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8.5.

2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 110 E/43

Northern Fleet: nuclear submarines that have to be dismantled, handling and storing the nuclear spent fuel
resulting from that, improving the safety conditions of the naval bases of the area. In particular, the
quantity of spent fuel stored in the Andreeva Bay base and the imminent environmental threat of the
damaged spent fuel storage ponds, signal this base as the top priority to be addressed by the NDEP fund.

In addition, at the Kananaskis summit (Canada, 26 and 27 June 2002), the Group of eight most
industrialised countries launched a global partnership against the spread of weapons and materials of mass
destruction. Its aims to develop, coordinate, implement and finance, according to their respective means,
new or expanded cooperation projects to address non-proliferation, disarmament, counter-terrorism and
nuclear safety (including environmental) issues.

(2003/C 110 E/044) WRITTEN QUESTION P-2340/02


by Antonios Trakatellis (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(22 July 2002)

Subject: Mismanagement of Community funds in the environmental sector in Greece and the violation of
property rights in projects carried out under the Natura 2000 network

In view of the mismanagement of Community funds in the environmental sector in Greece which has been
condemned by the Greek Parliament (July 2002) and on the basis of detailed data furnished by
Commissioner Barnier in an annex to his answer to my question E-0796/02 (1) on the Community funding
of plans and projects implementing the Natura 2000 network and EAGGF contribution to environmental
protection in Greece, will the Commission state:

 What measures it has taken, or does it intend to take, to address the mismanagement of funds and
fraud in the funding of projects by the ERDF, the EAGGF and the Life programme and to ensure that
effective environmental protection is carried out in Greece?

 To which projects or actions has funding amounting to GRD 778 217 320 (EUR 2 283 836,6) been
allocated for the implementation of the ‘Maríne park of Lagana Bay, Zakynthos  Biotope
Management’ which was co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (operational
programme on the environment) for the protection of the Caretta Caretta sea turtle?

 Is it aware that excessively large areas of land have been tied down for twenty years for the protection
of Caretta Caretta and the creation of the national park of Zakynthos, without the owners receiving
any financial compensation or indemnification or the land being expropriated? To what extent does
the Commission find it acceptable that Community funds should be used to co-fund projects which
deprive the owners of ownership rights without just compensation being paid to them in good time,
which is a violation of the fundamental principles of the EU Treaty (Article 6) and the Charter of
Fundamental Rights of the European Union (see Article 17) (2)?

(1) OJ C 301 E, 5.12.2002, p. 54.


(2) OJ C 364, 18.12.2000, p. 1.

Answer given by Mr Barnier on behalf of the Commission

(30 September 2002)

The Commission has been informed about mismanagement of Community appropriations from the
European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) and in relation to long-term set-aside of
pasture. It has asked the Greek authorities to carry out on-site checks, the initial findings of which confirm
substantial irregularities. The European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) is currently conducting an investigation
with the assistance of the serious fraud squad and the other Greek authorities concerned, including the
Ministry of the Interior. All payments from the EAGGF have been suspended pending completion of the
investigation, the findings of which will be notified to the Greek authorities for follow-up action.
C 110 E/44 Official Journal of the European Union EN 8.5.2003

The Commission has not, however, been informed of any fraud in part-financing under the European
Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Financial Instrument for the Environment (LIFE).

Regarding the work part-financed by the ERDF for the Laganas Maríne Park project in Zakynthos, the
Commission would point out that  in accordance with the subsidiarity principle  sole responsibility for
project selection and implementation rests with the Member States. The Commission therefore does not
hold comprehensive information, which is supplied only in the event of checks, and would ask the
Honourable Member to request that information from the managing authority for the Environment
operational programme (Evritania and Itea Street 2, 11523 Athens, telephone 010-6971700).

The Commission is not responsible for determining financial compensation in respect of the losses referred
to or for taking expropriation decisions. Expropriations are a matter for the national authorities in
compliance with national legislation. Expropriation costs may be eligible for part-financing by the
Structural Funds, subject to the conditions and limits stipulated in rule No 5 of Commission Regulation
(EC) No 1685/2000 of 28 July 2000 laying down detailed rules for the implementation of Council
Regulation (EC) No 1260/1999 as regards eligibility of expenditure of operations co-financed by the
Structural Funds (1).

(1) OJ L 193, 29.7.2000.

(2003/C 110 E/045) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2354/02


by Michiel van Hulten (PSE) to the Commission
(31 July 2002)

Subject: European farm subsidy for the Netherlands royal family

According to a report in the Volkskrant newspaper on 16 July 2002 under the headline ‘Beatrix looks
forward to Balkenende’s arrival’, Queen Beatrix told a group of Members of the Netherlands Second
Chamber in February 1999 that the Netherlands royal house had received European subsidies for planting
an olive grove at the Netherlands royal family’s country estate at Porto Ercole in Italy.

1. Can the Commission confirm that the Netherlands royal house has received subsidies for planting an
olive grove at Porto Ercole, Italy?

2. Does the Netherlands royal house receive other kinds of European subsidies, from the agricultural
fund or from other funds (such as the European Social Fund)?

3. Is the subsidy to the Netherlands royal house granted under Article 33, paragraph 1(b) of the Treaty
of Rome, which says that one of the objectives of the common agricultural policy is ‘to ensure a fair
standard of living for the agricultural community, in particular by increasing the individual earnings of
persons engaged in agriculture’? If not, on the basis of what objective was it paid?

4. Does the Commission agree that insofar as any financial aid is granted to the agriculture sector it
should be restricted to small farms with low incomes, and that even the ceiling of EUR 300 000 proposed
by Commissioner Fischler is too high in some cases?

5. Does the Commission share the view that a decision to grant a subsidy should at least be based on
an income and means test? Is it prepared to revise its plans accordingly?

(2003/C 110 E/046) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2413/02


by Michiel van Hulten (PSE) to the Commission
(7 August 2002)

Subject: Further questions concerning the agricultural subsidy granted to Queen Beatrix

On 18 July 2002 I put questions to the Commission concerning the subsidy which Queen Beatrix of the
Netherlands reportedly received in connection with the establishment of an olive grove at the Netherlands