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C 46 E/122 Official Journal of the European Communities EN 13.2.

2001

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(16 May 2000)

The Commission does not agree with the Honourable Member’s assertion that the Community tuna
industry is uncompetitive solely because a number of Italian firms face structural difficulties. The
Honourable Member is invited to reread closely the study which the Commission asked to be drawn up
on this matter and which highlights the fact that all Community firms in this sector are, or may potentially
be, structurally weak.

It is clear that the firms themselves are primarily responsible for taking structural measures, which
constitute the only means of restoring their long-term competitiveness. For its part, the Commission is
prepared to support such measures as fall within Member States’ structural programmes for fisheries. In
the meantime, short-term measures  such as the Council’s annual opening, since 1997, of a tariff quota
for tuna loins  can go some way towards helping the Community’s canned tuna industry. In 1997, for
example, Spain and Italy respectively used up 56 % and 44 % of the tuna loin quota.

As already indicated in its answer to Written Questions E-756/00 to E-761/00 by Mr Varela Suanzes-
Carpegna (1), the Commission is largely able to endorse the study’s content as a sound analysis of the
circumstances, challenges and strategic options facing the sector as a whole.

(1) OJ C 26 E, 26.1.2001, p.104.

(2001/C 46 E/131) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1094/00


by Konstantinos Hatzidakis (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(7 April 2000)

Subject: Cotton-growing in Greece

Under the Agricultural and Home Affairs Ministries’ Interministerial Decision No 38570/10.2.2000, the
Greek State has designated cotton-growing as ‘controlled’ cultivation and has imposed conditions on
cotton producers. In practice, however, these have the effect of preventing cotton-growing for a large
proportion of those concerned. Thus, for example, long-standing producers wishing to increase production
above their average over the last three years may not do so, while new producers who wish to start
growing may do so only if they have inherited the farming land.

Could the Commission say whether it is aware of this situation, whether it considers that these
arrangements and others contained in the above-mentioned Greek interministerial decision are consistent
with Community legislation and, if not, what action it intends to take to remedy the situation?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(10 May 2000)

The Commission, recently informed of the situation to which the Honourable Member refers, has asked
the Greek authorities for the texts covering the Decision, and thus cannot comment at this stage.