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Use of sewage sludge in agriculture

Use of sewage sludge in agriculture

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Use of sewage sludge in agriculture

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These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Agriculture > Environment

Use of sewage sludge in agriculture

Document or Iniciative

Council Directive 86/278/EEC of 12 June 1986 on the protection of the environment, and in particular of the soil, when sewage sludge is used in agriculture [See amending acts].

Summary

Sewage sludge has valuable agronomic properties in agriculture. In using sewage sludge account must be taken of the nutrient needs of the plants without, however, impairing neither the quality of the soil nor that of surface and ground water. Some heavy metals present in sewage sludge may be toxic to plants and humans.

Sewage sludge may be used in agriculture provided that the Member State concerned regulates its use.

The Directive lays down limit values for concentrations of heavy metals in the soil (Annex IA), in sludge (Annex IB) and for the maximum annual quantities of heavy metals which may be introduced into the soil (Annex IC).

The use of sewage sludge is prohibited if the concentration of one or more heavy metals in the soil exceeds the limit values laid down in accordance with Annex IA. The Member States must therefore take the necessary steps to ensure that those limit values are not exceeded as a result of using sludge.

Sludge must be treated before being used in agriculture but the Member States may authorise the use of untreated sludge if it is injected or worked into the soil.

The use of sludge is prohibited:

  • on grassland or forage crops if the grassland is to be grazed or the forage crops to be harvested before a certain period has elapsed (this period, fixed by the Member States, may not be less than three weeks);
  • on fruit and vegetable crops during the growing season, with the exception of fruit trees;
  • on ground intended for the cultivation of fruit and vegetable crops which are normally in direct contact with the soil and normally eaten raw, for a period of ten months preceding the harvest and during the harvest itself.

Sludge and soil on which it is used must be sampled and analysed.

Member States must keep records registering:

  • the quantities of sludge produced and the quantities supplied for use in agriculture;
  • the composition and properties of the sludge;
  • the type of treatment carried out;
  • the names and addresses of the recipients of the sludge and the places where the sludge is to be used.

Where conditions so demand, Member States may take more stringent measures than those provided for in this Directive.

Five years after notification of this Directive, and every four years thereafter, Member States must produce a consolidated report on the use of sludge in agriculture, specifying the quantities used, the criteria followed and any difficulties encountered. They must forward the report to the Commission, which will publish the information contained in it.

In the light of that report the Commission will, if necessary, submit appropriate proposals for increased protection of the soil and the environment.

References

Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Directive 86/278/EEC

18.6.1986

18.6.1989

OJ L 181 of 4.7.1986

Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Directive 91/692/EEC

23.12.1991

1.1.1993

OJ L 377 of 31.12.1991

Regulation (EC) No 807/2003

5.6.2003

OJ L 122 of 16.5.2003

Regulation (EC) No 219/2009

20.4.2009

OJ L 87 of 31.3.2009

The successive amendments and corrections to Directive 86/278/EEC have been incorporated in the original text. This consolidated versionis of documentary value only.

Related Acts

Report from the Commission of 20 November 2009 on implementation of the community waste legislation Directive 2006/12/EC on waste, Directive 91/689/EEC on hazardous waste, Directive 75/439/EEC on waste oils, Directive 86/278/EEC on sewage sludge, Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging waste, Directive 1999/31/EC on the landfill of waste and Directive 2002/96/EC on waste electrical and electronic equipment for the period 2004-2006 [COM(2009) 633 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
Since the adoption of the Directive on sewage sludge more than 20 years ago, no implementation problems have been reported. However there are signals that the Directive may be too limited in scope and lack ambition. Several Member States have enacted and implemented stricter limit values for heavy metals and set requirements for other contaminants. The Commission impact assessment will evaluate whether more stringent measures should be put in place and look into a possibility of extending the scope of the Directive to other types of sludges and applications other than agriculture.

Report from the Commission of 19 July 2006 on implementation of the Community waste legislation: Directive 75/442/EEC, Directive 91/689/EEC on hazardous waste, Directive 75/439/EEC on waste oils, Directive 86/278/EEC on sewage sludge, Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging waste and Directive 1999/31/EC on the landfill of waste for the period 2001-2003 [COM(2006) 406 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
According to this report, several Member States have set concentration limits at levels below those in the Directive. In addition, average concentrations of heavy metals in sludge used in agriculture are significantly lower than those specified in the Directive. Most EU-15 Member States registered an increase in sludge generation. Seven Member States report using at least 50% of the sludge they generate in agriculture. The Commission considers that using sewage sludge as fertiliser on agricultural soils remains one of the best environmental options, provided it poses no threat to the environment or to animal and human health.

Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 19 May 2003 on the implementation of Community waste legislation, in particular Directive 75/442/EEC on waste, Directive 91/689/EEC on hazardous waste, Directive 75/439/EEC on waste oils, Directive 86/278/EEC on sewage sludge and Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging waste, for the period 1998-2000 [COM(2003) 250 final Not published in the Official Journal].

Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 10 January 2000 on the implementation of Community waste legislation for the period 1995-1997 (Directives 75/442/EEC, 91/689/EEC, 75/439/EEC and 86/278/EEC) [COM(1999) 752 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The Commission notes in this report that there were no major problems in the formal transposition of Directive 86/278 on sewage sludge into national law. The Directive has been successful in preventing crop contamination by pathogens caused by the use of sludge on agricultural soils. However, few Member States have very high sludge reuse rates. As the Commission foresees an increase of about 40 % of sludge production by 2005, it seems appropriate to completely revise the provisions of the Directive.

Commission Communication to the Council and the European Parliament of 27 February 1997 concerning the application of Directives 75/439/EEC, 75/442/EEC, 78/319/EEC and 86/278/EEC on waste management [COM(97) 23 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
As Directive 86/278/EEC was published on 17 June 1986, the Member States had to draw up their first report by 17 June 1991. Only six Member States (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Spain, France and the United Kingdom) sent their 1991/1992 report. A second report covering the years 1991-1994 should have been submitted by 17 June 1995.
The Commission’s analysis covers the period 1991-1994 on the basis of the reports submitted by five Member States (Belgium, Spain, France, the United Kingdom and Portugal).
The report notes that some Member States have failed to adopt all the national measures needed to transpose this Directive. As a result, Belgium in particular was sentenced by the Court of Justice (judgment of 3 May 1994, Case C-260/93) for failing to transpose the Directive.
Following the adoption of Directive 91/692/EEC standardising and rationalising reports on the implementation of certain Directives relating to the environment, the Commission adopted a standard questionnaire for drawing up these reports, first used for the 1991-1994 report. The report outlines the state of play regarding national laws and the minimum limit values set by the five Member States which submitted their report. The Commission feels that, under the current circumstances, it is difficult to draw final conclusions as the reports of several Member States are missing and some of the reports submitted were incomplete. However, it is of the view that the Directive was, on the whole, well implemented as regards the permitted concentration of heavy metals in sludge for use in agriculture, as the level is in general lower than the limit values laid down in Annex I B to the Directive.

Strategy for cooperation with Vietnam

Strategy for cooperation with Vietnam

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Strategy for cooperation with Vietnam

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

External relations > Relations with third countries > Asia

Strategy for cooperation with Vietnam (2007-2013)

Document or Iniciative

The European Commission – Vietnam Strategy Paper 2007-2013 .

Summary

Cooperation between the European Union (EU) and Vietnam aims primarily to reduce the level of poverty in the country. This aim is pursued in line with Vietnam’s socio-economic development plan and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Cooperation priorities

This strategy identifies a limited number of areas for cooperation, in order to enhance the effectiveness of development aid. Cooperation actions are mainly financed through the instrument for development cooperation (DCI). They are aimed at supporting:

  • socio-economic development, particularly the reform of public policies and the increase of financial resources, including by mobilising international donors;
  • the health sector, especially to improve access to care, the development of infrastructure and to extend the coverage of social protection to the whole population.

Furthermore, the EU supports the development of trade with Vietnam, to help the country to maximise its international trade development and exploit its membership of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Cooperation should contribute to the development of trade policies, and the legal framework applicable to workers, enterprises, investment and exports.

The increase in trade should have a positive impact on reducing poverty and the sustainable development of the country.

Policy dialogue

The partners are undertaking a strategic dialogue, in particular with a view to strengthening public institutions, public administration, good governance and human rights.

In addition, a set of thematic objectives supplements these priorities. They can be implemented through the European Instrument for Stability. The objectives are as follows:

  • democracy and human rights;
  • the development of civil society;
  • migration and asylum policy;
  • human and social development;
  • environmental protection and sustainable resource management;
  • higher education.

Cross-cutting issues

Cooperation actions should have a positive impact on gender equality, the fight against HIV/AIDS, environmental protection, democracy, good governance and human rights.

