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No 33.  Weekly. 10 January 2003

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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 announces decisive steps to toughen maritime safety

New measures to protect our coasts : the end in sight for single hull tankers

EP: The 2nd Rail Package, likely to be approved on 14 January

Commission clears joint control by Red Eléctrica and CVC over the transmission electricity assets of Iberdrola

Hungary: EIB lends EUR 395 Million for Transport and Environmental Projects

Croatia: EUR 50 million EIB support of motorway rehabilitation

Maritime Safety in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

The "Prestige" accident in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

Commission announces decisive steps to toughen maritime safety

French President Jacques Chirac and Commission President Romano Prodi discussed on 2 January 2003 the issue of maritime safety. This followed the collision of the Turkish tanker "Vicky" with a sunken carrier off the French coast on Wednesday. The tanker was transporting 70.000 tons of highly flammable kerosene. Against the backdrop of this accident and the ongoing oil pollution caused by the accident of the tanker "Prestige" off the Spanish coast last November, both presidents agreed that maritime safety remained far from satisfactory. In particular, legal responsibility for maritime accidents was unclear and new legislation was urgently needed. President Prodi underlined the Commission's commitment to present further proposals aimed at strengthening maritime safety at the beginning of 2003. The Commission already announced proposals on maritime safety in a communication of December 2002.

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Maritime Safety in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

The "Prestige" accident in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

New measures to protect our coasts : the end in sight for single hull tankers

No single-hull oil tanker will be allowed to carry heavy fuel oil in the European Union once the proposal presented on 20 December 2002 by the European Commission is adopted by Council and Parliament. Furthermore, all single-hull oil tankers of Erika and Prestige type aged more than 23 years will be immediately banned from the Union, while the elimination of more modern ones will take place earlier, between 2005 and 2010, according to a more stricter calendar than provided for by current rules. Finally, during the phasing out period, those tankers that have not yet reached the age limit will be subject to stricter safety inspections. "Our first proposal of this kind dates back to just after the Erika disaster in December 1999," said Loyola de Palacio, Vice-President for Transport and Energy, "The Prestige catastrophe makes it clear that the agreed compromise rules were not sufficiently ambitious. This will change." she added. "I hope that the measures we are putting forward today will swiftly enter into force, so that the threat to our maritime and coastal environment is radically and rapidly reduced." The Prestige, a 26-year-old single hull oil tanker carrying 77 000 tonnes of heavy fuel oil, sank off the coast of Galicia on 18 November, creating an oil slick on the coastline of Galicia which caused a major economic and environmental disaster.

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The 2nd Rail package in the web site of Energy & Transport DG
                     

The 2nd Rail package. Slides presentation 
                     

EP: The 2nd Rail Package, likely to be approved on 14 January

On Tuesday 14 January 2003 the European Parliament is expected to give the green light for a complete revitalisation of railways in the Community. Four reports from the Transport Committee are due to be adopted in plenary under the codecision procedure, first reading, on a package of Commission proposals designed to speed up the integration of railways in the Member States and – at a later stage – in the candidate countries. The aims of this second "railway package" are to broaden and accelerate the liberalisation of rail freight and passenger markets, introduce a common approach to rail safety, boost interoperability and set up a European Railway Agency.

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The internal market for electricity in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

State Aid legislation
                     

Commission clears joint control by Red Eléctrica and CVC over the transmission electricity assets of Iberdrola

The European Commission has authorised on 7 January the acquisition of joint control by Red Eléctrica Española S.A. and CVC Capital Partners Group, Ltd over the high voltage electricity transmission network of Iberdrola

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European Investment Bank web site
                     

Enlargement and international relations in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

 

Hungary: EIB lends EUR 395 Million for Transport and Environmental Projects

During a visit to Budapest on 07 January, Mr. Wolfgang Roth, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) signed five loans totalling EUR 395 million for transport and environmental projects in Hungary, respectively with the Minister of Finance, Mr Csaba László, and the Mayor of Budapest, Mr.Gábor Demszky. Three loans totalling EUR 195 million, to the Ministry of Finance, are for a number of road and railroad rehabilitation works throughout Hungary, as well as environmental schemes, including several sewerage networks and water treatment facilities as well as solid waste disposal facilities. The European Commission is co-financing these projects with ISPA funds.

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European Investment Bank web site
                     

Enlargement and international relations in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 
                     

Croatia: EUR 50 million EIB support of motorway rehabilitation

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Union's financing institution, is providing a loan of EUR 50 million to the to the state-owned Croatian Motorway Company (HAC)for the rehabilitation of the motorway along Pan-European Corridors X and Xa. The motorway links Croatia to Western Europe and provides a connection from Austria and Slovenia in the north to Greece via Serbia and FYROM in the south. The loan was signed on 13 December 2002 by Mr. Stanko Kovac, President of the Executive Board of Croatian Motorways Ltd., and Mr Ewald Nowotny, Vice President of EIB.. In his address on the occasion of the signature, Mr. Nowotny said that the EIB is pleased to support this high-priority project which is needed to provide improved basic infrastructure for the economic development of Croatia, and important links to neighbouring countries".

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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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