Michael Wukoschitz's picture

Airline black list?

Following the recent aircraft crashes EU-Commission is considering to publish a black list of those airlines which lost their flight permission into one of the member states in the internet . According to British newspaper "The Guardian", traffic commissioner Jacques Barrot would prefer to activate the website as early as October 2005, but final decision may take until the end of the year.

Michael Wukoschitz's picture

Passengers' Rights Survey

A recently published survey carried out by the EU Commission showed that almost four out of ten citizens are not aware that they conclude a conctract with a transport company when purchasing a ticket and a majority doesn't know about the rights and obligations contained in such contract. The most used means of transport, namely local urban transport and inter-city rail transport have a more negative image whereas air transport has a posive image among most Europeans.

John Downes's picture

EU Commission Approves Passenger Vessel Subsidy

The Commission has approved a Finnish scheme providing a subsidy to passenger vessels. This permits a 97% reduction of withholding tax on the marine work income of European seafarers working on board Finnish passenger vessels. This allows Finland to align with similar measure in neighbouring countries.

John Downes's picture

UK Scheme to aid Airlines

The EU Commission has approved an UK Scheme which compensates airlines for the costs incurred 11-15th September after the attacks in New York and Washington. Those are for costs occured as a result of flights cancelled or delayed by national authorities. The scheme applies to all UK airlines and is expected to cost £45m ($72m). A similar French scheme was approved in January.
John Downes's picture

Radical Reform of EU Institutions & Procedures

The EC Commission has prepared a paper on radical reform for the Inter-Governmental Conference in February. This is needed if the enlargement proposals are to work. It proposes a maximum of 20 Commissioners nominated in rotation by Member States. It also recommends that the existing 700 limit be maintained for membership of the European Parliament and the use of Qualified Majority Voting as the norm for Council meetings.

John Downes's picture

E-Commerce Hearing

The EU Commission held a meeting in Brussels on 4-5 November to address the legal issues involved in e- commerce. Representatives of businesses, consumers' groups and regulatory bodies attended to address issues such as conflicts of jurisdiction, application of Contract Law and consumer protection.

John Downes's picture

European Commission blocks Airtours Takeover of First Choice

The EU Commission rejected the proposed takeover because it would leave the three largest tour operators in the UK with 80% share of the package holiday market (Airtours, Thomson and Thomas Cook). These companies are also vertically integrated and the Commission believed that the proposed merger would restrict competition in the UK package holiday market.

John Downes's picture

New Commissioners

The new Commission President, Romano Prodi, announced his nominations for the new Commission in July. These include: Loyola de Palacio (Spain) - Transport and Energy; David Byrne (Ireland) - Health and Consumer Protection; Mario Monti (Italy) - Competition; and Antonio Vitorino (Portugal) - Justice and Home Affairs.

John Downes's picture

Air Agreements with the USA

The Commission referred eight Member States to the European Court of Justice for having concluded "open skies" agreements with the USA. The states are Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Luxembourg, Sweden and the UK. The Commission argues that these agreements distort competition and disadvantage EU airlines. The Commission itself had been negotiating an agreement with the USA but this was halted by the Council of Ministers.