No 169 - Weekly - 27 January 2006 

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


White Paper
  on Transport

Green Paper on Energy


  Green Paper
  on Energy Efficiency




Europe Direct


[ Transport ]

7-8 February 2006:  European Conference on Local Energy Action:
The 5th Annual Event for Energy Management Agents in Europe, Brussels


13-15 February 2006: Inland Navigation Summit, Vienna


[ Energy ]

[ Practical Information ]



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Motorways of the sea in the website of Energy & Transport DG

NEW VIDEO: "Motorways of the Sea" [RealVideo Format]

Vice-President Jacques Barrot's speech to the Ministerial Conference

First Ministerial conference in Slovenia to promote Motorways of the Sea [ full text ]

The first Ministerial Conference on the preparation of the future Motorways of the sea, was held on 24 January in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Co-hosted by European Commission Vice-President in charge of transport, Jacques Barrot, together with the Slovenian Minister of Transport, Janez Božič, conference gathered together over 100 participants from industry, Member States and the European Parliament to discuss the challenges and opportunities of the Motorways of the sea. As part of the trans-European networks, this new initiative aims to replace the heavy trucks on European highways with maritime transport. Key issues on the agenda of the conference included the selection of ports and port regions, maritime links and the question of financing.

[ More: ]

Air passenger rights  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

Air Transport in the web site of energy & Transport DG 

Sunny skies for EU passengers: European Court of Justice gives its backing to plans for air passenger compensation [ full text ]

The Chairman of the European Parliament's Transport Committee, Paolo Costa, has welcomed the recent ruling by the European Court of Justice concerning compensation for passengers bumped off flights or faced with long delays. The Court lined up behind rules agreed by the Parliament and ministers which aim to provide better protection to passengers. Mr Costa stated that the legislation has introduced big improvements to air passenger rights in the EU in the event of flight cancellation, denied boarding or long delays. The rules to provide compensation to passengers were introduced in February 2005, but were challenged in the British court by the European Low Fares Airline Association (ELFAA) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which claimed the legislation was discriminatory and limits consumer choice. The British High Court asked the EU court to rule on whether the legislation does infringe EU rules.

[ More: ]

Intermodal transport  in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Marco Polo in the web site of Energy and Transport DG 

European Commission approves Polish aid scheme for combined transport [ full text ]

On 25 January the European Commission authorised a Polish scheme which intends to encourage the development of combined transport through the construction of logistics centres and terminals. The notified scheme is expected to generate a growth of 7% in intermodal freight transport. The scheme is available to all EU companies which perform or plan to perform haulage operations in Poland and which invest in intermodal transport. The scheme is part of the Sectoral Operational Programme Transport financed by the European Regional Development Fund. The scheme will be in place by 31 December 2008 with a budget of € 31.6 million.

[ More: ]

Transport infrastructure charging policy in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

Road Transport in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

European Commission does not authorise reimbursement mechanism for the German toll system [ full text ]

The European Commission decided on 25 January that the proposed German aid measure concerning a reimbursement mechanism for the toll of heavy goods vehicles on German motorways is incompatible with the European common market. Vice-President Jacques Barrot, in charge of EU Transport Policy, said: “I welcome the successful introduction of the German toll system. The European Union is in favour of charging the use of road infrastructure by lorries. However, the proposed variation in the charges would create different conditions for German as opposed to non-German trucks.”

Related topics from previous issues :

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Air Transport in the web site of energy & Transport DG

Air transport in the EU25 : Air passenger transport up 8.8% in 2004 [ full text ]

A report published by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities, on air transport in the EU, Candidate countries and Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, showed that the total number of passengers transported by air in the EU25 rose by 8.8%, to 650 million in 2004. Of these, 24% were carried on national flights, 42% on intra-EU flights and 34% on extra-EU flights. London/Heathrow remained EU’s busiest airport in terms of passengers, handling 67 million in 2004 - about 10% of all air passengers in the EU, and up 6.2% on 2003. With just under 51 million passengers each Paris/Charles de Gaulle (up 6.1%) and Frankfurt (up 5.6%) were the second and third busiest airports in the EU, followed by Amsterdam (42 million passengers) and Madrid (38 million). Prague/Ruzyne, with 9.6 million passengers, remained the top airport of the new Member States, moving to 27th place compared to 36th in 2003. The wide-ranging Eurostat report also looks in detail at national, intra-EU and international air transport passengers and freight, as well as the most important airport pairs, nationally and internationally.