Context

In 2007, Vietnam and the EU launched negotiations with a view to intensifying their relations by adopting a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement.

Protection of laying hens

Protection of laying hens

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Protection of laying hens

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Animal welfare

Protection of laying hens

Document or Iniciative

Council Directive 1999/74/EC of 19 July 1999 laying down minimum standards for the protection of laying hens [See amending act(s)].

Summary

This Directive establishes minimum standards for the protection of laying hens. It does not apply to establishments with fewer than 350 laying hens or establishments rearing breeding laying hens.

The rearing of laying hens must comply with the relevant provisions laid down by Directive 98/58/EC relating to the protection of farmed animals and with those laid down in the Annex to this Directive.

Alternative systems

From 1 January 2002, all newly built or rebuilt alternative systems of production and all such systems of production brought into use for the first time must comply with the following requirements:

  • all systems must be equipped with:
    1. either linear feeders (at least 10 cm per hen) or circular feeders (at least 4 cm per hen),
    2. either continuous drinking troughs (2.5 cm per hen) or circular drinking troughs (1 cm per hen),
    3. at least one nest for every seven hens,
    4. adequate perches (at least 15 cm per hen),
    5. and at least 250 cm2 of littered area per hen;
  • the floors of installations must support each of the forward-facing claws of each foot;
  • there are special provisions on systems of rearing allowing hens to move freely and/or permitting access to outside runs;
  • the stocking density must not exceed nine laying hens per m2 of usable area (however, where the usable area corresponds to the available ground surface, a stocking density of 12 hens per m2 is authorised until 31 December 2011 for those establishments applying this system on 3 August 1999).

Member States are to ensure that these requirements apply from 1 January 2007.

Rearing in unenriched cage systems

From 1 January 2003, all unenriched cages must comply with the following requirements:

  • at least 550 cm2 of cage area must be provided for each hen;
  • a feed trough (of a length of at least 10 cm multiplied by the number of hens), which may be used without restriction must be provided;
  • each cage must have an appropriate drinking system;
  • cages must be at least 40 cm high over 65 % of the cage area and not less than 35 cm at any point;
  • floors of cages must be constructed so as to support the claws of each foot. If the floor is on a slope, this must not exceed 14 % or 8 % except where the floor is made of a material other than wire mesh;
  • cages must be fitted with suitable claw-shortening devices.

With effect from 1 January 2003, no unenriched cages may be built or brought into service for the first time. This type of rearing system is prohibited with effect from 1 January 2012.

Rearing in enriched cages

From 1 January 2002, all enriched cages must comply at least with the following requirements:

  • each laying hen must have:
    1. at least 750 cm2 of cage,
    2. a nest,
    3. litter such that pecking and scratching are possible,
    4. appropriate perches of at least 15 cm;
  • a feed trough that may be used without restriction must be provided. Its length must be at least 12 cm multiplied by the number of hens in the cage;
  • each cage must have an appropriate drinking system;
  • there must be a minimum aisle width of 90 cm between tiers of cages and a space of at least 35 cm must be allowed between the floor of the building and the bottom tier of cages;
  • cages must be fitted with suitable claw-shortening devices.

Final provisions

The competent authority must register the establishments covered by the Directive and give them a distinguishing number that will ensure the traceability of eggs placed on the market for human consumption.

Member States must ensure that inspections are carried out under the responsibility of the competent authority to check that the provisions of the Directive are complied with. They must submit a report on the inspections to the Commission, which must then inform the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health.

Veterinary experts from the Commission may, where necessary for the uniform application of the current Directive, carry out on-the-spot checks in cooperation with the competent authorities. The findings of those checks are discussed with the competent authorities, which then take any measures revealed to be necessary by the checks.

Not later than 1 January 2005, the Commission must submit to the Council a report, drawn up on the basis of an opinion from the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health, on the different systems of rearing taking account of the requirements for the welfare of hens and the socio-economic implications of those systems. The report is to cover the negotiations within the World Trade Organisation and be accompanied by appropriate proposals.
The Council must act by a qualified majority on those proposals no later than 12 months after their submission.

Member States have until 1 January 2002 to bring into force the laws, regulations and administrative provisions, including any penalties, necessary to comply with the Directive and must forthwith inform the Commission thereof. In addition, they may maintain or apply within their territories more stringent provisions than those envisaged by the Directive.

References

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Directive 1999/74/EC

3.8.1999

1.1.2002

OJ L 203, 3.8.2009

Amending Act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 806/2003

5.6.2003

OJ L 122, 16.5.2003

Related Act(S)

Commission Directive 2002/4/EC of 30 January 2002 on the registration of establishments keeping laying hens, covered by Council Directive 1999/74/EC [Official Journal L 30 of 31 January 2002].

Member States must establish a system for registering every production site covered by Directive 1999/74/EC. The information required for registration includes the person responsible for the laying hens, the owner and the distinguishing number. Establishments must be registered before 31 May 3003. From 1 June 2003, establishments that are not registered may not continue or begin to operate.

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 8 January 2007 on the various systems of rearing laying hens in particular those covered by Directive 1999/74/EC [COM(2007) 865 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Decision-making procedures

Decision-making procedures

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Decision-making procedures

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Institutional affairs > Building europe through the treaties > The Amsterdam treaty: a comprehensive guide

Decision-making procedures

Treaty on European Union

Human rights and fundamental freedoms

Common foreign and security policy (CFSP)

Police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters

Final provisions

Treaty establishing the European Community

Closer cooperation

Discrimination on grounds of nationality

Discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation
Establishing the single market

Citizenship of the Union

Free movement of goods

Agriculture

Free movement of workers

Right of establishment

Services

Capital and payments

Visas, asylum, immigration and other policies related to free movement of persons
Transport

Rules on competition

Tax provisions

Approximation of laws

Economic policy

Monetary policy

Institutional provisions in the area of economic and monetary policy
Transitional provisions in the area of economic and monetary policy
Employment

Common commercial policy

Customs cooperation

Social provisions

European Social Fund

Education, vocational training and youth

Culture

Public health

Consumer protection

Trans-European networks

Industry

Economic and social cohesion

Research and technological development

Environment

Development cooperation

Association of the overseas countries and territories

Institutional provisions (list not exhaustive)

Financial provisions (list not exhaustive)

General and final provisions (list not exhaustive)

INTRODUCTION

Decision-making in the European Union comprises several different procedures. This means that the different institutions play different roles depending on the subject matter concerned. As a rule, decision-making principally involves three institutions: the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission. However, other institutions and bodies such as the Court of Auditors, the European Central Bank, the Economic and Financial Committee, the Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions also play a role in certain specific areas. The various bodies operate within the powers conferred on them by the Treaties.

The description below covers the provisions of both the EU Treaty and the EC Treaty. It is organised by subject, following the title and chapter headings in the Treaties. Bold italics indicate changes introduced by the Amsterdam Treaty, whether in the form of a new provision or the amendment of a decision-making procedure.

TREATY ON EUROPEAN UNION

Human rights and fundamental freedoms

Determining the existence of a serious and persistent breach of the principles on which the European Union is founded (Article 7(1)):

  • proposal by one third of the Member States or the Commission – assent of the European Parliament acting by a two-thirds majority of the votes cast, representing a majority of its members – Council, meeting in the composition of the Heads of State or Government, acting by unanimity (disregarding the vote of the Member State in question).

Decision to suspend certain rights deriving from the application of the Treaty to the Member State in question (Article 7(2)):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (disregarding the vote of the Member State in question).

Decision to revoke or vary suspension measures taken against a Member State (Article 7(3)):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (disregarding the vote of the Member State in question).

Common foreign and security policy (CFSP)

Adopting common strategies and setting out their objectives, duration and the means to be made available by the Union and the Member States for their implementation (Article 13):

  • decision by European Council.

Decisions under the common foreign and security policy (Article 23(1)):

  • Council acting unanimously (abstention by a Member State not preventing the adoption of such decisions).

Adopting joint actions and common positions on the basis of a common strategy (Article 23(2), first subparagraph, first indent):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Adopting any decision implementing a joint action or a common position (Article 23(2), first subparagraph, second indent):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Referring a decision to the European Council where a member of the Council declares that, for important reasons of national policy, it opposes the adoption of a decision to be taken by qualified majority (Article 23(2), second subparagraph):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Procedure for concluding an agreement with one or more States or international organisations (Article 24):

  • Council, acting unanimously, may authorise the Presidency, assisted by the Commission, to open negotiations – recommendation from the Presidency – agreement concluded by the Council acting unanimously.

Decision not to charge certain expenditure to the budget of the European Communities (Article 28):

  • Council acting unanimously.

Police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters

Adoption of common positions, framework decisions and decisions (Article 34(2)(a), (b) and (c):

  • initiative of Commission or a Member State – Council acting unanimously.

