The Open Regional Fund for South-East Europe – Energy Efficiency (ORF-EE) is organizing a second parliamentary forum for South-East Europe on November 27 in the Alexander Palace hotel in Skopje.
The focus of this year’s forum are the best parliamentary practices for energy efficiency in South-East Europe (SEE) and the creation of policies to reduce energy poverty in the region. The event is intended as a platform for the exchange of knowledge and best practices among the representatives of the SEE parliaments, including Macedonia.
The event will be opened by Hari Lockvenec, Chairman of the Defense Committee and member of the Committee on Economy in Macedonia, and David Oberhuber, Director of GIZ for Macedonia and Kosovo.
The participatory approach in the preparation of the new EE law in Kosovo will be presented by Sala Berisha-Shala, chairman of the Committee for Economic Development, Infrastructure, Trade, Industry and Regional Development of Kosovo.
Representatives from the Montenegrin Parliament will have the opportunity to talk about the organization and implementation of consultative parliamentary sessions as a participatory democratic instrument and explain its effectiveness in monitoring the implementation of the EE policy in their country, as well as in improving sectoral policies.
The forum will end with a presentation by the contracting parties of the Energy Community for the Western Balkans on the implementation of the EE policy with recommendations on defining the viable role of the SEE parliaments.
Germany plans to double taxes on short-haul flights
Berlin plans to nearly double taxes on short-haul flights under Germany’s emissions cutting programme, an official at the Finance Ministry said on Tuesday.
The bigger than expected tax hikes form part of a climate package in Germany aimed making the country carbon neutral by the year 2050 and are accompanied by measures to promote public transport use.
Climate activists and industry groups had criticized the plans as not going far enough to achieve Germany’s 2050 emissions goal.
The tax on domestic and intra-European flights is likely to rise to 13.03 euros from 7.50 euros, while for medium-haul flights it would rise to 33.01 euros from 23.43 and for long-haul flights to 59.43 from 42.18 euros.
Government approves financial aid for 170 companies through economic growth plan
The government endorsed a report on conclusion of contracts awarding financial assistance to 170 companies, including companies from commercial-industrial zones and one from the diaspora, through programs set out in the Economic Development Plan.
Prior to awarding financial assistance, the authorities assessed the investments in 2018 in terms of investments in purchase of new machinery and equipment, and investments in facilities and land.
The financial aid, provided through the Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion, has been granted for completed initial or additional investments. The funds for this purpose are foreseen in the 2019 Budget.
The total value of investments in these 170 companies amounts EUR230 million, adding 4.577 jobs to the labor market, of which, 2.117 jobs were registered in 2018.
Adria Airways files for bankruptcy, all flights canceled
Slovenia’s airline Adria Airways has filed for bankruptcy and canceled all flights, it said in a statement on Monday, after financial problems forced it to ground most of its planes over the last week.
“Bankruptcy proceedings were initiated by the management of the company because of the company’s insolvency,” Adria, which is owned by German investment firm 4K Invest, said.
Adria is the latest in a long line of small European airlines to run into financial trouble amid industry overcapacity, cut-throat competition and high fuel prices.
Since last Tuesday Adria has canceled more than 400 flights affecting more than 15,000 passengers.
Slovenia’s Economy Minister Zdravko Pocivalsek said earlier on Monday the government was considering establishing a new airline company to improve the country’s international connections. Adria’s collapse was very damaging to Slovenia’s economy and tourism industry, the minister said.
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