EUROPEAN COMMISSION DAILY NEWS – 15 APRIL

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EUROPEAN COMMISSION DAILY NEWS - 15 APRIL
15 Apr 2019

EUROPEAN COMMISSION DAILY NEWS – 15 APRIL

Brussels Daily

EU-U.S. Trade: Commission welcomes Council’s green light to start negotiations with the United States

The European Commission welcomes today’s decision by the Council to adopt the negotiating directives for trade talks with the United States, thus continuing to deliver on the implementation of the Joint Statement agreed by Presidents Juncker and Trump in July 2018. European Union Member States gave the Commission the green light to start formal negotiations with the U.S. on two agreements, one on conformity assessment, and the other on eliminating tariffs on industrial products. President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker said: “The European Union is delivering on what President Trump and I have agreed on 25 July 2018. We want a win-win situation on trade, beneficial for both the EU and the U.S. Notably we want to slash tariffs on industrial products as this could lead to an additional increase in EU and U.S. exports worth around €26 billion. The European Union and the United States have one of the most important economic relationships in the world. We want to further strengthen trade between us based on the positive spirit of last July.” Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said: “This is a welcome decision that will help ease trade tensions. We are now ready to start formal talks for these two targeted agreements that will bring tangible benefits for people and economies on both sides of the Atlantic. I am convinced that breaking down barriers to trade between us can be win-win”. The Council’s decision comes just three months after the European Commission had put forward the mandates and in line with the conclusions of the March European Council, during which EU leaders called for a “rapid implementation of all elements of the U.S.-EU Joint Statement of 25 July 2018“.In line with the directives agreed by EU governments, the Commission will now further examine the potential economic, environmental and social impacts of the agreement, taking into account the commitments of the EU in international agreements, including the Paris Agreement on climate change. An economic analysis undertaken by the European Commission already indicates that an EU-U.S. agreement on eliminating tariffs on industrial goods would increase EU exports to the U.S. by 8% and U.S. exports to the EU by 9% by 2033. For more information, see the full press release available online. (For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tel.: +32 229 56185; Kinga Malinowska – Tel: +32 229 51383)

Commission announces two cooperation programmes with Jamaica, worth a total of over €20 million

Today, the European Commission announced two cooperation programmes to support Jamaica in addressing climate change and improving public governance, transparency, accountability and delivery of public services. The first programme (€16.5 million) will support Jamaica’s national forest management and conservation plan for 2016-2026 as well as support the sustainable management and utilisation of Jamaica’s forest resources. The second programme (€3.6 million) will assist Jamaica’s government improve public governance, transparency, accountability and public service delivery in Jamaica. During his ongoing visit to Jamaica, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica said: “With today’s cooperation programmes, we are supporting our Jamaican partners in two areas. First, in building up climate change resilience and protect precious forest resources as well as support biodiversity, while paying special attention to developing a low-emission and climate-resilient economy; and second in assisting the Government in building the necessary structures of a modern Integrated Financial Management System which will further improve public governance, transparency, accountability and delivery of public services.” (For more information: Carlos Martin Ruiz De Gordejuela – Tel.: +32 229 65322; Christina Wunder – Tel.: +32 229 92256; Xavier Cifre Quatresols – Tel.: +32 229 73582)

State aid: Commission approves €54 million support for a waste-to-energy highly efficient cogeneration plant in Poland

The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, Polish plans to support the construction of a highly efficient waste-to-energy cogeneration plant located in Olsztyn. The beneficiary of the aid is Miejskie Przedsiębiorstwo Energetyki Cieplnej Sp. z o.o. (“MPEC”), a municipally owned company. The project will be organised in the form of a public-private partnership between MPEC and a private partner selected by the beneficiary through a competitive procedure. The Commission assessed the measure under EU State aid rules, in particular the Commission’s 2014 Guidelines on State aid for environmental protection and energy. The Commission found that the aid will contribute to the EU’s energy and environmental objectives without unduly distorting competition in the Single Market. In particular, cogeneration increases energy efficiency by recycling the heat from power generation for other uses (in this case, the public district heating), to the overall benefit of the environment. The new installation will also help reduce municipal waste disposal in landfills by incinerating approximately 100.000 tonnes of waste that is currently landfilled. More information will be available on the Commission competition website in the public case registerunder the case number SA.51614. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Giulia Astuti – Tel.: +32 229 55344)

State aid: Commission approves Irish scheme for renewable heat generation

The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, an Irish scheme to support the generation of heat from two renewable technologies: biomass and anaerobic digestion. The scheme is open to a wide range of heat users, namely commercial, industrial, agricultural, district heating and other non-domestic heat users. Beneficiaries will receive operating aid in the form of a payment for the useful renewable heat generated over 15 years. The Commission assessed the measure under EU State aid rules, in particular the Commission’s 2014 Guidelines on State aid for environmental protection and energy. It found that the scheme is proportionate as the payments granted to beneficiaries will not lead to overcompensation. The Commission concluded that the scheme will contribute to the EU’s energy and environmental objectives without unduly distorting competition. More information will be available on the Commission’s competition website, in the State Aid Register under the case number SA.50807. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Giulia Astuti – Tel.: +32 229 55344)

Read the European Commission – Daily News in full here

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