Category Archives: ΔΙΑΦΟΡΑ

Παραιτήθηκε ο Ρέντσι

Ο πρωθυπουργός της Ιταλίας Ματέο Ρέντσι υπέβαλε την παραίτησή του στον πρόεδρο της χώρας Σέρτζιο Ματαρέλα, την Τετάρτη το βράδυ, όπως είχε προαναγγείλει ώρες νωρίτερα. Ο κ. Ρέντσι είχε ανακοινώσει την πρόθεσή του να παραιτηθεί αμέσως μετά την απόρριψη της συνταγματικής μεταρρύθμισης την οποία είχε προτείνει στο δημοψήφισμα της Κυριακής, με ποσοστό σχεδόν 60%. Ο πρόεδρος της Ιταλίας ζήτησε από τον κ. Ρέντσι να συνεχίσει να ασκεί τα καθήκοντά του ως υπηρεσιακός πρωθυπουργός, ώστε ο κ. Ματαρέλα να έχει τον χρόνο να διαβουλευτεί με τα κόμματα που εκπροσωπούνται σε Βουλή και Γερουσία για το τι μέλλει γενέσθαι. Οι διαβουλεύσεις του επικεφαλής του ιταλικού κράτους θα αρχίσουν την Πέμπτη το βράδυ και θα ολοκληρωθούν το Σάββατο το απόγευμα. Πιθανότερο σενάριο αυτή τη στιγμή είναι, μετά το πέρας των διαβουλεύσεων, ο πρόεδρος Ματαρέλα να ζητήσει από κάποιον υπουργό της απερχόμενης κυβέρνησης ή άλλο στέλεχος του κεντροαριστερού Δημοκρατικού Κόμματος να προσπαθήσει να σχηματίσει κυβέρνηση. Οι επόμενες εκλογές, με βάση τη θητεία της Βουλής και της Γερουσίας, είναι προγραμματισμένες για την άνοιξη του 2018, ωστόσο πολλές πολιτικές δυνάμεις καλούν σε πρόωρη διεξαγωγή τους. Ο γρίφος του εκλογικού νόμου Το εκλογικό σύστημα που ψηφίστηκε το 2015 δίνει στο πρώτο κόμμα ή στον πρώτο συνασπισμό κομμάτων άνετη πλειοψηφία στη Βουλή (κάτω σώμα του ιταλικού κοινοβουλίου). Ωστόσο, μετά την απόρριψη - στο δημοψήφισμα της Κυριακής - της μεταρρύθμισης Ρέντσι η οποία αποδυνάμωνε τη Γερουσία (άνω σώμα του κοινοβουλίου), η τελευταία συνεχίζει να εκλέγεται με σχετικά αναλογικό εκλογικό σύστημα και να διατηρεί ακριβώς ίδιες αρμοδιότητες και «ειδικό βάρος» με τη Βουλή. Δεδομένου ότι η κυβέρνηση της Ιταλίας πρέπει να έχει την εμπιστοσύνη και των δύο σωμάτων, σε περίπτωση που διεξαχθούν εκλογές με άλλο εκλογικό σύστημα για τη Βουλή και άλλο για τη Γερουσία, η χώρα κινδυνεύει να περιπέσει σε θεσμικό και πολιτικό αδιέξοδο. naftemporiki.gr Let's block ads! (Why?)

Πασίγνωστος ηθοποιός αποκάλυψε: Με βίαζε ο παππούς μου – ΦΩΤΟ

Σόκαρε την Αγγλία πασίγνωστος ηθοποιός με τις αποκαλύψεις που έκανε περί σεξουαλικής κακοποίησης του σε συνέντευξή του στην εφημερίδα, Guardian. Ο λόγος για τον 55χρονο πρωταγωνιστή των ταινιών Pulp Fiction και Reseervoir Dogs, Τιμ Ροθ, ο οποίος, μάλιστα, αποκάλυψε και την ...

