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European Commission - Economic and Financial Affairs
European leaders pledge €7.2 billion in climate aid for developing countries
- Greece unveils plans for reform and fiscal consolidation
- Trichet calls for ‘timely and gradual’ phasing-out of crisis measures
- New financial instrument ELENA launched by Commission and EIB
- New tool provides information on domestic fiscal frameworks across Member States
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European leaders pledge € 7.2 billion in climate aid for developing countries

At the European Council meeting on 10-11 December, European heads of state agreed to provide €2.4 billion a year over the next three years to help developing countries mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change. The funding represents the high-end of the €5-7 billion range previously agreed upon, and includes both new and old resources. The EU has also confirmed its offer to move from 20% to a 30% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2020 compared to 1990 levels, provided other parts of the developed world make similar commitments.

Viewpoint
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I am delighted we have achieved an ambitious figure on fast start financing that exceeds the initial commitments we made some months ago. This is so important for developing countries, especially African countries and small island states, whose future depends on immediate action.

José Manuel Durão Barroso, President of the European Commission
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Greece unveils plans for reform and fiscal consolidation

Commissioner Joaquín Almunia welcomed the Greek government's intention, expressed on 14 December by Prime Minister Papandreou, to cut public deficit and debt, and introduce structural reforms in the budget, pension, tax and statistical systems. But he also stressed plans will have to be detailed in the new Stability Programme that Greece will submit to the Commission in January. In April 2009 Greece was asked by the Council to correct its deficit by 2010. Its response was deemed inadequate by the EU finance ministers meeting on 2 December. The Commission will make new recommendations, with a new deadline, at the beginning of next year.

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Trichet calls for ‘timely and gradual’ phasing-out of crisis measures

In his quarterly monetary dialogue with the European Parliament, held on 7 December, ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet said that monetary exit strategies need to be “timely and gradual”, and closely coordinated among national governments. He warned that the market might get “addicted” to support measures, so the ECB is trying to find the “appropriate moment” to withdraw them. With banks already repaying their loans and the economic situation improving in many countries, however, Trichet stressed that such a decision has to be “timely”.
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New financial instrument ELENA launched by Commission and EIB

The European Local Energy Assistance (ELENA) facility will help local authorities invest in energy efficiency, renewables and sustainable urban transport. A budget of € 15 million will be made available over the first year from the Intelligent Energy Europe II programme to leverage a minimum investment by municipalities of at least EUR 375 million. Technical assistance in assessing the projects will be provided by European Investment Bank (EIB) specialists. The new instrument was jointly launched by the Commission and the EIB yesterday, and will contribute to the EU's objectives in terms of emissions reduction.
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New tool provides information on domestic fiscal frameworks across Member States

The domestic fiscal governance database is an analytical tool designed to provide comprehensive information on domestic fiscal frameworks across EU Member States, namely numerical fiscal rules, independent institutions and medium term budgetary frameworks (MTBFs). The information contained in the database was collected from Member States by the European Commission in coordination with the Economic Policy Committee. The database will be updated annually.
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Publications


European Business Cycle Indicators, issue 1, December 2009
This new monthly online publication provides short-term analysis based on the joint harmonised EU programme of business and consumer surveys. The surveys gauge sentiment in various business sectors and measure confidence among consumers. This first issue includes a focus on the manufacturing sector investment survey conducted in autumn 2009, which reveals the largest contraction in investment expectations since the series began in 1985. If you wish to be alerted when a new issue is published, please subscribe to our email alert service or update your subscription profile here.


European Economy Research Letter, Volume 3, Issue 3, December 2009
A comparison of structural reform scenarios across the EU member states. Simulation-based analysis using the QUEST model with endogenous growth, Economic Paper 392
The euro: It can’t happen, It’s a bad idea, It won’t last. US economists on the EMU, 1989-2002, Economic Paper 395
Public investment, transport infrastructure and growth in Poland. Country Focus
Forthcoming: Quarterly report on the euro area, vol. 4, December 2009
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Agenda Calls
11-19 January
Brussels-Strasbourg
European Parliament hearings of new Commission
18-19 January
Brussels
Eurogroup/ECOFIN Council
27-31 January
Davos
World Economic Forum Annual Meeting
Visiting Fellows Programme (no closing date)
Economics Seminar Programme (no closing date)
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