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Water Protection and Management

Water protection and management

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Water protection and management

Topics

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

Environment > Water protection and management

Water protection and management

Some 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered by seas and oceans, and these produce almost three quarters of the oxygen we breathe. We can use directly only 1% of this water, however, and many forms of human activity put water resources under considerable pressure. Polluted water, whatever the source of the pollution, flows one way or another back into our natural surroundings – into the sea or water tables – from where it can have a harmful effect on human health and the environment. One of the most important pieces of legislation in this area is the Water Framework Directive.

GENERAL FRAMEWORK

  • Water protection and management (Water Framework Directive)
  • Pricing and long-term management of water
  • Flood management and evaluation
  • Droughts and water scarcity
  • Urban waste water treatment

SPECIFIC USES OF WATER

  • Quality of drinking water
  • Bathing water quality (until 2014)
  • Bathing water quality
  • Water suitable for fish-breeding
  • Quality of shellfish waters

MARINE POLLUTION

  • Strategy for the marine environment
  • Maritime safety: compensation fund for oil pollution damage
  • Maritime safety: prevention of pollution from ships
  • Ship-source pollution and criminal penalties
  • Maritime safety: prohibition of organotin compounds on ships
  • Maritime safety: Bunkers Convention

REGIONAL WATERS

  • European Union Strategy for Danube Region
  • Baltic Sea Strategy
  • Environment strategy for the Mediterranean
  • Strategy to improve maritime governance in the Mediterranean
  • Black Sea Synergy
  • Danube – Black Sea region

Regional convention

  • Barcelona Convention for the protection of the Mediterranean
  • Helsinki Convention on the protection of the Baltic Sea
  • Helsinki Convention: trans-boundary watercourses and international lakes
  • Convention for the Protection of the Rhine
  • OSPAR Convention

DISCHARGES OF SUBSTANCES

  • Industrial emissions
  • Integrated pollution prevention and control (until 2013)
  • Environmental quality standards applicable to surface water
  • Protection of groundwater against pollution
  • Detergents
  • Stockholm Convention on persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
  • Agricultural nitrates
  • Community strategy concerning mercury
  • Protection of the aquatic environment against discharges of dangerous substances (until 2013)
  • Other substances: protection of groundwater

 


 

Another Normative about Water protection and management

Topics

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

Agriculture > Environment

Water protection and management (Water Framework Directive)

Document or Iniciative

Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2000 establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy [See amending acts].

Summary

The European Union (EC) has established a framework for the protection of:

  • inland surface waters *;
  • groundwater *;
  • transitional waters *; and
  • and coastal waters *.

This Framework-Directive has a number of objectives, such as preventing and reducing pollution, promoting sustainable water usage, environmental protection, improving aquatic ecosystems and mitigating the effects of floods and droughts.

Its ultimate objective is to achieve “good ecological and chemical status” for all Community waters by 2015.

Administrative arrangements

Member States have to identify all the river basins * lying within their national territory and to assign them to individual river basin districts *. River basins covering the territory of more than one Member State will be assigned to an international river basin district.

Member States are to designate a competent authority for the application of the rules provided for in this Framework-Directive within each river basin district.

Identification and analysis of waters

By 2004 at the latest, each Member State shall produce:

  • an analysis of the characteristics of each river basin district;
  • a review of the impact of human activity on water;
  • an economic analysis of water use;
  • a register of areas requiring special protection;
  • a survey of all bodies of water used for abstracting water for human consumption and producing more than 10 m³ per day or serving more than 50 persons.

This analysis must be revised in 2013 and every six years thereafter.

Management plans and programmes of measures

In 2009, nine years after the Framework-Directive entered into force, management plans were produced for each river basin district, taking account of the results of the analyses and studies carried out. These plans cover the period 2009-2015. They shall be revised in 2015 and then every six years thereafter.

The management plans must be implemented in 2012. They aim to:

  • prevent deterioration, enhance and restore bodies of surface water, achieve good chemical and ecological status of such water by 2015 at the latest and to reduce pollution from discharges and emissions of hazardous substances;
  • protect, enhance and restore the status of all bodies of groundwater, prevent the pollution and deterioration of groundwater, and ensure a balance between groundwater abstraction and replenishment;
  • preserve protected areas.

The management plans for river basin districts can be complemented by more detailed management programmes and plans for a sub-basin, a sector or a particular type of water.

Temporary deterioration of bodies of water is not in breach of the requirements of this Framework-Directive if it is the result of circumstances which are exceptional or could not reasonably have been foreseen and which are due to an accident, natural causes or force majeure.

Member States shall encourage participation by all stakeholders in the implementation of this Framework-Directive, specifically with regard to the management plans for river basin districts. Projects from the management plans must be submitted to public consultation for at least 6 months.

From 2010, Member States must ensure that water pricing policies provide adequate incentives for users to use water resources efficiently and that the various economic sectors contribute to the recovery of the costs of water services, including those relating to the environment and resources.

Member States must introduce arrangements to ensure that effective, proportionate and dissuasive penalties are imposed in the event of breaches of the provisions of this Framework Directive.

A list of priority substances selected from among the ones which present a significant risk to the aquatic environment has been drawn up at European level. This list is set out in Annex X to this Framework-Directive.

Key terms used in the act
  • Inland waters: all standing or flowing water on the surface of the land, and all groundwater on the landward side of the baseline from which the breadth of territorial waters is measured.
  • Surface water: inland waters, except groundwater, transitional waters and coastal waters, except in respect of chemical status, for which territorial waters are also included.
  • Groundwater: all water which is below the surface of the ground in the saturation zone and in direct contact with the ground or subsoil.
  • Transitional waters: bodies of surface water in the vicinity of river mouths which are partly saline in character as a result of their proximity to coastal waters but which are substantially influenced by freshwater flows.
  • Coastal water: surface water on the landward side of a line every point of which is at a distance of one nautical mile on the seaward side from the nearest point of the baseline from which the breadth of territorial waters is measured, extending where appropriate up to the outer limit of transitional waters.
  • River basin: the area of land from which all surface run-off flows through a sequence of streams, rivers and, possibly, lakes into the sea at a single river mouth, estuary or delta.
  • River basin district: the area of land and sea, made up of one or more neighbouring river basins together with their associated groundwaters and coastal waters, which is identified under Article 3(1) as the main unit for management of river basins.

References

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

Directive 2000/60/EC

22.12.2000

22.12.2003

OJ L 327 of 22.12.2000

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

Decision 2455/2001/EC

16.12.2001

OJ L 331 of 15.12.2001

Directive 2008/32/EC

21.3.2008

OJ L 81 of 20.3.2008

Directive 2009/31/EC

25.6.2009

OJ L 140 of 5.6.2009

The successive amendments and corrections to Directive 2000/60/EC have been incorporated in the original text. This consolidated versionis of documentary value only.

AMENDMENT OF ANNEXES

Annex X – List of priority substances in the field of water policy

Directive 2008/105/EC [Official Journal L 348 of 24.12.2008].

