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3. 4.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 102/143

Answer given by Mr Pinheiro on behalf of the Commission


(8 October 1997)

Between 1994 and 1996 the Commission financed two projects in support of the Tibetans. One of these was a
media project implemented by the organisation ‘Droit de parole − Observatoire Maongpa’ [The right to speak −
Maongpa Observatory]. This project ended in 1996. At the end of 1996 two new media projects were submitted,
one from the same organisation.

As part of its work to develop a more coherent intervention strategy on human rights, in June 1997 the
Commission sent two consultants to Tibet to identify worthwhile projects. At the beginning of August they
submitted a report accompanied by details of about twenty projects involving different sectors, among them
media projects which include those referred to by the Honourable Member.

The Commission will study the projects received and recommended by the consultants and make its selection in
line with its broader policy for the region as a whole.

(98/C 102/215) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2881/97


by Brendan Donnelly (PPE) to the Commission
(17 September 1997)

Subject: Population control programmes

Will the Commission make a statement about the practical measures which its officials take to ensure that
funding for population control programmes in developing countries does not go to countries or organizations
which practise or tolerate coercive measures?

Answer given by Mr Pinheiro on behalf of the Commission


(13 October 1997)

Recital (9) of the new Council Regulation (EC) No 1484/97 of 22 July 1997 on aid for population policies and
programmes in the developing countries (1) points out that the Community denounces any violations of human
rights in the form of compulsory abortion or compulsory sterilisation; Article 6 of the Regulation lays down that
cooperation initiatives shall be implemented on the basis of dialogue with the national, regional and local
authorities concerned so as to avoid programmes which are coercive, discriminatory or prejudicial to
fundamental human rights.

Action supported by the Commission has to abide by these principles. The Commission makes sure of this, in
particular by careful prior analysis of projects and schemes submitted to it and through dialogue with its partners
and the contractors.

(1) OJ L 202, 30.7.1997.

(98/C 102/216) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2884/97


by Glyn Ford (PSE) to the Commission
(17 September 1997)

Subject: Mutually recognized training qualifications

What progress has been made towards achieving harmonization of training standards and qualifications across
Member States?
C 102/144 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 3. 4. 98

Answer given by Mrs Cresson on behalf of the Commission


(23 October 1997)

Under the terms of Articles 126 and 127 of the EC Treaty, the harmonisation of training systems and vocational
qualifications is outside the Community's competence in the field of education and training.

In Europe, there are ‘regulated’ professions – in other words, those whose exercise in a given Member State is
subject, by law, to possession of a specific qualification − and non-regulated professions, which can be exercised
freely.

With regard to regulated professions, the principle of the mutual recognition of qualifications was introduced by
a series of Community directives adopted for the completion of the internal market. The transposition of these
texts by the Member States has enabled certain legal obstacles to mobility to be removed and has substantially
reinforced the transnational recognition of vocational qualifications.

For more than ten years now, the Commission has actively supported the transparency of qualifications in the
non-regulated sphere. It also recently published a Green Paper on obstacles to mobility.

The Council Resolution of 3 December 1992 on transparency of qualifications (1) defines a practical approach,
aimed not at equivalence but at greater transparency of qualifications. A pilot European portfolio of skills has
been developed and tested among employers and jobseekers. The Leonardo da Vinci programme supports
high-quality transnational projects in this field, some of them in fact stemming directly from earlier pilot projects
such as the portfolio.

On 15 July 1996, the Council adopted a new Resolution on the transparency of vocational training certificates (2),
calling on the Member States to increase the transparency of such certificates by incorporating information on
the content of the training received and the skills acquired. The issuing of multilingual certificates is also
encouraged.

(1) Council Resolution of 3 December 1992 on transparency of qualifications, OJ C 49, 19.2.1993.


(2) Council Resolution of 15 July 1996 on the transparency of vocational training certificates, OJ C 224, 1.8.1996.

(98/C 102/217) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2911/97


by Johanna Maij-Weggen (PPE) to the Commission
(17 September 1997)

Subject: Children with AIDS in Africa

According to Unicef, 1000 children per day are now dying of AIDS in 15 African countries south of the Sahara,
while in 1996 alone 400 000 children are said to have been infected with the AIDS virus.

Unicef estimates that after the year 2000 average life expectancy in the affected countries will fall by more than
11 years, partly as a result of this infection.

Can the Commission state what action it is taking, together with the African countries affected, to counteract HIV
infection?

What amounts is the European Union spending in support of AIDS prevention in the African countries affected?

Answer given by Mr Pinheiro on behalf of the Commission


(15 October 1997)

In 1986 the international community initiated its response to the threat posed by the human immunodeficiency
virus acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) epidemic. It was in the light of this concerted
international action that the Community launched its own programme in mid 1987, initially as part of its
co-operation with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, and subsequently extending it to all the
developing countries with the creation of a new budget line in 1988 (B7-6211). From 1987 to mid-1997, the
Community committed approximately MECU 170 to the support of HIV/AIDS activities in developing countries.
A major part of these funds are used to prevent transmission of the virus on the African continent where the
problem is very widespread.