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Employers troubled by climate-energy package

The National Association of Employers (RUZ) in Slovakia is convinced that by adopting unilateral measures to prevent climate change the European Union might threaten business and put jobs at risk, the SITA newswire wrote. The General Secretary of the RUZ, Martin Hošták, said that pressing for such measures could lead companies to relocate factories to countries that have imposed no limits on emissions of greenhouse gases. "The RUZ is in favour of pursuing better environmental performance and energy efficiency, but without any loss of competitiveness," said Hošták, adding that employers who are members of the RUZ are appealing to the government of the Slovak Republic not to "sacrifice" jobs in Slovakia at the spring meeting of the European Council by automatically accepting the so-called climate-energy package.

The National Association of Employers (RUZ) in Slovakia is convinced that by adopting unilateral measures to prevent climate change the European Union might threaten business and put jobs at risk, the SITA newswire wrote. The General Secretary of the RUZ, Martin Hošták, said that pressing for such measures could lead companies to relocate factories to countries that have imposed no limits on emissions of greenhouse gases. "The RUZ is in favour of pursuing better environmental performance and energy efficiency, but without any loss of competitiveness," said Hošták, adding that employers who are members of the RUZ are appealing to the government of the Slovak Republic not to "sacrifice" jobs in Slovakia at the spring meeting of the European Council by automatically accepting the so-called climate-energy package.

According to employers, the draft EU directive does not offer to companies in energy-hungry sectors sufficient legal security and certainty. The RUZ wants supporting measures specifically designed for these sectors. The sectors will not be defined before 2010, and an assessment of realistic emissions risks until 2011. The RUZ points out that these sectors are operating in an international competitive environment, face imports to the EU and that their exports compete on global markets with products unburdened by measures designed to combat climate change. At the end of January, the European Commission published a package of measures aimed at reducing emissions of greenhouse gases by one-fifth by 2020, at the same time increasing the proportion of energy coming from sources to twenty percent. SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports

The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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