Related Acts

Communication from the Commission of 22 March 2007 – Towards sustainable water management in the European Union – First stage in the implementation of the Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC [COM(2007) 128 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

In this report the Commission sets out the results provided by the Member States concerning the application of the Water Framework Directive. Among other things, it mentions that there is a considerable risk that several Member States will fail to meet the targets set in the Framework Directive, in particular because of the physical deterioration of aquatic ecosystems, especially as a result of overexploitation of water resources and disturbing levels of pollution from diffuse sources. The Commission also indicates that there have been problems with meeting the deadline for incorporating the Framework Directive into national law and shortcomings in the actual transposition process in some cases. However, the establishment of river basin districts and the designation of the competent national authorities seem to be well under way, although progress does still need to be made with regard to international cooperation in some instances. The Commission also indicates that there are considerable differences in the quality of the environmental and economic assessments made in respect of river basins as well as shortcomings in the economic analyses carried out. The Commission finishes by making a number of recommendations to the Member States with a view to making good the shortcomings reported, integrating sustainable management of water into other national policies and making the most of public participation, and gives advance notice of what it plans to do in future in the context of European water management policy.

Report from the Commission of 1 April 2009 published in accordance with article 18.3 of the Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC on programmes for monitoring of water status [COM(2009) 156 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Water Protection and Management in other Legal Encyclopedias

Klamath Basin Water Supply Enhancement Act of 2000 – American Legal Encyclopedia

Coastal Zone Management Act Of 1972 in the American Legal Encyclopedia

Consumer credit agreements

Consumer credit agreements

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Consumer credit agreements

Topics

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

Internal market > Single market for capital

Consumer credit agreements

Document or Iniciative

Directive 2008/48/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2008 on credit agreements for consumers and repealing Council Directive 87/102/EEC.

Summary

This Directive aims to harmonise the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States covering credit for consumers, in order to facilitate cross-border services. It shall increase the transparency of contractual conditions and improve the level of consumer protection.

However the Directive is not applicable to credit agreements that are:

  • secured by a mortgage;
  • concluded for the purchase of land or immovable property;
  • whose total amount is less than 200 euros or more than 75 000 euros;
  • relating to lease or hire where there is no obligation to purchase;
  • granted free of interest, without other charges or in the form of an overdraft facility;
  • concluded with an investment company;
  • the result of a judicial ruling;
  • linked to the payment or to the surety of a debt;
  • linked to loans granted to a limited group of the public.

Member States may also apply a less restrictive regime to organisations with social aims and activities that only profit their members, where they offer an annual percentage rate of charge which is lower than the current market rate.

During the pre-contractual phase,the creditor * or their intermediaries * must supply clear information on the main features of the credit offered in due course. In particular, this concerns:

  • the duration of the credit agreement;
  • the total amount of credit;
  • the borrowing rate and rates relating thereto;
  • the annual percentage rate of charge * and the total amount owed by the consumer *;
  • the amount, number and frequency of instalments;
  • the cash price for goods or services supplied against specific payment terms or a linked credit agreement;
  • costs linked to or resulting from the agreement;
  • contractual obligations;
  • consumer rights;
  • the consequences of late payments and defaults;
  • sureties.

Consumers shall receive this information in a standard form as stipulated in Annexe II of the Directive.

Apart from an obligation to supply comprehensive pre-contractual information, creditors must supply consumers with adequate explanations so that the latter may choose a contract which corresponds to their needs and to their financial situation. In addition creditors must evaluate the solvency of their clients before concluding an agreement, whilst also respecting the right of consumers to be informed when their request for credit is rejected.

The contract must restate the main information relating to the credit offer chosen. If the borrowing rate is modified *, the consumer must be informed of the new amount, the number and frequency of instalments.

Consumers may exercise their right to withdraw by notifying the creditor of their intention, without having to justify their decision. This must take place within fourteen days from the conclusion of the agreement.

Consumers also have the right to make early repayment of their debt. They can exercise this right at any time, as long as the creditor receives fair compensation which is objectively justified.

Member States shall ensure that creditors and credit intermediaries fulfil their obligations. They shall ensure that audits are carried out by an independent authority.

Context

This Directive repeals Directive 87/102/EEC in order to strengthen consumer protection. It must be implemented in Member States before 2 May 2010.

Key terms of the Act
  • Creditor: any natural or legal person who grants or promises to grant credit in the course of their trade, business or profession.
  • Credit intermediary: a natural or legal person who does not act as a creditor and who, in the course of their trade, business or profession:
    1. presents or offers credit agreements to consumers;
    2. assists consumers by carrying out preparatory work for agreements;
    3. concludes credit agreements with consumers on behalf of the creditor.
  • Total amount payable by the consumer: the sum of the total amount of the credit and the total cost of the credit to the consumer.
  • Annual percentage rate of charge: the total cost of the credit to the consumer, expressed as an annual percentage of the total amount of credit.
  • Borrowing rate: the interest rate expressed as a fixed or variable percentage applied on an annual basis to the amount of credit drawn down.

