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European Commission calls for better protection for package holidays

08/01/2014

European Commission calls for better protection for package holidays

83% of Irish people took a holiday in another EU country, and spent just over €1 billion on package holidays last year. Thanks to EU consumer protection rules, many people booking package holidays can travel to their chosen destinations with peace of mind: they know, for example, that they will be able to go home, even if the travel agent that booked their flights, hotels and car rentals goes bust.  More...

EU develops new driverless car parking system

07/31/2014

EU develops new driverless car parking system

There are only a few minutes before your flight check-in closes, or before your train departs, but you now have to spend precious time hunting for a free space at the airport or station car park. Imagine leaving your vehicle at the main entrance and letting the car do the rest on its own. Researchers from Germany, Italy, the UK and Switzerland are working on this, and successful tests took place at Stuttgart airport earlier this year. €5.6 million of EU funding is invested in the system which will be available in the coming years.  More...

Learn to code: Summer coding camps across the country

07/31/2014

Learn to code: Summer coding camps across the country

Julie Cullen, a teacher in St Oliver's Community College in Drogheda, and the Irish Ambassador for EU Code Week, is urging young people to get out and learn how to write computer code this summer. There are a variety of activities taking place this across the country  More...

June 2014- Euro area unemployment rate at 11.5%

07/31/2014

June 2014- Euro area unemployment rate at 11.5%

According to figures released today by Eurostat, Ireland experienced one of the largest decreases in unemployment rates in the EU, from 13.6% to 11.8% between June 2013 and June 2014, just behind Portugal (16.6% to 14.1%) and Hungary (10.4% to 8.1%).  More...

EU scales up funding in response to Ebola outbreak in West Africa

07/30/2014

EU scales up funding in response to Ebola outbreak in West Africa

The European Commission is allocating an additional €2 million to respond to the worst Ebola outbreak ever recorded. This brings the Commission's aid to fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa to €3.9 million.  More...

€3.7million EU funding for Ireland's transport network

07/30/2014

€3.7million EU funding for Ireland's transport network

Ireland is set to benefit to the tune of €3.7 million in EU funding for its transport networks. This funding is part of an overall investment of over €320 million covering 106 transport projects across the EU.  More...

Migrant integration in the labour market in 2013

07/30/2014

Migrant integration in the labour market in 2013

Figures released by Eurostat today reveal the rates of employment for nationals, other EU residents, and non-EU residents of the 28 EU member states. Employment rates for citizens of other EU countries (68.6%) in Ireland are slightly higher than for Irish citizens (65.8%), according to 2013 figures, while non-EU residents in Ireland have an employment rate of 54.4%.  More...

07/29/2014

State aid: Commission approves transfer of last tranches under Irish asset relief scheme NAMA

The European Commission has authorised, under EU state aid rules, the transfer of the last tranches of risky financial assets resulting from the Irish real estate bubble (from tranches 3 to 9) to the Irish National Asset Management Agency (NAMA).  More...

Greener airports thanks to EU-funded tech with Irish partners

07/28/2014

Greener airports thanks to EU-funded tech with Irish partners

Every summer millions of Europeans descend upon the continent’s airports on their way to sunshine and adventure. As airport users explode in number, so does the cost and environmental footprint of running an airport. Did you know that as airports get bigger and bigger they each consume as much energy as small cities? Think only about the lighting, heating and air conditioning systems in these huge transport hubs. That is why European researchers have used Commission funding to develop a new software and sensor system to reduce carbon emissions and energy costs by 20% in airports.  More...

94% of Irish happy with quality of life - Eurobarometer survey

07/25/2014

94% of Irish happy with quality of life - Eurobarometer survey

Irish people feel more positive about the economy than this time last year, but are less optimistic than the EU average. Positive sentiment about the Irish economy is at 24%, up 6 percentage points since Autumn 2013.  This is one of the findings of a recent Europe wide survey on European citizens' opinions on the economy, politics and citizenship.  More...

