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9. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 310/113

Answer given by Mr Marı́n on behalf of the Commission

(3 April 1998)

Al-Invest is a decentralised Community programme designed to foster business meetings. The initiative for
arranging such meetings therefore comes from private operators such as chambers of commerce and industry,
professional associations and federations and specialised consultants forming part of networks known as
Eurocentres in Latin America and Coopece in Europe.

In Spain, institutions located in Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid, Valencia and Zaragoza have taken an active part in
Al-Invest. Not many Galician firms have been represented at Al-Invest sectoral meetings with the notable
exception of the fisheries sector.

(98/C 310/150) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0655/98

by Esko Seppänen (GUE/NGL) to the Commission
(10 March 1998)

Subject: Use of hormones in cattle rearing

In the EU the use of hormones in cattle rearing has been prohibited, and not solely for health reasons. Supervision
of hormone use is however inadequate. In many countries meat has been found to contain hormone residues. It
has been estimated (by Der Spiegel magazine) that as much as ECU 1.5 billion worth of hormones are sold in the
EU in spite of the fact that their use is prohibited. What does the Commission think could be done to promote
more effective supervision of hormone use?

Answer given by Mrs Bonino on behalf of the Commission

(7 April 1998)

According to Council Directive 96/22/EC of 29 April 1996 concerning the prohibition on the use in stockfarming
of certain substances having a hormonal or thyrostatic action and of B-agonists, and repealing Directives
81/602/EEC, 88/146/EEC and 88/299/EEC (1), the use of hormones for growth promotion purposes in animals is
prohibited, the main reason being the protection of consumers from eating potentially dangerous substances.

Within the Community it is the Member States which are responsible for the control of prohibited substances
such as the hormones covered by Directive 96/22/EC. Council Directive 96/23/EC 18,2 lays down the measures
to monitor certain substances and residues thereof in live animals and animal products, including the growth
promoting hormones. With the implementation by the Member States as from 1 July 1997 of the surveillance
measures required by this Directive as well as the imposition of severe sanctions with respect to fraud, it is
expected that the illegal use of hormones will be prevented more efficiently.

(1) OJ L 125, 23.5.1996.

(98/C 310/151) WRITTEN QUESTION P-0661/98

by Undine-Uta Bloch von Blottnitz (V) to the Commission
(2 March 1998)

Subject: Nuclear waste at Dounreay

After previous revelations about the disposal of nuclear waste in a shaft close to the British reprocessing facility
at Dounreay ‘The Guardian’ has now been able to produce evidence in early February that, since 1971,
considerable quantities of highly hazardous radioactive waste materials have been sunk in a further − hitherto
unknown − shaft on the site of the facility. This waste includes at least 40 kg of uranium, plutonium and sodium.