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EU web links

A collection of links to web sites of the European Union institutions and other European business web sites.

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Cinema: EU regulatory framework
European Commission website covering State aid to Cinema, Protection of film heritage, Promotion of the film industry, and other documents relevant to the EU cinema industry.

European Commission Technical Assistance Office for the West Bank and Gaza Strip
The EU’s relationship with the region, and the Palestinians in particular has grown deeper over the past decades. The EC hopes that this relationship will be successful in helping pave the way towards a just peace and a Palestinian State in the near future. The website of the European Commission Technical Assistance Office for the West Bank and Gaza Strip contains information about the role of this office and various areas of cooperation with the Palestinian Authority. You will find an overview of the EU’s activities and relevant information on EC’s assistance and programmes. It is designed to provide easy and accessible information on the EU in general, its external relation policies, its institutions and its activities.

The EU and disability issues
The European Commission website for the Integration of People with Disabilities. The main responsibility for disability issues at the Commission lies with Directorate-General Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities. This website has been developed to provide a short overview of the European Disability Strategy and to keep visitors updated on the latest developments in the area of disability policy at European level.

European Judicial Training Network
The website of the European Judicial Training Network aims to provide its visitors, and more particularly, European judges and prosecutors, with information on the activities of the Network, as well as its members, which are the institutions in charge of the judicial training in each EU Member State.

Risk Sharing Finance Facility (RSFF)
The European Commission and the European Investment Bank (EIB) have joined forces to set up the Risk Sharing Finance Facility (RSFF). RSFF is an innovative scheme to improve access to debt financing for private companies or public institutions promoting activities in the field of: * Research, Technological Development Demonstration, and * Innovation investments. * RSFF is built on the principle of credit risk sharing between the European Community and the EIB and extends therefore the ability of the Bank to provide loans or guarantees with a low and sub-investment grade risk profile (involving financial risks above those normally accepted by investors). The scheme also provides a wealth of opportunities for new and innovative EIB financing solutions directed at the private sector and the research community as a whole.

The EU & G7 - G8
Representatives of the then European Community first began participating at the 1977 London Summit after the agreement between the European Commission and Council Presidents that “The President of the Council and the President of the Commission will be invited to take part in those sessions of the (Downing Street) Summit at which items which are within the competence of the Community are discussed”. The Commission then gradually became fully associated with the run up to the Summit and included in political discussions at the Summit itself. The European Union now participates at the G8 Summit and is represented by the President of the European Commission and the leader of the country that holds the Presidency of the European Union. When a European member of the G8 hosts the Summit at the same time as holding the EU Presidency, the two roles are combined.

European Business Council in Japan
The National European Chambers of Commerce and Business Organisations in Japan together with their collective trade policy arm, the European Business Council (EBC), form the premier business networking platform for Europeans in Japan. With close to 3,000 European and Japanese members, this network reaches deep into the business communities of both Europe and Japan, and has close ties with the National European Governments and the European Commission. Many of the European members of this network have mastered the Japanese language and have a long history of involvement in the Japanese business environment. The EBC has been working to improve the trade and investment environment for European companies in Japan since 1972.

EU Employment Week
The 14th edition of Employment Week, the leading employment and social-affairs event of the year, will take place on 5-6 June 2007 in Brussels. The two-day conference and exhibition offers a great opportunity for practitioners and European decision-makers to connect and discuss the latest policies and trends in European employment.

EU Bathing Water Overview 2006
The annual bathing water report presented today by the European Commission reveals that the large majority of bathing sites across the European Union met EU hygiene standards in 2006. 96% of coastal bathing areas and 89% of bathing sites in rivers and lakes are in compliance with the mandatory values.. The removal of bathing sites from the official list has decreased but the Commission remains concerned about the delistings. The report provides useful water quality information for the millions of people who visit Europe's beaches every summer.

Community-wide statistics for 2006
The latest Customs statistics published by the European Commission show that counterfeiting and piracy continue to be a alarming threat in Europe. Customs seized around 250 million articles in 2006 , and the number of customs cases involving fakes increased to 36.486. Growth in seizures of fakes dangerous to health and safety also continued. In 2006, more than 2,7 millions counterfeit medicines and more than 1,58 millions counterfeit cosmetics and personal care products were seized.

Europeans and organ donations
Special Eurobarometer study on the subject of organ donations and transplantations.

Strategy for Europe on Nutrition, Overweight and Obesity
White Paper from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on 'A Strategy for Europe on Nutrition, Overweight and Obesity related health issues'.

European Automobile Manufacturers' Association annual report 07/08
The new European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) annual report is now available. The report includes a foreword by European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and an introduction by ACEA President Sergio Marchionne (CEO of Fiat) and ACEA Secretary General Ivan Hodac. The annual report 07/08 contains a wealth of information on all main topics concerning the European automobile industry: CO2 emissions from cars, the industry's competitive strength, the international and European regulatory framework, trade relations, road safety, taxation, air quality, transport policy, innovation and research & development. A special chapter is dedicated to the automobile market and economy. The report also includes the latest key figures on automobile production, employment, exports, cars-in-use, tax revenues and more.

