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9. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 310/157

As part of the mechanisms put in place to ensure an adequate follow-up to this, there will be regular monitoring
of the implementation of the accession partnerships in the relevant (sub-)committees operating in the framework
of the Europe agreements. The Commission will present regular reports reviewing the progress made by each
applicant country in the implementation of the accession partnership, including the mentioned social policy
issues. Moreover, the Phare management committee will ensure that financing decisions are compatible with the
accession partnerships.

(98/C 310/218) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1125/98


by Marjo Matikainen-Kallström (PPE) to the Commission
(8 April 1998)

Subject: Charges to Erasmus programme exchange students

The basic idea of the Erasmus programme, which is funded by the European Union, is reciprocal free movement
of students in the Member States without their being charged separate tuition fees. However, I have heard of
cases in Britain, for instance, where Finnish exchange students were charged tuition fees or required to make
comparable payments under various pretexts.

What will the Commission do to ascertain how widespread such infringements of the principles underlying the
exchange programme are, and what will the Commission do to ensure that all educational establishments
participating in exchange programmes abide by the same rules?

Answer given by Mrs Cresson on behalf of the Commission


(20 May 1998)

An essential condition for participation in the student mobility action of the Erasmus Chapter of Socrates is that
the student must not be charged a university fee by the host institution for the study period abroad. The student’s
home institution is, however, permitted to continue to charge such fees during this study period.

‘University fees’ include payments for tuition, registration, examinations, access to laboratory or library
facilities. Small fees may, however, be charged to incoming Erasmus students on an equal basis with local
students for costs such as insurance, student unions, and the use of miscellaneous material such as photocopiers,
laboratory products.

The Commission pursues all cases brought to its attention in which Erasmus students claim to have been charged
university fees by their host institution. It investigates the circumstances of each case, in consultation with the
relevant Socrates or Erasmus national agency as appropriate, to determine whether an infringement of the
programme rules has taken place.

If the Honourable Member were able to furnish the Commission with the names and circumstances of Finnish
Erasmus students required to pay tuition fees at British universities, the Commission would examine the matter.

(98/C 310/219) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1415/98


by Riitta Myller (PSE) to the Commission
(11 May 1998)

Subject: The right of citizens of the European Union to vote in local elections in the Member States

Citizens of the European Union are supposed to have the same opportunities to exercise citizens’ rights, such as
voting in municipal elections in the Member State where they live, even if they are not nationals of the State
concerned, on the same conditions as nationals of that State. In principle, at least, this right is a significant step
towards a stronger Citizens’ Europe. However, shortcomings have emerged in the way in which this right is
ensured in the Member States.
C 310/158 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 9. 10. 98

I would ask the appropriate Member of the Commision, therefore, why, for instance, citizens of the European
Union residing in France were unable to vote in the local elections there. Does the term ‘the right to vote at
municipal elections’, as used in the Treaty, apply only to municipal elections, or ought not all citizens of the
European Union also to have the right, as a matter of principle, to vote in elections at other levels of local
government, for example to the authorities of regions and departments in France? Ought not at least these rights,
which promote the realization of the principles of the rule of law in the European Union, to be interpreted in
accordance with the purpose for which they were adopted, so that citizens of the Union can participate in
representative decision-making at local level outside their home country?

Moreover, how, in practice, is the right of citizens of the Union to vote in municipal elections guaranteed?
Practical experience has shown that, inter alia in France, the right to vote in municipal elections has not been
guaranteed to all citizens of the European Union.

Answer given by Mr Monti on behalf of the Commission


(10 June 1998)

The Commission would refer the Honourable Member to the reply it gave to Oral Question H-316/98 by
Mr White during question time at Parliament’s April 1998 part-session (1).

(1) Debates of the Parliament (April 1998).

(98/C 310/220) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1474/98


by Ursula Stenzel (PPE) to the Commission
(13 May 1998)

Subject: Fourth Framework Programme for Research

How many applications have been submitted from Austria in connection with the Fourth Framework Programme
in the field of Research?

How many applications has the Commission approved, and to which specific projects do they relate?

What does this list of projects look like excluding mergers?

Who were the coordinators of these projects, and what were the partner countries involved?

How much money was made available for the individual projects?

Answer given by Mrs Cresson on behalf of the Commission


(5 June 1998)

The Commission is collecting the information it needs to answer the question. It will communicate its findings as
soon as possible.