Areas of agrarian sector of Ukraine were discussed at the "round table": "Free trade areas: what farmers need to know to enter the European market."

MIL OSI – Source: Parliament of Ukraine –

Headline: Areas of agrarian sector of Ukraine were discussed at the “round table”: “Free trade areas: what farmers need to know to enter the European market.”

More than 40 farmers from across the country came
to join the work of the “round table” on “Free trade areas:
what farmers need to know to enter the European market?”, which took
place on June 9 at the initiative of the Committee on agrarian policy and land
relations and interns of the internship program in the Verkhovna Rada of
Ukraine of 2015-2016 years, the public organization  “League of interns” and the German
international cooperation GIZ within the project “Consulting of Ukraine on
agrarian policy under the free trade Agreement between the EU and Ukraine.”

The meeting was attended by deputies of Ukraine,
members of the Committee on agrarian policy and land relations, leaders and
experts of agro-industrial complex (AIC) Ukraine, interns, representatives of public
organization  “League of interns”,
the Ministry of agrarian policy and food of Ukraine and the mass media.

Vladyslava Rutytska, deputy minister of agrarian
policy and food of Ukraine on European integration, and Olga Trofymtseva, chief
of “Consulting of Ukraine on agrarian policy under the free trade
Agreement between the EU and Ukraine” opened the event. V.Rutytska said
that every third dollar from Ukrainian agrarian export comes from the EU.
“So the theme of the meeting is very actual. First of all it relates
increasing exports of small and medium manufacturers with niche products and
product focus groups,” – she said.

The main purpose of the event was to raise information
awareness of small and medium agricultural manufacturers on the procedure for
exporting products to the EU market.

To discuss and highlight the key information domestic
and foreign experts has been invited.

During the discussion it was noted that in recent
years Ukrainian agricultural products entered several new markets. Thus, half
of the exports are directed to Asia, 14% – in Africa, one third – to the EU
countries. Speakers noted that the rate of the National Bank of Ukraine is formed
grounding on the volume of foreign exchange earnings coming from exports, so
increasing exports causes the increasing rate of National Bank.

Maria Didukh, the key expert of support Center,
stressed that the idea of ??creating this organization is advising of Ukrainian
farmers, especially those who is just starting out in international markets.
The Center provides information on the opportunities and challenges of entering
the market and assesses the ability of farmers to conduct their own trade.

Anton Zhemerdieiev, an employee of the Committee
on agrarian policy and land relations, focused on the major problems of the
agricultural sector to be solved primarily in large and small amounts of
financing.

Mykola Ryzhankov, expert of Institute for
economic research and policy consulting, presented an analysis of the development
of international market of Ukraine in the period from 2013 to the first quarter
of 2016. The expert stressed that the dynamics of agricultural exports started
getting better as a result of the gradual recovery in prices and exports and
the role of agricultural and food products increased significantly compared to
2013.

Participants of the “round table” also
participated in the panel discussion on tariff and non-tariff regulation of
export deliveries of products.Participants discussed the supply quotas; regulatory mechanisms at excess
of quotas; peculiar features of supply of agricultural products to the EU
market; peculiarities of customs control, including hygiene certificates and
certificates of origin and establishing in Ukraine of a modern control system
for food safety.

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"Round table" in the Verkhovna Rada: "Peculiarities of taxation of operations on import into the customs territory of Ukraine and supply on the customs territory of Ukraine of vehicles equipped with electric motors"

MIL OSI – Source: Parliament of Ukraine –

Headline: “Round table” in the Verkhovna Rada: “Peculiarities of taxation of operations on import into the customs territory of Ukraine and supply on the customs territory of Ukraine of vehicles equipped with electric motors”

The event was attended by invited people’s
deputies, representatives of relevant ministries and experts.

The objective of the event: to discuss the
prospects of the draft law  on the
temporary exemption of VAT, its influence on the growth market of electric
vehicles and indicators of the state budget, as well as the experience of
foreign countries on this issue.

People’s deputy Leonid Yemets opening the
meeting, said that if the Ukrainian citizens will be able to enjoy cheap
affordable electric cars, they this will only get better, because they will
suffer no losses on fuel and maintenance expenses.

L. Yemets called the market expansion of electric
vehicles in Ukraine a positive process. He also noted that enterprises and
persons related to selling and servicing vehicles, which have no electric
motor, suppliers of gasoline, diesel fuel, owners of gas stations and more
would be against it.

People’s deputy said that the problems with
the implementation of the law are evident to the naked eye. But on the side of the
initiators of the law social public support should be.

He also said that such a draft law has already
been developed with the participation of all interested parties: people’s
deputies, representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers, several ministries,
inter-factional deputy association “Deputy’s Control” and field  associations.

General Director of Ukrainian Association of auto
importers and dealers Oleg Nazarenko noted that the market for electric
vehicles in Ukraine today is the most dynamic – in May of last year were
imported five electric vehicles, in May of this year – 13%; for five months
last year imported 29, for five months of this year – 103 electric cars, which
is 255 percent. He stressed that it is economically important market and it is
necessary to develop, to think about energy independence of Ukraine from
external supplies.

O.Nazarenko also noted that Ukrainian is not
lagging behind the others, buying the most popular models for today in the
world of electric cars. He supported the need for the draft law, which will allow
to develop this segment of the market and the infrastructure.

The adoption of the draft law on the specifics of
taxation of operations on import into the customs territory of Ukraine and
supply on the customs territory of Ukraine of vehicles equipped with electric
motors were also supported by other members of the “round table”.

In particular, increasing the number of electric
vehicles and reduction of  their cost, as
it will provide measures to protect the environment, reduce the unit cost of
travel will facilitate the introduction of new technologies, was supported by
the representative of the Ministry of Infrastructure. He also supported measures
at reducing the tax burden when imported electric cars and promoting this type
of transport.

The speakers also underlined the need to unite,
to double their efforts towards this, in order to convince the parliamentarians,
who are against the adoption of such a law, in its necessity.

