You are on page 1of 1

C 137 E/60 Official Journal of the European Union EN 12.6.

2003

(2003/C 137 E/067) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2249/02


by Pedro Marset Campos (GUE/NGL) to the Council
(23 July 2002)

Subject: Construction of a hydroelectric power station on indigenous land in Chile

The company Endesa Chile, which has been privatised and acquired by Endesa España, is in the process of
constructing the Ralco hydroelectric power station. This will result in the flooding of 630 hectares of
indigenous land and the disappearance of two Pehuenche Indian communities which have always existed
in the Alto Bio Bio, and contravenes Indigenous Law No 19.253 of 5 October 1993 and the Basic Law on
the Environment No 19.300 of 9 March 1994.

Furthermore, adverse opinions on this construction project have been issued by 22 relevant Chilean public
bodies, and the World Bank has refused to grant it funding because it contravenes its code of ethics.

Eight of the 93 families living in the area have asserted their rights under the Indigenous Law and refused
to be relocated, while the others have caved in to pressure, threats and blackmail.

The Chilean government is affecting ignorance of its own laws, and has set up a Committee of Wise Men
to put a figure on the compensation payable to these eight families. This is unlawful and sets an alarming
precedent for the indigenous peoples of Chile and their survival.

1. Is the Council aware of this situation?

2. Does it not feel there is a need, in the light of the recently signed EU-Chile Association Agreement,
to demand respect of democracy clauses and the indigenous rights they contain?

3. What measures is it considering taking with regard to this violation of indigenous rights and
therefore of the EU-Chile Association Agreement?

Reply
(6 February 2003)

1. As the situation referred to in the Honourable Member’s written question has not come to the
Council’s notice, the Council has not had occasion to discuss it.

2. The EU-Chile Association Agreement was initialled by its negotiators  the Commission and the
Chilean authorities  on 10 June 2002. The Council received the Commission proposal on 7 October
2002. The signing of the Agreement has been placed on the agenda for the Council meeting on
18 November 2002. Following the signing, the Chilean authorities will set in motion their domestic
ratification procedure. Once that ratification has been completed and notified, the Council will take a
decision, in accordance with established procedures, on the implementation of measures for the
provisional application of the Agreement.

3. The Council would point out, however, that it does hold regular political dialogue meetings with the
Chilean authorities, at various levels. If necessary, it will not hesitate to raise with the Chilean authorities
any questions concerning serious violations of human rights in general or any specific cases of violation of
indigenous communities’ rights.

(2003/C 137 E/068) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2250/02


by Robert Goebbels (PSE) to the Commission
(23 July 2002)

Subject: Broad economic policy guidelines for Luxembourg

In its proposals on broad economic policy guidelines adopted by the Council on 21 June CSL 10093/2002
 COM(2002) 191 final, the Commission stated with regard to the Luxembourg economy that ‘some
elements of the competition framework, such as obsolete legislation on prices, have the potential to restrict
competition on product markets’. The ‘abolition of fixed and monitored prices’ was therefore proposed.