Adoption of measures necessary for implementing a decision (Article 34(2)(c):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Adoption of conventions (Article 34(2)(d), first subparagraph, ex Article K.6):

  • initiative of Commission or a Member State – Council acting unanimously – ratification by Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements – conventions, once adopted by at least half of the Member States, enter into force for those Member States.

Adoption of measures implementing conventions (Article 34(2)(d), second subparagraph, ex Article K.6):

  • within the Council by a majority of two-thirds of the Contracting Parties.

Establishing closer cooperation under Title VI (Article 40(2), first subparagraph):

  • at request of Member States concerned – Commission consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Referring a decision to the European Council where a member of the Council declares that, for important reasons of national policy, it opposes the granting of authorisation for closer cooperation (Article 40(2), second subparagraph):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Decision not to charge certain expenditure to the budget of the European Communities (Article 41):

  • Council acting unanimously.

Transferring action in areas covered by Title VI of the Treaty on European Union to Title IV of the Treaty establishing the European Community (Article 42, ex Article K.14):

  • initiative of Commission or a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously – ratification by Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.

Final provisions

Amending the Treaties on which the European Union is founded (Article 48, ex Article N):

  • proposal from a Member State or the Commission – European Parliament and, where appropriate, Commission consulted (Council and European Central Bank also consulted where changes relate to the monetary area) – Council opinion in favour – conference of representatives of governments of Member States convened by President of Council to determine by common accord the amendments to be made to the Treaties – ratification by Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.

Accession to the European Union by a European State (Article 49, ex Article O):

  • application from prospective member – Commission consulted – assent of European Parliament – Council acting unanimously – ratification by all the contracting States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.

TREATY ESTABLISHING THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY

Closer cooperation

Authorisation to establish closer cooperation (Article 11(2), first subparagraph):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Referral to the Council, meeting in the composition of the Heads of State or Government, where a Member State declares that, for important reasons of national policy, it opposes the granting of authorisation for closer cooperation (Article 11(2), second subparagraph):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority (with at least 10 members voting in favour).

Authorisation to establish closer cooperation granted by the Council, meeting in the composition of the Heads of State or Government (Article 11(2), second subparagraph):

  • Council acting unanimously.

Discrimination on grounds of nationality

Adopting rules to prohibit such discrimination (Article 12, ex Article 6):

  • co-decision procedure.

Discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation

Measures necessary to combat all forms of discrimination (Article 13):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Establishing the single market (see also points 6, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 16)

Determining the guidelines and conditions necessary to ensure balanced progress in all the sectors covered by the four freedoms (Article 14(3), ex Article 7 A):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Citizenship of the Union

Adopting provisions to facilitate the exercise of Union citizenship rights (Article 18, ex Article 8 A):

  • co-decision procedure with the Council acting unanimously.

Arrangements for exercising the right to vote and to stand as a candidate in municipal elections (Article 19(1), ex Article 8 B):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Arrangements for exercising the right to vote and to stand as a candidate in elections to the European Parliament (Article 19(2), ex Article 8 B):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Provisions to strengthen or add to the Union citizenship rights (Article 22, ex Article 8 E):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Free movement of goods

Fixing Common Customs Tariff duties (Article 26, ex Article 28):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Agriculture

Adopting regulations, directives, decisions and common market organisation arrangements (Article 37(2) and (3), ex Article 43):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Free movement of workers

Adopting measures to bring about freedom of movement for workers (Article 40, ex Article 49):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted.

Adopting measures in the field of social security to provide freedom of movement for workers (Article 42, ex Article 51):

  • co-decision procedure with the Council acting unanimously.

Right of establishment

Issuing directives to bring about freedom of establishment (Article 44, ex Article 54):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted.

Exempting certain activities from the provisions of the “Right of establishment” Chapter (Article 45, ex Article 55):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Directives on coordinating provisions laying down special treatment of foreign nationals on grounds of public policy, public security or public health (Article 46, ex Article 56):

  • co-decision procedure.

Directives for the mutual recognition of diplomas, certificates and other evidence of formal qualifications (Article 47(1), ex Article 57):

  • co-decision procedure.

Directives for the coordination of provisions laid down by law, regulation or administrative action in Member States concerning the taking-up and pursuit of activities as self-employed persons (Article 47(2), ex Article 57):

  • co-decision procedure (with the Council acting unanimously, where implementing the directive requires amendments to be made in at least one Member State to the existing legal principles governing training and conditions of access for natural persons to professions).

Services

Extending the provisions of the “Services” Chapter to service providers who are nationals of a third country, but established within the Community (Article 49, ex Article 59):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Directives to liberalise a specific service (Article 52, ex Article 63):

  • Commission proposal – Economic and Social Committee and the European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Capital and payments

Measures on the movement of capital to or from third countries involving direct investment – including investment in real estate – establishment, the provision of financial services or the admission of securities to capital markets (Article 57, ex Article 73 C):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority (unanimity required for measures constituting a step back in Community law as regards the liberalisation of the movement of capital).

Safeguard measures where, in exceptional circumstances, movements of capital to or from third countries cause, or threaten to cause, serious difficulties for the operation of economic and monetary union (Article 59, ex Article 73 F):

  • Commission proposal – European Central Bank consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Urgent measures to suspend or reduce economic relations between the European Union and a third country (Article 60(1), ex Article 73 G):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Amending or abolishing unilateral measures taken by a Member State against a third country (Article 60(2), ex Article 73 G):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Visas, asylum, immigration and other policies related to free movement of persons

Measures to ensure the absence of any controls on persons, when crossing internal borders (Article 62(1)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures on standards and procedures to be followed by Member States in carrying out checks on persons at external borders (Article 62(2)(a)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Adoption of a uniform format for visas and a list of third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders (Article 62(2)(b)(i) and (iii)):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Establishing the procedures and conditions for issuing visas by Member States and rules on a uniform visa (Article 62(2)(b)(ii) and (iv)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / co-decision (after the transitional period).

Measures setting out the conditions under which nationals of third countries shall have the freedom to travel within the territory of the Member States during a period of no more than three months (Article 62(3)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures on asylum (criteria and mechanisms for determining which Member State is responsible for considering an application for asylum, minimum standards on the reception of asylum seekers, conditions for qualifying for refugee status, for granting or withdrawing refugee status) (Article 63(1)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures on refugees and displaced persons (granting temporary protection) (Article 63(2)(a)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures on refugees and displaced persons (balance of effort between Member States) (Article 63(2)(b)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Measures on immigration policy (conditions of entry and residence, and standards on procedures for issuing long-term visas and residence permits) (Article 63(3)(a)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Measures on immigration policy (illegal immigration and illegal residence) (Article 63(3)(b)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures defining the rights and conditions under which nationals of third countries who are legally resident in a Member State may reside in other Member States (Article 63(4)):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Provisional measures in an emergency situation characterised by a sudden inflow of nationals of third countries (Article 64):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Measures in the field of judicial cooperation in civil matters having cross-border implications (Article 65):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure (after the transitional period).

Measures to ensure cooperation between the relevant departments of the administrations of the Member States, as well as between those departments and the Commission (Article 66):

  • Commission proposal or initiative of a Member State – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously (for a transitional period of five years after the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam) / Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously to make a decision about the required procedure(after the transitional period).

Decision to provide for all or parts of the areas covered by Title IV to be governed by the co-decision procedure after the end of the transitional period and to adapt the provisions relating to the powers of the Court of Justice (Article 67(2), second indent):

  • European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Transport

Common rules, conditions under which non-resident carriers may operate transport services within a Member State, safety and other appropriate provisions (Article 71(1), ex Article 75):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Provisions concerning the principles of the regulatory system for transport, the application of which would be liable to have a serious effect on the standard of living and on employment in certain areas and on the operation of transport facilities (Article 71(2), ex Article 75):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Rules to abolish discrimination which takes the form of carriers charging different rates and imposing different conditions (Article 75, ex Article 79):

  • Commission proposal – Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Deciding whether, to what extent and by what procedure appropriate provisions may be laid down for sea and air transport (Article 80, ex Article 84):

  • Council acting by a qualified majority.

Rules on competition

Adopting appropriate regulations or directives to give effect to the principles set out in Articles 81 and 82 (Article 83, ex Article 87):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Derogation whereby State aid that would normally be in breach of Community law is, in exceptional circumstances, considered to be compatible with the common market, :

  • Request by a Member State – Council acting unanimously.