Commission welcomes agreement to ensure compliance of Intergovernmental Agreements in the field of energy with EU law

According to the new rules, Member States will have to notify the Commission their Intergovernmental Agreements in the field of gas and oil with non-EU countries before concluding them. The proposal for a review of the Intergovernmental Agreement Decision is an important part of the sustainable energy security package proposed by the Commission in February 2016. Its key objective is to increase transparency on the gas market, make sure Intergovernmental Agreements are in line with EU law and strengthen the EU's resilience to gas supply disruptions. Securing an agreement today, in record time after the proposal was tabled by the Commission, is a major political achievement. Energy security is one of the cornerstones of the Energy Union strategy, a key political priority of this Juncker Commission. Maroš Šefčovič, European Commission Vice-President for the Energy Union, said: "One of the Energy Union's main objectives is to enhance energy security, solidarity and trust. An important element in ensuring energy security is full compliance of agreements related to buying gas and oil from third countries with EU law. Practice has shown that renegotiating Intergovernmental Agreements, once they have been concluded, is very difficult - to the detriment of the Member State concerned and the European Union. Today's Agreement ensures that rather than assessing whether international agreements comply with EU law after they are signed, Member States will now do so in advance. This is a big political and legislative achievement". Miguel Arias Cañete, Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, said: “Today's agreement, only nine months after the Commission adopted this proposal, is a major achievement for the EU's energy security. This significant first deliverable of the Energy Union Strategy, achieved in record time, shows the Commission's commitment to ensuring compliance with EU law and transparency on the energy agreements between EU and non-EU countries. The new rules, agreed by the negotiators of the European Parliament and the Council, will allow the Commission to guarantee that no energy deal jeopardises the security of supply in an EU country, or hampers the functioning of the EU's energy market". Main agreed achievements Introduction of a mandatory ex-ante compatibility check by the Commission of Intergovernmental Agreements related to gas and oil. Member States will have to notify their draft Intergovernmental Agreements related to gas and oil to the Commission before concluding them. Member States cannot sign these Intergovernmental Agreements until the Commission has issued its opinion. When concluding the proposed Intergovernmental Agreements, Member States will have to take utmost account of the Commission's opinion. Intergovernmental Agreements related to electricity will be covered by a mandatory ex-post assessment, but a review clause has been inserted to possibly include electricity-related IGAs in the mandatory ex-assessment in the future.   Next steps Following today's political agreement (in 'trilogue', between negotiators of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission), the text will have to be formally approved by the European Parliament and the Council. Once endorsed by both co-legislators, the revised Intergovernmental Agreement Decision will be published in the Official Journal of the Union. Background Current rules on Intergovernmental Agreements were agreed in 2012 and they require Member States to notify the Commission their energy agreements with non-EU countries only after they have been concluded (ex-post). Under the 2012 rules, 124 Intergovernmental Agreements have been notified to the Commission. One-third of the agreements related to energy infrastructure or energy supply contained provisions that were not compliant with EU law. Moreover, it has proven very difficult to renegotiate or terminate Intergovernmental Agreements once they have been signed by the parties. In fact, no Intergovernmental Agreement has been successfully renegotiated as yet. More information http://ec.europa.eu/energy/en/topics/international-cooperation/intergovernmental-agreements http://ec.europa.eu/priorities/energy-union-and-climate_en Let's block ads! (Why?)

Αμεση έκδοση και των οκτώ Τούρκων στρατιωτικών ζητά η Αγκυρα

Την άμεση έκδοση και των οκτώ Τούρκων στρατιωτικών που είχαν διαφύγει στην Ελλάδα την επομένη του πραξικοπήματος στη γειτονική χώρα ζήτησε με δηλώσεις του την Τετάρτη, ο Τούρκος υπουργός Εξωτερικών, Μεβλούτ Τσαβούσογλου.Μιλώντας στον κρατικό τουρκικό σταθμό TRT, ο Τσαβούσογλου υποστήριξε ότι και οι οκτώ είναι πραξικοπηματίες, υπογραμμίζοντας ότι η Αγκυρα «επιθυμεί την άμεση έκδοσή τους». Υπενθυμίζεται ότι χθες, Τρίτη, το Συμβούλιο Εφετών αποφάσισε την έκδοση τριών εκ των οκτώ Τούρκων αξιωματικών, ενώ ο Εισαγγελέας άσκησε έφεση και κατά της αντίθετης απόφασης, δηλαδή της μη έκδοσης, που είχε ληφθεί τη Δευτέρα για τους τρεις πρώτους.Let's block ads! (Why?)