The event drew attention to the fact that Europe,
USA, China and most other developed countries actively introduce government
programs to support electric vehicles, such as free refills, possibility of
free parking, traffic lane designated solely for public transport, and most
important – state compensation for the acquisition of electric vehicles.

People’s deputy Leonid Yemets added that in
addition to the powerful anti-lobby there is a misunderstanding of some people’s
deputies. “If it is hard to fight anti-lobby, where there is a misunderstanding
of People’s deputies, we can speak with them, we have a lot of arguments and
they are strong enough” – he said.

Participants also noted that the draft law has no
disadvantages: small budget losses not comparable with the future benefits. Indeed,
it is proposed  a norm on exemption from
excise taxation of operations on  import
into the customs territory of Ukraine of vehicles equipped with electric motors
just for  few years, such situation will
be an incentive to attract investment to the country, will help create the
infrastructure for the market. When this development reaches the state level,
the rules of this law will come to an end and taxes again begin to fill the
budget.The speakers also stressed the need for active public participation to
ensure that the law would pass.

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Valsts prezidents uzsver Valmieras reģiona uzņēmumu nozīmi valsts ekonomikā

MIL OSI – Source: President of Latvia in Latvian – Press Release/Statement

Headline: Valsts prezidents uzsver Valmieras reģiona uzņēmumu nozīmi valsts ekonomikā

Ar Valmieras uzņēmumu apmeklējumu piektdien, 10.jūnijā, Valsts prezidents Raimonds Vējonis uzsāka darba vizīti Valmierā. Iepazīstoties ar SIA “VALPRO”, A/S “Valmieras Stikla šķiedra” un SIA “Padtex Insulation” darbību, Valsts prezidents uzsvēra šo uzņēmumu būtisko pienesumu ne tikai Valmieras pilsētas un reģiona attīstībai, bet arī valsts ekonomikai kopumā. 

“Valmiera vienmēr bijusi pilsēta, kur tiek atbalstīta uzņēmējdarbība. Manuprāt, tas ir ļoti nozīmīgi, ka uzņēmējdarbība mums ir ne tikai Rīgā, bet arī citviet Latvijā – katra ražotne ir darba vietas cilvēkiem, kas konkrētā pašvaldībā dzīvo. Arī iepazīstoties ar Valmieras pilsētas izaugsmes rādītājiem, var redzēt, ka šajā pilsētā cilvēki strādā, domā, rada,” teica Raimonds Vējonis.

Valsts prezidents atzina, ka Valmiera ir labs paraugs citām pašvaldībām veiksmīgai sadarbībai ar uzņēmējiem, lai tie konkrētā pašvaldībā būtu ieinteresēti attīstīties, kā arī veiksmīgi izmanto Vidzemes kā zaļā reģiona iespējas tūrisma attīstībai.

Metāla apstrādes uzņēmuma SIA “VALPRO” apskates laikā Valsts prezidents Raimonds Vējonis atzinīgi novērtēja uzņēmuma spēju veiksmīgi apgūt eksporta tirgus visā pasaulē –91% saražotās augstas kvalitātes produkcijas tiek eksportētas uz vairāk nekā 30 valstīm Eiropā, Ziemeļamerikā, Āzijā, Āfrikā, kā arī Austrālijā. 

Savukārt, viesojoties A/S “Valmieras Stikla šķiedra”, kas Valmieras pilsētā nodrošina turpat 1000 darba vietu, Valsts prezidents uzsvēra uzņēmuma nozīmīgo ieguldījumu Valmieras pilsētas un visas valsts ekonomikas attīstībā – tas ir lielākais eksportspējīgas produkcijas ražotājs un nodokļu maksātājs Vidzemē. Apmeklējuma laikā Valsts prezidents iepazinās ar uzņēmuma un Valmieras tehnikuma īstenoto duālās izglītības programmu, kas veidota pēc Vācijas profesionālās izglītības sistēmas parauga. 

“Valmieras pieredze apliecinājusi, ka šādas darba vidē balstītas izglītības programmas jāattīsta arī citur Latvijā. Tās skolu audzēkņiem nodrošina ne tikai prakses iespējas, bet arī darbavietu pēc skolas absolvēšanas,” sacīja Raimonds Vējonis.

Apmeklējot stikla šķiedras izstrādājumu ražotāju SIA “PADTEX Insulation”, Valsts prezidents novērtēja veiksmīgo inovāciju ieviešanu ražošanā, kas uzņēmumam ļauj ražot eksportspējīgu augstas pievienotās vērtības produkciju.

Darba vizītes turpinājumā Valsts prezidentam paredzētas darba pusdienas ar Valmieras pilsētas domes priekšsēdētāju un deputātiem, Vidzemes Augstskolas, Valmieras integrētās bibliotēkas un Valmieras muzeja apmeklējums, kā arī tikšanās ar Valmieras iedzīvotājiem. Vizīti Valmierā Valsts prezidents noslēgs ar dalību un uzrunu Valsts prezidenta balvas izcīņas sacensību oficiālajā atklāšanas ceremonijā.  

Андрей Черезов провел заседание оперативного штаба по подготовке к отопительному сезону 2016-2017 гг.

MIL OSI – Source: Russia Ministry of Energy –

Headline: Андрей Черезов провел заседание оперативного штаба по подготовке к отопительному сезону 2016-2017 гг.

Москва, 9 июня. – Заместитель Министра энергетики Российской Федерации Андрей Черезов провел заседание оперативного штаба по рассмотрению вопросов, связанных с подготовкой и прохождением субъектами электроэнергетики отопительного сезона  2016-2017 гг. В совещании приняли участие представители Ростехнадзора и других федеральных органов исполнительной власти, ОАО «СО ЕЭС», ОАО «РЖД», ООО «Газпром энергохолдинг», ПАО «Российские сети», ПАО «РусГидро», ПАО «РАО ЭС Востока», АО «Концерн Росэнергоатом», ЗАО «Техническая инспекция ЕЭС» и другие компании.

Андрей Черезов в своем вступительном слове отметил, что основные показатели прошедшего осенне-зимнего периода демонстрировали позитивную динамику, несмотря на известные экономические трудности, а также озвучил основные промежуточные итоги работы, проводимой энергокомпаниями в рамках подготовки к ОЗП 2016-2017 годов.

