EU establishes a facility for rapid response to soaring food prices in developing countries

As a response to the strong increase of food prices in the developing countries, Regulation (EC) Nº 1337/2008 has been published in the OJEU on December, 31st. This regulation establishes as a complement to the European Union’s current development policy instruments, a financing facility for a rapid response to the crisis caused by volatile food prices in developing countries.

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The EU adopts a common system for statistics on public health and health and safety at work

Aiming to establish a common framework for the systematic production of Community statistics on public health and health and safety at work, the Official Journal of the European Union, OJEO, has published on December 31st, 2008, Regulation (EC) Nº1338/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on Community statistics on public health and health and safety at work.

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EC publishes a Call for tenders for studying the impact of software and services

The European Commission's Directorate-General for Information Society and Media has issued a call for tenders for a study related to the development and perspectives of some aspects of Informations Technologies and software. This call makes reference to the Specific Programme on Cooperation of FP7.

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Simplification of some procedural rules relating Action Programme in the field of Lifelong Learning and Programme “Europe …

The Official Journal of the European Union, OJEU, has published on December, 30th, 2008, Decisions Nº 1357/2008/CE and Nº 1358/2008/CE of the European Parliament and of the Council of December, 16th, respectively amending Decision Nº 1720/2006/EC establishing the Action Programme in the field of Lifelong Learning and Decision Nº 1904/2006/EC establishing the “Europe for Citizens” Programme for the period 2007 to 2013.

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EC publishes its proposal to amend the amount of guarantees provided by TIR Carnets

According to the Proposal for a Council Decision on the position to be taken by the Community concerning the proposal to amend the customs Convention on the International Transport of goods under cover of TIR carnets (TIR Convention 1975), as published on December 19th, the Commission supports the proposal to change the amount which may be claimed for each TIR Carnet from 50,000USD to 60,000€.

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OJEU publishes the new Directive on on return of illegal immigrants

The Official Journal of the European Union, OJEU, has published on December 24th, Directive 2008/115/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of December, 16th 2008 on common standards and procedures in Member States for returning illegally staying third-country nationals. This Directive establishes a horizontal set of rules, applicable to all third-country nationals who do not or who no longer fulfil the conditions for entry, stay or residence in a Member State.

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OJ publish new EU programmes

The Official Journal of the European Union has published on the 24 th December 2008 four new European Programmes related to  Youth, Culture, Internet and Creativity and Innovation.

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FSE-ERDF Revenuegenerating projects

On the 24th December the Official Journal of the European Union has published the COUNCIL REGULATION (EC) No 1341/2008 of 18 December 2008 amending Regulation (EC) No 1083/2006 laying down general provisions on the European Regional Development Fund, the European Social Fund and the Cohesion Fund, in respect of certain revenuegenerating projects.

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Financial services rules: clearing and settlement and credit claims

MEPs have adopted updates to European law on two aspects of the “plumbing” of the financial system: the aim, on the one hand, is to reflect in law the increasingly interconnected operation of clearing and settlement systems, and, on the other hand, to create a level playing field for central banks in Europe regarding the rules on accepting credit claims (receivable assets resulting from bank loans) as collateral from commercial banks.

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Accelerated procurement procedure: the answer to the financial crisis

In its conclusions of 12 December the European Council invited the Commission to adopt a number of measures in response to the financial crisis. One of these measures concerns the use of accelerated procedures in public procurement.

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EC agrees the acquisition of Continental AG by Schaeffler KG

The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Continental AG, a German manufacturer of car components, by Schaeffler KG, also of Germany. After examining the operation, the Commission concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.

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New EU rules to strengthen the safe toys

The European Commission is satisfied with the adoption by the European Parliament of its proposal to substantially strengthen EU-rules on toy safety. It gives consumers assurance that toys sold in the EU fulfil the highest safety requirements world-wide, especially those relating to the use of chemical substances.

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