Adopting appropriate regulations for the application of Articles 87 and 88 in respect of State aid (Article 89, ex Article 94):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Tax provisions

Remissions and repayments for a limited period in respect of exports to other Member States(Article 92, ex Article 98):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Harmonisation of legislation concerning turnover taxes, excise duties and other forms of indirect taxation (Article 93, ex Article 99):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Approximation of laws

Issuing directives for the approximation of such laws, regulations or administrative provisions of the Member States as directly affect the common market (Article 94, ex Article 100):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Establishment and functioning of the internal market (Article 95, ex Article 100A):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted.

Special cases where distortion of competition needs to be eliminated (Article 96, ex Article 101):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Economic policy

Adopting recommendations setting out broad economic policy guidelines (Article 99(2), ex Article 103):

  • Commission recommendation – draft adopted by the Council acting by a qualified majority – report to European Council – conclusion of European Council – on basis of European Council conclusion, recommendation adopted by Council acting by qualified majority.

Recommendations to Member States acting inconsistently with the broad economic policy guidelines (Article 99(4), ex Article 103):

  • Commission recommendation – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Decision to make Council recommendations public (Article 99(4), ex Article 103):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Possibility of adopting detailed rules for the multilateral surveillance procedure in respect of economic policies (Article 99(5), ex Article 103):

  • cooperation procedure.

Appropriate measures in the event of severe difficulties arising in the supply of certain products (Article 100(1), ex Article 103 A):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously.

Community financial assistance for a Member State in difficulties caused by exceptional occurrences beyond its control (Article 100(2), ex Article 103 A):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously (qualified majority where the severe difficulties are cause by natural disasters).

Application of the prohibition on assuming commitments and providing overdraft facilities (Article 103, ex Article 104 B):

  • cooperation procedure.

Establishing the existence of an excessive deficit (Article 104(6), ex Article 104 C):

  • Commission recommendation – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Excessive deficit procedure (Article 104(7)-(9), (11) and (12), ex Article 104 C):

  • Commission recommendation – Council acting by a majority of two-thirds of the weighted votes of its members, excluding the votes of the representative of the Member State concerned..

Amending the Protocol on the excessive deficit procedure (Article 104(14), ex Article 104 C):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and European Central Bank consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Monetary policy

Decision conferring upon the ECB specific tasks concerning policies relating to the prudential supervision of credit institutions and other financial institutions with the exception of insurance undertakings (Article 105):

  • Commission proposal – European Central Bank consulted – assent of European Parliament – Council acting unanimously.

Measures to harmonise the denominations and technical specifications of all coins intended for circulation in the Community (Article 106, ex Article 105 A):

  • cooperation procedure with European Central Bank consulted.

Amending the Statute of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) (Article 107(5), ex Article 106):

  • either: recommendation from European Central Bank – Commission consulted – assent of European Parliament – Council acting by a qualified majority;
  • or: Commission proposal – European Central Bank consulted – assent of European Parliament – Council acting unanimously.

Adoption of certain provisions referred to in the Statute of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) (Article 107(6), ex Article 107):

  • either: Commission proposal – European Parliament and European Central Bank consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority;
  • or: recommendation from European Central Bank – Commission and European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Conclusion of formal agreements on an exchange-rate system for the euro in relation to non-Community currencies (Article 111(1), ex Article 109):

  • Commission or European Central Bank recommendation – Council acting unanimously.

Adopting, adjusting or abandoning the central rates of the euro (Article 111(1), ex Article 109):

  • either: recommendation from European Central Bank – Council acting by a qualified majority;
  • or: Commission recommendation – European Central Bank consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Formulating general orientations in the absence of an exchange-rate system in relation to one or more non-Community currencies (Article 111(2), ex Article 109):

  • either: recommendation from European Central Bank – Council acting by a qualified majority;
  • or: Commission recommendation – European Central Bank consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Arrangements for negotiating and concluding agreements concerning monetary or foreign exchange regime matters (Article 111(3), ex Article 109):

  • Commission recommendation – European Central Bank consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Institutional provisions in the area of economic and monetary policy

Adopting detailed rules on the make-up of the Economic and Financial Committee (Article 114, ex Article 109 C):

  • Commission proposal – European Central Bank and Economic and Financial Committee consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Transitional provisions in the area of economic and monetary policy

Ending derogations for Member States unable to adopt the single currency (Greece and Sweden) from the outset of the third phase (Article 122, ex Article 109 K):

  • Commission proposal- European Parliament consulted – Council, meeting in the composition of the Heads of State or Government, by qualified majority.

Adoption, on 1 January 1999 , of the conversion rates at which the national currencies shall be irrevocably fixed and at which irrevocably fixed rate the ECU shall be substituted for these currencies (Article 123, ex Article 109 L):

  • Commission proposal – European Central Bank consulted – Council acting with the unanimity of those Member States not subject to a derogation.

Employment

Drawing up guidelines for the Member States to take into account in their employment policies (Article 128(2)):

  • conclusions of European Council – Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee, Committee of the Regions and Employment Committee consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Recommendations to Member States concerning employment policy(Article 128(4)):

  • Commission recommendation – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Adoption of incentive measures designed to encourage cooperation between Member States and to support their action in the field of employment (Article 129):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Common commercial policy

Adopting directives to harmonise the systems for granting aid for exports to third countries (Article 132, ex Article 112):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Exercising the powers conferred on the Council under Article 133 (Article 133, ex Article 113):

  • Qualified majority.

Extending Article 133 to international negotiations and agreements on services and intellectual property (Article 133(5), ex Article 113):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Customs cooperation

Measures to strengthen customs cooperation between Member States and between the latter and the Commission (Article 135):

  • co-decision procedure

Social provisions

Adoption of directives laying down minimum requirements in the social field and measures designed to encourage cooperation between Member States (Article 137(2), ex Article 118):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Adoption of measures concerning social security and social protection of workers, protection of workers where their employment contract is terminated, representation and collective defence of the interests of workers and employers, including co-determination, subject to paragraph 6, conditions of employment for third-country nationals legally residing in Community territory and financial contributions for promotion of employment and job-creation, without prejudice to the provisions relating to the Social Fund. (Article 137(3), ex Article 118):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Decisions on implementing Community-level agreements between labour and management (Article 139(2), ex Article 118 B):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority (unanimity where the decisions concerns one of the areas in Article 137(3)).

Adoption of measures to ensure the application of the principle of equal opportunities and equal treatment of men and women in matters of employment and occupation (Article 141(3), ex Article 119):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted.

Assigning to the Commission tasks in connection with the implementation of common measures, particularly as regards social security for the migrant workers (Article 144, ex Article 121):

  • Council acting unanimously after consultation of Economic and Social Committee.

European Social Fund

Adoption of implementing decisions relating to the European Social Fund (Article 148, ex Article 125):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions consulted .

Education, vocational training and youth

Adoption of incentive measures to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of education (Article 149(4), first indent, ex Article 126):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions consulted.

Adoption of recommendations to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of education (Article 149(4), second indent, ex Article 126):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Adoption of measures to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of vocational training (Article 150, ex Article 127):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions consulted.

Culture

Adoption of incentive measures to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of culture (Article 151(5), first indent, ex Article 128):

  • co-decision procedure with Committee of the Regions consulted (Council acting unanimously throughout procedure).

Adoption of recommendations to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of culture (Article 151(5), second indent, ex Article 128):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously.

Public health

Adoption of measures and incentive measures to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of public health (including the veterinary and plant health areas) (Article 152(4), ex Article 129):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Adoption of recommendations to contribute to the achievement of the Community’s objectives in the field of public health (Article 152, ex Article 129):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Consumer protection

Adoption of measures which support, supplement and monitor the policy pursued by the Member States (Article 153(4), ex Article 129 A):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted.

Trans-European networks

Adoption of guidelines and measures to achieve the Community’s objectives in the field of trans-European networks (Article 156, ex Article 129 D):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted (guidelines and projects of common interest which relate to the territory of a Member State require the approval of the Member State concerned).

Industry

Adoption of special measures to support action by the Member States to achieve the objectives of the Community and the Member States in the field of industry (Article 157, ex Article 130):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Economic and social cohesion

Specific action proving necessary outside the Funds (Article 159, ex Article 130 B):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Defining the tasks, priority objectives and the organisation of the Structural Funds, as well as the general rules applicable to them and the provisions necessary to ensure their effectiveness and their coordination with one another and with the other existing financial instruments (Article 161, ex Article 130 D):

  • Commission proposal – assent of European Parliament – Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Implementing decisions relating to the European Regional Development Fund (Article 162, ex Article 130 E):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Research and technological development

Adoption of multiannual framework programme (Article 166(1), ex Article 130 I):

  • co-decision procedure after Economic and Social Committee consulted (Council acting by qualified majority throughout procedure).