References

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

Directive 2008/48/EC

11.6.2008

12.5.2010

L 133/66 of 22.5.2008

Resources

Further Reading

  • AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa. Atti del Conv egno internazionale dedicato alla memoria de Alberto Trabucchi, Milano, Cedam, 2002.
  • ALPA, G., “Autonomia privata e «garanzie» commerciali”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 109 y ss.
  • ALPA, G./DE NOVA, G., y otros, L´acquisto di beni de consumo, Milano, 2002.
  • AMADIO, G., “La conformità al contrato tra garanzia e responsabilità”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 2 y ss.
  • AMADIO, G., “Difetto di conformità e tutele sinallagmatiche”, Riv. dir. civ., 2001, I, pp. 863 y ss.
  • AMADIO, G., “Conformità al contratto e tutele satisfattorie”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 151 y ss.
  • AMATO, C., Per un diritto europeo dei contratti con i consumatori, Milano, Giuffrè, 2003.
  • AMTENBRINK, F./SCHNEIDER, C., “Die europaweite Vereinheitlichung von Verbrauchsgüterkauf und –garantien”, VuR, 1996, pp. 367 y ss.
  • AMTENBRINK, F./SCHNEIDER, C., “Europäische Vorgaben für ein neues Kaufrecht und deutsche Schuldrechtsrecofr”, VuR, 1999, pp. 293 y ss.
  • ANDERS, “Zur Reform des Kaufrechts”, ZRP, 2000, pp. 293 y ss.
  • ARNOLD, S./Hannes UNBERATH, H., “Die Umsetzung der Richtlinie über den Verbrauchsgüterkauf in England”, ZEuP, 2004, n.º 2, pp. 366 y ss.
  • BALDUS, C., Binnenkonkurrenz kaufrechtlicher Sachmängelansprüche nach Europarecht, Baden-Baden, Nomos Verlag, 1999.
  • BALL, “Neues Gewährleistungsrecht beim Kauf ”, ZGS, 2002, pp. 49 y ss.
  • BAMBERGER, H. G./ROTH, H., Kommentar zum Bürgerlichen Gesetzbuch, Band 1, München, Beck, 2003.
  • BÄRENZ, “Die Auslegung der überschießenden Umsetzung von Richtlinien am Beispiel des Gesetzes zur Modernisierung des Schuldrechts”, DB, 2003, pp. 375 y ss.
  • BEMMANN, “Der Pferdekauf im Jahr nach der Schuldrechtsreform”, AUR, 2003, pp. 233 y ss.
  • BERESKA, “Der neue Lieferantenregress nach §§ 478, 479 BGB. Eine Arbeitshilfe”, ZGS, 2002, pp. 59 y ss.
  • BERGMANN, N., “Die Umsetzung der Verbrauchersgüterkaufrichtlinie 1999/44/EG in Italien: ein neuen Paragrapg im Codice civile”, en Jahrbuch für italienisches Recht, 2003, pp. 261 y ss.
  • BERNARDEAU, L., “Harmonisation minimale et droit applicable”, en J.
  • BERTI, C., La vendita dei beni di consumo Commentario breve agli artt. 1519-bis ss.cc. (Artt. 1519-bis – 1519-nonies c.c.), Milano, Giuffrè, 2004.
  • BIANCA, C. M., “Consegna di aliud pro alio e decadenza dai rimedi por omessa denunzia nella direttiva 1999/44/CE”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 16 y ss.
  • BIANCA, C. M., “L´attuazione della directtiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 103 y ss.
  • BIN, M., “Per un dialogo con il futuro legislatore dell´attuazione: ripensare l´intera disciplina della non conformità dei beni nella vendita alla luce della direttiva comunitaria”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2000, pp. 403 y ss.
  • BIN, M./CALVO, R./CIATTI, A./DELOGU, L., “Un progetto per l’attuazione in Italia della direttiva 1999/44/CE (dalla redazione torinese della rivista)”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 156 y ss.
  • BIN, M./LUMINOSO, A., Le garanzie nella vendita dei beni di consumo, Padova, Cedam, 2003.
  • BOCCHINI, F., “La tutela del consumatore nella vendita tra piazze diverse”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 161 y ss.
  • BOCCHINI, F., “La vendita tra piazze diverse di beni di consumo”, Riv. dir. civ., 2002, II, pp. 2 y ss.
  • BÖHLE, J., Der Rückgriff in der Lieferkette gemäss der §§ 478, 479 BGB nach dem Schuldrechtsmodernisierungsgesetz, Berlin, Duncker & Humblot, 2004.
  • BONFANTE, G./CAGNASSO, O., “Risoluzione del contratto ed “azione di adempimento” quali strumento di tutela del consumatoreo dell’impresa?”, Contr. Impr./Eur., pp. 23 y ss.
  • BRAMBRING, “Wer schützt den Verbraucher vor dem Verbraucherschutz?”, ZNotP, 2003, pp. 42 y ss.
  • BRÜGGEMEIER, G., “Zur Reform des deutschen Kaufrechts – Herausforderungen durch die EG-Verbrauchsgüterkaufrichtlinie”, JZ, 2000,pp. 529 y ss.
  • BRÜGGEMEIER, G., “Zur Reform des deutschen Kaufrechts – Herausforderungen durch die EG-Verbrauchersgüterkaufrichtlinie”, JZ, 2000, pp. 529 y ss.
  • BRÜGGEMEIER, G., “Das neue Kaufrecht des Bürgerlichen Gesetzbuches”, WM, 2002, pp. 1376 y ss.
  • BUCK, “Kaufrecht”, en WESTERMANN (Coord.), Das Schuldrecht, 2002, pp. 105 y ss.
  • BÜDENBENDER, U., “Das Kaufrecht nach dem Schuldrechtsreformgesetz (Teil II)”, DStR, 2002, pp. 361 y ss.
  • BÜDENBENDER, U., “Die Bedeutung der Verbrauchsgüterkaufrichtlinie für das deutsche Kaufrecht nach der Schuldrechtsreform”, ZEuP, 2004, n.º 1, pp. 49 y ss.
  • CABELLA PISU, L., Vendita, vendite: quale riforma delle garanzie?”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 34 y ss.
  • CALAIS-AULOY, J., “De la garantie des vices cachés à la garantie de conformité”, Mélanges Ch. Mouly, 1998, t. 2, pp. 63 y ss.
  • CALLIES, G.-P., “Nach der Schuldrechtsreform: Perspektiven des deutschen, europäischen und internationalen Verbrauchervertragsrechts”, AcP, 2003, n.º 4/5, pp. 575 y ss.
  • CALVAO DA SILVA, Venda de bens de consumo. Comentário, Coimbra, 2003.
  • CALVO, R., “L´attuazione della direttiva n. 44 del 1999: una ‘chance’ per la revisione in senso unitario della disciplina sulle garanzie e rimedi nella vendita”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2000, pp. 463 y ss.
  • CALVO, R., “Nota a margine del convegno di Padova dedicato alla memoria di Alberto Trabucchi su “L’attuazione della direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 419 y ss.
  • CANARIS, C.-W., “L´attuazione in Germania della direttiva concernente la vendita di beni de consumo”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 235 y ss.
  • CANARIS, C.-W., “Die Nacherfüllung durch Lieferung einer mangelfreien Sache beim Stückkauf”, JZ, 2003, pp. 831 y ss.
  • CIATTI, A., “L’àmbito di aplicazione ratione materiae della direttiva comunitaria sulla vendita e le garanzie dei beni di consumo”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2000, pp. 433 y ss.
  • CIGINI, S., “L’avant-projet sull’attuazione nel diritto francese della direttiva n. 44 del 1999”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2003, pp. 902 y ss.
  • CORAPI, D., “La direttiva 99/44/CE e la Convenzione di Vienna sulla vendita internazionale: verso un nuovo diritto comune della vendita?”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 135 y ss.
  • COSTANZA, M., “La direttiva 99/44: art. 3 e obblighi di pagamento del compradore”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 185 y ss.
  • CUGINI, S., “L’avant-projet sull’attuazione nel diritto francese della direttiva n. 44 del 1999”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2003, n.º 2, pp. 902 y ss.
  • CZIESIELSKY, M., Verbrauchsgüterkaufrichtlinie und amerikanisches Gewährleistungsrecht im Vergleich, Hamburg, Kovac, 2003.
  • DE CRISTOFARO, G., Difetto di conformità al contratto e diritti del consumatore. L´ordinamento italiano e la direttiva 99/44/CE sulla vendita e le garanzie dei beni di consumo, Padova, Cedam, 2000.
  • DE CRISTOFARO, G., “L´esonero de responsabilità del venditore per i difetti di conformità che il consumatore conosceva o non poteva ragionevolmente ingorare «al momento della conclusione del contrato»: brevi note su taluni aspetti problematici dell´attuazione dell´art. 2, par. 3, della direttiva 99/44/CE”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 201 y ss.
  • DE MATTEIS, R., “Il difetto di conformità e l’equilibrio contrattuale dello scambio”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2001, pp. 46 y ss.
  • DE NOVA, G., “La proposta di direttiva sulla vendita e la garanzia dei beni di consumo”, Riv. dir. priv., 1997, pp. 22 y ss.
  • DE NOVA, G., “La recezione della Direttiva sulle garanzie nella vendita di beni di consumo: vincoli, ambito de applicazione, difetto de conformità”, Riv. dir. priv., 2001, pp. 759 y ss.
  • DE NOVA, G., “La recepzione della direttiva sulle garanzie nella vendita dei beni de consumo: vincoli, ambito di applicazione, difetto di conformità”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 33 y ss.
  • DE SAINT DIDIER, C., “La directive 1999/44 du 25 mai 1999 sur certains aspects de la vente et des garanties des biens de consommation: impact pour les professionnels”, en J. LETE ACHIRICA (Ed.), Garantías en la venta de bienes de consumo. Les garanties dans la vente de biens de consommation, Santiago de Compostela, Ed. Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, 2004, pp. 277 y ss.
  • DELL’AQUILA, G./PARADISI, G., “La Direttiva 1999/44/CE, in materia di garanzie post-vendita a tutela dei consumatori, e il diritto vigente”, Disciplina del commercio, 2001, pp. 44 y ss.
  • DELOGU, L., “La proposta modificata di direttiva del Parlamento europeo del Consiglio sulla vendita e le garanzie dei beni di consumo”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 1998, pp. 1039 y ss.
  • DELOGU, L., “Il patti modificativi della responsabilità del venditore: la direttiva 1999/44/CE, l’odierno diritto italiano e le prospettive di riforma”, Contr. Impr./Eur., 2000, pp. 489 y ss.
  • DI MAJO, A., “Garanzia e inadempimiento nella vendita di beni di consumo”, Europa e dir. priv., 2002, pp. 1 y ss.
  • DI MAJO, A., “Il sistema dei rimedi: risoluzione del contratto, riduzione del prezzo e pretese risarcitoria”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 83 y ss.
  • DI PAOLA, L., “Vendita di beni de consumo: si rafforzano le garanzie per l´acquirente”, Le nuove leggi civile commentate, 2002, n.º 2-3, pp. 309 y ss.
  • DIEZ-PICAZO, L., “I problemi della attuazione della direttiva 1999/44/CE nei diritti nazionali”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 255 y ss.
  • DOEHNER, R., Die Schuldrechtsreform vor dem Hintergrund der Verbrauchsgüterkauf-Richtlinie. die Richtlinie des Europäischen Parlaments und des Rates zu bestimmten Aspekten des Verbrauchsgüterkaufs und der Garantien für Verbrauchsgüter und ihre Auswirkungen auf das deutsche Recht, Baden-Baden, Nomos Verlag, 2004.
  • EBERSOHL, J. N., Vertragsfreiheit und Verbrauchererschutz in der schwedischen Gesetzgebung der letzten Jahrzenhnte. Zum skandinavischen Einfluss aud das Europäische Verbraucherschtuzrecht, Göttingen, V & R Unipress, 2003.
  • ECCHER, B., “Il recepimento della direttiva 99/44/CE nell´ordinamento giuridico austriaco”, en AAVV, L´attuazione della Direttiva 99/44/CE in Italia e in Europa, Milano, Cedam, 2002, pp. 263 y ss.
  • ECCHER, B./SCHURR, F. A., “Die Umsetzung der Richtlinie 99/44/EG über den Verbrauchsgüterkauf in Italien”, ZEuP, 2003, n.º 1, pp. 65 y ss.
  • ECCHER, B./SCHURR, F. A., “Die Richtlinie 99/44/EG und das Neur Kaufrecht in Italien”, en Jahrbuch für italienisches Recht, 2003, pp. 3 y ss.
  • EGER, T., “Einige ökonomische Aspekte der Europäischen Verbrauchsgüterkauf-Richtlinie und ihrer Umsetzung in deutsches Recht”, German Working Papers in Law and Economics, 2002-1-1032 (disponible en https://ideas.repec.org/p/bep/dewple/2002-1-1032.html).
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  • SCHMIDT, “Änderungen des Kaufrechts durch die Schuldrechtsreform und deren Bedeutung für die Praxis der Insolvenzverwaltung”, ZInsO, 2002, pp. 103 y ss.
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  • SCHNYDER, A./STRAUB, R. M.,“Das EG-Grünbuch über Verbrauchsgütergarantien und Kundendienst. Erster Schritt zu einem einheitlichen EG-Kaufrecht?”, ZEuP, 1996, pp. 8 y ss.
  • SCHREIER, B., Vergleich der Umsetzung ausgewählter Verbraucherschutzrichtlinien in Deutschland und Norwegen. Vergleich der Umsetzung der AGB-Richtlinie 93/13/EWG, der Haustürwiderrufs-Richtlinie 85/577/EWG und der Verbrauchsgüterkauf-Richtlinie 99/44/EG, Hamburg, Verl. Kovac, J, 2004.
  • SCHUBEL, “Mysterium Lieferkette”, ZIP, 2002, pp. 2061 y ss.
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  • State aid to shipbuilding

