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Thursday, 15 June 2017

EU Commission: Indicative programme - Foreign Affairs Council of 19 June 2017

Indicative programme - Foreign Affairs Council of 19 June 2017

Place:        European Convention Centre Luxembourg (ECC)
Chair(s):    Federica Mogherini, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

All times are approximate and subject to change

from 08.00
Arrivals (live streaming)

+/- 08.45 (ttbc)
Doorstep by High Representative Federica Mogherini

+/- 09.00
Beginning of meeting
Adoption of the agenda
Approval of A items

Implementation of the EU Global Strategy

EU-NATO Cooperation




+-/ 13.00
Working lunch on the Gulf crisis

+/- 14.30
Press conference
(live streaming)

In the margins of the Council:


from 14.00
Arrivals EaP Ministers

Family photo


+/-18.00 (tbc)
Doorstep by HR Mogherini

Working dinner

+/- 20.00
Departure doorsteps

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Indicative programme - Economic and Financial Affairs Council meeting, 16 June 2017

Place:        European Convention Centre Luxembourg (ECCL)
Chair:         Edward Scicluna, Minister for Finance of Malta

All times are approximate and subject to change.

+/- 07.50
Doorstep by Minister Scicluna

from 08.00
Arrivals (live streaming)

Ministerial breakfast (Roundtable)

Beginning of the Council meeting
Adoption of the agenda
Adoption of legislative A items (public session)

Reduced VAT rate for electronically supplied publications (e-Publications) (public session)
General reverse charge mechanism (public session)
Strengthening of the Banking Union / Risk-reduction measures (public session)
Any other business
-   Current financial services legislative proposals (public session)

Approval of non-legislative A items

Non performing loans.
Fight against the financing of terrorism (Commission Action Plan)
Capital markets Union: midterm review.
Contribution to the European meeting on 22-23 June 2017: European Semester 2017.
Implementation of the stability and growth pact.
Any other business.

At the end of the meeting
Press conference
(live streaming)

*           *           *

In the margins of the Council (in Luxembourg):

15 june

EMS annual meeting

roundtable (ESM ministerial meeting)

EMS press conference

Eurogroup meeting


At the end of the meeting
press conference

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Free roaming is a win for consumers however EU cities and regions want more to be done
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Passenger ship safety rules and standards: agreement with the Parliament

The presidency today reached an informal agreement with the European Parliament on a revised directive on passenger ship safety rules and standards, which clarifies and simplifies the current technical rules so that they are easier to update, monitor and enforce.

This 'general' directive on passenger ship safety rules and standards contains the most extensive rules on passenger ship safety in the EU, applicable to vessels travelling on domestic routes. The directive sets out detailed technical requirements for ships in areas such as construction, stability and fire protection. It applies to ships made of steel or equivalent material, and thus covers most modern passenger ships.

The new rules leave small ships (under 24 metres) to be regulated at national level, reflecting the fact that these ships are more sensitive to local operating conditions and in general present a lower risk.

"The clear set of technical rules agreed today will contribute to improved safety, while introducing an appropriate degree of proportionality. In fact, national rules work better for small ships, as they can take better account of local circumstances", said Ian Borg, the Maltese Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects.

Member states will have two years from the directive's entry into force to incorporate the new provisions into their national legislation.

The draft directive agreed today is part of a comprehensive review of passenger ship safety, which aims to make travelling by sea safer while simplifying the rules and cutting administrative costs.

The presidency will submit the outcome of today's negotiations for endorsement by member states in the coming weeks.

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Better protection for workers from cancer-causing substances: Council reaches agreement

Today, the EPSCO Council reached an agreement which will guarantee the protection of more than 4 million workers from exposure to carcinogens or mutagens in the workplace. 

The President of the Council, Ms Helena Dalli said "With this agreement, we can better protect millions of EU workers from cancer-causing chemical substances in the work place. This is particularly important given that cancer is the first cause of work-related deaths in the EU." 

The proposed directive seeks to introduce stricter limits on exposure values and skin notations for five carcinogens as well as skin notations independently of limit values for two more carcinogens, covering seven carcinogens in total. 

The carcinogenic and mutagenic substances covered by the directive are the following: Mineral Oils that have been used before in internal combustion engines, certain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) mixtures, trichloroethylene, 4,4'-methylenedianiline, epichlorohydrine, ethylene dibromide, ethylene dichloride. 

Background information 

The Commission submitted in January 2017 the proposed revision which concerns in particular annexes I and III of directive 2004/37/EC. 

The retained limit values are based on an analysis of economic, social and environmental impacts of the different policy options for each chemical agent, on the criteria of the scientific advice of the scientific committee on occupational exposure limits (SCOEL), effectiveness, efficiency and coherence. 

The limit values were also agreed by the advisory committee on health and safety at work (ACSH). 
This revision follows an earlier Commission proposal which already included 13 carcinogenic agents.
A further package of proposed limit values is expected to be adopted by the Commission at the beginning of next year. 

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