Adoption of specific programmes implementing the multiannual framework programme (Article 166(4), ex Article 130 I):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Negotiation and conclusion of research and technological development agreements with third countries and international organisations (Article 170, ex Article 130 M):

  • Article 300 procedure (ex Article 228): Commission recommendations to Council – Council authorises Commission to open and conduct the necessary negotiations in conjunction with the special committees appointed by the Council and in line with directives fixed by the Council – agreement concluded by Council (by qualified majority or unanimously depending on procedure required for the adoption of internal rules).

Setting up joint undertakings or any other structure necessary for the efficient execution of Community research, technological development and demonstration programmes (Article 172, first subparagraph, ex Article 130 O):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament and Economic and Social Committee consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Decisions on detailed rules implementing the multiannual framework programme and the rules applicable to the supplementary programmes (Article 172, second subparagraph, ex Article 130 O):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee consulted (adoption of supplementary programmes requires agreement of Member States concerned).

Environment

Negotiation and conclusion of agreements between the Community and third countries or international organisations (Article 174, ex Article 130 R):

  • Article 300 procedure (ex Article 228): Commission recommendations to Council – Council authorises Commission to open and conduct the necessary negotiations in conjunction with the special committees appointed by the Council and in line with directives fixed by the Council – agreement concluded by Council (by qualified majority or unanimously depending on procedure required for the adoption of internal rules).

Action to be taken to achieve the Community’s environmental objectives (Article 175(1), ex Article 130 S):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted .

Adoption, by way of derogation from Article 175(1), of fiscal provisions, measures concerning town and country planning, land use, management of water resources and energy supply. (Article 175(2), first subparagraph, ex Article 130 S):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Definition of matters referred to in Article 175(2), where decisions must be taken by qualified majority (Article 175(2), second subparagraph, ex Article 130 S):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Adoption of general action programmes setting out priority objectives to be attained (Article 175(3), ex Article 130 S):

  • co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted.

Implementation of action programmes referred to in Article 175(3) (Article 175(4), ex Article 130 S):

  • as appropriate, either: co-decision procedure with Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted ;
  • or: Commission proposal – European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions consulted, – Council acting unanimously.

Development cooperation

Measures necessary to further the Community’s development cooperation objectives (such as multiannual programmes) (Article 179, ex Article 130 W):

  • co-decision procedure.

Negotiation and conclusion of agreements between the Community and third countries or international organisations (Article 181, ex Article 130 Y):

  • Article 300 procedure (ex Article 228): Commission recommendations to Council – Council authorises Commission to open and conduct the necessary negotiations in conjunction with the special committees appointed by the Council and in line with directives fixed by the Council – agreement concluded by Council (by qualified majority or unanimously depending on procedure required for the adoption of internal rules).

Association of the overseas countries and territories

Establishing provisions on the detailed rules and procedure for the association of the overseas countries and territories of the Community (Article 187, ex Article 136):

  • Council acting unanimously.

Institutional provisions (list not exhaustive)

Establishing a uniform procedure for elections by direct universal suffrage to the European Parliament (Article 190(4), ex Article 138):

  • Council acting unanimously after obtaining assent of European Parliament acting by a majority of its component members – ratification by Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.

Establishing principles and rules governing executive powers conferred by the Council (Article 202, ex Article 145):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously.

Fixing the order in which the Member States are to hold the Presidency of the Council (Article 203, second subparagraph, ex Article 146):

  • Council acting unanimously.

Financial provisions (list not exhaustive)

Laying down provisions relating to the system of own resources of the Community (Article 269, ex Article 201):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting unanimously – ratification by Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.

Adoption of Community budget (Article 272, ex Article 203):

  • Preliminary draft budget submitted to Council by Commission by 1 September – draft budget adopted by Council acting by a qualified majority and placed before European Parliament by 5 October – within 45 days, the European Parliament may amend the draft budget in the case of non-compulsory expenditure or propose modifications in the case of compulsory expenditure – draft budget altered in line with the amendments and modifications accepted or rejected by the Council acting by qualified majority, and then placed before the European Parliament – the European Parliament may, within fifteen days and acting by a majority of its Members and three-fifths of the votes cast, amend or reject the modifications to its amendments (non-compulsory expenditure) made by the Council and adopt the budget accordingly; alternatively the European Parliament, acting by a majority of its Members and two-thirds of the votes cast, may reject the draft budget and ask for a new draft to be submitted to it – the President of the European Parliament declares that the budget has been finally adopted.

Adopting the necessary measures in the fields of the prevention of and fight against fraud affecting the financial interests of the Community with a view to affording effective and equivalent protection in the Member States (without prejudice to the application of national criminal law or the national administration of justice.) (Article 280(4), ex Article 209 A):

  • co-decision procedure with Court of Auditors consulted.

General and final provisions (list not exhaustive)

Laying down the Staff Regulations of officials of the European Communities and the Conditions of Employment of other servants of those Communities (Article 283, ex Article 212):

  • Commission proposal – institutions concerned consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Making changes to the list of products connected with the production of or trade in arms, munitions and war material (Article 296, ex Article 223):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting unanimously.

Adoption of special measures fixing the conditions for applying the Treaty establishing the European Community to the outermost regions (Article 299(2), ex Article 227):

  • Commission proposal – European Parliament consulted – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Adopting the necessary urgent measures where a common position or a joint action adopted according to the provisions of the Treaty on European Union relating to the common foreign and security policy provides for action to interrupt or to reduce economic relations with one or more third countries (Article 301, ex Article 228 A):

  • Commission proposal – Council acting by a qualified majority.

Partnership with Africa for the development of the cotton industry

Partnership with Africa for the development of the cotton industry

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Partnership with Africa for the development of the cotton industry

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Development > African Caribbean and Pacific states (ACP)

Partnership with Africa for the development of the cotton industry

The Accession Partnership with Romania

The Accession Partnership with Romania

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about The Accession Partnership with Romania

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Enlargement > Enlargement 2004 and 2007

The Accession Partnership with Romania

The Accession Partnership is intended to help the Romanian authorities in their efforts to meet the accession criteria. It covers in detail the priorities for Romania’s accession preparations, in particular implementation of the acquis, and forms the basis for programming pre-accession assistance from Community funds like the Phare programme. On 25 April 2005, Romania signed its Treaty of Accession to the European Union. The objective now is its ratification, so that Romania can become a Member State of the European Union on 1 January 2007

In its ” Agenda 2000 ” communication, the European Commission set out a range of proposals for strengthening the pre-accession strategy for all the candidate countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEEC). The general objective of this strategy is to offer a coherent programme for preparing these countries for membership of the European Union, and more particularly:

  • to bring together the various forms of aid offered by the European Union within a single framework, the accession partnerships;
  • to familiarise applicants with the European Union’s procedures and policies by offering them the opportunity to participate in Community programmes.

Objective

The objective of the Accession Partnership (adopted in March 1998 and amended in December 1999, January 2002 and May 2003) is to place within a legislative framework the working priorities set out in the road map and the Commission’s 2003 Regular Report on progress towards accession, the financial resources available to help Romania implement these priorities, and the conditions which apply to this aid. This partnership underpins a range of instruments to support candidate countries in the accession process.

These instruments include a national programme for adopting the Community acquis, joint evaluation of medium-term economic priorities, the pact against organised crime, the national development plan and other sectoral programmes required for participation in post-accession structural funds and pre-accession implementation of ISPA and SAPARD. In 2002, the Accession Partnership served as the starting point for preparing an action plan to reinforce the administrative and judicial capacity of Romania.

Although these instruments will not form an integral part of the partnership, their priorities will be compatible with it.

Implementation of the Accession Partnership will be monitored under the Europe Agreement between the European Union and Romania.

Priorities

The Accession Partnership priorities were reviewed in December 1999 (see page 3 of the Annex to Decision 1999/852/EC). A final revision was published in May 2003 (Decision 2003/397/EC). The revised priorities formed the basis of the Commission’s evaluation in its 2003 report.

The revised Accession Partnership defines the priorities which Romania should wholly or largely achieve from 2003-2004. They were jointly defined by the EU and Romania. The level of aid granted to Romania will depend upon the implementation of these priorities.

Romania has addressed the priorities set out in the revised Accession Partnership. Overall, it has made progress, but must make further efforts to achieve the objectives laid down for 2003-2004. Romania has launched major reforms in the fields of public administration, the fight against corruption, and the judicial system, which are intended to strengthen democracy and the rule of law. Further progress has been made in the area of human rights and the protection of minorities, although attention should be focused on the implementation of these reforms and on the enforcement of existing legislation. Structural reforms have included major privatisations in industry and in the energy sector, but further efforts are still needed in order to tackle the accumulation of arrears and reluctance to initiate bankruptcy procedures. Romania has made satisfactory progress with the adoption and implementation of the acquis. However, considerable efforts are still needed to ensure effective implementation and enforcement of the legislation arising from the commitments made in the negotiations. Overall, more legislative alignment and greater administrative capacity are needed to meet these commitments.

