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14.2.

2002 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 40 E/243

On the other hand, the great variety of the pension schemes in the Community leads to different levels of
administrative costs (for example a defined benefit scheme covering biometric risk would normally have
higher charges than a defined contribution scheme). The Commission is therefore of the opinion that the
influence of various factors on the administrative costs would question the value of any study dealing with
the average or typical costs paid to managers of pension funds.

(1) See proposal for a Directive of the Parliament and of the Council on the activities of institutions for occupational
retirement provision (COM(2000) 507).

(2002/C 40 E/264) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2392/01


by Christopher Huhne (ELDR) to the Commission
(20 August 2001)

Subject: EU competence

In which areas of EU competence does the Commission believe that less activity in the future would be
desirable?

Answer given by Mr Prodi on behalf of the Commission


(7 September 2001)

The Commission’s activities are set out in its annual work programme drawn up on the basis of policy
objectives laid down when it took office (1) and more targeted policy objectives decided each year on the
basis of developments and new or existing needs for European-level activity. The areas in which there
should be ‘less activity’ at a given time are those in which, at that time, there are fewer priority objectives
to be achieved.

(1) Strategic objectives 2000-2005 ‘Shaping the New Europe’ (COM(2000) 154 final).

(2002/C 40 E/265) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2398/01


by Christopher Huhne (ELDR) to the Commission
(20 August 2001)

Subject: EU secession

Will the Commission describe the means by which certain geographical areas which were once within the
European Union seceded from EU membership? Does it regard this as a precedent for any future Member
State secession?

Answer given by Mr Prodi on behalf of the Commission


(24 September 2001)

The only case of ‘secession’ from the Union concerns Greenland, a Danish territory in which the
Community Treaties have not been applicable, or have been applicable only on a limited basis, since 1985.
Other territories belonging to Member States were excluded from the EC Treaty at the time of conclusion
of the founding Treaties or Treaties of Accession. The Greenland question was settled by a Treaty between
Denmark and the European Community in accordance with the provisions of the EC Treaty allowing the
Community to conclude agreements. The negotiations followed a referendum in Greenland. The Greenland
Treaty was ratified by the Member States. It dates from the mid-19Il est difficile de considérer lIt dates
form the mid-1980s and cannot be seen as a precedent for a Member State for two reasons: first, at the
time the Member States and the inotamment institutions declared that it was an exceptional situation;.
second, because Greenland is not a European State within the meaning of Article 49 of the Union Treaty.