. Then at 10.20, Commissioner Moedas will award the €1 million iCapital – 2017 European Capital of Innovation Prize for which ten cities are shortlisted. At 11.30, Commissioner King will speak in a panel on creating a collaborative (cyber) security. In parallel Commissioner Vestager gives a speech on how the EU protects competition. At 13.30 Commissioner Navracsics will participate in the panel discussion “No one left behind: The skills your children need to know”. On Wednesday morningat 10.45, Commissioner Moedas will give a keynote speech on costs and benefits of publicly funded research. During the Web Summit, Commissioners will have the opportunity to present and discuss the Commission’s initiatives to support innovators, including the Juncker Plan, the “Start-up and Scale-up Initiative” and funding for market-oriented research and breakthrough innovation. Time schedule above is in local time. (For more information: Lucía Caudet – Tel.: +32 229 56182; Victoria von Hammerstein – Tel.: +32 229 55040; Joseph Waldstein – Tel.: +32 229 56184)



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