Директором Департамента оперативного контроля и управления в электроэнергетике Минэнерго России Евгений Грабчак представил аналитический доклад, в котором была дана подробная оценка работе по устранению замечаний, выявленных в ходе подготовки и прохождения прошедшего ОЗП, озвучена информация по текущей стадии устранения последствий крупных аварий, а также иные важные технические отраслевые параметры.

В части статуса исполнения мероприятий, находящихся на контроле Минэнерго России по итогам проверок к ОЗП было отмечено, что компаниям было предписано выполнить 229 мероприятий, из которых на сегодняшний день выполнено в срок 199 мероприятий, не подошел срок исполнения по 22 мероприятиям, не выполнено 8: ОАО «ТГК-1» (2),  ПАО «РусГидро» (1), ПАО «МРСК Северного Кавказа» (5).

В завершимвшемся ОЗП основные показатели – потребление электроэнергии и электрической мощности, а также выработка электроэнергии на электростанциях ЕЭС России в ОЗП 2015-2016 гг. остались на уровне прошлых лет. 

Отдельно Евгений Грабчак остановился на показателях аварийности:

«В целом снижение аварийности в электрических сетях 110 кВ и выше и на электростанциях более 25 МВт по ЕЭС России составило 6,8%. В генерации за 2015 год снизилась по сравнению с прошлым годом на 5%, а в электрических сетях напряжением 110 кВ и выше на 13%. По итогам ОЗП 2015-2016 гг. и сети и генерация добились снижения аварийности относительно предыдущих ОЗП: по генерации на 9,2%, по сетям на 5,7%», – отметил директор Департамента Минэнерго.

Вместе с тем на особом контроле остается мониторинг устранения последствий крупных аварий, произошедших ранее, среди которых отмечены:

–     авария на Василеостровской ТЭЦ-7 (ОАО «ТГК-1»), где 7 декабря 2015 года произошел выброс и возгорание масла на ТГ-4. В результате пожара произошло обрушение кровли машинного зала площадью около 200 м2, повреждение турбогенератора ТГ-4 и вспомогательного оборудования и, в результате, снижены параметры теплосети. Сейчас здание полностью восстановлено, схемы электроснабжения и теплоснабжения прилегающего района полностью восстановлены;

–     авария на Березовской ГРЭС (ОАО «Э.ОН Россия»), где 1 февраля 2016 года из-за повреждения мазутопровода в районе энергетического котла № 3 произошло возгорание мазута на площади 850 м2. В результате пожара произошла деформация металлоконструкций кровли над энергетическим котлом № 3 на площади около 300 м2 и деформация металлоконструкции технологических площадок энергетического котла № 3. Сейчас энергоблок №3 Березовской ГРЭС находится в аварийном ремонте, ведется укрепление ферм и монтаж спецоборудования. Срок расследования аварии продлен до сентября 2016 года;

Кроме того, по результатам анализа отчетной информации субъектов электроэнергетики о техническом состоянии золошлакоотвалов в 2015 году выявлена наиболее сложная ситуация с остаточным свободным объемом ЗШО на Партизанской ГРЭС АО «ДГК», где заполнение секций ЗШО составляет 99,8 % при остаточном свободном объеме – 14 000 м3 и среднегодовом приросте заполнения секций 150 000 м3 и более.

«Собственнику необходимо срочно принять меры по вводу в эксплуатацию нового ЗШО «Зеленая балка» проектным объемом 8 млн м³ в запланированные сроки (4 квартал 2016 года) и обеспечить надежную работу объектов электроэнергетики в предстоящий осенне-зимний период», – отметил Евгений Грабчак.

Также было отмечено, что объемы запланированных генерирующими компаниями на 2016 год ремонтных работ превышают показатели 2015 года: по турбоагрегатам на 1,3 %, по энергетическим котлам – на 5,1 %, а по сетевым компаниям по ремонту ЛЭП выше на 7,8 %, а по расчистке участков трасс ЛЭП от ДКР (на фоне существенного роста предыдущих двух лет) наблюдается снижение на 2,0 %.

По итогам анализа выполнения компаниями ремонтных программ за 4 месяца 2016 года особые риски для надежной работы вызывает состояние оборудования и выполнение ремонтной программы:

–     на Воркутинской ТЭЦ-2 (ПАО «Т Плюс»), где существенная корректировка ремонтной программы привела к несвоевременному выполнению и сокращению объемов плановых ремонтов оборудования станции, что может отразиться на показателях аварийности в предстоящий ОЗП 2016-2017 гг. и привести к ограничениям электроснабжения потребителей региона.

–     на Иркутской ТЭЦ-6 (ПАО «Иркутскэнерго»), где перенос срока капитального ремонта турбины ст. № 2 на период ОЗП 2016-2017 гг. (сентябрь-декабрь 2016 года), имеющей наработку, превышающую нормативный межремонтный ресурс, создает риск аварийного отключения оборудования и снижения обеспечения центральной части города Братска, Братского лесопромышленного комплекса отоплением и горячим водоснабжением.

 «По итогам 4 месяцев 2016 года выполнение календарного плана капитальных и средних ремонтов по генерации составило порядка 90 %, а по сетевым компаниям на уровне 97-99 %», – отметил Евгений Грабчак в завершении своего выступления.

На совещании были заслушаны отчеты компаний, не получивших паспорта готовности к ОЗП 2015-2016 (ОАО «ЕВРАЗ ЗСМК» (Западно-Сибирская ТЭЦ) и ГУП РК «Крымэнерго»). Руководители компаний доложили о выполнении мероприятий, итогах прохождения ОЗП и о планах по подготовке к ОЗП 2016-2017 годов.

Большое внимание на совещании было уделено ситуации с выполнением энергокомпаниями мероприятий, запланированных в соответствии с приказом Минэнерго России № 215 «Об утверждении перечня регионов с высокими рисками нарушения электроснабжения на 2015-2018 годы».