    State aid to shipbuilding

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about State aid to shipbuilding

    Topics

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

    Competition > Rules applicable to specific sectors > Competition in transport

    State aid to shipbuilding (I)

    Document or Iniciative

    Council Regulation (EC) No 3094/95 of 22 December 1995 on aid to shipbuilding [See amending acts].

    Summary

    Regulation (EC) No 3094/95, which was the result of an agreement concluded in 1994 within the framework of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) regarding normal competitive conditions in the commercial shipbuilding and repair industry, cannot enter into force until the agreement has been ratified by all the parties. Given the reluctance by the United States to ratify, the Council initially adopted Regulation (EC) No 1540/98 in its place. This Regulation has now expired and has been replaced by the link on state aid to shipbuilding.

    Definition of some of the terms used in the Regulation (“shipbuilding”, “ship repair”, etc.).

    Enumeration of the various types of aid and the conditions which must be satisfied for them to be judged compatible with the common market:

    • social assistance (when such aid is intended to cover the cost of measures for the exclusive benefit of workers who lose retirement benefits or who are made redundant or are otherwise permanently deprived of their employment in the respective shipbuilding, conversion or repair enterprise, when such assistance is related to the discontinuance of shipyard activities, bankruptcy, or changes in activities other than shipbuilding, conversion or repair);
    • research and development aid (when such aid relates to fundamental research, basic industrial research, applied research or development, provided the limits set by the Regulation are observed);
    • indirect aid (when this is given in the form of state loans and guarantees, as development assistance to a developing country or for the building or conversion of ships, provided the conditions laid down in the Regulation are observed).

    Derogations in favour of Spain, Portugal and Belgium, whereby reconstruction aid granted in the form of investment assistance and any other aid for social measures not covered by the Regulation and granted after 1 January 1996 may be authorised, provided the conditions laid down in the Regulation are observed.

    Possibility of considering other aid to be compatible in the particular cases listed in the Regulation.

    Monitoring procedure:

    • obligation on Member States to give the Commission advance notice of any aid scheme or amendment of an existing scheme, any decision to apply an aid scheme to an undertaking or any individual application of aid schemes;
    • obligation on Member States to provide the Commission with various reports on aid, on the basis of which the Commission draws up an annual overall report to serve as a basis for discussion with national experts.

    References

    Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Regulation (EC) No 3094/95 31.12.1995 OJ L 332 of 30.12.1995
    Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Regulation (EC) No 2600/97 23.12.1997 L 351 of 23.12.1997

    Related Acts

    Seventh Commission report to the Council on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2003) 232 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    The countries or regions with the largest market shares in this sector are Japan, South Korea, China and the European Union. The sector is currently reeling from a deep crisis caused by three factors: past over-ordering, the global economic slowdown – and particularly the US slowdown – and the repercussions of September 11.

    Order intake worldwide fell by 12.3% from 2001 to 2002, following a decrease of 20.7% between 2000 and 2001. European shipyards have, however, been the worst affected by this slump, with orders generally down 50% on 2001 and by over 70% compared to 2000. The hardest hit vessels are container ships and cruise ships. Only oil product tankers and bulk carriers have seen increased ordering, due to the replacement of old tonnage following new European Union maritime safety regulations and strong domestic demand in the Far East.

    The main shipbuilding regions have, however, been affected in different ways: Japanese yards have the advantage of strong domestic demand, especially for bulk carriers; South Korea and China are battling for tanker contracts; and the European Union is only really active in the ferries and small tankers segment, where replacement needs are building up, although it is possible that Korean shipbuilders might try to further penetrate this market segment.