Article – Emergency Lessons: the importance of educating children in emergency situations

Some 462 million children live in countries affected by war or national disasters and about 75 million of them need educational support. The EU and Unicef launched the Emergency Lessons campaign this year to highlight the importance of education for children affected by emergencies. On 6 December children, teachers and volunteers visited the Parliament in Brussels to talk about their experiences. Children's education can be disrupted or even abandoned when emergencies hit, be it from natural disasters, military conflicts or health crises, such as an Ebola outbreak. As schools give children a sense of normality, Unicef sees education as critical as food and medicine, enabling young people not only to survive, but also to thrive. The Emergency Lessons initiative is a partnership between the European Commission’s department for humanitarian aid and civil protection and the United Nations Children’s Fund, which is better known under the abbreviation Unicef. The event at the Parliament was organised by the development committee and supported by Christos Stylianides, commissioner responsible for humanitarian aid and crisis management; MEP Linda McAvan and Unicef Deputy Executive Director Justin Forsyth.  UK S&D member McAvan, chair of Parliament's development committee, said during the event: ”I visited a refugee camp in Turkey. I saw there what is Unicef doing, with the support of the European Union, to bring education to people in very difficult circumstances." During the event youth ambassadors surprised the audience with a card game explaining the roles of gender equality and people with disabilities in the society. In addition a Facebook live session was held with young representatives from Ukraine and Zimbabwe. Let's block ads! (Why?)

Local EU Statement on the earthquake in Aceh province

"We offer our sincere condolences to the families of the victims and the people of Indonesia for the loss of lives and destruction caused by the earthquake that hit the Pidie Jaya district in Aceh Province, Indonesia this morning. The European Union has a long-standing commitment to Indonesia and, in particular, the province of Aceh, notably after the 2004 Tsunami. We stand by the Indonesian people at this difficult time and are ready to help". Let's block ads! (Why?)

Pernyataan Setempat Uni Eropa mengenai gempa bumi di provinsi Aceh

"Kami menyampaikan belasungkawa mendalam kepada keluarga korban dan rakyat Indonesia atas hilangnya nyawa dan kehancuran yang disebabkan oleh gempa bumi yang melanda kabupaten Pidie Jaya di Provinsi Aceh, Indonesia pagi ini. Uni Eropa memiliki komitmen jangka panjang terhadap Indonesia dan, khususnya, Provinsi Aceh, terutama setelah peristiwa Tsunami tahun 2004. Kami berdiri bersama rakyat Indonesia pada masa sulit ini dan siap membantu ". Let's block ads! (Why?)

Πακιστάν: Συνετρίβη αεροσκάφος με 47 επιβαίνοντες

Αεροσκάφος των πακιστανικών αερογραμμών με 47 επιβαίνοντες συνετρίβη σε ορεινή περιοχή στο βόρειο Πακιστάν, ενώ πραγματοποιούσε πτήση από την πόλη Σιτράλ με προορισμό το Ισλαμαμπάντ, όπως ανακοίνωσε αξιωματούχος της αστυνομίας. TWITTER/ SAMAA TV Φωτογραφία από το σημείο της συντριβής του αεροσκάφους, όπως τις μετέδωσε τηλεοπτικός σταθμός του Πακιστάν. Ο εθνικός αερομεταφορέας του Πακιστάν επιβεβαίωσε με ανακοίνωσή του ότι η επικοινωνία με την πτήση PK-661 χάθηκε το απόγευμα της Τετάρτης (τοπική ώρα). TWITTER/DANYAL GILANI Υψηλόβαθμος αξιωματούχος της τοπικής αστυνομίας δήλωσε στο πρακτορείο Reuters ότι το αεροπλάνο συνετρίβη κοντά στην πόλη Χαβελιάν. Μιλώντας στο ίδιο πρακτορείο, κυβερνητικός αξιωματούχος που μετέβη στο σημείο της συντριβής απέκλεισε το ενδεχόμενο ανεύρεσης επιζώντων, σημειώνοντας ότι πολλές σοροί έχουν απανθρακωθεί. Let's block ads! (Why?)

