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2001 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 235 E/161

(2001/C 235 E/187) WRITTEN QUESTION P-0244/01

by Christopher Huhne (ELDR) to the Commission

(31 January 2001)

Subject: Tuberculosis treatment in Asia and Africa

Given that the EU currently funds anti-Tuberculosis programmes in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet
Union, and that the Directly Observed Treatment Shortcourse (DOTS) has been found by the World Bank
to be one of the most cost-effective medical interventions, will the Commission consider a proposal to
extend funding to programmes in Asia and Africa if necessary by setting up a budget line to finance DOTS

Answer given by Mr Nielson on behalf of the Commission

(2 March 2001)

The Commission recognises the importance of the directly observed treatment shortcourse (DOTS)
approach and shares the concern over the impact of tuberculosis (TB) in Africa and Asia. However the
scale of the problem caused by tuberculosis (and by malaria and human immunodeficiency virus/acquired
immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS), the other major communicable diseases associated with poverty)
requires an extraordinary response from the international development community. The Commission has
developed options for a major new commitment as part of a co-ordinated international response rather
than through establishment of a specific tuberculosis (TB) budget line.

Recommendations are set out in the Communication on a Community programme for accellerated action
on HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis in the context of poverty reduction. The Commission proposes
a comprehensive approach through action across three areas: increasing impact from existing effective
interventions including DOTS, action to increase the affordability of key pharmaceuticals and action to
accelerate the development of new generations of diagnostics and treatments, which are sorely needed for

The Commission provides extensive and increasing levels of support to the health sector in developing
countries with commitments of over € 700 million, or 8 % of the development budget, in 1998. Much of
this support is directed at improving the organisation, management and performance of national health
systems, including support to tuberculosis control programmes. Increasingly such support is provided as
sectoral or budget support rather than as project support for disease specific programmes. The Commis-
sion will however invite proposals for innovative work related to the link between TB and HIV under the
reproductive health budget line in 2001.

(2001/C 235 E/188) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0247/01

by Alexandros Alavanos (GUE/NGL) to the Commission

(8 February 2001)

Subject: Repeal of Regulation (EEC) 2158/92 on protection of the Community’s forests against fire

At the Standing Forestry Committee’s meeting in Chambord, France, the Commission announced its
intention to repeal Regulation (EEC) 2158/92 (1) on protection of the Community’s forests against fire and
to incorporate its measures into Regulation (EC) 1257/1999 (2), which deals with rural development.