    Prices: the statistics show that some categories of vessel are particularly affected by a major drop in market prices. Large container ships have seen their sales prices fall as a result of excessive price-cutting by Korean yards. The trend has been such that production costs have not always been covered. This is all the more surprising as the current weakness of the US dollar against the euro, won and yen should have led to an across-the-board increase in US dollar prices. Studies have also been carried out to investigate the relationship between the normal price, which is the full cost of production plus a profit margin of 5%, and the actual contract price charged by certain Korean shipyards. Given that production costs have risen in recent years, the gap between contract prices and normal prices has widened further. The studies are based on an analysis of several Korean yards and have revealed that the difference between the normal price and the contract price ranges from between -1% and -39%. All these results indicate a clear trend: Korean shipyards are trying to grab every order that appears in the market no matter the cost, despite assertions made to the contrary by the management of the different Korean groups. This strategy could be damaging if Korean yards fail to take certain factors into consideration, such as inflation and debt servicing, and major financial difficulties could ensue in the short term.

    Sixth Commission report to the Council on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2002) 622 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    Following the breakdown of two rounds of talks conducted by the Commission (26-27 August 2002 in Seoul and 24-27 September 2002 in Brussels) the Commission had no choice but to initiate proceedings with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and to start bilateral consultations with the Republic of Korea. At the same time a temporary defensive mechanism was authorised for certain market segments and for a limited period only.

    The crisis in world shipbuilding is deepening with very slow order intake in the major shipbuilding regions in the first six months of 2002. The main reasons are past over-supply, slowing economies around the world and the effects of 11 September. Only Japanese yards still manage to fill building slots. However, this is helped a lot by domestic demand, in particular for bulk carriers, as has been long-standing practice in this region.

    World-wide ordering of new ships in the first half of 2002 was down by almost two thirds compared to average quarterly figures in 2000, which was admittedly the best year ever for shipbuilding. In the EU the situation is even worse, with ordering down by almost 80% compared to 2000. Prices for new ships have declined further and are now at the lowest level for more than a decade. Yards in South Korea have further lowered offer prices despite increases in all major cost factors, and a number of Korean yards may find it difficult to meet their financial obligations if order intake is not increased soon.

    Fifth Commission report to the Council on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2002) 205 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    The world shipbuilding market continues to face serious difficulties due to a substantial imbalance of supply and demand. Past expansion of shipyards, mainly in Korea, but now increasingly also in China, has led to price depression. Thanks to a historically high level of ordering in 2000, prices recovered to some extent, but the significant drop in orders in 2001 has led to a new reduction in prices. The year 2001 has been very problematic for the maritime industries worldwide: the recession in the United States and the terrorist attacks of 11 September have reduced the demand for sea trade and cruises respectively. The decline in ordering affected the container ship and cruise ship sectors most, leading to a drop in overall market shares for Korea and the EU, which are particularly strong in these segments.

    The detailed cost investigations undertaken by the Commission show that certain Korean yards continue to price ships below cost while others are trying to improve their bottom line. Despite various rounds of talks with Korea, the Commission did not manage to convince the Korean authorities and yards to fully implement market principles and allow a shake-out of non-viable companies. An improvement in the market situation is therefore unlikely and the Commission has consequently proposed counter-measures to the Council, including preparing the ground for requesting a dispute settlement at the World Trade Organisation and the introduction of a temporary defensive mechanism for shipbuilding.

    Fourth Commission report to the Council on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2001) 219 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    The year 2000 has seen a significant expansion in orders for new ships. Nearly 56% more orders were placed as compared to 1999, primarily benefiting South Korean shipyards, which have seen their market share increase again. EU yards also benefited considerably from the higher demand for ships, although orders for cruise ships probably played a dominant role here. In 2000 South Korea has consolidated its dominant position on the world shipbuilding market, accounting for more than 35 % of all tonnage ordered worldwide. If cruise ship orders are included, the market share for the EU and Norway is around 18 % (in cgt). However, if they are excluded from the overall figures, the market share of EU yards for new orders in 2000 is below 10 %. In 2000 prices for new ships are reported to have recovered in certain market segments from the very low levels seen after the Asian crisis in 1997.

    Third Commission report on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2000) 730 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    In this report the Commission confirms the general trend highlighted in the second report of 18 May 2000, namely that, despite increased orders, ship prices have not on the whole recovered the ground lost since 1997. Prices continue to be depressed owing to the very low offer prices from yards in South Korea, which is now the biggest shipbuilding country in the world. Over the first eight months of 2000, its shipyards took more than 40% of all new orders. The Commission considers the stagnation in prices to be all the more alarming in that the European Union has drastically cut back state aid to shipbuilding. Despite the signing of the Agreed Minutes in June 2000 aimed at obtaining from South Korea firm commitments on non-intervention in the financing of shipbuilding, bilateral talks ended in failure. The Commission thus plans to:

    • continue its monitoring of the market situation;
    • examine the European industry’s complaint of October 2000 against Korean dumping, in order to deal with this problem under WTO rules;
    • remain open, at the same time, to any Korean proposals;
    • continue efforts to re-establish fair competition at international level;
    • encourage the International Monetary Fund to ensure that the restructuring of Korean shipyards is closely monitored;
    • continue to cooperate with the industry on competitiveness issues;
    • examine with the Council any possible action to address the problem.

    Second Commission report on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (2000) 263 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    The report takes stock of the world shipbuilding market. The market is in crisis, with supply outstripping demand. Vessel prices are falling in the face of unbeatable competition from Korean yards, which are prepared to sell at a loss in order to ensure market share and cash flow. To address the problem, the European Commission obtained an agreement from the Korean authorities to restrict State financial intervention in the shipbuilding industry. The Commission also gathered evidence pointing to unfair competition, and a complaint may be filed under the Trade Barriers Regulation.

    First Commission report on the situation in world shipbuilding [COM (1999) 474 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    The report describes overcapacity on the shipbuilding market, with a marked imbalance between supply and demand caused mainly by South Korea’s increased capacity. Vessel prices were between 15 and 30% down on 1998 levels, stimulating demand and increasing the Korean yards’ market share. There were reasons to believe that Korean yards were offering vessels at below-retail rates.

    Council Regulation (EC) No 1177/2002 of 27 June 2002 concerning a temporary defensive mechanism to shipbuilding [Official Journal No L 172 of 2.7.2002].

    The commitments contained in the Agreed Minutes signed by the European Commission and the Government of the Republic of Korea on 22 June 2000 with a view to ensuring an effective price surveillance mechanism have not been effectively implemented by the Korean side and therefore a satisfactory result has not been obtained.

    Consequently, despite the ban imposed by Council Regulation (EC) No 1540/98, the 2002 Regulation introduces a temporary defensive mechanism applicable to certain segments of the market (namely container ships and product and chemical tankers) for a short and limited period authorising support of 6% of contract value before aid. The aim is to enable Community shipyards to overcome unfair Korean competition. This Regulation expires on 31 March 2004.

    This summary is for information only. It is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document, which remains the only binding legal text.


    Another Normative about State aid to shipbuilding

    Topics

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

    Competition > Rules applicable to specific sectors > Competition in transport

    State aid to shipbuilding (II)

    To remove the differences between the rules applicable to the shipbuilding industry and to those applicable to other industrial sectors.

    2) Document or Iniciative

    Framework on state aid to shipbuilding [Official Journal C 317 of 30.12.2003].