Всего в соответствии с приказом запланировано проведение 41 мероприятия, однако на сегодняшний день в срок не исполнено 4 мероприятия: 3 мероприятия по Иркутской энергосистеме (ответственные исполнители ОАО «РЖД», ЗАО «Витимэнерго», ПАО «Россети») и 1 мероприятие по Якутской энергосистеме (ответственный исполнитель ПАО «РАО ЭС Востока»).

Представитель ОАО «РЖД» в своем выступлении доложил о статусе исполнения мероприятий в соответствии с приказом РВР: на ПС 220 кВ Кичера, ПС 220 кВ Ангоя, ПС 220 кВ Перевал – зашиты будут смонтированы в 2016 году; по остальным мероприятиям ведутся конкурсные процедуры и разработка проектной документации.

Андрей Черезов подчеркнул недопустимость ситуации с постоянным нарушением сроков исполнения мероприятий рядом энергокомпаний.

«Приказ подготовлен на основании анализа ожидаемых режимов работы энергосистем и включает важнейшие для обеспечения надежного энергоснабжения потребителей мероприятия. Его неисполнение и систематические переносы сроков недопустимы», – отметил заместитель Министра.

Отдельной темой совещания стала ситуация с техническим состоянием основного оборудования на Воркутинских ТЭЦ (ПАО «Т Плюс»).

С начала 2016 года ситуация с работой оборудования на Воркутинской ТЭЦ-2 только ухудшилась: за 4 месяца 2016 года по сравнению с аналогичным периодом 2015 года рост аварийности составил +123 % (29 и 13 аварий соответственно).

Из-за множества различных неисправностей периодически в аварийном ремонте одновременно находятся от 4 до 5 котлоагрегатов из 9 установленных, что приводит к максимальному снижению рабочей мощности станции.

Сложившая ситуация на Воркутинской ТЭЦ-2 привела к срыву запланированных сроков выполнения ремонтных работ на ВЛ 220 кВ Инта-Воркута, выполнение которых возможно только в зимнее время года.

Кроме того, в Воркутинском и Интинском энергорайонах 7 июня объявлен режим с высокими рисками нарушения электроснабжения в связи с  угрозой полного погашения потребителей. Высокая аварийность и критическое техническое состояние остается на постоянном контроле Минэнерго России.

Андрей Черезов потребовал от присутствовавшего на совещании в режиме видеосвязи руководства компании скорейшего завершения ремонтно-восстановительных работ на Воркутинской ТЭЦ-2 и доведения технического состояния основного оборудования станции до нормативных значений. Соответствующие поручения были доведены Правительственной телеграммой до руководства ПАО «Т Плюс» и руководителей регионального штаба по обеспечению безопасности энергоснабжения.

Подводя итоги, Андрей Черезов обратил особое внимание, что по всем мероприятиям, разработанным для обеспечения надежного прохождения ОЗП 2016-2017 гг. Минэнерго России установлены четкие сроки и ведется контроль их исполнения, готовность субъектов электроэнергетики к прохождению максимумов нагрузок является для Минэнерго России одной из самых приоритетных задач.

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On interest rates on the Bank of Russia specialised refinancing instruments (6/10/2016)

MIL OSI – Source: Central Bank of the Russian Federation in English –

Headline: On interest rates on the Bank of Russia specialised refinancing instruments (6/10/2016)



On 10 June 2016, the Bank of Russia Board of Directors decided to leave unchanged interest rates on the specialised refinancing instruments except interest rate on the Bank of Russia loans secured by the mortgages issued under the Military Mortgage Programme.
In line with this decision, interest rates on the following instruments are set at 9.00% per annum:
loans secured by the pledge of receivables on loans extended to fund investment projects;
loans secured by bonds placed for investment project funding and included in the Bank of Russia Lombard List;
loans secured by the pledge of receivables on loan agreements secured by insurance agreements of OJSC Export Insurance Agency of Russia (OJSC ‘EXIAR’);
loans secured by the pledge of receivables on loans extended to leasing companies.
In line with this decision, interest rates on the following instruments are set at 6.50% per annum:
loans secured by the pledge of receivables on loan agreements entered by JSC SME Bank
with credit or microfinance institutions and which are targeted for lending to small and medium enterprises;
loans secured by the surety of JSC Russian Small and Medium Business Corporation.
The interest rate on the Bank of Russia loans secured by the mortgages issued under the Military Mortgage Programme is reduced from 10.75% to 10.50% per annum.

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The Bank of Russia decided to reduce the key rate from 11.00 to 10.50 % p.a (6/10/2016)

MIL OSI – Source: Central Bank of the Russian Federation in English –

Headline: The Bank of Russia decided to reduce the key rate from 11.00 to 10.50 % p.a (6/10/2016)



