What are the ingredients for successful growth in developing countries?

Developing countries can achieve fast, sustained, equitable growth if they take advantage of opportunities in the global economy and have committed leaders. Those are among the messages in a report that Danuta Hübner, Commissioner for Regional Policy, and Nobel Laureate Michael Spence present today in Brussels. The 'Growth Report: Strategies for Sustained Growth and Inclusive Development' concludes two years of work by the Commission on Growth and Development. Commissioner Hübner was a member of this group, created under the auspices of the World Bank, and chaired by Professor Spence. The report identifies distinctive characteristics of successful growth, using 13 high-growth economies since 1950 as examples, and explores how developing countries can emulate them.

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Cross-border electronic Procurement in the EU

The European Commission is moving a step closer to making it easier for companies, in particular Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs), to bid for public sector contracts anywhere in the EU; a crucial step towards achieving the Single European Market. The Commission will co-finance a pilot project, driven by eight European countries that will create the conditions to link existing national electronic public procurement (e-procurement) systems.

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Improving the safety and environmental performance of vehicles

The European Commission proposes that all new cars from 2012 will have Electronic Stability Control (ESC) systems, to drastically improve vehicle safety. Furthermore lorries and other heavy vehicles should be fitted with Advanced Emergency Braking Systems (AEBS) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW) Systems as of 2013.

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Emissions of CO2 from businesses in the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) increase by 0.68%

Overall emissions of CO2 from businesses in the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) increased by 0.68% in 2007 when adjusted for changes in the number of installations covered, according to the information provided by Member State registries.

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EU-funded project develops soil regeneration method

The EU-funded CLEANSOIL project has developed a method for the regeneration of contaminated soil in situ. The method was successfully tested on soils in Russia and Ukraine, which have been heavily polluted with petrochemical residues and pesticides, proving particularly effective in removing the latter.

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Parliment asks Turkey to reenergise its reform plans

In its latest progress report on Turkey, adopted by a large majority of 467 for, 62 against and 61 abstentions, the European Parliament welcomes recent legislative activities in the country, while insisting that the speed of reforms must pick up. The own-initiative report, drawn up by Ria Oomen-Ruijten (EPP-ED, NL), "welcomes the commitment of Prime Minister Erdogan that 2008 is going to be the year of reforms" and "urges the Turkish government to fulfil its promises" by implementing them.

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EIB visit to broaden activity in Brazil

Brazil is the main Latin American beneficiary country of EIB loans for investment in productive activities and the largest recipient of EU foreign direct investment in the region. The EIB has so far extended 24 loans totalling EUR 1.4 billion, representing some 48% of its entire activity in Latin America. The diversified portfolio of EIB financing operations in Brazil directly supports private sector investment. Among the main investments supported are those of Vivo, Continental, Michelin, Pirelli, TIM, Telefónica, Itaú-BBA, Volkswagen, Mercedes and Veracel, as well as the Bolivia-Brazil gas pipeline.

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Commission decision on Broadband Wireless Access in Europe

The Commission adopted on 21 May, in line with the rules of the EU's regulatory framework for electronic communications of 2002, a decision on the harmonisation of the 3400-3800 MHz frequency band for terrestrial systems capable of providing electronic communications services in the Community.

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Simplification of metrology directives

Latest news from the  Enterprise & Industry DG is to Simplification of metrology directives. Measuring instruments are essential to ensure accuracy of measurement, notably for transactions by consumers and industry in every day life: examples include water meters, taximeters, electricity meters and weighing machines. Concerns have been expressed about eight  technical rules used for regulating measuring instruments used for tasks requiring legal metrological control, are not easily adaptable to technological progress and therefore risk hindering innovation.

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The European Parliment says "Promote sustainable industries"

Cut red tape and remove tax obstacles for SMEs says MEPs. The Small Business Act has received strong support leading up to its presentation by the Commission on 2nd July. This Small Business Act should be a legislative proposal which includes "new, concrete initiatives" to cut the red tape for SMEs. The proposal should also guarantee that SMEs have access to financial resources and to research infrastructure. The report also stresses that an EU-wide market for venture capital should urgently be established "by removing existing regulatory and tax obstacles to venture capital investments in Europe's most innovative small firms".

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investigations into state aid and public money grants to NorthLink and CalMac Ferry services

On the 23rd of May 2008 the EC published a communication of the confirmed state aid from the 16th April 2008, to two maritime transport service companies in Scotland, United Kingdom. Under procedures relating the implementation of the competition policy, state aid in the form of subsidies has been awarded to CalMac and NorthLink for maritime transport services. The Commission has invited third parties to offer their comments. They must be received within one month of the date of publication of this decision to:

European Commission
Directorate-General for Energy and Transport
Directorate A — Unit 2
B-1049 Brussels
Fax (32-2) 296 41 04

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New Administrative cooperation between New Zealand and EC

In the Official Journal of the European Union, the Commission published a notice relating to the establishment of the Administrative Cooperation between New Zealand and the European Community. The Official text was published on the 23rd of May 2008.

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