    3) Summary

    Background

    Since the early 1970s, state aid to shipbuilding has been subject to a series of specific Community regimes. This framework, which replaces Council Regulation (EC) No 1540/98, is designed to remove the differences between the rules applicable to the shipbuilding industry and those applicable to other industrial sectors. However, it takes account of specific factors affecting the shipbuilding sector, namely:

    • the nature of the world shipbuilding market (overcapacity, depressed prices, etc.);
    • the nature of ships as very large capital goods in respect of credit facilities;
    • the difficulty of applying the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules on unfair trading practices to the shipbuilding sector;
    • the existence of agreements within the Organisation for Economic coordination and development (OECD) in the shipbuilding sector; this mainly concerns the 1994 Agreement on respecting normal competitive conditions in the shipbuilding and repair industry, which has not entered into force and which the OECD is in the process of replacing.

    Definitions

    For the purposes of this Framework, the following definitions shall apply:

    • shipbuilding: the building of self-propelled seagoing commercial vessels;
    • ship repair: the repair or reconditioning of self-propelled seagoing commercial vessels;
    • ship conversion: the conversion of self-propelled seagoing commercial vessels of not less than 1 000 gt, on condition that conversion operations entail radical alterations to the cargo plan, the shell, the propulsion system or the passenger accommodation;
    • self-propelled seagoing commercial vessels, including:

    – vessels of not less than 100 gt used for the transportation of passengers and/or goods;
    – vessels of not less than 100 gt for the performance of a specialised service (for example, dredgers and ice breakers);
    – tugs of not less than 365 kW;
    – fishing vessels of not less than 100 gt;
    – unfinished shells of vessels.

    Scope

    Aid to shipbuilding includes aid to any shipyard, related entity, shipowner or third party which is granted, whether directly or indirectly, for the building, repair or conversion of ships.

    The Framework provides for special measures in relation to investment aid for innovation, closure aid, export credits, development aid and regional aid.

    Research, development and innovation aid

    Aid granted to defray expenditure by shipbuilding, ship repair or ship conversion firms on R&D projects may be considered compatible with the common market if it complies with the rules laid down in the Community framework for state aid for research and development.

    Aid granted for innovation in existing shipbuilding, ship repair or ship conversion yards may be deemed compatible with the common market up to a maximum aid intensity of 20% gross, provided that it contributes to the search for innovative products and processes.

    Closure aid

    Aid to defray the costs resulting from the total or partial closure of shipbuilding, ship repair or ship conversion yards may be considered compatible with the common market provided that the resulting capacity reduction is of a genuine and irreversible nature.

    The costs eligible for aid are:

    • payments to workers made redundant or retired before the legal retirement age;
    • the costs of counselling services to workers made or to be made redundant or retired;
    • payments to workers for vocational retraining;
    • expenditure incurred for the redevelopment of the yard, its buildings, installations and infrastructure for use other than shipbuilding.

    Companies receiving partial closure aid must not have benefited from rescue and restructuring aid in the past ten years. For further information, see the Community guidelines on state aid for rescuing and restructuring firms in difficulty.

    Employment aid

    Aid granted for the creation of employment, the recruitment of disadvantaged and disabled workers or to cover the additional costs of employing disadvantaged and disabled workers in shipbuilding, ship repair or ship conversion firms may be considered compatible if it complies with the substantive rules laid down in Commission Regulation (EC) No 2204/2002.

    Development aid and export credits

    Aid to shipbuilding in the form of development aid or export credits may be considered compatible with the common market if it complies with the terms of the 1998 OECD Arrangement on Guidelines for Officially Supported Export Credits and with its Sector Understanding on Export Credits for Ships.

    Regional aid

    Regional aid to shipbuilding, ship repair or ship conversion may be considered compatible with the common market on condition that it fulfils the following conditions:

    • aid must be granted for investment in upgrading or modernising installations with a view to improving productivity and must not be linked to financial restructuring of the yards concerned;
    • in the regions referred to in Article 87(3)(a) of the EC Treaty and in compliance with the regional aid map, the intensity of the aid must not exceed 22.5%;
    • in the regions referred to in Article 87(3)(c) of the EC Treaty and in compliance with the regional aid map, the intensity of the aid must not exceed 12.5 % or the applicable regional aid ceiling, whichever is the lower.

    Aid must cover eligible expenditure as defined in the Community guidelines on regional aid.

    Member States are required to submit annual reports to the Commission on all existing aid schemes. This Framework will be applicable from 1 January 2004 until 31 December 2006 at the latest. It may be reviewed by the Commission during this period, in particular in the light of the Community’s international obligations.

    4) Implementing Measures

    5) Follow-Up Work

    This summary is for information only. It is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document, which remains the only binding legal text.

    Reform of the common agricultural policy

    Reform of the common agricultural policy

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Reform of the common agricultural policy

    Topics

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

    Agriculture > General framework

    Reform of the common agricultural policy (CAP)

    Since its inception, the common agricultural policy has had to adapt a great deal in order to meet the challenges with which it has been faced over the years: in the early days it concentrated on attaining the goals set out in Article 39 of the Treaty, securing a fair standard of living for the agricultural community and ensuring security of supply at affordable prices, and then it had to control quantitative imbalances. Finally it embarked on a new approach based on a combination of lowering institutional prices and making compensatory payments. The aim of the new CAP reform is to deepen and widen the 1992 reform by replacing price support measures with direct aid payments and accompanying this process by a consistent rural policy.

    The new challenges

    New internal and external challenges have now arisen:

    • strong growth is predicted on the world agricultural market with prices offering a good rate of return. The current level of CAP prices is too high for the EU to meet international undertakings and to be able to take advantage of the expansion of world markets, with the risk that surpluses will appear again and create intolerable budget costs, and market share may be lost within the Community and on the world level;
    • agricultural support is distributed somewhat unequally between regions and producers, resulting in poor countryside planning: a decline in agriculture in some regions and overly intensive farming practices in others, generating pollution, animal diseases and poorer food safety;
    • making the CAP more acceptable to the average citizen, to the consumer, is a key task;
    • the strength of the agricultural sector in the Union rests on its diversity: its natural resources, its farming methods, its competitiveness and income levels, and also its traditions. With successive enlargements, the management of the CAP has become far too complex and bureaucratic, and sometimes even almost impossible to understand. A new, more decentralised model has, therefore, to be developed which grants the Member States greater freedom without any risk of distorting competition or renationalising the CAP but with shared, clear ground rules and rigorous controls;
    • the Union has to prepare its agricultural sector for international negotiations and define the limits of what it finds acceptable;
    • enlargement makes market management and simplification measures even more necessary as the economies in the applicant countries are still heavily dependent on agriculture.

    The responses

    The agreement reached at the European Council in Berlin responds to the key Agenda 2000 proposals, giving concrete shape to a European model for agriculture in the years ahead.

    The Berlin European Council reaffirmed that the content of the reform will secure a multifunctional, sustainable and competitive agriculture throughout Europe, including in regions facing particular difficulties. It will also be able to maintain the landscape and the countryside, make a key contribution to the vitality of rural communities and respond to consumer concerns and demands regarding food quality and safety, environmental protection and maintaining animal welfare standards.

    The Commission’s proposals adopted by the European Council were based on the 1992 reforms which successfully reduced surpluses and controlled expenditure without compromising an average 4.5 % rise in income. This general trend has been confirmed by the European Council in the following guidelines.

