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2001 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 136 E/115

(2001/C 136 E/130) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2862/00

by Elspeth Attwooll (ELDR) to the Commission

(14 September 2000)

Subject: Euratom Safeguards Directorate

The European Parliament’s resolution of 6 July 1988 (B2-0520/88 (1)) called upon the Euratom Safeguards
Directorate to submit a comprehensive annual report to Parliament. This was subsequently altered to a
biennial report.

Can the Commission state when the next such comprehensive report will be published, and can it confirm
that, thereafter, these reports will indeed be published on a biennial basis and will be open to public

(1) OJ C 235, 12.9.1988, p. 70.

Answer given by Mrs de Palacio on behalf of the Commission

(27 October 2000)

The Commission is in the process of reviewing the way the Euratom Safeguards Office conducts its
activities and the priorities assigned to it.

Once the priorities have been clarified, a comprehensive report on the operation of Euratom Safeguards
will again be submitted at regular intervals to the Parliament. Only the parts dealing with non-classified
information may be made available to the public.

(2001/C 136 E/131) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2867/00

by Camilo Nogueira Román (Verts/ALE) to the Commission

(14 September 2000)

Subject: The Galicia-Northern Portugal Working Community and the EU’s programmes for 2000-2006

On the occasion of taking over the biannual presidency of the Galicia-Northern Portugal Working
Community, Mr Manuel Fraga, President of the Galician regional government, spoke of the need to
reinforce economic and social ties in this Euro-region in the context of the action programmes for 2000-
2006, taking account of the changed circumstances arising from the entry into the Union of the new
eastern European Member States. Is the Commission taking specific account of the existence and actions of
the Galicia-Northern Portugal Euro-region, given its special function in Europe, by supporting specific
investments and programmes with a view to making particular contributions to its development and

Answer given by Mr Barnier on behalf of the Commission

(30 October 2000)

The Community is supporting very significant investments in GalicIA and the North region of Portugal
under Objective I of the Community Structural Funds for 2000-2006. This assistance is included in the
Community support frameworks for Spain and Portugal recently adopted by the Commission.

Beyond this action to be implemented at Member State level the Commission will be giving particular
attention to joint action by the Galicia and North regions under the Interreg III Community Initiative to
promote cross-European cooperation and harmonious and balanced territorial development in Europe.
C 136 E/116 Official Journal of the European Communities EN 8.5.2001

NUTS (Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics) areas Ourense and Pontevedran Galicia and Alto-
Tras-Os-Montes, Cavado and Minho-Lima in North are eligible under strand A (cross-frontier cooperation)
of Interreg III. Both regions are eligible in their entirety, as forming part of the ‘Atlantic’ and ‘South-West
European’ cooperation zones, for the purposes of strands B (transnational cooperation) and C (interregional
cooperation) of the Initiative.

For 2000-2006 the indicative Interreg III allocations are € 900 000 000 to Spain and € 394 000 000 to
Portugal. The national authorities have not yet officially notified the Commission of their breakdown of
these amounts by region, strand and cooperation zone. At present therefore the Interreg III assistance for
Galicia and North cannot be precisely quantified.

The Commission can nonetheless confirm that it assesses very positively the working methods of and
results achieved by this Euro-region, which took the lead in a number of cooperative projects during the
last programming period (1994-1999) for the Community Structural Funds. The Galicia/North Working
Community already enjoys a vigorous institutional life and a tradition of cooperation that should form one
of the bases for planning the future cross-frontier programme. The Commission will pay particular
attention during the present period to cross-frontier projects that strengthen the social and economic
links already established between the two regions.

(2001/C 136 E/132) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2868/00

by Camilo Nogueira Román (Verts/ALE) to the Commission

(14 September 2000)

Subject: Payment of the surtax or fine in respect of milk production

There is great concern in rural milieux in Galicia over the Commission’s intention to impose a surtax or
fine in respect of milk production for 1999-2000. These plans could affect 20 000 agricultural households
and could involve the highest fines ever levied, according to the Galician farmers’ union (the Sindicato
Labrego Galego). In view of the unacceptable passivity of the Galician regional government, whose
competences include agriculture, this union, along with the other farmers’ unions and, indeed, Galician
society as a whole, believes that it is totally unfair to impose such a fine on households who are at this
time making a historic effort to modernise their activity while being obliged to sell their milk at the lowest
prices in Europe, with the dairy industries taking advantage of the farmers’ need to find outlets for what
they produce in excess of the minimal quotas allocated to Galicia. Since Galician agriculture is a special
case in Europe, even though the Union has to date never considered it to be such, does the Commission
intend, at last, to take the necessary action to raise the milk quotas to a sufficient level, thus enabling
Galicia’s agricultural households to survive and complete the modernisation of their activity which they
have so visibly embarked on at great sacrifice?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(25 October 2000)

The Honourable Member is wrong in ascribing to the Commission an intention to impose a fine on milk
producers. Under Council Regulation (EEC) No 3950/92 establishing an additional levy in the milk and
milk products sector (1) an ‘additional levy’ is automatically due from all producers in excess when the
deliveries of a particular year exceed the national reference quantity (‘quota’). Since 1992 the levy rate has
been 115 % of the milk target price. The amount of the levy depends solely on the quantity in surplus and
not on the Commission. According to the Agriculture Ministry’s annual statement the national quota was
exceeded in Spain in 1999/2000, but by less than in 1995/96.