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C 82/106 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 17. 3.


(98/C 82/174) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2556/97

by Harald Ettl (PSE) to the Commission
(24 July 1997)

Subject: Discriminatory age limits in the advertising of posts in EU institutions

In the EU employment debate the blame is very often laid at the door of the individual, mobility and lifelong
learning being described as the panacea for unemployment. The EU institutions in particular should set an
example in this context by refraining from the practice of imposing discriminatory age limits as a requirement for
admission to the EU’s service and taking suitable initiatives to create skilled jobs in the EU sphere for anyone,
male or female, of any age.

1. Is it true that some notifications of vacant posts in the European institutions impose an age limit
(Notification of Open Competition EUR/A/121 published by the Council of the European Union, the Economic
and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions in OJ C 363 A, 3.12.1996)?

2. What objective arguments for the discriminatory exclusion of older people from working and professional
life are advanced when, on the one hand, the people concerned still have 20 or more years of working life before
them and, on the other hand, programmes for the integration of older people into the labour market indicate a
different policy?

3. How is this inconsistency justified?

4. What suitable initiatives have been taken by the EU institutions to create skilled jobs in the EU sphere for
anyone, male or female, of any age?

(98/C 82/175) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2720/97

by Susan Waddington (PSE) to the Commission
(1 September 1997)

Subject: Age discrimination in recruitment − Amsterdam Draft Treaty

Given that the Amsterdam Draft Treaty text includes a new Article 6a, which provides for Community action ‘to
combat discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual
orientation’, what effect does the Commission envisage that this article will have on its own recruitment practices
that incorporate age limits, once Treaty ratification has been completed?

Will this prospect now lead the Commission to remove the use of age barriers in its recruitment?

Joint answer
to Written Questions E-2556/97 and E-2720/97
given by Mr Liikanen on behalf of the Commission
(22 September 1997)

In reply to questions 1, 2 and 3, the Commission confirms that there is an agreement between the Community
institutions to apply a general age limit of 35 for admission to competitions for starting grades. There are several
reasons for applying age limits, and they have virtually all been aired in the answers given to parliamentary

Nevertheless, as indicated in the answer to Question E-1623/97 by Mr Alex Smith (1), the Commission has
started taking a more flexible approach to age limits for recruitment.

The Board of the Heads of Administrative Departments have begun preliminary talks with a view to adopting a
common approach to be applied by all European institutions. Discussions will resume early in the autumn.
17. 3. 98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 82/107

The question of age limits will be one of those to be assessed in the context of the future entry into force of
Article 6a of the EC Treaty introduced by the Amsterdam Treaty, on non-discrimination on grounds inter alia of
age, and of trends in this respect in the Member States.

(1) OJ C 45, 10.2.1998.

(98/C 82/176) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2559/97

by Patricia McKenna (V) to the Commission
(24 July 1997)

Subject: Transport of live animals

The Commission has proposed a new directive specifying technical requirements for vehicles used for
transporting live animals. Improving animal welfare conditions is purported to be one of the main aims of this

On what basis does the Commission believe that this new directive would improve animal welfare standards?
Can it give details of what advice it obtained from veterinary and animal welfare experts in drafting this

Has the Commission considered ending EU subsidies to the live export trade as a means of discouraging the
cruelty to animals which it involves? Has it considered any policy proposals to boost employment in the meat
processing industry by requiring that animals be slaughtered closed to where they are raised before their meat is

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(9 September 1997)

The Commission proposal of standards for vehicles used for transporting animals more than eight hours has been
based on Article 13 of Directive 91/628/EEC (1), amended by Directive 95/29/EC (2), on the protection of animals
during transport.

Directive 95/29/EC was a political compromise reached after long and difficult discussions. This Directive laid
down the basic elements for the standards for vehicles in Chapter VII, point 3 of the Annex, taking into
consideration all the available scientific information. From this information it is well known that especially the
ventilation and the regular or continious water supply to the animals, depending on species and age, are very
important for the welfare of the animals.

The Commission has examined the possibilities of withdrawing export refunds from exporters where it is shown
that they have not fully respected the rules on the welfare of animals during transport to their final destination.
The Commission recently presented a proposal to the Council under which the payment of export refunds would
be subject to compliance with the provisions on the protection of animals during transport.

The Commission has not considered making policy proposals to boost employment in the meat processing
industry by requiring the animals to be slaughtered close to the place of raising.

(1) OJ L 340, 11.12.1991.

(2) OJ L 148, 30. 6.1995.

(98/C 82/177) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2560/97

by Patricia McKenna (V) to the Commission
(24 July 1997)

Subject: Euratom payments to the Sellafield nuclear complex, Britain

How much has been paid from Euratom to developments in the Sellafield nuclear complex in Combria, Britain,
over the past ten years?