    • Continued competitiveness should be ensured by sufficiently large price cuts that will guarantee growth of home-market outlets and increased participation by Community agriculture in the world market. These price reductions are offset by an increase in direct aid payments in order to safeguard the income level.
    • There is to be a new division of functions between the Commission and the Member States, whether concerning compensation in the form of direct payments or rural development measures incorporated into an overall programming framework.
    • This new decentralisation is logically accompanied by a major effort at simplifying the rules, such as the new rural development Regulation, which does away with a large number of regulations, or the market-management regulations, in particular the one on arable crops. Legislation is now clearer, more transparent and easier to access, with red tape for farmers cut to the strict minimum.
    • Rural development becomes the second pillar of the CAP. For the first time, the foundations have been laid for a comprehensive and consistent rural development policy whose task will be to supplement market management by ensuring that agricultural expenditure is devoted more than in the past to spatial development and nature conservancy, the establishment of young farmers, etc. The Member States will be able to vary, i.e. downwards, the direct aids awarded to holdings in line with criteria to be defined by each Member State relating to the amount of labour employed on a farm. Money released in this way is to be allocated by the Member State to agri-environmental schemes.

    Beef and veal

    The effects of the 1996 crisis on beef and veal consumption should ease. If there is no change in market policy, production should soon creep back up to its maximum potential after 2001, while consumption is set to decline in the long term. Over-production cannot be solved by slaughtering young calves, nor by imposing quotas limiting the number of animals or production levels.

    The new Regulation cuts effective market support. It should be possible to stabilise market prices with the aid of protective measures at the Community’s external frontiers and measures relating to exports, and by introducing a private storage scheme similar to that for pigmeat.

    Farmers will undoubtedly suffer losses of income which they should be able to offset by adapting production methods and investments. In return, they will be granted direct income payments by head of cattle, which will be increased gradually.

    A number of simplifications have been made in the beef and veal sector, such as the abolition of the marketing system and the processing premium for veal calves. The intervention scheme will apply only in severe crises. Finally, the new Regulation repeals a number of other Regulations.

    Milk and milk products

    The Regulation establishes a new common market organisation for dairy products. It remains based on intervention and public storage of butter and skimmed-milk powder as well as certain aid schemes and marketing measures. Intervention prices for butter and skimmed milk powder are to be cut from the marketing year 2005/06 to improve competitiveness on both internal and external markets. As for internal market aid measures, a number of Regulations have been repealed, resulting in a major simplification of the legislation in this sector.

    The new system is to extend the quota scheme until 2007/08, in order to gradually reduce internal and external consumer prices. The total reference quantity has been increased and the additional quantity will be allocated to Greece, Italy, Spain, Ireland and Northern Ireland.

    Tobacco, olive oil and wine

    In December 1996 the Commission presented a report on the tobacco regime to the Council and the Parliament, giving a positive assessment of the 1992 reform and proposing extending it along the same guidelines. In February 1997, the Commission presented a report on the olive oil regime, in which it suggested replacing price support with direct aid payments and a radical simplification of these payments. The new regime takes account of the proposals in both of these reports.

    For wine, a reform proposal had been pending at Council level since 1994. Developments in the sector have largely been influenced by the Uruguay Round agreement. The new Regulation follows the guidelines laid down in the 1995 “agricultural strategy document”. The new Regulation replaces 23 Council Regulations previously in force, thus clarifying the system immensely and facilitating more direct access to the legislation.

    The ban on planting vines has been maintained and will be operated flexibly to allow development of wine production where there is growing demand. The grubbing measures have also been maintained, although targeted more specifically at regions with serious and persistent structural surpluses. Intervention will be eliminated, while a “crisis distillation” mechanism will be introduced to deal with exceptional cases of market disturbance.

    Lastly, the Regulation officially recognises the potential role of producer groups and inter-branch organisations, and it provides for major adjustments to the designation and presentation of wine sector products to ensure that consumers are better informed.

    Arable crops

    The intervention price for arable crops has been cut. The Regulation provides for an increase in direct payments for cereals and silage maize in two steps, from EUR 54 to EUR 63 per tonne. Payments for oilseeds and non-textile linseed are to be progressively reduced in three stages to the same level as cereals. Protein crops will receive a direct payment of EUR 72.5 per tonne, thus ensuring their profitability in relation to other arable crops. The special scheme for durum wheat is to be continued.

    Compulsory set-aside has been retained, and voluntary set-aside is still allowed: it has, however, been made more effective and should have a more positive impact on the environment. The level of compensation for set-aside, both compulsory and voluntary, will be the same as for cereals.

    Although the essential elements of the existing regime (in particular the base areas, the regionalisation scheme, the link to historic yields and the set-aside provisions) have been retained, major simplifications have been achieved.

    Rural policy

    The accompanying measures previously financed by the Guarantee Section of the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) have been complemented by aid for less-favoured areas and areas whose development is lagging behind. All these measures have been applied horizontally and implemented in a decentralised manner. For rural areas eligible under Objective 1 of the Structural Funds the current system will be maintained. In rural areas eligible under the new Objective 2 (former Objectives 5(a) and 5(b)), measures are financed under the EAGGF Guarantee Section. Objective 2 is financed through the intermediary of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the European Social Fund (ESF) and the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG). Any measures in favour of rural areas that are not eligible under the Structural Funds are part-financed under the EAGGF Guarantee Section.

    To improve integration of environmental objectives in the common market organisations, the new reform enables Member States to make direct aid payments conditional on compliance with environmental provisions.

    More specifically, the measures aim to:

    • strengthen the agricultural and forestry sectors by trying to promote quality agricultural products. The reform includes measures concerning the establishment of young farmers and conditions for taking early retirement;
    • improve the competitiveness of rural areas with the aim above all of improving the quality of life of rural communities and creating new sources of income for farmers and their families;
    • preserve the environment and European rural heritage via agri-environmental measures such as organic farming. To help the further ‘greening’ of the CAP, the traditional compensatory allowances in support of farming in less-favoured areas will be extended to areas where farming is restricted by the existence of specific environmental constraints.

    Member States must, however, ensure that farmers are able to demonstrate that they do not exercise activities solely for the purpose of obtaining the benefit of support payments.

    The financial framework

    The new financial framework must cover the development of the CAP and the effects of enlargement in a coherent fashion and within reasonable budget limits, for a sufficient length of time. At the same time, it must finance key needs and ensure sound management of public funds. A simplified and comprehensive agricultural policy can now make it clear that the expenditure it involves is justified by the services which society at large expects farmers to provide.

    The Berlin European Council considered that this reform could be implemented within a financial framework of an average level of EUR 40.5 billion plus EUR 14 billion over the period for rural development as well as veterinary and plant health measures. The reform aims at stabilising agricultural expenditure over the period while staying more in keeping with actual levels of spending.

    In the light of these decisions, the European Council considered that the amounts to be entered in heading 1 of the financial perspective should be those indicated below. The Inter-institutional Agreement will ensure that all parties abide by this agreement.

    Heading 1
    (EUR million – 1999 prices)
    CAP expenditure
    (excluding rural development and accompanying measures)
    Rural development and accompanying measures
    2000
    2001
    2002
    2003
    2004
    2005
    2006
    40 920
    42 800
    43 900
    43 770
    42 760
    41 930
    41 660
    36 620
    38 480
    39 570
    39 430
    38 410
    37 570
    37 290
    4 300
    4 320
    4 330
    4 340
    4 350
    4 360
    4 370

    The agricultural guideline will also remain unchanged. It will be re-examined on the basis of a report which the Commission will present to the Council before the next enlargement of the European Union in order to make any adjustment considered necessary. The amount set aside in the financial perspective for the agricultural pre-accession instrument (EUR 250 million – 1999 prices) falls within the ceiling established by the guideline.

