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All announcements

Europarl TV focus on Safer motorcycles and e-Call system

This week the web TV channel of the European Parliament published a video on 'e-Call', a system for new cars that automatically calls the nearest emergency centre. Parliament Committees champion saving 2,500 lives a year using this new equipment. In addition, Europarl TV published a video to inform that trialogue talks on the legislative report on Approval and market surveillance of two-, three- and four-wheel vehicles continue, to achieve the objective of producing safer and greener motorcycles in Europe.

IMCO Working Group on E-Commerce

The Working group convened its seventh and last meeting for this semester on 28th June, 10h00 - 12h30 in JAN 6Q2. The members of the Working Group received presentations on six studies mandated by IMCO Committee, grouped in two panels: ‘Overcoming barriers for consumers & business in e- commerce’ and ‘Internet everywhere, anytime and on any device’.

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E-procurement conference on 26 June "e-procurement - challenges and opportunities"

In the context of the on-going modernisation of the public procurement directives, the European Commission services with the support of IMCO organised this conference that highlighted the opportunities offered by e-procurement, and discussed how to make it easy to move away from paper.

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Vote on Recreational craft and personal watercraft

IMCO adopted on 21 June Malcolm Harbour's draft report on the proposal for a new directive on recreational crafts and personal watercrafts with 30 votes in favour and 1 against. 50 AMs were adopted related especially to clarifications in regards to essential requirement as the boat design categories, the possibilities of "marinisers" (manufacturers adapting engines for marine use) to use the original manufacturer proof of conformity, when adapting engines without changing essential characteristics and the need to develop test cycles for all combustion engines, which are part of the propulsion system, including hybrid power installations. A proposal requiring an emergency stop device for tiller-controlled outboard engines, was also adopted as well as a call for the Commission to consider further harmonization of boat licenses. Prior to the vote, a short presentation was given by the Rapporteur on a briefing paper on boat design categories, commissioned by IMCO. The briefing paper is prepared by a French contractor and supports the amendments to the existing boat design categories, which removes the existing link between intended use and geographical location and in stead make wave heights and wind force the main parameters, leading to better information of consumers. The amendments were adopted by IMCO together with a review clause and call for further evaluation by the Commission. Due to slow progress in the Council, it is uncertain whether it is realistic to seek a first reading agreement on this file. The provisional date for the vote in plenary is September.

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Exchange of views on General Data Protection Regulation - 21/6

During the IMCO meeting on 21 June, the Rapporteur Lara Comi (EPP) welcomed heartily the proposed reform package on data protection and said that the Commission, in its timing showed how aware it is of the needs of the citizens. The Rapporteur will be focusing on 4 main themes in her opinion:

1. Main challenges presented by new technologies and which priority action which needs to be taken;
2. The rights of data subjects and consumer protection can be ensured in case of data breaches;
3. The relationship between authorities and data controllers, including the setting up of a 'one-stop shop' and the division of competencies at stake;
4. The link between the online and offline world.
Children in the digital era need to be ensured safety online and to be protected from misleading advertising. The right of consent and what information and education needs will thereby be addressed. The right to be forgotten is also an important issue; and, last but not least, the issue of proportionality of penalties and the recognition of judgements across border particularly as cloud computing will be used increasingly across borders as this will bear implications potentially too for data protection. The issue of data protection needs to be addressed as part of the holistic approach to the development of the Digital Single Market.

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Provisional Agreement by the IMCO Delegation

IMCO delegation and Council Presidency reached an agreement on the following two proposals:
- European Standardisation (rapporteur Lara Comi, EPP)
- Internal Market Information System - IMI (rapporteur Adam Bielan, ECR)

Implementation of the Consumer Credit Directive

The Consumer Credit Directive 2008/48/EC aims at high-level consumer protection and enhancement of cross-border internal market in consumer credit. On 7 June, Ms Sabine Verheyen (EPP), speaking on behalf of the Rapporteur Birgit Collin-Langen (EPP), presented the draft report which is IMCO's special report to assess the implementation of the Consumer Credit Directive (CCD) adopted by the Parliament on 16 January 2008 and aimed at harmonising certain aspects of the Member States' legislation on credit loans agreements of a value between €200-€75,000. The document prepared by MEP Collin-Langen identifies the shortcomings in the implementation of the CCD, notices the insignificant increase in the cross-border take-up of consumer credit, and invites the Commission to proceed with analysis of the application of the Directive before debating any necessary amendments. The Chair, in his capacity of a Shadow Rapporteur, welcomed the draft report and made a number of comments on specific issues related to the consumer-protection aspects, such as early repayments and the uniform calculation of the annual percentage rates, and to the Directive's scope. The European Commission (DG SANCO) representative supported the main message of the draft report and described the current process of verifying the transposition of the CCD by the Member States, with the results expected by the end of 2012.

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Welcome words

The Single Market and its free movement of people, goods and services is one of the absolute foundations of the EU. It has provided prosperity and growth, jobs, mobility and freedom of choice to Europe's citizens and businesses.
In the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer protection, we believe that citizens must be placed at the heart of the Single Market. It is our mission to ensure that people can establish themselves anywhere within the EU, to work, study or set up a business.
We want to make sure that consumers know their rights and feel assured that they are safe and protected when buying products in the EU, whether in their local shop or when shopping online across borders.
We aim to make clear rules for businesses, and to make life simpler for small firms while expanding their market opportunities in making, selling or providing services.
The Internal Market Committee initiated the Single Market Act to give a fresh impetus to the Single Market. We remain committed to deliver on its proposals as quickly as possible. Only a well functioning Single European Market can ensure our prosperity and competitiveness in the world in the decades to come.
Malcolm Harbour
Chair of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection