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C 110 E/112 Official Journal of the European Union EN 8.5.


(2003/C 110 E/116) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2829/02

by Struan Stevenson (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(9 October 2002)

Subject: Illegal driftnetting

European press reports and anecdotal information point to the continued use of pelagic driftnets by boats
of at least two European Union countries, despite the full prohibition coming into force in January 2002.

Can the Commission include whether it has any additional information on the continued use of such
driftnets, what measures are being adopted by Member States to ensure compliance with Regulation (EC)
1239/98 (1), and what measures the Commission intends to take against Member States that still allow
fishing boats to use driftnets?

(1) OJ L 171, 17.6.1998, p. 1.

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(31 October 2002)

The Commission is engaged in a programme, covering the whole fishing year, of ad hoc missions by its
inspectors to verify on the spot that Community vessels (and non-EU vessels operating in Community
waters) are complying with Regulation (EC) No 1239/98 (1) prohibiting driftnet fishing for highly
migratory species. It wishes to stress the cooperation extended by the Member States’ authorities in
execution of this programme.

Despite the provisions adopted by the Member States to ensure respect for the rules a number of
infringements have been detected.

At the end of the inspection programme a comprehensive assessment will be made on the basis of which
the Commission will decide on any action to be taken against Member States.

(1) Council Regulation (EC) No 1239/98 of 8 June 1998 amending Regulation (EC) No 894/97 laying down certain
technical measures for conservation of fishery resources, OJ L 171, 17.6.1998.

(2003/C 110 E/117) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2835/02

by Jorge Hernández Mollar (PPE-DE) to the Commission

(9 October 2002)

Subject: EU assistance for bottling Malaga wine

On Spain’s entry to the European Union in 1986, the majority of Andalusian wine was sold abroad
unbottled. Wine producers in Jerez have almost entirely abandoned the practice, but a third of all Malaga
wines are still exported unbottled.

Although about two million litres of Malaga wine are produced every year, only a third is exported, and of
that only a third is bottled. However, Malaga wine producers are determined that in five years’ time all
Malaga wine will be sold in bottled form, which will avoid its inclusion on the list of semi-generics, a
denomination category which is not respected abroad, particularly in the United States.

Will the Commission indicate to what extent it will support the Malaga wine producers’ aims to ensure
that in five years all Malaga wine will be exported in bottled form with a denomination of origin?
8.5.2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 110 E/113

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(21 November 2002)

On the matter of bottling of wine in the region of origin reference should be made to the Court of Justice’s
judgment of 16 May 2000 in case C-388/95 (1).

It must nonetheless be stressed that bottling of Malaga wines in the region cannot by itself solve the semi-
generic problem. Agreements with the countries using these are indispensable.

The Commission is doing all it can to conclude bilateral agreements with other countries on trade in wines
and spirits and is at present negotiating with the United States.

(1) [2000] ECR I-03123.

(2003/C 110 E/118) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2838/02

by Salvador Garriga Polledo (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(9 October 2002)

Subject: Delimitation of the fishing area in the mouth of the River Guadiana

The recent incident in the mouth of the River Guadiana on the border between Spain and Portugal, which
resulted in the seizure of a Spanish fishing boat by the Portuguese navy, has revived demands from the
Assembly of Andalucia and the Huelva Fishing and Agricultural Commission for clear demarcation of the
above fishing area between Spain and Portugal.

For the Huelva fishermen, the boundary between Spanish and Portuguese waters is not sufficiently clear
and they believe that a new fishing agreement between the two countries would prevent similar incidents
in the future.

Given the Commission’s role in the fisheries common policy, could it intervene to meet the demands of
the Huelva fishermen regarding clear demarcation of the fishing area, and thus avoid future recurrences of
incidents such as that concerning the Spanish fishing vessel described above?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(24 October 2002)

The Commission wishes to inform that it has not received any request from the national authorities to
intervene in the referred matter.

Anyway, the question related to the delimitation of the fishing zone does not fall within the Community
competence. It is clear, however, that the Commission wishes that the fishing activities are carried out in
this area in satisfactory conditions for all the parties concerned.

(2003/C 110 E/119) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2839/02

by Salvador Garriga Polledo (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(9 October 2002)

Subject: Assistance towards promoting greater liberalisation of agricultural leaseholds

Both EU public administrations and farmers themselves have pointed out that the number of farmers
directly involved in working their own land is on the decrease. Thus ever-increasing numbers of farmers
are leasing their land.