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Industry urges government to take stand against emissions quotas

Representatives of 17 large corporations and the Federation of Employers' Associations have asked the government to take a firmer line in dealing with
the European Commission in the matter of limits on the production of greenhouse gases.

The call came at the end of a meeting in Košice that
brought together firms which produce 78 percent of the carbon dioxide emitted by Slovakia.

In October, the European Commission cut Slovakia's previous annual quota of 106.5 megatons by 14 percent.

The Košice declaration claims that this reduction, to a level 20% below Slovakia's allowance under the Kyoto Protocol, is discriminatory and will harm the Slovak economy.

The president of U.S. Steel Košice (USSK) Christopher Navetta, criticized the Ministry of the Environment for failing to consult with the finance and economy ministries about the change, and the Slovak government for failing to take advantage of the sixty-day period allowed for appeals.

USSK has launched a legal challenge to the European Commission's decision in the European Court of First Instance in Luxembourg. Navetta invited other corporations and also the government to join the action.

The other participants in the meeting welcomed USSK's actions but did not commit themselves to joining it. Nevertheless, they left the option of further
legal action open in case the government continues to ignore their demands.

Compiled by Roger Heyes from press reports
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