Irish SMEs have the highest success rate at 20% in first wave of grants under EU SME Instrument

07/24/2014

Irish SMEs have the highest success rate at 20% in first wave of grants under EU SME Instrument

The European Commission today announced the first results of its new €3 billion SME Instrument, launched under Horizon 2020 to help innovative small firms get ideas from the lab to the market. 10 Irish SMEs out of a total of 155 SMEs from 21 countries (EU Member States or countries associated to Horizon 2020) will each receive €50,000 to finance feasibility studies to develop their innovation strategy. In addition, SMEs can benefit from up to three days of business coaching.  More...

European Commission & COST sign €300 million research and innovation agreement

07/24/2014

European Commission & COST sign €300 million research and innovation agreement

Today the European Commission signed a new seven year partnership agreement with COST (the inter-governmental organisation for European Cooperation in Science and Technology) worth around €300 million.  More...

European Commission proposes a higher and achievable energy savings target for 2030

07/23/2014

European Commission proposes a higher and achievable energy savings target for 2030

New opportunities for European businesses, affordable energy bills for consumers, increased energy security through a significant reduction of natural gas imports and a positive impact on the environment: these are some of the expected benefits of the energy efficiency target for 2030 put forward today by the European Commission in a Communication. The proposed target of 30 % builds on the achievements already reached: new buildings use half the energy they did in the 1980s and industry is about 19% less energy intensive than in 2001.  More...

Report on agriculture in the EU - 2013 issue published with latest figures

07/22/2014

Report on agriculture in the EU - 2013 issue published with latest figures

There are around 12 million farms in the EU with agriculture representing 5.2% of employment in the EU. These are among the statistics presented in the Agriculture in the European Union: statistical and economic information report published today by the European Commission, an annual publication covering agriculture-related topics in EU Member States and acceding and candidate countries.  More...

Commission announces €100 million Fast Track to Innovation and five innovation prizes

07/22/2014

Commission announces €100 million Fast Track to Innovation and five innovation prizes

The European Commission today presented details of a new €100 million "Fast Track to Innovation" (FTI) pilot action and five innovation prizes under Horizon 2020, the European Union's €80 billion research and innovation programme. The FTI aims to support Europe's economy by offering innovative businesses and organisations grants to give a final push to get great ideas to market. The prizes offer a reward for technological breakthroughs of high societal relevance.  More...

COSME: the European Commission and the European Investment Fund sign agreement which will boost funding opportunities for SMEs

07/22/2014

COSME: the European Commission and the European Investment Fund sign agreement which will boost funding opportunities for SMEs

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Europe will soon have access to up to €25bn of additional finance, as a result of an agreement signed today between the European Commission and the European Investment Fund (EIF). The signing ceremony of the agreement will be hosted by the newly-appointed Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship, Ferdinando Nelli Feroci.  More...

In-app purchases: Better protection for EU consumers in online games

07/18/2014

In-app purchases: Better protection for EU consumers in online games

Following a large number of complaints in EU countries concerning in-app purchases in online games and in particular inadvertent purchases by children, national authorities joined forces with the European Commission to find solutions.  More...

Ireland ranks well in European single market scoreboard

07/17/2014

Ireland ranks well in European single market scoreboard

The European Commission today released a scoreboard of Member States' performance in implementing the European single market. Since last summer, it has become easier to live, work or do business in another EU country, according to the latest edition of the Single Market Scoreboard.  More...

Study maps EU school food policies for the first time

07/16/2014

Study maps EU school food policies for the first time

As part of the European Commission's efforts to help reduce childhood obesity, the Commission's in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre (JRC), has published the first comprehensive report on school food policies in Europe. It shows that European countries acknowledge the important contribution of school food to children's health, development and performance at school.  More...

