Brussels Daily
10 Mar 2015


Brussels Daily

EU Finance Ministers agree Regulation for Commission’s Investment Plan fund 

At today’s ECOFIN Council, EU Finance Ministers agreed on the Regulation to set up the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), which will be at the heart of the Commission’s €315 billion Investment Plan for Europe. The decision clears a major hurdle on the path to matching ample liquidity reserves with potential investment projects. Also today Italy announced that it will contribute €8bn to the Investment Fund via its national promotional bank. European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, welcomed the news: “I congratulate the Latvian Presidency for their speedy and skilful steering of negotiations in the Council. By reaching an agreement on the Regulation for a European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) in less than two months, Member States deliver on the commitment they have taken at the European Councils in October and December last year. This also shows that Member States are serious about getting citizens back to work and the European economy back on a sustainable growth path. With Italy announcing a contribution of €8bn to the Investment Plan today, four Member States have now put their money where their mouths are.” Full statement.

New EU rules for safer and more eco-friendly lorries

Today the European Parliament will vote on the new EU rules for safer and more eco-friendly lorries (Directive 2013/0195), put forward by the Commission. These rules will allow manufacturers to develop more aerodynamic lorries which will reduce fuel consumption by 7-10%, cut emissions of greenhouse gases, and also enhance road safety. The rules currently setting the specifications for lorries date back to 1996 (Directive 96/53/EC). They now need to be updated to take account of technological developments. The old rules are the reason why todays lorries are brick shaped, which is the least aerodynamic shape and the main reason for many traffic related casualties.

EUROSTAT: Share of renewables in energy consumption up to 15% in the EU in 2013

In 2013, the share of energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy reached 15.0% in the European Union, compared with 8.3% in 2004, the first year for which the data is available. These figures come from a publication issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. The target to be reached by 2020 for the EU is a share of 20% energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy. Each EU Member State has its own Europe 2020 target. Three out of the 28 EU Member States have already reached the level required to meet their national 2020 targets: Bulgaria, Estonia and Sweden. Read the EUROSTAT press release.

Read full edition: Daily News 10 -03- 2015

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