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2. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 304/21

A copy of the agreed set of statistical tables will be forwarded direct to the Honourable Member and to
Parliament’s Secretariat.

As mentioned above, the second statistical report based on non-harmonised data is scheduled to be available by
the end of April 1998.

The Commission will incorporate the data on the cosmetic products passed on by the Member States into its 1997
annual report. Those data concern the progress made on the development, validation and legal acceptance of
methods which may be used as substitutes for animal experiments in accordance with Article 4(1)(i) of Council
Directive 76/768/EEC on cosmetic products, as amended by Council Directive 93/35/EEC of 14 June 1993 (1).

(1) OJ L 151, 23.6.1993.

(98/C 304/30) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0039/98
by Giacomo Leopardi (PPE) to the Commission
(29 January 1998)

Subject: Pharmaceutical expenditure − compulsory deductions and compatibility with EU principles

In considering the draft law on financial control for 1998, the Italian Parliament has adopted an amendment
proposed by the Italian Government, requiring pharmaceutical companies, wholesale distribution companies and
pharmacies to pay a contribution of the national health service equal to 60% of the surplus on planned
pharmaceutical expenditure for 1998, with the amount calculated on the basis of the percentage of fees included
in the consumer price of medicines (Article 31(15) of Senate law No. 4354).

Will the Commission say whether this provision, which imposes a compulsory deduction on surplus
pharmaceutical spending which is in no way the responsibility of pharmacies or production and wholesale
distribution companies, can be considered compatible with European Union principles and free enterprise, given
that pharmacies are already required to pay a percentage contribution to the national health service, varying
between 3.75% and 12.5%, depending on the price of the medicines provided by the Italian state for persons on
benefit?

Answer given by Mr Monti on behalf of the Commission
(6 April 1998)

The contribution to Italy’s national health service referred to by the Honourable Member must be treated as a
charge on the consumption of medicinal products even though it is intended that persons other than consumers
should pay it. Its lawfulness must therefore be determined primarily on the basis of the Community rules on
indirect taxation.

The Commission would note that the contribution is not objectionable under those rules since such charges have
not been harmonised at Community level and, moreover, it does not give rise to tax discrimination to the
detriment of other Member States’ products.

(98/C 304/31) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0041/98
by Ulf Holm (V) to the Commission
(29 January 1998)

Subject: Rules on the importation of domestic animals

When Sweden joined the EU some of the rules pertaining to the importation of domestic animals were changed.
Now it is enough to have a veterinary certificate from the exporting country and in certain cases deworming and
vaccination. There is a risk that an infected animal may not have developed antibodies and that the infection may
therefore not be discovered. The previous rules which stipulated six months’ quarantine considerably increased
the possibility of preventing the importation of infected animals.