A new start for Europe - Jean-Claude Juncker's agenda for Jobs, Growth, Fairness and Democratic Change

07/15/2014

A new start for Europe - Jean-Claude Juncker's agenda for Jobs, Growth, Fairness and Democratic Change

Today Jean-Claude Juncker was elected President of the European Commission by a strong majority of 422 votes in the European Parliament plenary session. After being proposed as candidate for Commission President by the European Council on 27 June 2014, Jean-Claude Juncker needed a majority of 376 votes in the European Parliament.  More...

Online gambling: Commission recommends principles to ensure effective protection of consumers

07/15/2014

Online gambling: Commission recommends principles to ensure effective protection of consumers

The European Commission has today adopted a Recommendation on online gambling services. It encourages Member States to pursue a high level of protection for consumers, players and minors through the adoption of principles for online gambling services and for responsible advertising and sponsorship of those services. The aims of the principles are to safeguard health and to minimise the eventual economic harm that may result from compulsive or excessive gambling.  More...

07/10/2014

Commission acts to ensure that European legislation is fully and properly implemented in Ireland

In its monthly package of infringement decisions, the European Commission is taking action against Ireland and other Member States for failing to comply properly with their obligations under EU law in the areas of Health Policy, Employment and Social Affairs, and Transport. These decisions aim to ensure proper application of EU law for the benefit of citizens and businesses.  More...

9% Increase in Ireland's international student numbers

07/10/2014

9% Increase in Ireland's international student numbers

Ireland welcomed 6,277 students under the Erasmus programme in 2012/2013, an increase of 9% since 2011/2012, while 2,762 Irish students took advantage of the opportunity to study or train abroad during the same period.  More...

Launch of first calls for Public-Private Partnerships under Horizon 2020

07/09/2014

Launch of first calls for Public-Private Partnerships under Horizon 2020

Research partnerships between the EU, the private sector and Member States today presented their first calls for projects and partners under Horizon 2020, the EU's €80 billion research and innovation programme. Worth a total of €1.13 billion in public funding, which will be complemented by a comparable amount from the private partners, the first round of funding will go into projects that will improve people's lives as well as boost international competitiveness of Europe's industry.  More...

€23 million EU funding for ESB wave power project

07/08/2014

€23 million EU funding for ESB wave power project

ESB WestWave, an Irish project developing Ireland's wave energy potential, has been awarded €23 million by the European Commission. The European Commission today awarded €1 billion funding to 19 projects in 12 EU Member States to fight climate change under the NER 300 funding programme. The NER300 is funded from the sale of emission allowances in the EU Emissions Trading System. ESB WestWave is the only Irish project to receive funding under this scheme.  More...

Short-term EU agricultural outlook: very good cereal harvest and increased meat and milk production expected

07/07/2014

Short-term EU agricultural outlook: very good cereal harvest and increased meat and milk production expected

Prospects for 2014 indicate an above average EU cereal harvest for the second year in a row (and a record level of cereal exports for marketing year 2013/14), according to the Commission's Summer 2014 Short-Term Agricultural Outlook published today.  More...

Have your say on the future of science: public consultation on Science 2.0

07/03/2014

Have your say on the future of science: public consultation on Science 2.0

The European Commission has today launched a public consultation on ‘Science 2.0’, in order to gauge the trend towards a more open, data-driven and people-focused way of doing research and innovation. Researchers are using digital tools to get thousands of people participating in research, for example by asking them to report if they catch flu in order to monitor outbreaks and predict possible epidemics.  More...

EU calls for increased recycling rates

07/02/2014

EU calls for increased recycling rates

Eurostat, the European statistics office estimates that 570kgs of municipal waste* is generated per person in Ireland each year, and of this 570kgs, 45% is recycled and composted, 39% is landfilled and 16% is incinerated. While the amount of municipal waste generated in Ireland is above the EU average of 490kgs per person, Irish rates of recycling and composting are above the EU average of 42%.  More...

