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2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 110 E/85

Can the Commission tell me on the basis of what figures it has concluded that those entitled to enter
would be at risk if (a) non-EU staff were able to use the shop or (b) EU staff do their shopping in another,
‘ordinary’ supermarket?

On the basis of what criteria will the Commission decide whether or not to admit people to this shop? In
other words, how do you obtain the right of access? Or, what steps must you take to gain access?

Can the Commission say whether ‘external’ staff (e.g. maintenance, reception, catering and security staff)
who work in the EU institutions but have employment contracts with outside companies will be able to
make use of these shopping facilities?

Finally, does the Commission agree that non-EU employees in the European area face the same problems
of pressure of time and accessibility of shops, and will it therefore open the EU shop to non-EU staff?

(1) OJ C 309 E, 12.12.2002, p. 120.

Answer given by Mr Kinnock on behalf of the Commission

(4 November 2002)

As I said in my reply to the Honourable Member’s written question E-1412/02 (1), the shop is in the
basement of a Commission building and access to it is obviously via that building. Access is consequently
limited in order to meet security and proof of identity requirements. The shop may be used by staff of all
the European Institutions, by Members of Parliament and their Assistants, by staff of Permanent
Representations and Embassies, by accredited journalists, by staff of certain other Institutions, such as
Eurocontrol, and by other duly authorised visitors to the building. This would include any ‘external staff’
who have the security or ‘visitors’ badges that are necessary to give them access to the building at 27, rue
de la Science.

If a formal proposal to open the shop to the public was received from Delhaize, the Commission would be
ready to examine the possibility of acceding to such a request. In examining such a request, the
Commission would have to ensure that the strict rules for access to Commission buildings were respected
in order to guarantee the security of the staff in the building where the shop is located. It would also be
necessary to verify that such a proposal would be in line with the terms of the lease of the building at 27,
rue de la Science and that local planning regulations would permit the use of the premises as a shop that
was open to the public.

The Commission is naturally aware that the area around the shop is not well served with shopping
facilities and can understand that people who are not EU employees and do not fall within any of the
categories listed above consequently encounter inconvenience. However, because of the objective
considerations set out above the Commission is not in a position to change the provisions on access to
the store in present circumstances.

(1) OJ C 309 E, 12.12.2002, p. 120.

(2003/C 110 E/088) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2673/02

by Pasqualina Napoletano (PSE), Hélène Flautre (Verts/ALE),
Raimon Obiols i Germà (PSE), José Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra (PPE-DE),
Pedro Marset Campos (GUE/NGL) and Bob van den Bos (ELDR) to the Commission

(24 September 2002)

Subject: Criteria for including Mediterranean partner countries in the European Initiative for Democracy
and Human Rights Programming Document, 2002-2004

The European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights Programming Document, 2002-2004 defines
the geographical priorities which correspond to the EU’s political priorities, as set out in the Commission
communication of 8 May 2001 (1). As regards the Mediterranean partner countries, the priorities seem to
be Algeria, Israel, the West Bank/Gaza Strip, and Tunisia.
C 110 E/86 Official Journal of the European Union EN 8.5.2003

Does the Commission not consider that the exclusion of countries such as Morocco, Egypt, the Lebanon
and Jordan is difficult to explain and to comprehend?

Will the Commission correct this incomprehensible decision, given that all the countries of the Euro-
Mediterranean partnership should be priorities for the European Union as regards encouraging civil society
and democracy, and that the Mediterranean partner countries and the general public within the European
Union may find it difficult to understand and accept this policy of excluding or including particular

(1) COM(2001) 252 final.

Answer given by Mr Patten on behalf of the Commission

(19 November 2002)

The concentration of the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) on a number of
‘focus countries’ and thematic priorities for 2002-2004 originates in the Commission’s Communication of
8 May 2001 on ‘the Union’s role in promoting human rights and democratisation in third countries’ (1),
which recognised the need to develop a more strategic approach for the EIDHR. The EIDHR had
previously been the subject of a number of Parliament reports (2) and evaluations which had commented
that the impact of EIDHR assistance was reduced because of a lack of focus on priorities, as well as limited
sustainability of action. The Commission’s resolve to adopt a more strategic approach to the EIDHR was
welcomed and encouraged by the Council in June 2001 (3).

After extensive consultation with the Commission’s geographical services and Delegations, 29 ‘focus
countries’ were identified, among which, for the Mediterranean region, Algeria, Israel, West Bank/Gaza and
Tunisia. Selection was made according to criteria set out in the May 2001 Communication: enhancing the
impact of EIDHR financed activities, taking into account geographical balance, and enhancing coherence
and complementarity with other Community development co-operation instruments and Member States’
activities. Considerations about impact and complementarity were framed within the context of overall
political relations between the Union and third countries. In order to enable the Commission to ensure
that its strategy is coherent and to allow it to produce measurable results on the ground, a substantial
revision of the ‘focus country’ list is not envisaged in the near future.

However, regarding complementarity with other Community co-operation instruments, it should be

underlined that the Mediterranean-European Development Agreement (MEDA) programme foresees
substantial allocations for civil society in a number of countries like Egypt and Jordan, as well as support
to measures aiming at improving good governance. Substantial allocations to democratisation related
reform, in areas such as the judiciary, are also being implemented with several Mediterranean partners in
the framework of the MEDA programme.

Further, the Commission would like to recall that civil society from all third countries, including all
Mediterranean partners, have been able to send projects under all thematic EIDHR calls for proposals
launched in 2002.

Calls for proposals were launched on:

a) support for abolition of the death penalty

b) prevention of torture and support for the victims of torture

c) fighting impunity and promoting international justice

d) combating racism and xenophobia and discrimination against ethnic minorities and indigenous

(1) COM(2001) 252 final.

(2) Lenz Report on setting up a single co-ordinating structure within the Commission responsible for human rights and
democratisation, PE 220.735/fin, 4.12.97, Imbeni Report on the report from the Commission on the
implementation of measures intended to promote observance of human rights and democratic principles (for
1995), COM(96) 672 final  C4-0095/97, PE 223.610/fin, 2.12.1997; Roubatis Report on COM(95) 567 final 
C4-0568/95, PE 228.009fin, 6.11.1998.
(3) Council Conclusions on the Union’s Role in Promoting Human Rights and Democratisation in Third Countries,
Luxembourg, 25 June 2001.