Conflict prevention paper to stress Commission’s role

first_imgFrance and Germany are insisting the EU executive should not be given the right to determine whether a group of member states can press ahead with ‘enhanced cooperation’ in the foreign policy arena, although it will be able to do so in other areas of policy-making in its role as guardian of the Union treaty.French diplomats have suggested that enhanced cooperation could be used, for example, to allow some states to form a special high-level task force to deal with the conflict in the Great Lakes region in Africa even if others did not wish to take part. But Paris argues that the Commission should not be given in a say in whether this happens.France has traditionally been the strongest advocate of giving the EU a more united position on external relations issues, but through greater coordination of individual member states’ stances rather than by boosting the Commission’s role.However, Patten argues that trying to improve the effectiveness of the Union’s foreign policy while marginalising the Commission is self-defeating because the executive can provide considerable aid and controls essential policy tools for dealing with crisis situations.He emphasised the importance of his institution’s role in a speech in June, saying: “While the Commission has nothing to say – nor do we seek a role – in defence, it is impossible to separate purely military matters from related issues in which we are competent, and have a real contribution to make. Military and the non-military actions cannot be placed neatly into separate boxes. Nor should they be, because they need to be closely coordinated in the service of a single strategy.”The debate comes as EU leaders prepare to boost Solana’s role by giving him control of the Union’s new permanent political and security committee (PSC), which will run crisis management operations from next year. The paper on ‘effective conflict prevention’ will emphasise the executive’s importance in dealing with humanita-rian emergencies such as the situations in Bosnia and Kosovo, although it will not be involved in the military side of crisis management operations.It will also argue against any attempt to marginalise the Commission, while acknowledging that the Union’s usual decision-making procedures will have to be telescoped if it is to take rapid action to deal with crisis situations.The move comes as most EU governments are fighting French-led attempts to limit the Commission’s role in deciding whether some Union countries can go ahead with new foreign policy initiatives without all 15 member states being involved.last_img read more

See More

James Taylor Launches Archival Video Series With 1970 Cover Of The Beatles’ “With A Little Help From My Friends” [Watch]

first_imgJames Taylor took to his website this week, announcing a new archival video series that will see him release one song at a time over the coming weeks and months.Related: James Taylor Performs “You Can Close Your Eyes” With Family On ‘Fallon’ [Watch]“There’s a lot of stuff in the vault from over the years and we’ll rummage around in there – see what we can find… We’ll do our best to maintain the sharpest photographic clarity and highest fidelity sound quality that modern technology can afford,” he said in a post to the landing page of his website.He continued, “Best perhaps to start at the beginning, so up first are some the songs from a BBC broadcast in the early 1970s. This may not be the earliest film of me performing… but it’s got to be close. We will roll these out one song at a time over the next many weeks. I wish you the joy of it.”Taylor launched the series with a remastered video of his cover of The Beatles‘ “With A Little Help From My Friends”, filmed during his November 16th, 1970 performance on BBC in Concert. Clocking-in at 3:22, Taylor’s acoustic rendition takes a minimal, yet powerful, approach to the 1967 Sgt. Pepper’s classic. The performance came shortly after the release of his sophomore album, Sweet Baby James.Check out the video below and head to Taylor’s YouTube channel for the latest archival footage as it become available.James Taylor – “With A Little Help From My Friends” – 11/16/70[Video: James Taylor]last_img read more

See More

National average gas prices fall for 38th straight day. Where does Texas stand?

first_img The lowest price in the state today is $1.25/g while the highest is $2.54/g, a difference of $1.29/g.The national average price of gasoline has fallen 10.1 cents per gallon in the last week, averaging $1.97/g today.The national average is down 45.5 cents per gallon from a month ago and stands 72.7 cents per gallon lower than a year ago.“Motorists should continue to be vigilant if they need to fill their tanks- bring hand sanitizer and potentially wipes, but also shop around as the gap between station widens to historic levels,” DeHaan said. Gas prices in Texas are 38.0 cents per gallon lower than a month ago and stand 71.0 cents per gallon lower than a year ago.“With the nation continuing to be under siege from the coronavirus and millions staying parked at home, there’s quite a bit more downside that’s in the pipeline coming in the weeks ahead,” DeHaan said. “We could easily see the national average fall 50 cents to a dollar per gallon, while pricey states like California will see the biggest drops to come, playing catch up to the drop that has seen twenty nine states average gas prices fall under $2.”According to GasBuddy price reports, the cheapest station in Texas is priced at $1.25/g today while the most expensive is $2.54/g, a difference of $1.29/g. Today is the 38th straight day the national average gas price has fallen, and the first week of the national average being under $2/gal for the first time in over four years.Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, said motorists continue to park their cars and shelter in place, leading to an unprecedented drop never before seen in U.S. gasoline demand, “causing prices to sink like a rock.”Texas gas prices have fallen 10.5 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $1.75/g today, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey of 13,114 stations.center_img Historical gasoline prices in Texas and the national average going back ten years:March 30, 2019: $2.46/g (U.S. Average: $2.70/g)March 30, 2018: $2.41/g (U.S. Average: $2.65/g)March 30, 2017: $2.11/g (U.S. Average: $2.32/g)March 30, 2016: $1.89/g (U.S. Average: $2.05/g)March 30, 2015: $2.21/g (U.S. Average: $2.42/g)March 30, 2014: $3.36/g (U.S. Average: $3.55/g)March 30, 2013: $3.52/g (U.S. Average: $3.64/g)March 30, 2012: $3.82/g (U.S. Average: $3.93/g)March 30, 2011: $3.50/g (U.S. Average: $3.60/g)March 30, 2010: $2.66/g (U.S. Average: $2.78/g)Neighboring areas and their current gas prices:• Midland Odessa – $1.88/g, down 12.0 cents per gallon from last week’s $2.00/g.• San Antonio – $1.66/g, down 9.2 cents per gallon from last week’s $1.76/g.• Austin – $1.70/g, down 8.6 cents per gallon from last week’s $1.79/g.last_img read more

See More

Top News of the Week of Nov 04 – Nov 10, 2013

first_img[mappress]Subsea World News Staff , November 10, 2013 FSG Launches Amazon Warrior Seismic VesselFlensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft successfully launched the first of two offshore seismic vessels for the WesternGeco concern. The ship was Hull No. FSG 760 and she was named Amazon Warrior.SBM Offshore COO DismissedSBM Offshore confirms that effective immediately Bruno Chabas, CEO, has temporarily taken over the role of COO following the dismissal of Jean-Philippe Laures, COO.Bibby Offshore Invests in Sonardyne SPRINT INS for ROV OperationsAberdeen-based subsea installation contractor Bibby Offshore has chosen to invest in two SPRINT subsea inertial navigation systems from Sonardyne International Ltd. to support ROV operations carried out by its new offshore survey business division.ZPMC Delivers Pipelay Vessel “CPP 601″ to CNPCOn 30th Oct, ZPMC subordinate Oil Rigs & Wind Farm Department delivered “CPP 601” pipelay vessel to CNPC. ZPMC constructed 1600-ton fully revolving crane and stinger petroleum pipeline of the vessel.Hallin Marine Secures Its First Major Project in ChinaHallin Marine, a Superior Energy Services company, announces a key first in its history with the securement of a direct project contract with COOEC Subsea Technology Company Limited, part of the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC).Related:Top News of the Week of Oct 28 – Nov 03, 2013Top News of the Week of Oct 21 – Oct 27, 2013last_img read more

See More