Environment: 88 per cent of Irish people say the country is generating too much waste

07/01/2014

Environment: 88 per cent of Irish people say the country is generating too much waste

According to a new survey, most European citizens think their own country is generating too much waste. The survey on the "Attitudes of Europeans towards Waste Management and Resource Efficiency" indicates that 96 % of respondents say it is important for them that Europe uses its resources more efficiently: 68 % say this is very important for them, and just 3 % of respondents say this issue is not important.  More...

International Day against Drug Abuse: new study shows recent cannabis use highest among young Irish people

06/26/2014

International Day against Drug Abuse: new study shows recent cannabis use highest among young Irish people

A new Eurobarometer study on young people and drugs shows that Ireland has the highest number of young people who have used cannabis in the past year (28%) compared to an EU average of 17%. Only 58% of young Irish people have never taken cannabis, third lowest in Europe and well below the EU average of 69%. Furthermore young Irish people are less likely to consider regular cannabis use to be high risk at 46% than the EU average of 63%.  More...

Commission adopts new rules for State Aids in Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Areas

06/25/2014

Commission adopts new rules for State Aids in Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Areas

The European Commission has today set out revised and updated criteria under which Member States can support agriculture, forestry and rural areas, in line with EU state aid rules. This is part of the Commission's State Aid Modernisation (SAM) initiative, aimed at fostering growth and competitiveness in the EU, and goes hand in hand with the Common Agricultural Policy, more particularly with the new rural development policy of the EU.  More...

Climate Change could cost the EU €190 billion

06/25/2014

Climate Change could cost the EU €190 billion

If no further action is taken and global temperature increases by 3.5°C, climate damages in the EU could amount to at least €190 billion, a net welfare loss of 1.8% of its current GDP. Several weather-related extremes could roughly double their average frequency. As a consequence, heat-related deaths could reach about 200,000, the cost of river flood damages could exceed €10 billion and 8,000 km2 of forest could burn in southern Europe.  More...

New smartphone app provides information on EU road traffic rules

06/25/2014

New smartphone app provides information on EU road traffic rules

What is the speed limit on Spanish motorways? Do I need to wear a helmet when I cycle in Sweden? What safety equipment must I always have in the car when driving in Slovakia? From now on, holiday makers do not need to spend a lot of time searching for this information. They can have it at hand wherever they are with the European Commission's new smartphone app "Going Abroad".  More...

Science 2.0: Europe can lead the next scientific transformation says EU Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn at ESOF

06/24/2014

Science 2.0: Europe can lead the next scientific transformation says EU Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn at ESOF

In a keynote address to the EuroScience Open Forum in Copenhagen today, EU Research, Innovation and Science Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn told participants that the Commission would shortly launch a public consultation on Science 2.0.  More...

Planning your Holidays? Make sure you have your European Health Insurance card

06/24/2014

Planning your Holidays? Make sure you have your European Health Insurance card

Almost 200 million Europeans already have the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), according to the latest figures available for 2013. This represents more than half of the insured population in the EU. The number of EHIC holders is steadily increasing, with 8 million more citizens carrying it in 2013 compared to the previous year (+4%).  More...

Huge cuts in mobile data roaming price caps from 1 July – a drop of over 50% from last summer!

06/24/2014

Huge cuts in mobile data roaming price caps from 1 July – a drop of over 50% from last summer!

It's a big summer sale courtesy of the European Commission! From 1 July 2014, the EU will cut the price caps for data downloads by more than half: down from 45 cents per megabyte to 20c/MB. It will become even cheaper to use maps, watch videos, check mails and update social networks while travelling across the EU.  More...

Buying medicines online? Commission introduces logo to make sure consumers are safe

06/24/2014

Buying medicines online? Commission introduces logo to make sure consumers are safe

With Europeans increasingly buying medicines online, how can we be sure that an online pharmacy is authentic and safe? Today, the Commission adopts an implementing Regulation under the Falsified Medicinal Products Directive (2011/62/EU) which sets out the design for a common logo for online pharmacies, and the technical requirements for ensuring its authenticity. The logo will fully be available in second half of 2015.  More...