To find out more, see: Adoption of the Community Acquis.

Financial Framework

Support from the Phare programme and other pre-accession instruments is focused on the Accession Partnership priorities. The total volume of pre-accession assistance available to Romania for 2004 (around EUR 825 million) is substantial and increasing: EUR 405.3 million for the national Phare programme, EUR 158.7 million for Sapard and between EUR 289 million and EUR 343 million for Ispa.

Phare

Under the Phare programme, Romania received EUR 2.1 billion for the period 1992-2003, of which EUR 283 million for 2003. The economic and social cohesion subprogramme of the 2004 National Phare programme will be allocated about EUR 160 million, about 40% of the total Phare budget in 2004. This is an increase on the 2003 allocation of EUR 48 million.

The 2004 Phare programme focuses on the following priorities:

  • Political criteria: emphasis is put on multiannual programmes to strengthen administrative and judicial capacity, support minorities and civil society, fight corruption and fraud, improve prison conditions and strengthen police cooperation (EUR 50 million).
  • Economic criteria: substantial further assistance is provided for the creation of a unified, efficient and adequate land registration system as the basis for Community support (e.g. in agriculture) and also for ensuring the safety of investments (EUR 4.5 million). Meeting the obligations of membership: twinning, technical assistance and investment projects are carried out principally in four priority areas, namely public finance, agriculture, environment and border management, also subject to multiannual programming. Further areas will be covered specifically under the 2004 budget: internal market, competition, statistics, social policy and employment, energy, transport, consumer protection, justice and home affairs and the audiovisual sector (EUR 155.4 million).
  • Economic and social cohesion: support is provided in close conjunction with the three-year National Development Plan (NDP) adopted by the Romanian Government in December 2003 (EUR 160.1 million).

In addition, EUR 28 million of the programme will be devoted to cross-border cooperation programmes on Romania’s borders with Hungary (EUR 5 million), Bulgaria (EUR 8 million), Moldova (EUR 5 million), Serbia & Montenegro (EUR 4 million) and Ukraine (EUR 6 million).

Pre-accession aid

Aid for agricultural and rural development (SAPARD) and a structural instrument (ISPA) giving priority to measures in the transport and environmental sectors were introduced in 2000. The Regulation coordinating aid under Phare, SAPARD and ISPA, adopted in June 1999, enables the Commission to carry out a posteriori monitoring of contracts where it considers the financial control in the partner country to be deficient.

The total financial aid made available between 2000 and 2002 was EUR 1 890 billion, of which EUR 242 million under Phare, EUR 150 million under SAPARD; and between EUR 208 and EUR 270 million under ISPA. SAPARD 2003 allocated around EUR 162.2 million to Romania. The envelope agreed under ISPA for the same year was EUR 255.1 million.

The Community allocated EUR 158.7 million for implementation of the SAPARD programme in Romania in 2004. The main focus of the 2004 SAPARD programme is to increase the absorption and especially the use of the 2000 financial allocations, since any unused funds are due to be decommitted by the end of 2004. In December 2003 the SAPARD Agency was accredited for the implementation of the following three additional measures: “Investments in agricultural holdings”, “Development and diversification of economic activities, multiple activities and alternative income” and “Improving vocational training”. With this accreditation the Agency will manage 80% of the amount available for Romania under the programme.

ISPA programming is governed by the national strategy papers for transport and the environment, which the Romanian authorities finalised in 2000. The strategies for these two sectors are currently under revision. The strategic objectives in the field of transport are intended to address serious weaknesses in the network of roads and railways and are focused on the modernisation of the trans-European corridors crossing the country. Other priorities are dealing with increased traffic levels around urban areas and developing the use of waterways. In 2004, a total commitment of EUR 272.3 million was approved, in support of both transport (EUR 149.6 million) and environmental projects (EUR 122.7 million).

References

Commission Opinion COM(97) 2003 final
Not published in the Official Journal

ACCESSION PARTNERSHIPS

Council Decision 98/261/EC of 30.03.1998
Official Journal L 121 of 23.04.1998

Council Decision 1999/852/EC of 06.12.1999
Official Journal L 335 of 28.12.1999

Decision 2002/92/EC of 28.01.2002
Official Journal L 44 of 14.02.2002

Decision 2003/397/EC of 19.05.2003
Official Journal L 145 of 12.06.2003

REGULAR REPORTS

Commission Report COM(98) 702 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(1999) 510 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2000) 710 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2001) 700 final – SEC(2001) 1753
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2002) 700 final – SEC(2002) 1409
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2003)676 final – SEC(2003) 1211
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2004) 657 final – SEC(2004) 1200
Not published in the Official Journal

MONITORING REPORTS FOLLOWING THE SIGNATURE OF THE TREATY OF ACCESSION

Treaty concerning the Accession to the European Union of Romania of 25 April 2005 – Official Journal L 157 of 21.06.05
After the European Parliament gave its agreement on 13 April 2005, Romania signed its Treaty of Accession to the European Union in Luxembourg on 25 April 2005. Romania is scheduled to join the EU on 1 January 2007.

Comprehensive monitoring report from the Commission COM(2005) 534 final – SEC(2005)1354

Monitoring report of May 2006 from the Commission COM(2006) 214 final – SEC(2006) 596

Communication from the Commission of 16 May 2006 “Monitoring report on the state of preparedness for EU membership of Bulgaria and Romania” COM (2006) 214 final
Not published in the Official Journal

This summary is for information only and is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document.

Inland navigation: structural improvements

Inland navigation: structural improvements

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Inland navigation: structural improvements

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Transport > Waterborne transport

Inland navigation: structural improvements

Document or Iniciative

Council Regulation (EEC) No 1101/89 of 27 April 1989 on structural improvements in inland waterway transport [Official Journal L 116 of 116 of 28.04.1989].

Summary

Statement of measures for the structural improvement of inland waterway transport:

  • the scrapping of vessels and the payment of a premium to owners in order to reduce overcapacity in inland waterway transport;
  • supporting measures to avoid aggravation of existing overcapacity or the emergence of further overcapacity. This measure is known as the “old for new” rule and applies until 28 April 1999.

Description of vessels covered by the Regulation and those excluded.

Setting-up of a Scrapping Fund in each of the Member States concerned.

Payment of an annual contribution into the Funds by vessel owners for repayment of the sums prefinanced for the scrapping scheme by the Member States concerned.

Establishment of mutual financial support between the Funds in order to ensure that the time limit for repayment of these loans is the same for all the Funds.

Possibility for Member States concerned to take measures to make it easier for inland waterway carriers to obtain a retirement pension or to transfer to another economic activity.

Regulation (EEC) No 3572/90 sets out the provisions applicable following German unification.

Commission Regulation (EC) No 2310/96 in respect of the conditions applying to the placing in service of new pusher-craft capacity on inland waterways.

Commission Regulation (EC) No 742/98 in respect of the conditions applying to the placing in service of new dry cargo ships on inland waterways.

Related Acts

On 24 October 1994 the Council adopted a Resolution on structural improvements in inland waterway transport (Official Journal C 309, 05.11.1994).
This resolution calls upon the Commission to adopt measures with a view to improving the effectiveness of the regulations on structural improvements in inland waterway transport and to present, before 1 January 1995, an overall proposal on inland waterway transport, concerning in particular the future organization of the market and scrapping operations.

On 3 November 1997 the Commission presented a report on the overall impact of the measures provided for in Council Regulation (EC) No 844/94 of 12 April 1994 extending until 28 April 1999 the ‘old for new’ arrangements in the context of the measures to promote structural improvements in inland waterway transport introduced under Council Regulation (EEC) No 1101/89 of 27 April 1989 [COM(97) 555 final].

Force

Force

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Force

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Vocational training

Force

1) Objective

To support and complement the policies and activities developed by and in the Member States in the area of continuing vocational training.

2) Community Measures

Council Decision 90/267/EEC of 29 May 1990 establishing an action programme for the development of continuing vocational training in the European Community (Force).

3) Contents

The programme covers the period from 1 January 19 19to 31 December 1994.

Definitions of terms: “continuing vocational training”: any vocational training engaged in by a worker throughout his working life; “undertaking”: large, small and medium-sized undertakings, regardless of their legal status or economic sector, and all types of economic activity; “training body”: all types of establishment engaged in vocational training, including autonomous economic organizations and professional associations; “worker”: any person having active links with the labour market, including the self-employed.

Objectives:

  • to encourage investment in continuing vocational training and improve the return from it, in particular by developing partnerships;
  • to encourage measures in those economic sectors or regions where access to, or investment in, such training is inadequate;
  • to encourage innovations in the management of continuing vocational training, methodology and equipment;
  • to support transnational and transfrontier projects and the exchange of experience;
  • to identify better ways of forecasting requirements in terms of qualifications and occupations.