[ More: ]

Special Eurobarometer Report "Attitudes towards Energy" [PDF]

Security issues in the web site of Energy and Transport DG 

European citizens in favour of a European Energy policy, says Eurobarometer survey [ full text ]

Forty-seven percent of EU citizens would prefer European level decisions on the new energy challenges such as energy supply security, growing energy consumption and climate change, 37% and 8% prefer energy decisions on a national or local level respectively. This is one of the conclusions of a Eurobarometer poll presented on 24 January by Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs. Those people asked would choose renewable energy and R&D as the means to tackle such problems and are willing to learn how to use energy more efficiently. “The message from the citizens is a clear one – energy is a concern for all Europeans and people expect clear and concrete actions on all political levels. Europe needs a real energy policy focused on security of supply, competitiveness and sustainability” said Commissioner Piebalgs.

[ More: ]

Energy Demand Management in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

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

Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs addresses Parliamentarians on energy efficiency [Speech in full ]

"The European initiative on Energy Efficiency" was the subject of a speech by Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs to representatives from the Parliaments of the Member States, Romania, Bulgaria and from the European Parliament on 24 January. Addressing the Joint Meeting of the European Parliament Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) and the national Parliaments, Commissioner Piebalgs emphasised the vital importance of energy efficiency: "Our energy options are many, all options are open for discussion, but energy efficiency is not one of these options; it is a must." Commissioner Piebalgs highlighted Europe's increasing dependence on foreign energy supplies and rising prices as the main motivations behind energy saving efforts. The need for a European initiative was stressed, along with the benefits that improved energy efficiency would bring to citizens in terms of improving competitiveness, spurring research and development efforts and creating jobs throughout Europe.

[ More: ]

Coal issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

State Aid in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

The Commission authorises Slovakia’s investment plan for the coal industry for the years 2005 to 2010 [ full text ]

The European Commission decided on 25 January not to raise any objections to the SKK 525 million (€ 13.9 million) aid which Slovakia is proposing to grant to mining company Hornonitrianske Bane Prievidza a.s. (HBP) in the years 2005 to 2010 for initial investments. The aid is compatible with the proper functioning of the common market. Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs underlined the importance of domestic coal production for the security of energy supply within the European Union. At the same time, he stressed the importance that mines become more efficient.

[ More: ]

Gas issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

State Aid legislation

European Commission approves state aid to Hungarian coal and gas companies [ full text ]

The European Commission decided on 25 January not to raise any objections to the € 67.6 millions aid which Hungary is proposing to grant to mining company Vértesi Erömü Rt. for the years 2005 and 2006. The aid is compatible with the proper functioning of the common market. At the same time, it decided that the fixed feed-in tariffs for coal which Hungary imposed upon the state-owned electricity undertaking MVM in the years 2004 and 2005 did constitute State aid, which is compatible with the common market.

[ More: ]

Coal issues in the web site of Energy & Transport DG 

State Aid in the web site of Energy & Transport DG

European Commission authorises prolongation of aid measures to improve safety in mines in Asturias [ full text ]

The European Commission decided on 25 January to approve subsidies of € 3 300 000 from the Principality of Asturias to private coal mining companies for the period 2005-2007. The aid scheme aims to improve working safety in mines and to protect the environment.


For a complete list of current calls for tenders please log on Tenders Electronic Daily

Public Consultations

In this section you will find the newest calls for submissions to public consultations in fields of energy and transport.

Topic of Consultation



Public consultation on the report of the High Level Group on the extension of the main trans-European transport axes to the neighbouring countries and regions and the way forward (TEN-T)



Public consultation on strengthening the protection of the rights of passengers travelling by sea or inland waterway in the EU



Open Public Consultation on GREEN PAPER on Energy Efficiency "Doing More With Less"



Please note that the announcement of technical reports and documents recently produced in specific energy and transport sectors can be found on the "What's New" pages of the corresponding chapters of Energy and  Transport on the EUROPA website.

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