Commission publishes findings of first post-programme surveillance mission to Ireland

06/24/2014

Commission publishes findings of first post-programme surveillance mission to Ireland

The Commission has published its first report following the first post-programme surveillance review mission to Ireland.  More...

European Vacancy and Recruitment Report -  lower skilled workers face increasing difficulties finding a job

06/24/2014

European Vacancy and Recruitment Report - lower skilled workers face increasing difficulties finding a job

Low-skilled workers encounter increasing difficulties finding a job, face lower job stability and are out-competed by medium-skilled workers even in elementary occupations. In contrast, job opportunities are growing in some high-skilled professions. These are the main findings of the European Vacancy and Recruitment Report 2014 published today.  More...

World Refugee Day: Numbers of asylum seekers granted protection in the EU up almost 20,000 in 2013

06/19/2014

World Refugee Day: Numbers of asylum seekers granted protection in the EU up almost 20,000 in 2013

According to Eurostat figures published today, on the eve of World Refugee Day, EU Member States granted protection to 135,725 asylum seekers in 2013, up from 116,200 in 2012. Over the last five years, more than 570,000 asylum seekers were granted protection status in the EU.  More...

Patient safety: in the EU - progress made but more to do

06/19/2014

Patient safety: in the EU - progress made but more to do

A patient safety package published today by the European Commission highlights how the Commission and EU countries are addressing the challenge of patient safety, progress made since 2012 and barriers to overcome to improve patient safety as foreseen in a Council Recommendation of 2009.  More...

Prices in Ireland fifth highest in the EU and highest for alcoholic and tobacco

06/19/2014

Prices in Ireland fifth highest in the EU and highest for alcoholic and tobacco

According to figures published today by Eurostat, consumer prices in Ireland were fifth highest in the EU in 2013 at 118% of the EU average. Prices were highest in Denmark (140% of the EU28 average) followed by Sweden (130%), Luxembourg and Finland (both 123%) and lowest in Hungary (60%), Poland and Romania (both 57%) and Bulgaria (48%).  More...

REFIT – Commission making EU law lighter, simpler and less costly

06/18/2014

REFIT – Commission making EU law lighter, simpler and less costly

Just a few days ahead of the European Council, the Commission pushes the EU's smart regulation agenda further. A Communication adopted today shows that the implementation of the Commission's Regulatory Fitness and Performance programme (REFIT) is in full swing and that EU law is indeed becoming lighter, simpler and less costly.  More...

EU recognises Limerick’s ‘park & picnic pods’ project

06/17/2014

EU recognises Limerick’s ‘park & picnic pods’ project

Limerick’s ‘park & picnic pods’ project is one of 19 projects around Europe that will receive funding under the European Commission’s Sustainable Urban Mobility campaign ‘Do the Right Mix’. The selected actions will each receive up to € 7 000 to support activities promoting greener and more sustainable ways of getting around town, such as design competitions and educational activities.  More...

Education and training is not up to the job, according to almost a quarter of Irish and Europeans in survey

06/17/2014

Education and training is not up to the job, according to almost a quarter of Irish and Europeans in survey

A new Eurobarometer survey on the 'European Area of Skills and Qualifications' shows that almost a quarter of EU (23%) and Irish citizens (22%) feel that their education or training has not provided them with the skills to find a job in line with their qualifications.  More...

Statement by Commissioner Šemeta on Taxation Trends in Europe

06/16/2014

Statement by Commissioner Šemeta on Taxation Trends in Europe

In a statement made following the publication of the Eurostat report "Taxation trends in the European Union", Algirdas Šemeta, Commissioner for Taxation, Customs, Anti-Fraud and Audit said that: "growth-friendly taxation must be put at the heart of structural reforms."  More...