The programme comprises a common framework of guidelines designed to support and complement the measures adopted by the Member States, together with a number of transnational measures implemented at Community level. The aim is to contribute to promoting the convergence of initiatives by the Member States which seek:

  • to improve the conditions for workers’ mobility;
  • to enable the least qualified workers to benefit from training;
  • to promote effective equality of opportunity for men and women and to ensure that all workers who are nationals of Member States are afforded equal treatment as regards access to continuing vocational training;
  • to strengthen incentives for undertakings, particularly small and medium-sized ones, to invest in continuing vocational training;
  • to seek to improve the forecasting of trends in qualifications.

The Commission must implement the transnational measures which are aimed at workers in undertakings, taking account of the differing needs and situations which exist in the Member States. Transnational measures include:

  • an exchange scheme to promote the rapid dissemination of innovations;
  • the design and development of transnational or cross-border pilot schemes;
  • establishment of a European network of transnational operations;
  • sectoral and statistical surveys and analysis of contractual policy and trends in qualifications and occupations.

The Commission ensures that there is consistency and complementarity between the Force and other Community programmes. It draws upon the assistance of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training and is also assisted by an advisory committee, which it keeps informed about the development of the programme.

4) Deadline For Implementation Of The Legislation In The Member States

Not applicable.

5) Date Of Entry Into Force (If Different From The Above)

01.01.1991

6) References

Official Journal L 156, 21.06.1990

7) Follow-Up Work

Council Decision 92/170/EEC of 16 March 1992 (Official Journal L 75, 21.03.1992) amending Decision 89/657/EEC (Eurotecnet) and Decision 90/267/EEC (Force), setting up an advisory committee on education and continuing training covering both Force and Eurotecnet.

On 27 July 1997, the Commission adopted its Final Report on the Force Programme [COM(97) 384 final, not published in the Official Journal]

This report complements the interim report prepared by the Commission (document COM(94)418 final of 13 October 1994) that set out the development of the FORCE Programme from 1 January 1991 to 31 December 1993.

This final report, while summarising the overall implementation of the FORCE Programme between 1 January 1991 and 31 December 1994, focuses more specifically on the issues related to outcomes: evaluation, exploitation, monitoring and dissemination of the results, and the conclusions to be drawn for the development of Community policy in the field of continuing vocational training (CVT).

The programme was made up of two sets of measures:

  • a “common framework of guidelines” aiming at the promotion of common targets between the Member States;
  • secondly, the transnational measures backing up the Member State initiatives

At the core of the transnational measures is the principle of the transfer of knowledge, innovation, experience and know-how throughout the Community, on the basis of active partnerships between companies, the social partners and research and training institutes. FORCE provided the first testing ground for a collaborative approach to the development of Community continuing vocational training policy and practice.

The report focuses on the results of the transnational measures, i.e. pilot projects and research projects.

Three calls for proposals were announced during the life of FORCE, resulting in the selection of 720 projects (out of a total of some 2400 submitted). Priorities for the projects were their contribution to investment in continuing vocational training by companies and access to it for all groups of workers; the direct involvement of companies in priority, particularly SMEs, and of the social partners; the design, development and implementation of training plans as part of companies’ business strategy; the significance of the transnational partnerships. Some 56% of the results of the transnational projects received a ‘Transnational Product’ label for their training product.

The 720 projects selected under the three calls created a highly significant transnational network of companies, social partners, training institutes and public authorities for the transfer of expertise and innovation in continuing vocational training. The network comprises over 7000 members of which 50% are companies, in large part SMEs or groupings of SMEs, and some 15% represent the social partners.

The ‘research’ projects comprised the four Sectoral Surveys of continuing vocational training plans, the analysis of contractual policy on continuing vocational training, the Statistical Survey of company continuing vocational training, the Reporting System – access, quality and volume of continuing vocational training in Europe – and the European Continuing Training Report. Together these activities provide a concentration of data on national systems and practices and a substantial fund of information for both sides of industry, companies and policy-makers at all levels.

The report summarises the programme’s approach towards dissemination of the project results, the main findings of the continuing vocational training statistics (CVTS), and the links between continuing vocational training and other Community policies (structural policy, transport policy, industry). It also contains an overview over the funds allocated during the lifetime of the programme amounting to 83.4 MECU and a list of main publications.

Finally, it repeats the main conclusions of the final external evaluation highlighting many of the undoubted strengths of the FORCE Programme. In particular:

  • Project contractors and partners were overwhelmingly positive about the benefits they enjoyed from participating in the programme.
  • New CVT knowledge was generated through project-based needs analyses, networks and surveys and studies.
  • Innovations occurred in the way training was delivered in many projects, in particular through a new focus on work-based learning.
  • The transnational dimension of FORCE has been strong both with regard to transnational goals and awareness and in terms of co-operation between partners.
  • Most projects reported that they achieved their immediate objectives and dissemination activity was among project partners.
  • The programme was able to involve large numbers of SMEs, either through intermediary bodies or as pilot “test sites”.
  • The structuring of the publications ensured comparability at a European level about national CVT policy and enterprise CVT practice.
  • FORCE was perceived to have reinforced and supported Member State CVT policies and to have been one of the most important sources of experience for a number of successor European programmes including LEONARDO and ADAPT.

The FORCE Programme was inevitably less successful in achieving some of its objectives and its potential results were not always fully realised. In particular:

  • Knowledge from FORCE surveys and studies was not widely taken up by FORCE partners.
  • There is a lack of evidence so far of uptake of training outputs and products by intended beneficiaries.
  • There was an under-representation of beneficiaries with labour market disadvantage.
  • FORCE experience tends to confirm that the European training market is not yet well developed.

As a conclusion it can be said that the FORCE Programme has achieved certain tangible results in relation to the investment made and the available resources. In particular, enterprises have featured prominently in the projects, genuine transnational training partnerships have been set up, a systematic policy for comparable information on national continuing training systems and arrangements has been devised, and a substantial contribution has been made to the development of knowledge on training practices, especially through the sectoral surveys and networks. This is due mainly to the fact that the Programme formed part of the strategy for the development of continuing training, encompassing national policies and Community activities (Social Dialogue, Access, Objective 4, etc.).

8) Commission Implementing Measures

 

Strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships

Strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Environment > Air pollution

Strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, of 20 November 2002, “A European Union strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships” [COM (2002) 595 final, Volume I – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The strategy includes the above communication and a Directive on the sulphur content of marine fuels (see Related acts below).

Impact on environment and health

Emissions from seagoing ships include air pollutants, greenhouse gases and ozone-depleting substances entailing risks for human health and the environment. Sulphur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from ships are responsible for acid deposition, which can be harmful to the environment, as well as particulate matter harmful to health. NOx and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone harmful to health and to the environment. NOx emissions contribute to environmentally damaging eutrophication. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions contribute to climate change. Halon emissions damage the ozone layer.

The communication contains a table showing emissions of air pollutants and greenhouse gases from ships in Community waters in 2000 as well as projected emissions for 2010 and their environmental impact. Other figures show ships’ SO2 emissions in EU sea areas, the contributions of ships’ SO2 and NOx emissions to critical loads of acidity being exceeded, the role of NOx and COV emissions in the concentration of ground-level ozone in Europe and the role of ships’ emissions of NOx in exceeding the critical loads of nutrient nitrogen.

Preventive measures deployed

At the international level, Annex VI of the MARPOL Convention (adopted by the International Maritime Organisation in 1997, but not yet in force) sets regulations for the prevention of air pollution by ships. The Kyoto Protocol also calls for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from ships.

To date, the bulk of Community legislation on atmospheric emissions does not apply to ships. As a result, in the European Union, ship emissions are higher than other land-based transport emissions. For example, by 2010, SO2 emission from ships in European waters are likely to account for 75% of all emissions from EU land-based sources. There are, however, a number of Community measures requiring the Commission to take action on ship emissions:

  • Directive 2001/81/EC on national emission ceilings for certain atmospheric pollutants commits the Commission to report on the extent to which emissions from maritime traffic contribute to acidification, eutrophication and the formation of ground-level ozone;
  • Directive 1999/32 relating to a reduction in the sulphur content of certain liquid fuels sets sulphur limits for marine distillate oil used in EU territorial waters;
  • Directive 94/63/EC on the control of volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions resulting from the storage of petrol and its distribution from terminals to service stations [Official Journal L 365 of 31.12.1994] provides that the Commission must consider extending the scope of the Directive to include the loading and unloading of ships;
  • Regulation (EC) No 2037/2000 on substances that deplete the ozone layer bans the marketing and use of ozone-depleting substances in the EU;
  • The Clean Air for Europe (CAFE) Programme tackles all sources of atmospheric emissions;
  • The sixth Environment Action Programme: one of the objectives of 6EAP is to achieve levels of air quality that do not have unacceptable effects on human health and the environment, and to stabilise greenhouse gases emissions in order to prevent unnatural variations of the earth’s climate.

