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2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 110 E/97

Answer given by Mrs Wallström on behalf of the Commission

(4 November 2002)

The Honourable Member is referring to correspondence received from a group of citizens drawing the
Commission’s attention to the installation of a large-scale radar in the Pico do Areeiro area on the island of
Madeira. This is located within the ‘Maciço Montanhoso Oriental da ilha da Madeira’, a special protection
area designated by Portugal under Article 4 of Directive 79/409/EEC of 2 April 1979 on the conservation
of wild birds (1).

The Commission can inform the Honourable Member that, following an examination of the situation, it
was decided that the correspondence should be registered as a complaint by the Commission’s Secretariat-
General and that the Portuguese authorities’ attention should be drawn to the obligations deriving from the
said Directive.

The Commission will be sure to keep the complainants informed of developments in the handling of the

(1) OJ L 103, 24.4.1979.

(2003/C 110 E/099) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2735/02

by Ilda Figueiredo (GUE/NGL) to the Commission

(30 September 2002)

Subject: Social and economic consequences of EU enlargement

Forthcoming EU enlargement to Central and Eastern European countries will have significant economic
and social consequences, particularly for regions and Member States with a similar economic structure to
these countries, such as Portugal, as has been underlined in various studies (1).

One example of this impact will be the likely relocation of firms to these countries  as is already
happening now  which will accentuate existing social and economic difficulties in Objective 1 regions.

The Commission:

1. Can it say what data it possesses on the economic and social impact on Portugal of EU enlargement to
countries of Central and Eastern Europe (by productive sector, employment aspects, etc.)?

2. Does it plan to create mechanisms (such as special programmes to support economic development, as
was the case in previous enlargement rounds) which might help offset the negative economic and
social consequences of enlargement, particularly in Portugal’s case, thus guaranteeing the effective
application of the principle of economic and social cohesion as regards raising levels of social and
economic development?

(1) See, for example, the opinion of Parliament’s Committee on Budgets on the budgetary aspects of European Union
enlargement of 20 June 2000  PE 289.570.

Answer given by Mr Barnier on behalf of the Commission

(5 November 2002)

The Commission has ordered a number of studies to be carried out on the impact of enlargement on both
the present and future Member States. These cover employment and the labour market, the economy in
general and small and medium-sized enterprises. Some of them are already available on the Commission’s
website (

Most of the studies on the economic impact of enlargement show that the positive effects will outweigh
whatever difficulties certain sectors or regions will face.
C 110 E/98 Official Journal of the European Union EN 8.5.2003

The Commission has not had any studies on individual Member States carried out but is aware that in the
context of Agenda 2000 the Portuguese Government commissioned several on the impact of enlargement
on Portugal. Mention should also be made of the study by the Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung
‘Productivity, Employment and Structural Funds’ of October 1998 and ‘EU Cohesion Policy  Eligibility
and Allocation Criteria’ of November 1997. Other studies are at present being carried out at the request of
the Portuguese authorities such as that of the Região Autónoma da Madeira and the Community support
framework observatory.

For its Second Report on Economic and Social Cohesion (1) the Commission analysed in detail the
challenges that enlargement poses to the cohesion policy and it has launched a wide-ranging debate on
post-2006 cohesion policy prior to adoption at the end of 2003 of the Third Cohesion Report, which is to
make concrete policy proposals. The Commission will design these in the aim that cohesion policy will
continue to support those regions of the present and new Member States that, objectively judged, still lag
behind in development.

(1) COM(2001) 24 final.

(2003/C 110 E/100) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2738/02

by Charles Tannock (PPE-DE)
and Theresa Villiers (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(30 September 2002)

Subject: Status of the London Congestion Scheme

In February, 2003, The Mayor of London, Mr Kenneth Livingstone, is due to introduce a controversial
pioneer Road User Charging Scheme known as the Congestion Charge which will apply a fixed GBP 5
daily fee per road vehicle entering a designated Central London Zone. One of the predicted negative effects
will be to divert traffic which currently crosses Central London around the periphery, causing additional
local levels of pollution in London suburban areas both in terms of noise and exhaust emissions which
may have deleterious effects on local residents. There are a number of other UK cities contemplating
similar schemes.

Could the Commission indicate whether it considers London’s Congestion Charge to constitute an Urban
Development Project as defined by Directive 85/337/EEC (1) (as amended by Directive 97/11/EEC (2)) and
which has itself been transposed into UK domestic planning legislation, and, if so, does it require an
impact assessment study if the UK is not to breach its legal obligations in this area?

(1) OJ L 175, 5.7.1985, p. 40.

(2) OJ L 73, 14.3.1997, p. 5.

Answer given by Mrs Wallström on behalf of the Commission

(4 November 2002)

The congestion charge proposed for London would not fall into the scope of the Environmental Impact
Assessment (EIA) Directive (Council Directive 85/337/EEC of 27 June 1985 on the assessment of the
effects of certain public and private projects on the environment as amended by 97/11/EC of 3 March
1997, Annex II, 10b) as an ‘Urban Development Project including the construction of shopping centres
and car parks’. Projects in the sense of the Directive mean ‘the execution of construction works or of other
installations or schemes’ (Article 1, point 2). The national guidelines (1) from November 2000 (for England
and Wales) for EIA procedures have transposed Annex II, 10b following this approach. The congestion
charge is a matter of national competence which should be raised with the appropriate local planning

(1) Environmental Impact Assessment a guide to procedures, DETR/National Assembly for Wales, November 2000.