EU Ministers' approve telecoms reform package

The Council of EU Ministers unanimously approved the EU's telecoms reform package, first proposed by the European Commission in 2007. The new rules will enhance competition and investment in Europe's telecoms market, by giving more certainty to companies investing in high-speed optical fibre and wireless networks. It will also open up airwaves for new mobile services. The European Parliament will vote next week, in its Strasbourg plenary session, to formally endorse the telecoms package.

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European Commission launches the 4th edition of its poster competition for youngsters

The Commission has launched its 4th poster competition for youngsters to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, under the title "Draw me a right!"

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Five winning projects for eGovernment Awards

The European eGovernment Awards is a European Commission initiative organised every two years. The aim is to encourage good practices and innovative solutions in central government authorities to increase access to public services for businesses and individuals. Five winners have been selected among the 52 finalists in a ceremony in Maslö (Sweden)

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EU extends its help to Somalia

In the context of EU's strengthened engagement in Somalia, EU Foreign Affairs and Defence ministers agreed on a concept to train Somali security forces in their last meeting. The decision comes in response to a request from the transitional government in Mogadishu. Now the plan to launch a training mission can begin.

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New leadership team for Europe

European heads of state and government had a working dinner in Brussels on 19 November to appoint the new EU's key posts: High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and President of the European Council.

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Accessible, interactive and customised online public services in Europe by 2015

EU ministers have committed to developing smarter online public services for citizens and businesses by 2015. The Commission has welcomed this step forward in making eGovernment more accessible, interactive and customised. At the fifth Ministerial eGovernment Conference in Malmö (Sweden), EU ministers outlined a joint vision and policy priorities on how this should be delivered. eGovernment is a key step towards boosting Europe's competitiveness, benefiting from time and cost savings for citizens and businesses across Europe.

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Commission rewards European organisations for outstanding environmental management

The European Commission will tonight present awards to European companies and public authorities for outstanding achievements in environmental management. The annual European Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) Awards celebrate and promote best practice in managing the environment. The award ceremony will take place at the National Museum of Sweden in Stockholm

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European Young Journalist Award 2010

The European Commission’s Directorate General for Enlargement has announced the European Young Journalist Award. The competition will reward Europe‘s best young journalists, focusing on EU Enlargement, for the third year running.

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Council and Parliament reech an agreement on energy-saving buildings

All buildings built after 31 December 2020 must have high energy-saving standards and be powered to a large extent by renewable energy. Public authorities will lead the way two years earlier and part of the funding for these changes will come from the EU. These are among the key points of a deal reached  between Parliament and Council negotiators.

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Broadband internet continues to grow in the EU

With more than 11 million new fixed lines laid in a year, the take up of broadband internet continues to grow in Europe. According to a report published today by the European Commission, 24% of the EU population had a broadband access line subscription in July 2009, up from 21.6% in July 2008, and connections are increasingly faster. The report also shows that mobile broadband is gaining momentum in Europe, with a 54% increase since January and now at a penetration rate of 4.2% per 100 citizens.

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The Commission encourages the careers of European researchers

The Official Journal of the European Union includes the publication of a call for proposals to co-finance actions of mobility for experienced researchers at different stages of their careers.

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Council ready to see the Integrated Maritime Policy step up a gear

The Commission has welcomed the conclusions of the General Affairs and External Relations Council of 16/17 November, which acknowledge the progress achieved in the field of the Integrated Maritime Policy over the past two years and endorse the integrated approach to maritime affairs. In its conclusions, the Council referred both to last month's IMP progress report submitted by the Commission and to the recent Communication on the integration of maritime surveillance.

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