On 10 June 2016, the Bank of Russia Board of Directors decided to reduce the key rate from 11.00 to 10.50 % p.a. The Board of Directors notes the positive trends of more stable inflation, decreased inflation expectations and inflation risks against the backdrop of imminent growth recovery in the economy. Slowing inflation allows more certain reliance on sustainable inflation reduction to less than 5% in May 2017 and the 4% target in late 2017, taking into account the decision just made and the retention moderately tight monetary policy. The Bank of Russia will consider the possibility of a further rate cut based on estimates for inflation risks and alignment of inflation decline with the forecast trajectory.
In making its key rate decision, the Bank of Russia Board of Directors has proceeded from the following factors.
First. There is more confidence in steadily positive trends in the inflation dynamics. Consumer prices grew less than predicted. The annual inflation has stabilised at 7.3% and the annualised monthly inflation, seasonally adjusted, is about 5%. Economic activity indicators improve along with ongoing low consumer demand and a high rate of savings without creating upward pressure on consumer prices. Inflation expectations of households and businesses continue to decrease. The situation in the global commodity markets was more favourable than expected and contributed to the inflation slowdown through the ruble exchange rate and food price movements (these factors’ influence is temporary and is subject to decrease, which is considered in the inflation forecast). The administered prices and tariffs will be adjusted in July in compliance with the stated plans, but to a lesser extent than a year ago. Consumer price growth rates will keep on going down further, primarily influenced by the demand-side restraints. The Bank of Russia marked down its inflation forecast for the end of 2016, to 5-6%. Considering the decision just made and retaining the current monetary policy stance, the annual inflation will be less than 5% in May 2017 to reach the 4% target in late 2017.
Second. Positive trends in the economy are not accompanied by a higher inflationary pressure. The figures of the GDP dynamics in 2016 Q1 and macroeconomic indicators for April confirm greater sustainability of the Russian economy to oil price fluctuations. Import substitution and non-commodity exports continue to expand and additional growth areas in manufacturing are taking shape. However, the changes in economic dynamics vary across the industries and regions. Investments continue to show a downward trend and a wide range of industries experience stagnation, including those that have traditionally been the sources of growth for the Russian economy. Yet positive shifts in the economy anticipate the beginning of its growth recovery. Quarterly GDP growth is expected no later than 2016 H2. The forecast predicts a GDP increase of 1.3% in 2017 and annual growth rate for output of goods and services remaining low in the following years. The forecast is based on a fairly conservative estimate of the annual average oil price, which is approximately $40 per barrel over the three-year horizon.
Third. Monetary conditions will still be moderately tight, despite a slight easing due to the lowering banking sector liquidity deficit. Real interest rates in the economy (adjusted for inflation expectations) will remain at the level that encourages savings and allows for demand for loans that does not cause an increase in inflationary pressure. In order to ensure operational control over the level and structure of market interest rates in the context of the emerging transition to the banking sector liquidity surplus, the Bank of Russia is ready to take a set of measures designed to mop up liquidity.
Fourth. The risks that inflation will not reach the target of 4% in 2017 declined, but still remain at a heightened level. This primarily stems from inflation expectation inertness, the lack of mid-term budget consolidation strategy and the uncertainty in the parameters of future indexation of wages and pensions. Volatility in the global commodity and financial markets also might have a negative impact on the exchange rate and inflation expectations. The materialisation of these risks might cause a slowdown in the inflation reduction.
The Bank of Russia will consider the possibility of a further rate cut based on estimates for inflation risks and alignment of inflation decline with the forecast trajectory.

The Bank of Russia Board of Directors will hold its next rate review meeting on 29 July 2016. The press release on the Bank of Russia Board decision is to be published at 13:30 Moscow time.
Interest rates on the Bank of Russia major operations1(% p.a.)

Purpose

Type of instrument

Instrument

Term

Rate since 03.08.15

Rate since 14.06.16
Liquidity provision

Standing facilities
(fixed interest rates)

REPO;
Overnight loans;
Lombard loans;
Loans secured by gold;
Loans secured by non-marketable assets and guarantees;
FX swaps (ruble leg)

1 day

12.00

11.50
Open market operations (minimum interest rates)

Loans secured by non-marketable assets, auctions2

3 months

11.25

10.75
REPO auctions

from 1 to 6 days3,
1 week

11.00
(key rate)

10.50
(key rate)
Liquidity absorption

Open market operations (maximum interest rates)

Deposit auctions

from 1 to 6 days3,
1 week
Standing facilities (fixed interest rates)

Deposit operations

1 day,
call

10.00

9.50
Memo item:
Refinancing rate4 I Information on interest rates on the Bank of Russia operations is given in the Table ‘Interest rates on the Bank of Russia operations’.
2 Floating interest rate linked to the level of the Bank of Russia key rate.
3 Fine-tuning operations.
Information notice ‘On the procedure for conducting fine-tuning operations’.
Information notice ‘On fine-tuning operations to absorb liquidity’
4 The Bank of Russia Board of Directors decided to equate from 1 January 2016 the refinancing rate with the Bank of Russia key rate set as of the respective date. Starting from 1 January 2016, the independent value of the refinancing rate will not be set.
Refinancing rate values prior to 01.01.2016

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Ambassador of Belarus V.Kozintsev held a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina

MIL OSI – Source: Belarus Ministry of Foreign Affairs in English – Press Release/Statement

Headline: Ambassador of Belarus V.Kozintsev held a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina

10-06-2016

On June 9, 2016 the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to the Argentine Republic, Victor Kozintsev, met with the with the Director of the Department of Eastern Europe of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina, José Néstor Ureta.

During the meeting, the sides discussed prospects for expansion of bilateral cooperation between Belarus and Argentina, possible directions of its further intensification, as well as the next session of the Belarusian-Argentine Joint Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation and Consultations between the Foreign Ministries of the two countries.

     

Ten countries continue to breach National Emission Ceilings Directive limits

MIL OSI – Source: European Union –

Headline: Ten countries continue to breach National Emission Ceilings Directive limits

Under the National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) (2001/81/EC), EU Member States have individual air pollutant emission limits, or ‘ceilings’, restricting emissions for four important air pollutants: nitrogen oxides (NOx), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ammonia (NH3).

As of 2010, all Member States are required to meet their emission ceilings, but preliminary 2014 data and final data for 2010-13 in the EEA’s new briefing ‘NEC Directive reporting status 2015’ shows that a number of countries consistently breached their limits for NOx, NMVOCs and NH3 in all these years.

The main reasons for the exceedances are emissions from road transport (NOx) and agriculture (NH3). Nitrogen dioxide (NO2), the harmful component of NOx, directly harms health as high concentrations can cause inflammation of the airways leading to respiratory conditions and cardiovascular disease. In addition, NOx forms fine particulate matter and ozone in the atmosphere. Both pollutants have adverse effects on human health. NH3, which mainly stems from the use of fertilisers and the handling of animal manure, also forms particulate matter in the atmosphere. Moreover, both pollutants have impacts on ecosystems as they contain nitrogen. 

Key findings

  • In 2014, 10 Member States reported emission data under the NECD that were above the ceiling for at least one pollutant.
  • Germany was the only Member State that exceeded three out of its four emission ceilings in 2014 (NOx, NMVOCs and NH3).
  • Since 2010, 10 Member States have persistently exceeded their respective emission ceilings for NOx (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland and Luxembourg), NMVOCs (Denmark, Germany, Ireland and Luxembourg) and NH3 (Austria, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Germany and Spain).
  • The SOceilings emissions were not exceeded by any Member State during the period 2010-2014.
  • The EU-28 as a whole did not exceed its aggregated emission ceilings for any of the four air pollutants in 2014.