Daily News 07 / 12 / 2016

Investing in Europe's youth: Commission presents measures to improve opportunities for young people and launches European Solidarity Corps The European Commission is today launching the European Solidarity Corps, just two months after President Juncker announced it in his State of the Union address and as a first deliverable of the priorities for action identified in the Bratislava Roadmap. As of today, young people between the ages of 18 and 30 can sign up for new opportunities to make an important contribution to society across the EU, and to gain invaluable experience and acquire valuable skills at the start of their career. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said: "The European Solidarity Corps will create opportunities for young people willing to make a meaningful contribution to society and help show solidarity – something the world and our European Union needs more of. For me, this has always been the very essence of what the European Union is about. It is not the Treaties or industrial or economic interests that bind us together, but our values. And those who work as volunteers are living European values each and every day." At 13:00 today, Vice-President Georgieva will officially launch the European Solidarity Corps under the Skyshelter Dome at the Schuman roundabout.In addition to the European Solidarity Corps,the Commission is also presenting a series of measures to boost youth employment, improve and modernise education, more investment in skills of young people, and better opportunities to learn and study abroad. Today's proposals bring together at EU-level for the first time different types of action with a single goal: to improve opportunities for young people. The measures will be presented by Commissioners Thyssen, Stylianides and Navracsics following today's College meeting. More information on the entire package can be found in the following press release and memo. More detailed information on the European Solidarity Corps can be found here. (For more information: Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 229 58615; Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253; Nathalie Vandystadt – Tel.: +32 229 67083) Ententes: la Commission inflige des amendes d'un montant total de 485 millions € au Crédit Agricole, à HSBC et à JPMorgan Chase pour participation à une entente concernant des produits dérivés de taux d'intérêt en euro La Commission européenne a infligé des amendes pour un montant total de 485 millions € au Crédit Agricole, à HSBC et à JPMorgan Chase pour leur participation à une entente concernant des produits dérivés de taux d'intérêt en euro. Les banques se sont entendues sur des éléments de la fixation du prix des produits dérivés de taux d'intérêt en euro, et ont échangé des informations sensibles, en violation des règles de l'UE concernant les pratiques anticoncurrentielles. Contrairement à Barclays, à Deutsche Bank, à RBS et à Société Générale, avec lesquelles la Commission est parvenue à une transaction concernant la même affaire d'entente en décembre 2013, Crédit Agricole, HSBC et JPMorgan Chase ont choisi de ne pas régler cette affaire par voie de transaction avec la Commission. Cette dernière a donc poursuivi son enquête à leur égard selon la procédure normale applicable en matière d'ententes. La décision d'aujourd'hui marque la fin de la première des différentes enquêtes ouvertes au sujet d'ententes dans le secteur des services financiers. Mme Margrethe Vestager, commissaire chargée de la politique de concurrence, a déclaré à ce propos: «Un secteur financier sain et concurrentiel est indispensable pour soutenir l'investissement et la croissance. Les banques doivent respecter les règles de concurrence de l'UE au même titre que n'importe quelle autre entreprise exerçant ses activités dans le marché unique.» Un communiqué de presse est disponible en ligne en EN, FR et DE. La conférence de presse du commissaire Vestager est disponible sur EbS.Voir aussi la déclaration du commissaire Vestager. (Pour plus d'informations: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Yizhou Ren – Tel.: +32 229 94889) Fitness Check of Nature legislation: Commission considers options for improved implementation of the Birds and Habitats Directives Today the College held an orientation debate on the next steps of the Fitness Check of the Birds and Habitats Directives. These Directives are vital for Europe's nature conservation policy and as such, their implementation needs to be improved. This was one of the findings of the extensive evaluation the Commission has been carrying out since late 2014 in which it has been consulting citizens and stakeholders across all EU Member States. Today First Vice-President Timmermans, Vice-President Katainen and Commissioner Vella, presented the key findings of this evaluation to the College and discussed the next steps. The challenges and problems identified primarily relate to the insufficient management and lack of adequate investment in the Natura 2000 network of protected sites, as well as to local deficiencies such as delays, unnecessary burdens for project permits and lack of adequate different assessments in regulating individual species. The evaluation identified the need to improve the implementation of the Directives and their coherence with broader socio-economic objectives, including other EU policy areas such as energy, agriculture and fisheries. On the basis of today's Orientation Debate, the Commission will develop an Action Plan to correct the deficiencies encountered in the implementation of the Birds and Habitats Directives. The Action Plan will contain a series of concrete measures such as holding regular meetings with mayors and other local authorities to assess