Food Safety: 35 years protecting human and animal health

06/13/2014

Food Safety: 35 years protecting human and animal health

Europe is more than ever reliant on its Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) to ensure that our food meets some of the highest food safety standards in the world. Besides its main role of ensuring food safety since its creation 35 years ago, the 2013 annual report RASFF, published today, shows that it is a crucial tool to trace back and withdraw products where fraud was detected.  More...

New Consumer Rights Directive enters into force today

06/13/2014

New Consumer Rights Directive enters into force today

Good news for Europe's more than 507 million consumers: as of today, new EU legislation will bolster their rights throughout the European Union. The new EU Consumer Rights Directive strengthens consumers' rights wherever and whenever they shop in Europe – online or on the high street.  More...

Only 9% of Irish respondents very satisfied with price of public transport

06/12/2014

Only 9% of Irish respondents very satisfied with price of public transport

A new Eurobarometer survey on satisfaction levels with public transport across Europe has revealed that only 9% of Irish respondents are very satisfied with the price of public transport, 31% are fairly satisfied, while 44% are dissatisfied. 44% of respondents in Malta (highest) are very satisfied with the price of public transport. At 4%, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands and Hungary are the least satisfied with prices for public transport  More...

Commission investigates transfer pricing arrangements on corporate taxation of Apple (Ireland)

06/11/2014

Commission investigates transfer pricing arrangements on corporate taxation of Apple (Ireland)

The European Commission has opened three in-depth investigations to examine whether decisions by tax authorities in Ireland, The Netherlands and Luxembourg with regard to the corporate income tax to be paid by Apple, Starbucks and Fiat Finance and Trade, respectively, comply with the EU rules on state aid. The opening of an in-depth investigation gives interested third parties, as well as the three Member States concerned, an opportunity to submit comments. It does not prejudge the outcome of the investigation.  More...

EU calls for reforms and investment in R&I to sustain economic recovery

06/10/2014

EU calls for reforms and investment in R&I to sustain economic recovery

Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, has today highlighted the importance of research and innovation (R&I) investments and reforms for economic recovery in the European Union.  More...

Data Protection well on track after Justice Council

06/06/2014

Data Protection well on track after Justice Council

Following today's Justice Council in Luxembourg, significant progress has been made under the EU Justice portfolio, with Ministers reaching agreements on a number of key files including data protection, protection for children in criminal court proceedings and cross-border insolvency law.  More...

Commission sponsors Machine Translation showcase at Localization World in Dublin

06/04/2014

Commission sponsors Machine Translation showcase at Localization World in Dublin

The European Commission is sponsoring the TAUS Machine Translation showcase at the Localization World conference. The conference runs from 4 to 6  June at the Convention Centre in Dublin.  More...

Building growth: Country-specific recommendations 2014

06/03/2014

Building growth: Country-specific recommendations 2014

The European Commission has today adopted a series of economic policy recommendations to individual Member States to strengthen the recovery that began a year ago. The recommendations are based on detailed analyses of each country's situation and provide guidance on how to boost growth, increase competitiveness and create jobs in 2014-2015.  More...

Commission clears acquisition of Telefónica Ireland by Hutchison 3G, subject to conditions

05/28/2014

Commission clears acquisition of Telefónica Ireland by Hutchison 3G, subject to conditions

The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Telefónica Ireland's mobile telecommunications business (O2 Ireland) by Hutchison 3G (H3G). The approval is conditional upon a commitments package submitted by H3G. The Commission had concerns that the merger, as initially notified, would have removed an important competitive force from the Irish mobile telecommunications market to the detriment of consumers.  More...

Water quality excellent at most of Ireland's bathing sites

05/27/2014

Water quality excellent at most of Ireland's bathing sites

Almost 85% of Ireland's bathing water has been deemed "excellent" quality according to the annual bathing water quality report from the European Environment Agency (EEA). 3% of Ireland's bathing water was deemed as "poor" quality, similar to France and Spain, but better than Belgium (4 %), the Netherlands (5 %) and Estonia (6 %).  More...




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