Table 1: Comparison of Member State emissions with respective NECD ceilings including footnote

 

Notes: ‘v’ indicates that the emission ceiling has been attained; ‘x’ indicates that the ceiling has not been attained.
2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013: final data; 2014: provisional data.
In some cases, the ceiling could have been attained on the basis of adjusted emission inventories as approved under the Gothenburg Protocol of the LRTAP Convention. In particular for 2013 and 2014, the number of exceedances above the 2010 NECD emission ceilings would become fewer.

Revision of the National Emission Ceilings Directive

A revised National Emission Ceilings Directive was proposed by the European Commission as part of its 2013 Clean Air Policy Programme. The proposal, which included new 2020 and 2030 reduction commitments for the four currently-covered pollutants, as well as new ceilings for two additional pollutants – fine particulate matter (PM2,5) and methane (CH4), is currently being negotiated by the European Parliament and Member States under the Dutch EU Presidency.

More information

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Ten actions to help equip people in Europe with better skills – Frequently asked questions

MIL OSI – Source: European Union –

Headline: Ten actions to help equip people in Europe with better skills – Frequently asked questions

Why does Europe need a New Skills Agenda?

In a fast-changing global economy, skills will to a great extent determine our competitiveness and capacity to drive innovation. They are also a pull factor for investment and a catalyst for job creation and growth. Europe’s future prosperity depends therefore on the optimal use of our human capital.

About 70 million Europeans[1] lack sufficient reading, writing and numeracy skills, and 40% of the EU population lack a sufficient level of digital skills. This puts them at high risk of unemployment, poverty and social exclusion.

On the other hand, 40% of European employers report that they cannot find people with the right skills to grow and innovate[2]. At the same time, a large number of others, particularly high-qualified young people, work in jobs that do not match their talents and aspirations.

The New Skills Agenda for Europe aims to improve the teaching and recognition of skills – from basic to higher skills, as well as transversal and civic skills – and ultimately to boost employability. It also aims both to ensure that no-one is left behind and that Europe nurtures the high-end skills that drive competitiveness and innovation. The Agenda therefore contributes to the European Commission’s first political priority, “A New Boost for Jobs, Growth and Investment”.

What does the New Skills Agenda for Europe bring?

The new Skills Agenda for Europe launches a number of actions to ensure that the right training, the right skills and the right support is available to people in the European Union. It will aim at making better use of the skills that are available; equip people with the new skills that are needed – to help them find quality jobs and improve their life chances. The Commission invites Members States, social partners, the industry and other stakeholders to work together to:

  • Improve the quality and relevance of skills formation
  • Make skills more visible and comparable
  • Improve skills intelligence and information for better career choices

What is the new Skills Guarantee and how does it work?

To reduce the high number of low-skilled adults in Europe, the Commission is proposing that a Skills Guarantee is established in cooperation with social partners, education and training providers. The aim of the Skills Guarantee is to help people improve their chances of securing and maintaining good jobs and quality of life. Through the Guarantee, low-skilled adults should be helped to acquire a minimum level of literacy, numeracy and digital skills and – when possible – a wider set of skills allowing them to get an upper secondary education qualification or equivalent. The Skills Guarantee should be open to people both in-work and out of work who are not covered by the Youth Guarantee, and implemented by Member States in line with national circumstances.

The Skills Guarantee would provide to adults who lack an upper secondary school qualification:

  • firstly, a skills assessment, giving them the chance to identify their existing skills and their upskilling needs;
  • secondly, a tailored learning offer, adapted to the specific needs of the individual and of local labour markets; and
  • thirdly, opportunities for the validation and recognition of the skills they acquire.

What will a review of the Key Competences[3] Framework bring?

The Commission will propose to Member States to review the 2006 Recommendation on Key Competences in order to bring it in line with the economic and social transformations that have occurred in the last ten years.

The review will further support a common understanding of a core set of key competences needed to work and live in the 21st century and will foster their introduction in education and training curricula and national skills strategies. It will also provide support to better describe, develop, assess, validate and compare key competences and related skills, in formal, non-formal and informal learning environments. Special attention will be paid to entrepreneurial skills (helping people be more creative, proactive, opportunity-oriented, and innovative), including encouraging policies for all young people to have a practical entrepreneurial experience before they leave school. Meanwhile, the Commission has developed two specific frameworks to ensure common understanding and foster citizens’ digital competences (DigComp) and entrepreneurial competences (EntreComp).

What will the initiative on tertiary graduate tracking bring?

To help students and education providers assess the relevance of learning offers, the Commission will propose in 2017 an initiative on tertiary graduate tracking to improve information on how graduates progress on the labour market. Feedback from and about graduates and their jobs and careers is indeed highly valuable to universities and colleges and to governments. It shows what kinds of jobs graduates have, provides information on labour market trends, and gives feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of education programmes. It is also part of the information and guidance that prospective students and their families should have before students make their study choices. This kind of information is collected in some, but not all, Member States, and in different ways. This initiative will step up EU cooperation, to provide better and more comparable information about the jobs graduates do, how easily they get into jobs, and how they are using their skills and knowledge.

How will the Skills Agenda address digital skills through the “Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition”?

All actions of the New Skills Agenda mainstream and give priority to digital skills in policies at all levels (from basic to high-end). This initiative builds on the existing Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs. It calls on Member States to share best practices, develop comprehensive digital skills strategies on the basis of targets and bring digital competences to all levels of education and training. It also brings reinforced support to national coalitions connecting public authorities, business, education, training and labour market stakeholders, including social partners. The Coalition will contribute to develop a large pool of digital talent and ensure that people in Europe are equipped with adequate digital competences.

What are the benefits of the revision of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF)?

The upcoming review of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF)will make it easier to compare qualifications across countries and help learners, workers and employers to better understand what a job applicant knows and is capable of doing. The revised EQF will also facilitate the comparison and understanding of qualifications of third country nationals.

