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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.
C 110 E/114 Official Journal of the European Union EN 8.5.2003

However many landowners fear that by leasing their land they will lose control of it, and the sector
believes the issue of liberalising agricultural leaseholds merits proper discussion in order to stimulate the
rural economy.

Given the current situation of farms, does the Commission agree that it is necessary to open a debate
which would provide the basis for realigning national legislation on agricultural leaseholds in order to
allow the leaseholder to concentrate on farming, and provide the landlord with sufficient guarantees that
he can recover his land at almost any moment?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(31 October 2002)

The Commission agrees with the Honourable Member that it is vitally important for the future of
agriculture, notably for the establishment of young people in the sector, that there continues to be an
adequate supply of land for renting.

The terms agreed between landlords and tenants are however governed by national legal provisions that
are often extremely different from one Member State to another, for reasons both historical and cultural.
Further, the contractual provisions, sometimes of a derogating character, that apply to rural leases are
closely linked to other bodies of law for which the Member States hold exclusive responsibility, such as
inheritance and tax law, many provisions of which also exhibit fundamental differences within the Union.

Thus it would be impracticable to think of proposing a Community-level adjustment of national legislative

provisions on rural leases.

The Commission will continue to bear this diversity in mind and to ensure that measures proposed at
Community level can fulfil their aims without prejudice to these areas of national competence.

(2003/C 110 E/120) WRITTEN QUESTION P-2843/02

by Ian Hudghton (Verts/ALE) to the Commission

(3 October 2002)

Subject: Ramifications of delays in proposals relating to the common fisheries policy

Given the repeated delays in the publication by the Commission of the CFP reform proposals and the
ongoing controversy surrounding them, it appears possible that the overall timetable for the completion
and entry into force of the reformed CFP will be delayed.

Can the Commission answer the following questions:

1. What will be the legal status of access restrictions should the CFP not, as seems apparent at this point,
enter into force by January 2003, with particular regard to:
(a) 6-12 mile coastal zones?
(b) access to the North Sea?

2. Can the Commission guarantee that the overriding goal of sustainable fisheries will not be jeopardised
because of delays and the Commission’s failure to keep to the timetable, since that would threaten the
very survival of fisheries-dependent communities?