implementation challenges and help Member States take the necessary corrective action. Moreover, the Plan will design, in partnership with Member States and relevant stakeholders, appropriate implementation guidelines for regional actors, reducing unnecessary burdens and litigation, and incentivising national and regional investment in biodiversity. The Committee of the Regions will be closely involved in the follow-up of today's orientation debate and Commissioner Vella with First Vice-President Timmermans and Vice-President Katainen will inform the College regularly about the progress on addressing the problems and shortcomings identified by the Fitness Check. (For more information: Enrico Brivio– Tel.: +32 229 56172; Iris Petsa – Tel.: +32 229 93321) Securing Europe's external borders: European Border and Coast Guard Agency launches rapid reaction pool of border guards and equipment Today the European Border and Coast Guard Agency is launching the rapid reaction pool of border guards and equipment. As of today, the Agency will be able to deploy equipment and a standing reserve of at least 1,500 border guards and experts at short notice to support Member States in emergency situations at the EU's external borders. Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos, said: "As of today, there should no longer be shortages of staff or equipment for the operations of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency. This is an important milestone in the roll-out of the Agency and will ensure, at all times, that sufficient support is available to help Member States in cases where the common external EU border is placed under strong pressure." Launched on 6 October, in record time and less than a year after it was first proposed by the Commission, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency will ensure the effective application of strong common border management standards and provide operational support and intervention where necessary to promptly respond to emerging crises at the external borders. The Agency will now be able to draw on 1,500 experts committed by EU Member States and Schengen associated countries that can be deployed within five working days. The border guards and experts of the rapid reaction pool will be in addition to the officers deployed in regular Agency operations at the EU's external borders. The Agency currently has 1,200 officers deployed in operations at EU external borders. As of today, the Agency will also have at its disposal the necessary technical equipment that can be used in rapid intervention operations, including vehicles, vessels and aircrafts. You can find a press release by the European Border and Coast Guardhere. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Markus Lammert – Tel.: +32 229 80423; Kasia Kolanko – Tel.: +32 229 63444) L'Union européenne renforce son soutien au Burkina-Faso avec 800 millions d'euros M. Neven Mimica, Commissaire européen pour la coopération internationale et le développement, est aujourd'hui à Paris pour participer à la Conférence internationale sur le Burkina Faso pour le financement du Plan national de développement économique et social (PNDES). Le Plan national pour le développement économique et social jette les bases pour la mise en œuvre des objectifs du nouveau gouvernement à l'horizon 2020. La Commission européenne compte l'appuyer avec un important soutien de 800 millions d'euros. Le Commissaire Mimica a fait la déclaration suivante : «Nous sommes aujourd'hui réunis pour discuter du Plan national pour le développement économique et social, plan que le Gouvernement du Faso présente à la communauté internationale. Il s'agit d'un Plan ambitieux qui doit mener à la consolidation de la démocratie et au développement durable du pays. L'Union européenne soutiendra à hauteur de 800 millions d'euros les efforts entrepris afin que la population du Faso voit rapidement les effets d'une stabilité retrouvée et bénéficie des dividendes de la paix.» Lors de cette conférence, le Commissaire Mimica va signer trois conventions de financement, dont deux appuis budgétaires, pour un montant de 205 millions d'euros.(Pour plus d'informations: Carlos Martin – Tel: +32 229-65322, Christina Wunder – Tel.: +32 229 92256) Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft, subject to conditions The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft. The decision is conditional on compliance with a series of commitments aimed at preserving competition between professional social networks in Europe. Microsoft and LinkedIn are mainly active in complementary business areas, except for minor overlaps in online advertising. The Commission's investigation under EU merger rules focused in particular on three areas: (i) professional social network services, (ii) customer relationship management software solutions, and (iii) online advertising services. In the professional social network services market, the Commission was concerned that Microsoft would use its strong market position in operating systems for personal computers and productivity software to strengthen LinkedIn's position among professional social networks. This would make it harder for new players to start providing professional social network services in the EEA. To address those concerns, Microsoft offered a series of commitments which will apply in the EEA for a period of five years and will be monitored by a trustee. These commitments address the competition concerns identified by the Commission. Regarding customer relationship management software and online advertising services, the Commission's concerns were not corroborated. The Commission therefore concluded that the proposed transaction, as modified by the commitments, would no longer raise competition concerns. Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: "A growing number of Europeans subscribe to professional social networks. These networks are important for professionals to connect and interact and to find new career opportunities. Today's decision ensures that Europeans will continue to enjoy a freedom of choice between professional social networks." A full press release is available online in EN, FR and DE. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Angela Nardella - Tel.: +32 229 86801) Une personne sur quatre âgées de 15 ans ou plus dans l'Union européenne est un fumeur Alors qu'un peu plus de trois quarts (76,0%) des personnes âgées de 15 ans ou plus vivant dans l'Union européenne (UE) ne fumaient pas en 2014, 19,2% fumaient quotidiennement du tabac et 4,7% en fumaient de manière occasionnelle. En d'autres termes, près d'une personne sur quatre (24,0%) âgées de 15 ans ou plus dans l'UE était actuellement fumeur en 2014. La proportion de fumeurs actuels varie selon le sexe, avec une proportion plus importante d'hommes fumant (28,7%) que de femmes (19,5%) dans l'UE en 2014. Vytenis Andriukaitis, Commissaire européen à la santé et la sécurité alimentaire, a déclaré: “Les taux élevés de fumeurs dans l'Union européenne, et les preuves que les jeunes Européens continuent d'en payer le prix de leur santé constituent une de mes plus grandes préoccupations. Les données qu'Eurostat publie aujourd'hui démontrent à nouveau la nécessité des mesures fortes adoptées à l'échelle de l'Union européenne pour encadrer les produits du tabac et que les pays de l'UE doivent mettre en œuvre depuis le 20 mai de cette année. Ces nouvelles mesures comprennent des images d'avertissement relatives aux conséquences du tabac sur la santé humaine, ainsi que l'interdiction des arômes et de divers paquets attrayants. Elles visent à décourager les jeunes de fumer et à faire en sorte que les citoyens de l'UE de tous les âges soient pleinement conscients des effets nocifs du tabagisme." Un communiqué de presse est disponible ici. (Pour plus d'informations: Enrico Brivio – Tel.: +32 229 56172; Aikaterini Apostola – Tel. +32 229 87624) ANNOUNCEMENTS Second EU Internet Forum to counter terrorist content and hate speech online Tomorrow, the European Commission will host the second EU Internet Forum with the participation of Commissioners Dimitris Avramopoulos, Věra Jourová and Julian King. The Forum will bring together the Commission, Member States, EUROPOL, the Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) and Internet companies, including Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube. The meeting will push for further progress on reducing accessibility to terrorist propaganda online and empowering civil society to increase the volume of effective alternative narratives on the Internet. The participants will also discuss a tool developed by the Internet industry to create a shared database to help identify potential terrorist content on social media and prevent its reappearance on other platforms. The Commission and Internet companies will sign a joint statement on curbing terrorist content on the Internet. The Commission will also report on progress made in addressing the surge of xenophobic and racist online hate speech. A press release from the launch of the EU Internet Forum is available online and a press point with Commissioners Avramopoulos and King will take place tomorrow in the VIP corner at 15:30. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Markus Lammert – Tel.: +32 229 80423; Kasia Kolanko – Tel.: +32 229 63444) Commissioners Avramopoulos, Jourová, King and Stylianides to attend the Justice and Home Affairs Council Commissioners Dimitris Avramopoulos, Věra Jourová, Julian King, and Christos Stylianides will attend the Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting in Brussels on 8-9 December 2016. On Thursday, Justice Ministers will discuss the latest development regarding the directive on the fight against fraud to the EU's financial interests (the so-called PIF directive), the digital content directive part of the digital contract proposal and the European Public Prosecutor's Office proposal (EPPO).  Discussions over lunch will focus on the code of conduct on countering illegal online hate speech. Finally, the Commission will report on the follow-up to the June Council conclusions on improving criminal justice in cyberspace. On Friday, Home Affairs Ministers will discuss the Commission proposals for a reform of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS), including the reform of the Dublin mechanism, the establishment of a European Agency for Asylum and the proposals to create a common procedure for international protection in the EU, uniform standards for protection and rights granted to beneficiaries of international protection and the further harmonisation of reception conditions in the EU. Over lunch, the application of the principles of responsibility and solidarity in the context of the EU's migration and asylum policy will be discussed. Home Affairs Ministers are also expected to agree on a mandate for negotiations with the European Parliament on the Eurodac regulation and possibly on the Entry-Exit System. Furthermore, Ministers will discuss the fight against terrorism, including policy options as regards foreign terrorist fighters, the cooperation between law enforcement agencies and electronic communication service providers and the management of the consequences following terrorist attacks including by strengthening Civil Protection measures. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 22962253; Carlos Martín Ruiz de Gordejuela – Tel.: + 32 229-65322) Upcoming events of the European Commission (ex-Top News) Let's block ads! (Why?)

