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2. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 304/53

In view of the above, will the Commissioner say whether he intends to take action to put an end to this
unacceptable situation and ensure that the 40% or so of Greek farmers who are SY.DA.SE members are
represented in the COPA?

Does the Commission also intend to take action to ensure that SY.DA.SE representatives sit on the agricultural
consultative committees and the Economic and Social Committee?

Finally, will the Commission say which Greek non-governmental organizations have been funded under the EU
budget (formerly budget heading 512 and currently B2/5122 during the years 1994, 1995, 1996 and 1997, and
what level of funding has been provided?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission
(16 March 1998)

The Honourable Member should note that the Committee of Agricultural Organisations in the European
Community (COPA) is completely independent of the Commission; it has its own articles of association and its
own governing bodies. The Commission cannot therefore comment on the admission of any organisation to
COPA, or its refusal to admit an organisation.

The members of the consultative committees are appointed on the basis of a proposal from the European farming
organisations, not from the national ones.

The Honourable Member is reminded that the Council appoints the members of the Economic and Social
Committee (second paragraph of Article 194 of the EC Treaty), not the Commission.

The Commission however maintains regular contacts with any farming organisations that so wish.

For information, the Honourable Member will find below a breakdown of the grants made since 1994 to Greek
non-governmental organisations under budget headings B2-514 and B2-5122:

1994 GESASE 24 000 ecus
SYDASE 10 000 ecus
1995 Ktinotrofiki 12 000 ecus
Institute of Cooperation 10 000 ecus
Coop. Greek livestock breeders 8 200 ecus
Passeges 29 800 ecus
SYDASE 15 000 ecus
1996 University of Athens 9 114 ecus
Passeges 30 000 ecus
1997 SYDASE 12 000 ecus
GESASE 28 000 ecus
Passeges 15 000 ecus
GESASE (visit) 10 000 ecus
SYDASE (visit) 12 000 ecus

For 1998, however, the Commission would draw the Honourable Member’s attention to the fact that Parliament
committed 98% of the appropriations to the major European organisations in the commentary on budget heading
B2-5122, leaving only ECU 100 000 to fund organisations pursuing aims in problem sectors and in the countries
of central and eastern Europe.

(98/C 304/74) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0208/98
by Katerina Daskalaki (UPE) to the Commission
(11 February 1998)

Subject: Problems facing the olive oil market

The olive oil market is facing serious problems owing to overproduction, both in the Community and worldwide,
which has resulted in marketing difficulties and a fall in prices.
C 304/54 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 2. 10. 98

Given the risk that the recent decision to stock 30 000 tonnes of Greek olive oil on a private basis may not have
the desired results − since it is due to be carried out by producer groups which are not sufficiently organized to
implement such a measure −, what action does the Commission intend to take to boost the market and keep
prices at levels acceptable to producers and consumers alike? Does the Commission intend to bring forward the
beginning of Community intervention which constitutes a safety valve for safeguarding farmers’ incomes?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission
(5 March 1998)

The Commission is following the difficult situation on the market for olive oil closely. To relieve the market
following the drop in prices, it has already proposed the grant of private storage aid for olive oil under Regulation
(EC) No 94/98 of 14 January 1998 on olive oil storage contracts for the 1997/98 marketing year (1). Of the 180
000 tonnes covered by this measure, 30 000 tonnes were authorised for Greece. There appear to be difficulties in
applying the measure in Greece owing to the small number of producers’ organisations entitled to conclude
storage contracts. The Commission is therefore seeking a legal means of helping the Greek authorities to solve
these problems and apply the measure.

As for bringing forward the opening of intervention buying-in, the Commission will first evaluate the results of
implementing the private storage measures in the various Member States before considering other market relief
measures.

(1) OJ L 9, 15.1.1998.

(98/C 304/75) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0213/98
by Bryan Cassidy (PPE) to the Commission
(11 February 1998)

Subject: International Group of P&I Clubs

I refer to Written Questions E-0164/96, E-0165/96 and E-0166/96 and the answer given by Mr Van Miert on
26 February 1996 (1). Following the Commission’s findings on the merits of a complaint lodged by the Greek
Maritime Cooperation Committee, London, against the International Group of P&I Clubs (IG P&I Clubs) on the
issue of renewing the exemption of the IG P&I Clubs from EC competition rules, the parties to the dispute made
further submissions.

However, although a considerable period of time has elapsed, the Commission has not yet delivered its final
verdict.

Can the Commission explain the reasons for this delay?

(1) OJ C 122, 25.4.1996, p. 32.

Answer given by Mr Van Miert on behalf of the Commission
(24 March 1998)

Following the complaint lodged by the Greek Shipping Cooperation Committee against some aspects of the
agreements concluded within the International Group of P&I Clubs (IG), the Commission launched a wide
investigation on the P&I insurance market. This investigation led to a statement of objections being addressed to
the IG on June 1997. In reaction to the statement of objections, the IG adopted some amendments to its
arrangements in July 1997 which were ratified by the clubs later that year. In particular, it reduced the level of
cover offered from around 18 300 MECU to 3 900 MECU and granted freedom to its members to offer higher
levels. The Commission believes that these amendments should alleviate the concerns that the Honourable
Member expressed in Written Questions E-0164/96, E-0165/96 and E-0166/96. The IG submitted further
proposals to amend their arrangements in November 1997 which are currently under examination.