In recent years, economic instruments have been introduced in some countries and ports around the world to encourage ships to reduce their atmospheric emissions. These include differential taxes on marine fuels, differentiated port and fairway dues, and differentiated tonnage taxes.

Strategy objectives and actions

The objectives of the strategy are:

  • to reduce ships’ emissions of SO2 where they contribute to critical loads for acidification being exceeded, and where they affect local air quality;
  • to reduce ships’ emissions of NOx where they contribute to critical loads for acidification and eutrophication being exceeded, and build-ups of ground-level ozone which affect health and the environment;
  • to reduce ships’ emissions of primary particles where these affect local air quality;
  • to reduce ships’ emissions of VOCs where these contribute to build-ups of ground-level ozone which affect health and the environment;
  • to reduce ships’ emissions of CO2;
  • to eliminate emissions of ozone-depleting substances from all ships operating in EU waters.

The communication outlines a number of actions to achieve these objectives, including:

  • coordinating the positions of EU Member States within the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to press for tougher measures to reduce ship emissions. The entry into force of MARPOL Annex VI setting regulations for the prevention of air pollution from ships is a fundamental aspect of the strategy;
  • adopting the proposal for a Directive amending Directive 1999/32/EC to limit the sulphur content of marine fuels (see Related acts below);
  • amending Directive 97/68/EC on NOx and PM emissions standards from non-road engines;
  • if the IMO has not proposed tighter international standards by 2007, to bring forward a proposal to reduce NOx emissions from seagoing vessels;
  • to remove, by 2010, the exemption which permits the use of halon on board existing cargo ships operating in EU waters;
  • although measures are not needed at the moment, to re-examine the possibility of proposing legislation in future to reduce VOC emissions from ship-loading;
  • to examine the use of a set of economic instruments providing incentives to reduce ships’ atmospheric emissions beyond regulatory requirements;
  • to launch a charging regime on the basis of ships’ environmental performance to benefit the least damaging;
  • to fund research into low-emission ship technologies;
  • to organise conferences on best practice in the field of ship emission reduction technologies.

Related Acts

Commission Recommendation 2006/339/EC of 8 May 2006 on the promotion of shore-side electricity for use by ships at berth in Community ports [Official Journal L 125 of 12.5.2006]

The Commission stresses that, if the present trend continues, maritime transport could be responsible for more pollution than land-based sources by 2020. It recommends Member States to install shore-side electricity for use by ships at berth in ports and to offer economic incentives to operators to use such electricity. According to experts, the supply of electricity to berths would significantly reduce emissions of particulate matter, VOCs, NOx and SO2. The Commission calls on Member States to work within the IMO to promote the development of harmonised international standards for shore-side electrical connections.


Directive 2005/33/EC

of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2005 amending Directive 1999/32/EC relating to a reduction in the sulphur content of certain liquid fuels [Official Journal L 191 of 22.07.2005]
This Directive extends the scope of Directive 1999/32/EC to all petroleum-derived liquid fuels used by ships operating within Member States’ waters. It provides for measures such as abolishing existing derogations for marine gas oils, enforcing the 1.5% limit on sulphur content in Emission Control Areas as defined by the International Maritime Organisation, applying the same limit to all passenger ships operating on schedules services to or from any Community port, requiring all ships at berth in Community ports to use a fuel with a sulphur content not exceeding 0.1%, and allowing the use of approved emission abatement technologies as an alternative to using low-sulphur marine fuels.

EC type-approval system for motor vehicles

EC type-approval system for motor vehicles

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about EC type-approval system for motor vehicles

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Internal market > Motor vehicles > Technical implications of road safety

EC type-approval system for motor vehicles

Document or Iniciative

Directive 2007/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 September 2007 establishing a framework for the approval of motor vehicles and their trailers and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles.

Summary

The European Union (EU) is revising the system of EC type-approval for motor vehicles. The Directive retains (in revised form) the majority of the provisions of Directive 70/156/EEC and also introduces some entirely new concepts and requirements. It repeals and replaces Directive 70/156/EEC in order to have a clearer, more coherent text based on the principle of proportionality.

Scope

The requirement for EC type-approval for access to the internal market used to apply to private cars, motorcycles, mopeds and agricultural tractors. The European Union is extending this system to all categories of motor vehicles designed and constructed in one or more stages for use on the road and also to the systems, components and separate technical units designed and constructed for such vehicles. More precisely, the Directive is aimed at commercial vehicles (vans, lorries, semi-trailers, trailers), buses and coaches.

Type-approval system

The EC type-approval system is the only system in place for ensuring permanent monitoring of the conformity of output. Type-approval is based on the principle that manufacturers must issue a certificate of conformity for each vehicle manufactured, attesting that it conforms to the approved type. The manufacturer can opt for one of the following procedures: step-by-step type-approval *, single-step type-approval * or mixed type-approval *.

The Directive introduces a new EC type-approval method known as “multi-stage type-approval”. Each manufacturer involved in manufacturing a vehicle will fill in the part of the certificate relating to its own stage. The aim of this is to adapt the process to the specific nature of commercial vehicle manufacturing. The multi-stage procedure will generally involve two steps:

  • firstly, the initial manufacturer will obtain type-approval for a chassis (including the engine, wheels, shock absorbers, brakes, etc.) and a first EC type-approval certificate will be issued;
  • subsequently, the second manufacturer will assemble the bodywork and present the finished vehicle for type-approval. Where the same manufacturer is responsible for both chassis and bodywork, the vehicle may be type-approved using the time-honoured procedure for passenger cars.

The Directive is based on the principle of total harmonisation. EC type-approval procedures are compulsory and replace the national procedures with which they have co-existed up until now. The type-approval process is therefore noticeably simplified for manufacturers. It is enough for one Member State to type-approve a vehicle in order for all vehicles of that type to be registered throughout the Community solely on the basis of their certificate of conformity.

Improving road safety and environmental protection

The Directive aims to improve road safety by making a number of devices compulsory. These include ABS (anti-lock braking system), new and more effective rear-view mirrors (including the new front rear-view mirror), improved lights, side protection to prevent cyclists or pedestrians from being dragged under vehicles and anti-spray devices.

Furthermore, it lays down additional requirements for buses and coaches (emergency exits must be adapted to the number of people which the vehicle can hold, greater ease of access for persons with reduced mobility, sufficient “survival space” in the event of the vehicle rolling over etc.).

The Directive also focuses on various environmental obligations such as CO2 emissions, fuel consumption, engine power and smoke from diesel engines.

Timetable

The provisions of the proposal will be implemented from 2009 and will be phased in gradually until 2014, depending on the category of vehicle. The aim of the transition periods is to enable the industry to gradually adapt its production systems to the new requirements and enable governments to deal progressively with the increased number of requests for type-approval.

Background

Since 1970, Directive 70/156/EEC has been the main legal instrument for implementing the single market in the motor vehicle sector. It has been amended many times in order to keep pace with this sector’s constant development. It therefore seemed appropriate to increase its clarity by recasting it. Doing so also provides an opportunity to extend the scope of the established principles to new categories of motor vehicles.

The first stage of the revision, Directive 2001/116/EC, put in place the technical provisions needed for the practical implementation of the type-approval of commercial vehicles. This Directive marks the second stage of the revision of Directive 70/156/EEC.

Key terms of the act
  • Step-by-step type-approval: a vehicle-approval procedure consisting in the step-by-step collection of the whole set of EC type-approval certificates for the systems, components and separate technical units relating to the vehicle, and which leads, at the final stage, to the approval of the whole vehicle.
  • Single-step type-approval: a procedure consisting in the approval of a vehicle as a whole by means of a single operation.
  • Mixed type-approval: a step-by-step type-approval procedure for which one or more system approvals are achieved during the final stage of the approval of the whole vehicle, without it being necessary to issue the EC type-approval certificates for those systems.

Reference

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Directive 2007/46/EC

29.10.2007

29.4.2009

OJ L 263, 9.10.2007

Successive amendments and corrections to Directive 2007/46/EC have been incorporated in the basic text. This consolidated version is for reference purpose only.

LAST AMENDMENTS TO THE ANNEXES

Annex IV – List of requirements for the purpose of EC type-approval of vehicles
Commission Regulation (EU) No 183/2011 [Official Journal L 53 of 26.2.2011].

Annex VI
Commission Regulation (EU) No 183/2011 [Official Journal L 53 of 26.2.2011].