Investing in Europe's Youth: Questions and Answers

What is the initiative "Investing in Europe's Youth" about? Today the Commission has presented several key actions to support young people in Europe. This includes the launch of the European Solidarity Corps, which was announced by President Juncker in his State of the Union speech on 14 September 2016. At the Bratislava Summit on 16 September 2016 the Heads of State or Government of 27 EU Member States committed to taking decisions by the end of the year on EU support for Member States in "fighting youth unemployment and on enhanced EU programmes dedicated to youth". Today's proposals are the first deliverable from the list of concrete measures set out in President Juncker's State of the Union speech and the Bratislava Roadmap. The initiative "Investing in Europe's Youth" covers four key areas of critical importance for young people: employment; mobility; solidarity and participation; education and training. What is the Commission proposing? 1. Tackling youth unemployment The recent Commission report on the implementation of the Youth Guarantee and the Youth Employment Initiative shows that the Youth Guarantee has become a reality across the EU and is yielding results. Around 9 million young people have taken up an offer under the Youth Guarantee scheme since its implementation. In addition, since 2013, there are 1.6 million fewer young unemployed and 900,000 fewer young people not in employment, education or training. Although youth unemployment is steadily dropping, it still remains too high. It is therefore necessary to draw lessons from the experience gained and build on the achievements so far in pursuing the full roll-out of the national Youth Guarantee schemes, as announced by President Juncker in his State of the Union address of 14 September 2016. The Commission aims at further supporting the implementation of the Youth Guarantee, also through the continuation of the Youth Employment Initiative. In particular, in September, the Commission proposed to increase funding by a total of €2 billion (€1 billion by increasing the budget line for the Youth Employment Initiative, matched by another billion from the European Social Fund). This would make it possible to support around 1 million more young people until 2020 in the Member States most affected by youth unemployment. 2. Mobility for young people To encourage mobility for young people, the Commission wants to build on one of Europe's most successful programmes: Erasmus+. This programme is emblematic for the opportunities the EU offers to young people to learn or study abroad. Learning and studying in another country has proven to be of great added value for young people to develop their skills, improve their career chances and enhance European citizenship. Learning abroad is a unique experience that helps those who do it to assume responsibility while developing cross-cultural communication experience and specialist skills. Experience gained abroad is a major advantage for young people when applying for a job. Employers appreciate additional assets such as the capacity to show initiative, adaptability in different cultural environments and linguistic skills. When it comes to learning mobility, apprentices are still under-represented. In spite of the proven positive impact, only a small fraction of apprentices spend time learning in another Member State and even then, it is usually for a very short amount of time (one month on average). In 2017, the Commission will launch "ErasmusPro", a new dedicated activity within the Erasmus+ programme to support long-duration (6-12 months) placements of apprentices abroad. In addition to the current 650.000 apprentices that will benefit from mobility under Erasmus+, these measures will open up the possibility for 50,000 additional young people to spend at least 6 months of their learning experience in another Member State in the period 2017-2020. Vocational education and training systems, in particular apprenticeships, are a tried-and-tested way to equip young people with relevant skills and facilitate their transition from school to the labour market; but it is essential that sufficient apprenticeship places are available and that they are of a good quality. Therefore the Commission is also proposing a Quality Framework for Apprenticeships which will set out key principles for the design and delivery of apprenticeships at all levels. 3. Solidarity and participation Today, the Commission is launching the European Solidarity Corps, providing new opportunities for young Europeans to engage in solidarity activities across Europe. Solidarity is a shared value which is strongly felt throughout European societies. Young Europeans need more and easily accessible opportunities to express their solidarity, whilst gaining certified experience and skills that can open new opportunities. Young people between the ages of 18 and 30 will be able to volunteer or do an internship, apprenticeship, or work where it is needed most and to respond to challenging situations. The European Solidarity Corps will serve the needs of vulnerable communities, of national and local structures via a wide range of actions such as providing food, cleaning forests and beaches, or helping with the integration of refugees. In addition, in 2017 the Commission will prepare the next European Youth Strategy for the post-2018 period with a view to boosting civic participation of young people. 