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17.4.

2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 92 E/211

(2003/C 92 E/270) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2784/02


by Glyn Ford (PSE) to the Commission
(3 October 2002)

Subject: Federal Mogul factory closure  transfer of jobs to EU applicant countries

The Federal Mogul Company, currently based in Bridgwater, south-west England, employs 370 people. On
20 August 2002 the company announced that the Bridgwater factory would be closing and the work
transferred to Poland and Turkey, in order to reduce production costs.

Poland and Turkey are applicant countries to join the EU.

What action does the Commission intend to take with respect to this transfer of jobs to ‘cheaper’ areas of
the enlarged EU?

Answer given by Mrs Diamantopoulou on behalf of the Commission


(18 November 2002)

The concept of free and open market economies lies at the very heart of the Union and features as one of
the criteria for membership of the Union outlined at the Copenhagen European Council in December
1993. In addition, candidate countries must be able to assume the obligations of membership. The
respective transposition of the legal and institutional framework, known as ‘acquis’, is intended to ensure a
level playing field for economic operators in the enlarging single market.

The European Social Model is founded on the premise that economic growth and social cohesion are
mutually reinforcing and that the right balance needs to be struck in order to ensure the dynamic
interaction of economic, employment and social policy.

All candidate countries will be obliged, upon accession, to apply the Community ‘acquis’, including the
acts adopted in the area of social law.

It is evident that the social partners play a crucial part in this context. That is why the Commission aims to
develop the social dialogue within candidate countries.

Furthermore, the Commission invited the social partners to engage in a dialogue on anticipating and
managing change with a view to apply a dynamic approach to the social aspects of corporate
restructuring.

As regards relocation of enterprises in general, the Commission advocates the idea that, when taking
decisions, enterprises should always take into account the effects that those decisions could have on their
employees as well as on the social and regional context. This has recently been underlined in the
Commission Communication concerning Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). A business contribution to
Sustainable Development (1).

(1) COM(2002) 347 final.

(2003/C 92 E/271) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2791/02


by Konstantinos Hatzidakis (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(4 October 2002)

Subject: Increase in the number of industrial accidents in Greece

According to recent information published by the Labour Inspectorate, there has been an increase in the
number of industrial accidents in Greece. Does the Commission have any information about the number
of industrial accidents in each Member State of the European Union? Is it satisfied with the policy of
prevention of industrial accidents in Greece?
C 92 E/212 Official Journal of the European Union EN 17.4.2003

Answer given by Mrs Diamantopoulou on behalf of the Commission

(29 November 2002)

In 1990 the Commission introduced a project entitled European Statistics on Accidents at Work (ESAW)
in order to harmonise data on accidents at work. Since 1994, harmonised figures have been available in
this area in the Member States. It should be noted, however, that the extent to which accidents at work are
declared varies a great deal between Member States and that some declare less than 50 %, which results in
distorted data and makes it difficult to compare the figures.

The Commission indicated in its Communication ‘Adapting to change in work and society: a new
Community strategy on health and safety at work 2002-2006’ (1) of 11 March 2002 that one of the
objectives to be targeted jointly with the Member States was a continuing reduction in occupational
accidents and illnesses.

The Commission believes that improving the quality of work (2), particularly in the form of a healthy and
safe working environment, is one of the essential components of adopting a global approach to wellbeing
at work. Accordingly, it is always possible to improve working conditions in all Member States, including
Greece.

(1) COM(2002) 118 final.


(2) Objective which the Union set itself at the Lisbon European Council in March 2000.

(2003/C 92 E/272) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2792/02


by Stavros Xarchakos (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(4 October 2002)

Subject: Monitoring epizootic diseases in Greece

The Commission has recently published reports DG(SANCO)/8551/2002 and DG(SANCO)/8505/2002 on


foot-and-mouth disease and wild and farmed game and rabbit meat, respectively. These reports give a full
description of the situation in Greece as regards staff shortages and the shortcomings in the treatment of
samples. They also state that emergency funding available to the veterinary services is either limited or
non-existent and sharply criticise the lack of modern technology (computers, fax machines, etc) and the
inadequate accommodation of the state control services.

Have the Greek authorities called into question the findings of the EU controls?

Has the threat of foot-and-mouth disease and classical swine fever been completely eradicated in Greece?
Are unimpeachable controls being carried out to guarantee absolutely the safety of the consumption of
wild and farmed game and rabbit meat in Greece?

Answer given by Mr Byrne on behalf of the Commission

(6 November 2002)

The Greek authorities have responded to the draft reports of these missions. They offered a small number
of clarifying observations in respect of the findings of report, DG(SANCO)8551/2002, but not in respect
of report DG(SANCO)8505/2002. At the same time, they provided initial information on the actions taken
in response to the recommendations of both reports. These responses are reflected as appropriate in the
final reports of the missions, which were sent to the Parliament on 31 July 2002 (DG(SANCO)/8551/
2002) and 13 September 2002 (DG(SANCO)/8505/2002). In addition, both the final reports, and the
comments from the Greek authorities, have been placed on the internet site of the Health and Consumer
Protection Directorate General (1).