No 130 - Weekly - 04 March 2005


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Green Paper on Energy

White Paper on Transport



Europe Direct


[ Transport ]


7-10/03/2005: Plenary Session of the European Parliament


21/04/2005: Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council


27-28/06/2005: Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council



[ Energy ]

[ Practical Information ]

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State Aid in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Road Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

The European Commission has decided to investigate the aid paid to Combus [ Full text ]

The Commission decided on 2 March to launch a formal procedure to investigate the State aid paid by Denmark to Combus, a company which provides public transport by bus. It questions whether the investments made in 1999 and 2001 by Denmark to Combus, a public company, to prepare for its restructuring and privatisation are in conformity with European law. The Commission must assess whether or not Denmark’s investments in Combus constitute State aid. If they do, the Commission will consider whether the aid is compatible with European rules, and in particular if it complied with the guidelines for the restructuring of firms in difficulty.

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State Aid in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Rail Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG  

Commission gives the green light to Fret SNCF restructuring [ full text ]

The Commission decided on 2 March to approve the financing arrangements for the restructuring of Fret SNCF, which has been in serious financial difficulties for several years. The measures examined are part of a comprehensive restructuring plan to make the operator viable again. The Commission considered that this plan was compatible with the European rules to the extent that it was strictly geared to restructuring Fret SNCF and includes measures to reduce capacity and bring forward the date for opening up the French rail market.

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Galileo in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Video on Galileo 

GALILEO: a new stage in the concession procedure [ full text ]

The European Commission has noted the Galileo Joint Undertaking’s decision, taken on 1 March to start negotiations with the two remaining candidates on the concession agreement. This new stage in the selection procedure is in line with the established timetable. The Commission is very pleased with the quality of the proposals, which fully comply with the conditions set, especially in financial terms. Jacques Barrot, Commission Vice-President, said “The quality of the proposals shows, if there was still any need for it, the commercial viability of this great European space project”, adding that “Opening simultaneous talks on the concession agreement will also make it possible to improve the two candidates’ proposals, to the greater benefit of the Galileo project.”


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Single European Sky  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

MEP Schmitt's report on the EU licence for air traffic controllers

Decision process of the Air Traffic license directive

EP Transport committee in favour of Commission's proposal for a European licence for air traffic controlers [ full text ]

On behalf of the Transport Committee, rapporteur Ingo SCHMITT (EPP-ED, D) will be recommending that Parliament give its backing to plans for a single Community air licence for air traffic controllers. The aim is to harmonise existing national licensing systems and to promote mutual recognition of national licences among EU Member States. A standard EU licence would make it easier to provide cross-border services and pave the way for more cross-border air traffic control zones within the EU. A single licence would also improve safety. For example, air traffic controllers will have to speak and understand English to a satisfactory level in all Member States, except for communicating with airport services such as the fire brigade and ambulances, where the local language may also be used if this is more practical. The vote will take place on 07 March.

Related topics from previous issues :


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Sea Ports  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

MEP Hennis-Plasschaert's report on Ports Security

Decision process of Ports Security directive

Port Security: EP's Transport Committee support Commission's text but want measures for the whole inter-modal chain [ full text ]

IParliament took the view that security measures should not be restricted to port terminals but should also extend to the whole port and ultimately the entire inter-modal chain. Rapporteur Jeanine HENNIS-PLASSCHAERT (ELDR, NL) believes that the present proposal for a directive meets that request. The directive defines the actors and procedures that are crucial to enhancing security. It calls on Member States to designate a port security authority and appoint a port security officer for each individual port. There is also a requirement to set up an advisory port security committee. Finally, the Member States are to appoint focal points to notify the Commission of the contact details of the port security authorities and officers. The Parliament will vote on 07 March.

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Nuclear issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Nuclear waste management in the web site of Energy &Transport web site

"European Union needs a clear answer on nuclear waste", says commissioner Piebalgs [ full text ]

"The management of radioactive waste is crucial for all EU countries - not only those producing electricity from nuclear energy. The debate launched in 2001 by the "Green Paper" on security of energy supply pointed out that nuclear energy would only remain an option for the future in Europe, if the management of nuclear waste was considered by the public as properly handled." These were the opening words of a speech in which Andris Piebalgs, Commissioner for Energy, presented his policy on nuclear waste management. The speech was delivered during the workshop “Nuclear waste: facts and choices” that took place in Brussels on 28 February.

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

Information on the evaluation process

Call for Experts - "Intelligent Energy Europe" Programme [ full text ]

A Call for Applications has been issued to select experts for evaluation activities in connection with the "Intelligent Energy – Europe" Programme. Experts interested to participate in the next evaluation exercise, relative to Call TREN/DIR D/SUB/05-2004 and scheduled on weeks 19 and 21, must submit their application by 31 March 2005 at the latest. All details on how to apply are available at "Intelligent Energy - Europe" (EIE) is the Community’s support programme for non-technological actions in the field of energy, precisely in the field of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.

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Gas issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

MEP Seppänen report on gas directive

Decision process of Gas directive

EP to vote in second reading the Gas transmission network directive [ full text ]

MEPs are to vote on 8 March the second reading of a regulation aimed at opening gas markets to competition. Parliament's gave a first reading to the Commission's proposals in April 2004. Since then representatives of Parliament and Council have agreed on a final compromise text. MEPs will be voting on this compromise, in the form of a recommendation from rapporteur Esko SEPPÄNEN (GUE/NGL, FIN) for the Industry, Research and Energy Committee. This should mean the regulation would be adopted at second reading.

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