No 83 - Weekly - 20 February 2004

>> European Union on-line > DG Energy and Transport on-line

Green Paper on Energy

White Paper on Transport

[ Transport ]

Transport, Energy and Telecom-munications Council
8 Mar 2004 - 9 Mar 2004

European Council meeting
Date: 25 Mar 2004 - 26 Mar 2004

3rd Annual European Energy and Transport Conference 4-5 May 2004

[ Energy ]

[ Practical Information ]

[ More: ]

Air safety in the web site of Energy and Transport DG

Air Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Commission tightens up common safety rules for commercial aircraft [ full text ]

The Commission has adopted on 17 February a draft regulation setting out operational rules for air carriers (EU OPS rules), including provisions regarding flight and rest times for aircraft crew members (FTL rules). "This new regulation will facilitate the necessary consensus between all the institutions to establish strict safety rules for all European commercial aircraft operations", said Loyola de Palacio, European Commission Vice-President responsible for energy and transport. The new amended proposal for a regulation has two important new features: A full set of rules has been added to the technical annex to limit flight times and regulate rest periods for both cabin crews and pilots, incorporating the broad lines of an amendment voted for by the European Parliament. With the new Regulation, the maximum flight time will be limited to 13 hours per day and to 11 hours 45 minutes for night flights.

[ More: ]

Open skies in the web site of Energy and Transport DG

Air Transport in the web site of energy & Transport DG

Commission proposes aviation policy for neighbouring countries [ full text ]

The European Commission outlined on 17 February in its communication "A Community aviation policy towards its neighbours" the economic and political benefits of closer aviation relations between the European Union and its neighbouring countries. To launch this initiative, the Commission will ask for a mandate to negotiate with the countries of the Western Balkans and Morocco, Jordan, and Lebanon. In a step by step strategy, the Commission will ask first for a mandate to negotiate with the countries of the Western Balkans, an agreement which would lead to their inclusion into the Single Aviation Market. Such a "European Common Aviation Area" (ECAA) should, according to the Commission, also include Romania and Bulgaria. In addition, the Commission will immediately start preliminary discussions with Turkey to see whether it would be possible to involve Turkey in such negotiations as well. In the longer term ECAA could span the whole of Europe.

[ More: ]

 Maritime security  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Sea ports  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Commission proposes to strengthen security in European ports [ full text ]

The Commission proposed on 17 February a new European-wide framework to enhance port security. Ports are particularly vulnerable parts of the logistics chain. Should they be successfully attacked by terrorists, consequences would be felt well beyond their narrow confines. This new proposal aims at complementing the security system by ensuring that all European port areas benefit from a European-wide security scheme. It builds on the Commission's May 2003 Communication on maritime security and on the recent agreement between the European Parliament and the Council on a European system of maritime security. "With this proposal we are aiming to raise another important piece of the Community's defences against intentional illegal acts", said Loyola de Palacio, Vice-President of the European Commission, responsible for transport and energy. She added: "Ports must be protected as much as possible against unlawful, illegal acts, including terrorist attacks. They must not be easy targets because too much is at stake: passengers, vessels, national and international trade, and essential installations."

[ More: ]

The web site of the European Parliament

European Transport Workers' Federation web site

Human factor the key to maritime safety, according to seafarers unionist [ full text ]

Parliament's Temporary Committee on Safety at Sea was told on 18 February that the EU's response to recent maritime disasters had missed the key point - the human factor. Eduardo Chagas, of the Maritime Transport Section of the European Transport Workers' Federation (ETF), explained to MEPs that the prime causes of tanker casualties were not structural but human. Grounding and collisions accounted for almost 50% of incidents, whereas only around 11% were related to hull failure. According to Mr Chagas, human conditions in the maritime sector should be taken more seriously, especially in EU legislation. Flags of convenience and false certificates for merchant navy officers were the issues that most needed to be tackled.

[ More: ]

New and renewable energies  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Biofuels  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Commission raises no objections to a total exemption from excise duty in favour of biofuels in Germany [ full text ]

As of 1 January 2004, Germany intends to introduce a total exemption from the excise duty on mineral oil for pure and blended biofuels. Biofuels are defined as energy products derived from bio-mass. The duration of the measure is limited until 31 December 2009. The Commission approved on 17 February the exemption on the basis of the Community Guidelines on State aid for environmental protection. This is because the exemption from excise duty is proportional to the percentage of biofuel included in the final blend. The higher the proportion, the greater the value of the potential reduction. In addition, the aid is limited to cover the difference between the cost of producing energy from renewable energy sources and the market price of conventional fuels.

[ More: ]

State Aid legislation

Internal market for gas in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Opening of inquiry into price of fuel used to heat glasshouses in Italy [ full text ]

The Commission decided on 17 February to open an inquiry into the reduced excise duties applied to fuels used to heat glasshouses in Italy. Glasshouse producers benefit from an additional reduction compared to other operators in the agricultural sector. Due to a lack of information from the Italian authorities it has still not been possible to quantify how much aid is involved, but the scheme appears to be of long standing. At this stage, this seems difficult to justify under the rules on State aid. After receiving official notification of today's decision the Italian authorities will have one month in which to notify their observations and provide all necessary clarification. The decision will also be published in the Official Journal of the European Communities and other interested parties will have one month from the date of publication to transmit their observations. These will be passed on to Italy, which will be able to comment on them.

[ More: ]

Intelligent Energy for Europe in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Managenergy web site

Intelligent Energy-Europe: Call for Proposals on Internet [ full text ]

On the occasion of the ongoing call for proposals of the Intelligent Energy-Europe programme, a second Information Day will take place on 24 February 2004 in Brussels (10:00-14:00) and on Internet. It will be possible to follow and take part in the Information Day discussions on Internet through the European Commission ManagEnergy Initiative. You can register for the virtual event on  The multi-annual programme "Intelligent Energy – Europe" supports the European Union's policy in the field of energy, in particular to increased energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources in all sectors of society. It aims at strengthening the supply of energy, fighting climate change and protecting the environment in the areas of energy and transport.


This selection is not exhaustive. For a complete list of current calls for tender please log to Tenders Electronic Daily

New Calls for Tender

In this section you will find the latest calls for tender, calls for manifestation of interest and calls for proposal in the fields of energy and transport.



Time-limit for receipt of tenders

Framework contract for long-range energy modelling for the period up to 2030

O.J. S 16-026916


Public awareness campaign for an energy sustainable Europe

O.J. S 16-012944 22/03/2004

Study on outputs, performance and future perspectives of SAVE agencies

O.J. S 16-012942 16/07/2003

More on DG Energy and Transport's publications, and how to order them.

Publications : Just Released !

A selection of our latest publications:

Nuclear safety: A Community approach
Just published (December 2003)
Luxembourg: Eur-OP, 2003 – 98 p.
Catalogue no KO-49-02-369-**-C
ISBN 92-894-4772-9
Language : DE, EN, FR
Price: gratis

EU energy and transport in figures:
Statistical pocketbook 2003
Just published (December 2003)
Luxembourg: Eur-OP, 2003 - 208 p.
Catalogue no KO-AB-03-001-EN-C
ISBN 92-894-6244-2
Languages: English
Price: gratis
Available online

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