4. Better opportunities for education and training High quality education is one of the best investments a society can make. The quality and accessibility of education are of critical importance in order to sustain Europe's social cohesion, growth, and competitiveness as well as enable a fair, open, vibrant and democratic society. Evidence shows, however, that a high share of young people do not acquire the necessary knowledge, skills or competences they need for the labour market, be it basic skills (such as reading or mathematics) or key competencies (such as digital skills or an entrepreneurial mindset). Education systems need to become better at equipping young people from all backgrounds with the knowledge and skills they need in life. In addition, too many young people are leaving education prematurely without a formal qualification, which makes the transition to the labour market harder for them (more than 40% of early school-leavers are unemployed). While education and training are competences of the Member States, EU-level policies, like Europe 2020 and the European Semester of economic policy coordination, can be used to steer and complement Member States' actions, driving forward policy reforms to improve performance by increasing the efficiency and quality of education outcomes. The Commission intends to fully use the instruments of both the Europe 2020 framework and the European Semester, reflecting the key importance of education and training; by offering enhanced policy support and strengthened evidence-base, analysis and bench-learning of what works in education and training; by identifying and disseminating good practice, and by presenting improving opportunities in the field of vocational education and training. The New Skills Agenda for Europe already announced specific measures to develop and use better the skills of Europeans, with a particular focus on adult learning, vocational education and training, and higher education. With the "Investing in Europe's Youth" initiative, the Commission is placing a particular emphasis on school and higher education and the quick roll-out of the youth-related actions of the New Skills Agenda for Europe. To help equip Europeans better with the digital skills they need to build their career, the Commission launched on 1 December 2016 the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, together with Member States, companies, social partners, NGOs and education providers. Members of the Coalition have committed to tackling the skills gaps at all levels, from high-level ICT specialist skills to the skills needed by all European citizens to live, work and participate in a digital economy and society. What is new about today's proposal? The centrepiece of today's initiative is the European Solidarity Corps. It will offer young people the possibility to put solidarity into practice. With this initiative, the Commission is also pushing ahead with the Europe-wide roll-out of all key EU youth policies, notably the Youth Guarantee, the New Skills Agenda for Europe and the European Youth Strategy, all of which cover a wide range of actions in support of young people, from education and training to employment and youth policy. The goal is to improve opportunities for young people by substantially increasing the quality of offers and their expected outcomes. How will young people benefit from this initiative? Today's initiative combines actions to address immediate needs, such as employment, as well as structural challenges, such as the quality of education and training. The Youth Guarantee helps young people to get a foothold in the labour market or invest in their education so that they acquire the skills and qualifications expected on the labour market. It is a commitment to ensure that all young people (under the age of 25) receive a good-quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within four months of becoming unemployed or leaving formal education. The Youth Guarantee is implemented through national Youth Guarantee schemes. Since January 2014, 14 million young people have already entered one of these schemes and 9 million have taken up an offer. Its full roll-out in all 28 Member States and the increased focus on the quality and number of offers will ensure that more and better opportunities under the Youth Guarantee are made available to every eligible young person and especially the most disadvantaged ones. In addition, the European Solidarity Corps is an opportunity for people to express their solidarity in practice, while acquiring skills that can be valuable for them in terms of their continued education and training, or as a stepping-stone into the labour market. Furthermore, spending time abroad to learn and study in another country is a unique experience. It helps young people discover new horizons and can change the course of their lives. Erasmus+ is a tried-and-tested way to open up this opportunity, and since its launch in 2014 almost 1.3 million young people have made use of it. Vocational education and training learners and apprentices will have the opportunities to enrich their mobility experiences through longer term work placements in another country. Finally, the Commission will help Members States to modernise and improve education and training systems by providing comparative data, strengthening the evidence-base, carrying out analysis, promote mutual learning, sharing knowledge about good practice and offering targeted support, building on existing cooperation with the OECD. To this end, in 2017 the Commission will present specific initiatives to support modernisation efforts in Member States.The initiatives will address key issues in the fields of school education, including higher education as well as vocational education and training. How will the EU mobilise its resources in support of young people? In addition to the already considerable EU-level financial allocations, on 14 September 2016 in the context of the mid-term review of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014–2020, the Commission proposed to increase the budget of Erasmus+ by €200 million. The Commission also made a proposal to increase the budget for the Youth Employment Initiative by €2 billion. The Youth Employment Initiative was launched in 2013 with €6.4 billion of financial resources to provide, for the first time ever, direct and targeted support for young people not in employment, education or training residing in regions with youth unemployment rates higher than 25%. What are the next steps? The Commission will discuss the proposed measures with the European Parliament and Council and will seek the support of the European Council at its meeting in December 2016. For more information Press release - IP/16/4165 Questions and Answers on the European Solidarity Corps - MEMO/16/4168 Let's block ads! (Why?)