How will the “Skills Tool for Third Country Nationals” support migrants?

An early identification of migrants’ skills can help better determine the first steps needed for their effective integration into EU societies and labour markets. The “Skills Tool Kit for Third Country Nationals” supports early profiling and assessing of skills and qualifications for asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants by the support services which work with them immediately upon arrival.

The Commission will also support the training of staff in reception facilities to allow faster recognition procedures, including bysharing of best practicesand providing information on transparency and recognition of qualifications.

Online language learning will also be made available for newly arrived migrants and refugees through the Erasmus+ programme online linguistic support. Around 100.000 refugees will have the opportunity to benefit from online language courses over 3 years.

How will the new Europass help career and learning choices?

The new Europass will offer a wider range of tools and services through a user-friendly online tool to help people with career and learning choices. Europass will offer tools such as a CV-builder for documenting skills and qualifications, free self-assessment tools and information on skills and qualifications across Europe.

Using the data collected in the Skills Panorama, Europass will be empowered by web crawling and big data analysis, to assist career and learning choices with accurate and real-time information.

What will the Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation bring?

The “Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills” is an initiative to better match skills within specific sectors. It will support the set-up of sectoral skills partnerships, in industry and services, and translate sectoral strategies for the next 5-10 years into identification of skills needs and development of concrete solutions, such as joint development of more and better VET opportunities, business-education-research partnerships, promotion of agreements on the recognition of sectoral qualifications and certifications.

The Blueprint will help mobilise and coordinate key players of the economic sector, stimulate private investment and encourage a more strategic use of EU and national funding programmes.

The Blueprint will be supported by existing EU funding and initially piloted in a demand driven process in 6 sectors: automotive, defence, maritime technology, space, textile and tourism. Additional sectors (such as construction, steel, health, green technologies and renewable energies) will be assessed in a second wave.  The pilot sectors have been identified on the basis of dialogue with specific industrial sectors, evidence collected of skills gaps in the sector and their potential impact on jobs, growth, innovation, and competitiveness, and taking into account the strong political and stakeholder commitment at EU and national level.

How will the Agenda support the quality and attractiveness of vocational education and training (VET)?

To help VET learners get more exposure to the word of work, the Commission will develop a set of support services to facilitate knowledge sharing, networking and cooperation on apprenticeships in the context of the European Alliance for Apprenticeships, building on the excellent experience in engaging labour market actors.  The recently launched Pact for Youth will provide opportunities for 100 000 new opportunities for apprenticeships, internships or entry-level jobs, as well as build 10 000 business-education partnerships. To showcase vocational studies as a first class option, the Commission, working closely with a wide range of stakeholders, will launch a first European VET Skills Week in December 2016 and will make proposals for improving data availability on labour market outcomes of VET. Enhanced quality of VET provision will be pursued by supporting implementation of quality assurance arrangements at provider level.

How have the social partners been consulted?

A series of targeted stakeholder consultations were organised to discuss the scope and priorities of the EU Skills Agenda. Social partners, European civil society organisations, national Public Employment Services, European Social Fund Managing Authorities, policy networks (EQF, Europass, Euroguidance), European cities, education and training providers, national education and training policy makers all voiced their views on the proposed Skills Agenda.

What is the role of the Commission?

While competence for the content of teaching and the organisation of education and training systems lies with Member States, actions are needed at the EU level. Members States indeed meet similar challenges and opportunities such as skills mismatches, skills shortages and insufficient workers’ mobility, digital needs, ageing workforces, brain drain, or migratory flows.

The Commission will therefore play a coordinating role through common initiatives, frameworks and guidelines, and will offer support by sharing expertise and good practice.

What will be the cost for Member States, and do EU funds support the New Skills Agenda?

Principally the interventions of the European Investment and Structural Funds – the European Social Fund (ESF) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) – will inject over €30 billion to support skills development in the current period 2014-2020. The ESF Programme can support implementation at national level with up to €79 billion being allocated to priorities for education, training and lifelong learning, social inclusion, and employment. An initial assessment of ESF Operational Programmes shows that Member States aim to target over 8 million low-skilled people under the education and training priority alone.

The Erasmus+ programme also supports skills development in education and training with nearly €15 billion. Other funds like the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF) and Horizon 2020 meet the objectives of this Agenda. Full use should also be made of the potential offered by the EIB and other financial actors and products, including the European Fund for Strategic Investments, to boost private sector investment in skills development.

Costs for implementing the Skills Guarantee will vary from country to country, depending on several factors: share of low skilled in the adult population, extent of skills deficits in this group, national policy choices for implementation and extent of existing provision and infrastructure.

What would be the cost for society if we would not invest better and more in skills?

Any investment in skills would result in a substantial positive net return on such investment. Estimates by Cedefop show that a one percentage point increase in the intermediate skills of the adult population, could boost the GDP per capita growth rate by 0.99 percentage points. Based on the latest available Cedefop skills forecasts, if no additional action is taken, the share of low-qualified adults within the working age adult population in the EU would be 18.6% in 2020 and 16.6% in 2025.

Next steps: What is the timeline for the actions in the New Skills Agenda?

Action

Timeline

Improving the quality and relevance of skills formation

Strengthening the foundations: basic skills

Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation on establishment a Skills Guarantee (see ref. doc COM(2016) 382)

June 2016

Building resilience: key competences and higher, more complex skills

Commission proposal to review the Key Competences for Lifelong Learning with a special focus on promoting entrepreneurial mindsets, and the accompanying European Reference Frameworks

4st Quarter 2017

Making VET a first choice

Commission proposals supporting VET modernisation, such as possible revision of the European Quality Assurance Reference Framework for Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET) and the European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET)

2nd Quarter 2017

Getting connected: focus on digital skills

Launch of the “Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition”

End 2016

Making skills and qualifications more visible and comparable

Improving transparency and comparability of qualifications

Commission proposal for the revision of the European Qualifications Framework (see ref. doc. COM(2016) 383)

June 2016

Early profiling of migrants’ skills and qualifications

Launch of the ” Skills Profile Tool for Third Country Nationals” to support early profiling and document skills of asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants

June 2016

Advancing skills intelligence, Documentation and informed career choices

Better intelligence and information for better choices

Commission proposal for the revision of the Europass Framework for the provision of better services for skills and qualifications

3rd quarter 2016

Better intelligence and information for better choices

Further analysis and sharing of best practice to tackle brain drain.

