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No 15.  Weekly. 19 July 2002

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Direct link to Green Paper on Security of Energy Supply
Green Paper on Energy

Direct link to the White Paper on European Transport Policy

White Paper 
on Transport 

Commission proposing to revitalise energy cooperation with the developing countries

Commission successfully settles GFU case with Norwegian gas producers

Commission approves aid to develop Northern Irish gas infrastructure

British rail network: Commission clears the EUR 37.5 billion financial package in favour of Network Rail

Scrapping of single hull oil tankers : Commission authorises the Italian State aid

VAT on road tolls: infringement proceedings against United Kingdom for failure to implement Court ruling 

Ships' hulls: Anti-fouling compounds to be banned from 2003

Dutch aid to Alkmaar container terminal: Commission initiates an investigation procedure

Commission approves EUR 9 million aid to UK coal industry

Maritime transport: Commission approves the rescue of SNCM

The web page of Loyola de Palacio, Vice-President of the Commission
                     

Johannesburg Summit web site

                     

The web site of Development Directorate General
                     

Commission proposing to revitalise energy cooperation with the developing countries

With the Johannesburg Summit on Sustainable Development only weeks away, the Commission tabled on 17 July specific recommendations to revitalise energy cooperation with developing countries. The EU Energy Initiative to be presented at Johannesburg is at the heart of these proposals. "Long neglected, both internationally and in the framework of Community development aid policy, energy must urgently be given a place in EU development cooperation that reflects its central role in the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic dimension of security of supply, the social dimension of combating poverty and the environmental dimension" said Loyola de Palacio, Vice-President in charge of energy and transport. "Africa's energy consumption is largely based on wood, collected by hand and transported over increasing distances, causing deforestation, desertification and poverty. If cost-efficient alternatives are not developed, energy will be a major brake on economic growth and sustainable development in Africa" added Poul Nielson, Development Commissioner.

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The Green Paper on Security of Energy Supply
                     

The web site of Competition Directorate General
                     

Gas issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

Commission successfully settles GFU case with Norwegian gas producers

The European Commission has decided on 17 July to accept the commitments offered by certain Norwegian gas producers - most prominently Statoil and Norsk Hydro - and in return to close the GFU case relating to the joint sale of Norwegian natural gas. Statoil and Norsk Hydro confirmed in particular that they will market their gas individually and they committed themselves to offer respectively 13 billion and 2.2 billion cubic meters (BCM) of gas for sale to new customers over a period of approximately four years. On an annual basis this corresponds to more than 5% of the total sales volumes of Norwegian gas. Commenting on the decision Mr Monti underlined: "I am very satisfied with the outcome of this important case. Norway is one of the largest gas producing countries in the world accounting for approximately 10% of EU gas consumption. The commitments will contribute to the creation of a single market for gas in Europe, since European gas purchasers will have a wider choice between gas suppliers from Norway. They will also facilitate the establishment of new supply relationships." According to Mr Monti "the case shows that competition issues concerning non-EU gas producers can be settled with the Commission in a manner that takes account of the interests of the parties while respecting European competition law."

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Gas issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

State Aid legislation
                     

Commission approves aid to develop Northern Irish gas infrastructure

The European Commission has authorised on 17 July EUR 61 million in aid to Bord Gais Eireann (BGE), from the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment, Northern Ireland for the development of the natural gas infrastructure in Northern Ireland.

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State Aid legislation
                     

Rail Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

British rail network: Commission clears the EUR 37.5 billion financial package in favour of Network Rail

The Commission has decided on 17 July not to raise any objections to the EUR 37.5 billion financial package, which the UK Government will provide to Network Rail for taking over the operation and management of the mainline rail network in Great Britain.

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State Aid legislation
                     

Maritime Safety in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

Memo: two years after the Erika shipwreck
                     

Scrapping of single hull oil tankers : Commission authorises the Italian State aid

The Commission has decided on 17 July to authorise an Italian aid scheme granting an incentive to shipowners for the elimination of single hull tankers over 20 years of age. Strict conditions regarding the promotion of the use of double tankers have been specified in the aid scheme. The Commission welcomes the objective of the proposed aid, which aims at implementing Community maritime safety legislation and achieving higher safety standards in maritime shipping, prior to it becoming mandatory.

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The sentence of the Cour of Justice (12 September 2000)
                     

VAT on road tolls: infringement proceedings against United Kingdom for failure to implement Court ruling

The European Commission has decided on 17 July to send the United Kingdom a formal request to implement measures to comply with the Court of Justice ruling issued on 12 September 2000 concerning VAT on road tolls. The formal request is in the form of a reasoned opinion, the second stage of the procedure laid down in Article 228 of the EC Treaty, applicable where a Member State fails to notify the measures taken to comply with a Court of Justice ruling. If there is no satisfactory response to the reasoned opinion within two months, the Commission may refer the case to the Court of Justice and ask it to impose daily penalties on the Member State.

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The web site of Enterprise Directorate General
                     

Ships' hulls: Anti-fouling compounds to be banned from 2003

The use of certain tin-based compound paints on large ships' hulls will be banned from 1 January 2003. The use of these compounds on ships shorter than 25 metres was already banned in 2000. This precautionary measure that responds to widely-accepted evidence of risks to the aquatic environment and food chain concerns, complements recent European Commission proposals to prevent EU flagged ships painted with these compounds from entering or leaving EU ports.

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State Aid legislation
                     

Inland waterways in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

Dutch aid to Alkmaar container terminal: Commission initiates an investigation procedure

The Commission has decided on 17 July to initiate the formal investigation procedure of a Dutch investment subsidy envisaged by the Noord-Holland Province in favour of Huisvuilcentrale Noord-Holland (HVC). The aid intends to promote the transport of waste on inland waterways through the construction of a waste container terminal nearby HVC's incineration plant and leaves questions open as regards possible distortion of competition in the waste incineration and disposal market.

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State Aid legislation
                     

Coal Issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

Commission approves EUR 9 million aid to UK coal industry

The Commission has authorised the United Kingdom to grant EUR 9 million in operating aid to eight coal production units to cover operating losses in 2001 and in the period from 1 January-23 July 2002.

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State Aid legislation
                     

Maritime Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

Maritime transport: Commission approves the rescue of SNCM

The Commission has authorised aid in the form of a EUR 22.5 million loan to rescue the Societe nationale maritime Corse-Mediterranee. The aid is to be granted by the French State via the 100% State-owned Compagnie generale maritime et financiere.

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The contents of this digest are prepared by officials of the Energy and Transport DG and represent their personal views on the subject matters. These views have not been adopted or in any way approved by the European Commission and should not be relied upon as a statement of the Commission or the Energy and Transport DG.

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