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C 60/50 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 25. 2.

98

Answer given by Mrs Wulf-Mathies on behalf of the Commission


(7 July 1997)

The Commission is unaware of the existence of a coordinating committee in support of the Urban programme in
Toledo or of its criticisms of the programme’s implementation. It will contact the Spanish authorities for their
opinion and any comments they may have. The Commission cannot, however, submit an accurate request
without knowing the subject of the criticisms and the name of the committee or of the responsible persons.

As regards the publication of an information bulletin on Urban, the Commission would like to point out that at
the time a measure is approved only the main areas of assistance are included in the programme. The content of
these areas, taking the form of a set of measures, is established at a later date, within the framework of
subsidiarity, by the authorities responsible for the implementation of the programme. The Commission is
informed and consulted during monitoring committee meetings. At the last such meeting, which took place in
January 1997, the Spanish authorities pointed out that a measure relating to the adoption of information and
publicity activities was undergoing analysis and consultation with the social and economic partners in the
district. No expenditure had been charged to that measure.

The role of the economic and social partners in the development and implementation of programmes is taken into
account under Article 4 of Council Regulation (EEC) No 2052/88 of 24 June 1988 on the tasks of the Structural
Funds and their effectiveness and on coordination of their activities between themselves and with the operations
of the European Investment Bank and the other existing financial instruments as amended (1) and in paragraph 3
of item 20 of the Commission communication to the Member States laying down guidelines for the Urban
Community initiative. The Regulation lays down that it is the task of the Member States, within the framework of
the institutional rules and practices specific to each Member State, to designate the competent bodies.

(1) OJ L 193, 31.7.1993.

(98/C 60/79) WRITTEN QUESTION P-1835/97


by Mirja Ryynänen (ELDR) to the Commission
(27 May 1997)

Subject: Taking account of climate in EU deadlines for harvesting and for aid applications

Under Commission rules, Finnish arable farmers are required to submit their aid applications by the end of May.
In the C aid area, notification of harvests may be delayed until 15 June, but not in the A and B areas. As spring is
late again in Finland this year, it will not be possible for crops to be harvested until June even on many farms in A
and B areas.

The fixed harvesting deadlines set by the Commission for A and B areas do not make sense in the difficult
conditions which prevail in the north. Some permanent way should be found of introducing flexibility in
connection with this significant problem, which affects tens of thousands of farmers, so as to ensure that it, and
the resultant uncertainty, does not continue to recur year after year.

What will the Commission do to eliminate the excessively strict enforcement of harvesting deadlines for northern
conditions and to increase flexibility by other means than special decisions adopted each year, which cause
uncertainty?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission


(12 June 1997)

The Commission would inform the Honourable Member that the deadline for 1997 has been extended to 15 June
1997 for the whole of Finland.

The Commission is aware of the special climatic features of the Nordic regions and their impact on the sowing
date. When the sowing date for the 1997 harvest was put back, it underook to consider the possibility of fixing a
more suitable date for the whole of Finland.