End 2016

Boosting skills intelligence in economic sectors

Launch of a Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills

June 2016

Better understanding the performance of graduates

Commission proposal for a an initiative on Graduate Tracking

2nd Quarter 2017

 

[1] The Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC): Implications for education and training policies in Europe, European Commission, 2013

[2] Eurofound, 3rd European Company Survey

[3] The key competences include ‘traditional’ skills such as communication in one’s mother tongue, foreign languages, digital skills, literacy, and basic skills in maths and science, as well as horizontal skills such as learning to learn, social and civic responsibility, initiative and entrepreneurship, cultural awareness, and creativity.

For further information:

IP/16/2039

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Ten actions to help equip people in Europe with better skills

MIL OSI – Source: European Union –

Headline: Ten actions to help equip people in Europe with better skills

Today’s New Skills Agenda for Europe calls on Member States and stakeholders to improve the quality of skills and their relevance for the labour market. According to studies, 70 million Europeans lack adequate reading and writing skills, and even more have poor numeracy and digitals skills. This puts them at risk of unemployment, poverty and social exclusion. On the other hand, a large number of Europeans, particularly high-qualified young people, work in jobs that do not match their talents and aspirations. At the same time, 40% of European employers report that they cannot find people with the right skills to grow and innovate. Finally, too few people have the entrepreneurial mindset and competences to start their own business and keep adapting to evolving requirements of the labour market.

Increasing skills levels, promoting transversal skills and finding ways to better anticipate the labour market’s needs, including based on dialogue with the industry, are therefore essential to improve people’s chances in life, and support fair, inclusive and sustainable growth as well as cohesive societies.

To help tackle skills challenges, the Commission will launch 10 actions which will address these issues and make skills more visible and improve their recognition at local, national and EU levels, from schools and universities to the labour market.

Vice-President for the Euro and Social Dialogue, Valdis Dombrovskis, said: “With millions of people in the EU currently out of work, we need to do all we can to help equip them with the right skills for the evolving labour market. Today’s 10-point action plan sets out areas where the EU can help make a difference, from ensuring better recognition of qualifications across EU borders, to a Skills Guarantee that helps low-skilled adults learn essential literacy, numeracy and digital skills.”    

Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, Jyrki Katainen, commented: “In this fast-changing world we need to invest in Europe’s greatest asset: our people. People need a broad set of skills to fulfil their potential both as active citizens and at work. Skills are vital for prosperity, jobs, growth and sustainable well-being. Our new Skills Agenda aims both to make sure that no-one is left behind, and that Europe nurtures the high-end skills that drive competitiveness and innovation.

Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Marianne Thyssen, said: “We need to invest more in skills in Europe. The most competitive countries in the EU, and in the world, are those that invest most in skills and 70 million Europeans are at the risk of falling behind. Stronger investment in skills is vital for strengthening competitiveness and boosting growth. And most of all, it is crucial to help people to realise their professional dreams and goals and reach their potential. I invite Member States, social partners and businesses to work together with us and make this New Skills Agenda for Europe a success.”

Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics, said: “Taking a long-term approach will be crucial to make the Skills Agenda a success. Beyond fixing current mismatches, we must prevent new gaps from opening up in the future. I am therefore glad to see that the Skills Agenda defines skills broadly and seeks to promote the full range of transversal skills that help people succeed in our fast-changing economies and become engaged citizens leading independent, fulfilling lives.”

Concretely, the Commission proposes 10 actions to be taken forward over the next two years, some of which will be launched today:

  • A Skills Guarantee to help low-skilled adults acquire a minimum level of literacy, numeracy and digital skills and progress towards an upper secondary qualification.
  • A review of the European Qualifications Framework for a better understanding of qualifications and to make better use of all available skills in the European labour market.
  • The “Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition” bringing together Member States and education, employment and industry stakeholders to develop a large digital talent pool and ensure that individuals and the labour force in Europe are equipped with adequate digital skills.
  • The ‘Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills’ to improve skills intelligence and address skills shortages in specific economic sectors.

Other actions will be launched later this year and in 2017:

  • A “Skills Profile Tool for Third Country Nationals” to support early identification and profiling of skills and qualifications of asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants.
  • A revision of the Europass Framework, offering people better and easier-to-use tools to present their skills and get useful real-time information on skills needs and trends which can help with career and learning choices.
  • Making Vocational Education and Training (VET) a first choice by enhancing opportunities for VET learners to undertake a work based learning experience and promoting greater visibility of good labour market outcomes of VET.
  • A review of the Recommendation on Key Competences to help more people acquire the core set of skills necessary to work and live in the 21st century with a special focus on promoting entrepreneurial and innovation-oriented mind-sets and skills.
  • An initiative on graduate tracking to improve information on how graduates progress in the labour market.
  • A proposal to further analyse and exchange best practices on effective ways to address brain drain.

Background

The European Skills Agenda was announced in the 2016 Commission Work Programme. It will support upward social convergence and contribute to the European Commission’s first political priority, “A New Boost for Jobs, Growth and Investment” by addressing three pressing challenges of today’s economies: the lack of relevant skills to match labour market needs, the insufficient transparency of skills and qualifications, and the difficulty to anticipate and forecast skills.

For more information

MEMO

Factsheet: Skills in the EU

Country-specific Factsheets

Factsheet: Digital skills

Factsheet: Green skills

Factsheet: Investing in skills

Factsheet: Mismatches at sectoral level

Factsheet: Skills and migrants

News item on DG Education and Culture website – Factsheet on education and skills

News item on DG Employment website

Communication “A New Skills Agenda for Europe: Working together to strengthen human capital, employability and competitiveness”

Cedefop 2016 skills forecast/skills panorama

Stockshots on New Skills Agenda

#EUSkillsAgenda

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