Better Training for Safer Food annual report 2006
Better Training for Safer Food is a European Union initiative aimed at organising EU training for national control authorities who are responsible for verifying compliance with food and feed law, animal health and welfare rules, and plant health rules. This report gives details of the background to the initiative and the work carried out in preparation for the launch of training activities in 2006.

Attitudes of Europeans towards Tobacco
This survey, commissioned by the Directorate-General Health and Consumer Protection of the European Commission aims to evaluate the Europeans’ attitude towards tobacco. The main themes addressed in this survey are: the level and frequency of tobacco consumption, attempts to give up smoking, level of exposure to tobacco smoke at home, at work and in public places, attitudes towards smoke-free policies, and awareness of harm caused by tobacco smoke. This survey was carried out in October and November 2006 by the TNS Opinion and Social network.

Test to help SMEs verify status
A new web-based test to help European companies find out if they correspond to the EU definition of small and medium sized enterprise (SME) is now available online. Developed by the Walloon regional authorities, the tool aims to serve the European Commission in negotiating contracts under the Seventh Framework help to National Contact Points (NCPs) in helping SMEs find out if they are eligible for participation in an FP7 scheme, or for higher funding rates.

EU fight against cybercrime
The European Commission is exploring various avenues for preventing and combating cybercrime in order to tighten up the security of information infrastructures - SCADPlus

EU Mini-Chefs - website for children on healthy cooking
The European Commission and Euro-toques International, the European Chefs' association, on 15 May 2007 launched "EU Mini-chefs" - a website for children which aims to contribute to the fight against child obesity by encouraging healthy eating and cooking. It promotes the European Day for Healthy Food and Cooking on 8 November 2007. On that day chefs across the EU will demonstrate to children how to cook and eat healthily in schools and restaurants. The website also outlines how children can take part in a drawing contest for a poster to be used in the campaign. It provides an internet forum on healthy food & cooking for parents, teachers and children. The website includes simple healthy recipes and cooking advice from some of the best chefs of Europe.

Innovative Medicines Initiative Online
The Innovative Medicines Initiative is a proposed partnership between the European Commission and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry and Associations (EFPIA). The vision of IMI is to create Biomedical Research & Development leadership for Europe to benefit patients and society.

Convergence Reports 2007 - Malta
On 16 May 2007, the European Commission concluded that Malta has achieved a high degree of sustainable economic convergence with the other Member States and that it fulfils the necessary conditions to adopt the euro. On the basis of its Convergence Report, the Commission is proposing to the Council that Malta adopts the euro on 1 January 2008. The final decision will be taken by EU finance ministers in July, after consultation of the European Parliament, and following a discussion by the Heads of State or Government at their summit in June. In its Convergence Report, the Commission assesses whether Malta has achieved a high degree of sustainable convergence, measured against the criteria set out in Article 121(1) regarding the government budgetary position, price stability, exchange rate stability and convergence of long-term interest rates. Compatibility of the legal framework with the Treaty is also examined.

Convergence Reports 2007 - Cyprus
On 16 May 2007, the European Commission concluded that Cyprus has achieved a high degree of sustainable economic convergence with the other Member States and that it fulfils the necessary conditions to adopt the euro. On the basis of its Convergence Report, the Commission is proposing to the Council that Cyprus adopts the euro on 1 January 2008. The final decision will be taken by EU finance ministers in July, after consultation of the European Parliament, and following a discussion by the Heads of State or Government at their summit in June. In its Convergence Report, the Commission assesses whether Cyprus has achieved a high degree of sustainable convergence, measured against the criteria set out in Article 121(1) regarding the government budgetary position, price stability, exchange rate stability and convergence of long-term interest rates. Compatibility of the legal framework with the Treaty is also examined.

'Taxes in Europe' Database
The "Taxes in Europe" database is the European Commission's on-line information tool covering the main taxes in force in the EU Member States. Access is free for all users. The system contains information on around 500 taxes, as provided to the European Commission by the national authorities.

Communication on a European agenda for culture in a globalizing world
The main purpose of the Communication is to see both what Europe can do for culture and what culture can do for Europe , with two main sets of objectives in mind: developing active European citizenship, respecting cultural diversity, promoting intercultural dialogue, while fostering a sense of 'European identity' complementary to other identities; the economic and social objectives of the Lisbon agenda, and the role of creativity in enhancing the competitive edge of Europe. (Culture and Creativity to Make Lisbon Work, states European Council - 9 March 2007).

Europe for Citizens
The Europe for citizens' programme provides the Union with instruments to promote active European citizenship. It puts citizens in the centre and offers them the opportunity to fully assume their responsibility as European citizens. It responds to the need to improve citizen's participation in the construction of Europe and encourage cooperation between citizens and their organisations from different countries in order to meet, act together and develop their own ideas in a European environment which goes beyond a national vision, respecting their diversity.

Spring economic forecasts 2007 - 2008
Growth outlook raised - unemployment and public accounts to improve further as growth stays solid - The economic prospects look even brighter than six months ago: the European Commission lifts its forecast for economic growth in the European Union to 2.9% in 2007.