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C 310/44 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 9. 10.

98

2. There are no Community rules on the number of passengers carried in trains since this matter is not one of
Community legal competence.
3. In designing rolling stock, the load bearing capabilities are calculated and they are in excess of what a fully
laden carriage would weigh. There is therefore no physical limit, other than space, on the number of
passengers a carriage may carry. Of course individual operators are free to impose their own limits.

(98/C 310/54) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0245/98


by Petrus Cornelissen (PPE) to the Commission
(13 February 1998)

Subject: Car-jacking

1. Is the Commission aware of an audacious new type of car theft in Europe, that of car-jacking in which
drivers are forced to hand over the keys of their vehicle and the car-jacker then drives off with it?

2. Will the Commission examine, possibly in conjunction with the police, car manufacturers, consumer
organizations and insurance companies, what ways there are of tackling this new type of cross-border crime?

3. Will the Commission also pay particular attention to new technical options such as satellite tracking or
remote immobilization of stolen vehicles?

Answer given by Mrs Gradin on behalf of the Commission


(17 March 1998)

The Commission is aware through the reports echoed in recent months in the international press of the increasing
number of cases of car-jacking in Europe and in particular in Brussels.

In the framework of the cooperation in the field of justice and home affairs the Commission is managing
programmes aimed at reinforcing police cooperation (OISIN programme) and has presented a proposal (1) for a
programme of exchange and training aimed at reinforcing the capabilities to fight organised crime (Falcone
programme).

Moreover, the Commission is closely associated with the work taking place within the Council addressing the
issue of law enforcement requirements for the development of technical measures to counter trafficking in stolen
vehicles.

On the basis of current expert studies on the subject, the Commission may also consider ways to adapt to
technical progress Council Directive 74/61/EEC of 17 December 1973 relating to devices to prevent the
unauthorised use of motor vehicles (2).

(1) OJ C 352, 20.11.1997.


(2) OJ L 38, 11.2.1974.

(98/C 310/55) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0247/98


by Christoph Konrad (PPE) to the Commission
(13 February 1998)

Subject: Exploitation of a dominant market position in telephone communications between mobile and fixed
telephone networks

The prices for telephone conversations between GSM mobile telephones and fixed telephone networks are set at
widely differing levels in the various European Union Member States. Moreover, in some markets these prices
have remained stable in spite of a considerable drop in the cost of expanding the network.
9. 10. 98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 310/45

1. Is there any justification for the suspicion that in some Member States mobile telephone companies have a
dominant position in the market network for such conversations and are overcharging their customers for
conversations between mobile and other networks?

2. Where such suspicion exists, does the Commission consider it has a responsibility to carry out a study on
the level of inter-connection costs and their changesover time in the individual Member States − along the lines
of the recently published study on inter-connection charges in the fixed network − in order to promote the
efficiency of competition in the interest of the customer?

Answer given by Mr Van Miert on behalf of the Commission


(30 March 1998)

1. Dominant market position and overcharging

The Commission has not as yet had to take a decision on any complaint regarding abuse of a dominant market
position in connection with prices charged by mobile-telephone operators. Generally speaking, there is a high
degree of competition between the various licence-holders on national mobile-telephone markets.

However, like all other network operators, mobile-telephone operators control call termination in their own
network. The reason for this is that calls to someone subscribing to a mobile or any other kind of network
necessarily terminate in that network.

The Commission does not have exhaustive data on price levels for calls between fixed and mobile networks. Call
prices are very much dependent on the interconnection charges between networks.

Interconnection charges for calls from mobile to fixed networks are generally subject to the principles of
transparency, non-discrimination and cost orientation laid down in the ONP (Open Network Provision)
Directive (1). Compliance with these obligations is monitored in each Member State by the regulatory authorities.
Interconnection charges can be expected to fall in the future, leading to a reduction in consumer prices for calls
from mobile to fixed network.

Under the ONP Directive, the interconnection charges of mobile-telephone operators are not subject to the same
obligations of transparency and cost orientation as long as the operators do not possess significant market power,
i.e. their share of the entire interconnection market does not exceed 25%. They are subject none the less to the
Community’s competition rules, which are designed to prevent any concerted practice that could result, for
example, in excessive prices being set.

2. Study on interconnection charges between fixed and mobile networks

The purpose of the Commission Recommendation of 8 January 1998 on interconnection (2) was to provide the
national regulatory authorities with information on best practice in setting interconnection charges and in
accounting. However, it applies only to calls to fixed networks. In practice, those authorities are responsible for
ensuring that the fixed network operators’ interconnection charges are transparent and cost-oriented.

The ONP Directive does not lay down any such obligations for interconnection from a fixed to a mobile network,
except for mobile-telephone operators who are considered individually to have a significant market share of the
interconnection market as a whole. However, such operators are not expected to appear on the market in the short
term. Consequently, there are no plans at present to conduct a study on interconnection to mobile networks with
the aim of establishing ‘best current practice’.

However, the Commission is closely monitoring interconnection charges between mobile and fixed networks.
The third implementation report of 18 February 1998 (3) gives an overview of interconnection charges between
fixed-network and mobile-telephone operators in all Member States.

In this connection, the Commission has also embarked on a survey that examines, in the light of the competition
rules contained in the EC Treaty, both call prices between fixed and mobile networks and the corresponding
interconnection charges in all Member States. It requested information from fixed-network and mobile-
telephone operators in all Member States, in order to obtain an overview of the various interconnection charges
between
C 310/46 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 9. 10. 98

fixed and mobile networks and of the consumer prices for the corresponding calls. The replies were to be sent to
the Commission by the end of February, so that an initial analysis might be available at the end of April.

(1) Council Directive 90/387/EEC on the establishment of the internal market for telecommunications services through the implementation of
open network provision (OJ L 192, 24.7.1990), as amended by European Parliament and Council Directive 97/51/EC (OJ L 295,
29.10.1997).
(2) OJ L 73, 12.3.1998.
(3) COM (98) 80 final.

(98/C 310/56) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0281/98


by Mark Watts (PSE) to the Commission
(17 February 1998)

Subject: Detentions under the Port State Control Directive (95/21/EC)

How many vessels, broken down by category, have been detained under the Port State Control Directive
(95/21/EC) (1) in each Member State?

(1) OJ L 157, 7.7.1995, p. 1.

(98/C 310/57) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0282/98


by Mark Watts (PSE) to the Commission
(17 February 1998)

Subject: Compliance with the Port State Control Directive (95/21/EC)

How many qualified inspectors are responsible for ensuring compliance with the Port State Control Directive
(95/21/EC) (1) in each Member State?

(1) OJ L 157, 7.7.1995, p. 1.

Joint answer
to Written Questions E-0281/98 and E-0282/98
given by Mr Kinnock on behalf of the Commission
(30 March 1998)

The number of detentions per Member State since the implementation date of Council Directive 95/21/EC of
19 June 1995 concerning the enforcement, in respect of shipping using Community ports and sailing in the
waters under the jurisdiction of the Member States, of international standards for ship safety, pollution
prevention and shipboard living and working conditions (port State control) (1 July 1996 to 31 December 1997)
is as follows:

Member States Total

Belgium 514
Denmark 792
Germany 2080
Greece 1101
Spain 2707
France 1884
Ireland 59
Italy 2063
Netherlands 3050
Portugal 627
Finland 823
Sweden 1030
United Kingdom 2631