    The European Council acknowledged the scale of the efforts being made to curb the budget and exercise rigour in implementing the common agricultural policy decided within the framework of Agenda 2000, the reduction in support prices being largely compensated by expenditure on the rural development budget and other accompanying measures (direct income aids, early retirement, aid to young farmers, etc.).

    Preparations must be made for the accession of the applicant countries in accordance with the conclusions of the Luxembourg European Council in compliance with the horizontal pre-accession framework provided by a general coordination Regulation. The applicant countries are facing major difficulties in adapting to a rather complex Community acquis and completing the institutional process of privatisation and transformation of agricultural structures.

    Concentrating on priority needs for agriculture, which remains a major source of employment, pre-accession measures concern in particular support for improving the efficiency of holdings and producer groups, processing and distribution, promotion of quality products, veterinary and phytosanitary control, land re-parcelling, water resource management, vocational training, environment, and the maintenance of rural heritage, etc.

    Responding to the challenge of enlargement means giving a fresh boost to the development and integration of the European economy as a whole.

    The efforts made, notably in terms of reducing support prices, represent an essential contribution by the European Community to stabilise the world’s agricultural markets. The European Council considers that the decisions adopted regarding the reform of the CAP within the framework of Agenda 2000 will constitute key elements in defining the Commission’s negotiating mandate for the future multilateral trade negotiations at the WTO.

    The Former Financial Regulation

    The Former Financial Regulation

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about The Former Financial Regulation

    Topics

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

    Budget

    The Former Financial Regulation

    1) Objective

    To lay down the procedures for drawing up, adopting and implementing the budget of the European Union.

    2) Community Measure

    Financial Regulation of 21 December 1977 applicable to the general budget of the European Communities.

    Amended by:
    CouncilRegulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1252/79 of 25 June 1979
    Financial Regulation of 16 December 1980 (80/1176 /EEC, Euratom, ECSC)
    Council Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1600/88 of 7 June 1988
    Council Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 2049/88 of 24 June 1988
    Council Regulation (Euratom, ECSC, EEC) No 610/90 of 13 March 1990
    Council Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 1923/94 of 25 July 1994
    Council Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 2730/94 of 31 October 1994
    Council Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2333/95 of 18 September 1995
    Council Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2334/95 of 18 September 1995
    Council Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2335/95 of 18 September 1995
    Council Regulation (EC) No 2444/97 of 22 September 1997
    Council Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2548/98 of 23 November 1998
    Council Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2779/98 of 17 December 1998
    Council Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2673/1999 of 13 December 1999

    3) Contents

    “The budget of the European Communities is the instrument which sets out the forecasts of, and authorises in advance, the expected revenue and expenditure of the Communities for each year”. It is on the basis of this definition (given in Article 1) that the Financial Regulation goes on toshape the European Union’s financial architecture step by step. Subsequent articles of the Regulation introduce the key concepts underlying the budget and lay down the procedures and rules for its establishment and implementation. The main features of the Financial Regulation are summarised below. More detailed questions can be answered by referring to the text of the Regulation itself.

    I. European budgetary law in 16 definitions

    The financial year: The financial year runs for 12 months from 1 January to 31 December. The budget comprises all expenditure and revenue authorised for that year. The appropriations entered in the budget are authorised only for the duration of one financial year. (See point 12 – Carryover of appropriations).

    Differentiated appropriations: One of the principles governing the Community’s financial system is annuality. This means that operations relate to a given financial year, making it easier to control the work of the Community executive. However, multiannual operations are often necessary (e.g. research programmes, structural measures, etc), in which case the notion of differentiated appropriations is used. Differentiated appropriations, as opposed to non-differentiated appropriations, are split into commitment appropriations and payment appropriations. Operations extending over more than one financial year have a deadline attached, i.e. a date by which the relevant projects must be completed.

    Commitment appropriations: Commitment appropriations cover the total cost, in the current financial year, of the legal obligations entered into for operations to be carried out over more than one financial year. This type of appropriation constitutes the upper limit of expenditure which can be committed during the financial year.

    Payment appropriations: Payment appropriations cover expenditure arising from commitments entered into during the current financial year or preceding years.

    Appropriations for commitment: This term refers to the sum of commitment appropriations and non-differentiated appropriations.*

    Appropriations for payment: This term refers to the sum of payment appropriations and non-differentiated appropriations. *In effect, non-differentiated appropriations authorise an equal amount of commitments and payments, so that both aspects must be fully taken into account.

    Principles of sound financial management: Principles underlying the use of budget appropriations, including economy, cost-effectiveness, evaluation prior to mobilisation of Community resources, regular review of operations, etc.

    Financial statement: The financial statement sets out the various financial aspects of an operation (financial consequences, links with financial instruments, schedule, etc). Any proposal or communication which may have budgetary consequences must include a financial statement.

    No offsetting: According to this principle, all revenue and expenditure must be entered in full with no adjustment against each other, thus ensuring an exhaustive and complete presentation of the budget.

    No assignment of revenue: This rule prevents specific revenue from being used to finance specific expenditure. Total revenue covers total expenditure. There are exceptions to this principle: for example Member States’ financial contributions to certain research programmes and contributions from non-member countries to Community activities under the Agreement on the European Economic Area.

    Booking of revenue and expenditure to articles: Revenue can be collected and expenditure effected only if it is booked to an article in the budget. This means that all financial operations (revenue or expenditure) must have a budgetary basis, i.e. a specific article in the budget. In addition, no expenditure may exceed the authorised appropriations.

    Carryover of appropriations: As a general rule, non-differentiated appropriations lapse if they are not used at the end of the financial year for which they are entered. However, in the case of payments outstanding in respect of commitments entered into before the end of the financial year, appropriations left unused must be transferred to the budget of the following year. Optional carryovers are possible when requirements cannot be met from the budget of the following financial year. Differentiated appropriations (consisting of commitment appropriations and payment appropriations) also lapse if they are not used at the end of the financial year, although a decision may be taken to carry them over in certain instances (e.g. where the basic legislative instrument is adopted at the end of December and the Commission is unable to commit the amounts before 31 December).

    Provisional twelfths: If the budget is not finally adopted by the beginning of the financial year, i.e. 1 January, the “provisional twelfths” system comes into operation. In this case, payments may be made monthly up to a limit of one twelfth of the appropriations entered in the budget of the previous financial year.

    Adoption of the budget: The adoption of the budget marks the end of the budget procedure. The budget, which is drawn up in euros, is declared adopted by the President of Parliament and then published in the Official Journal. Once the budget has been finally adopted, each Member State is required to make available to the Community its own resources payments with effect from 1 January of the following financial year.

    Reserves: Under European budgetary law, there are six types of reserves, of which three are expressly provided for by the Financial Regulation:

    1. provisional appropriations;
    2. The contingency reserve;
    3. The negative reserve: a mechanism whereby new expenditure is financed by anticipating savings which will be made during the financial year, even though it is impossible to tell, when the budget is adopted, which items will generate these savings. A negative amount is therefore entered in the budget and offset during the year by transfers from chapters which are in surplus.

    These reserves are designed to facilitate budget management. They can be drawn on – during the financial year – to enter amounts in a budget line for an operation that was not entirely finalised when the budget was adopted, to increase the authorised appropriations in order to deal with unforeseen circumstances or to reduce the authorised appropriations for the sake of economy, taking into account the progress made in implementation. The reserves can be used only by implementing a transfer procedure.

    The financial perspective provides for three other reserves designed to create room for manoeuvre, so that expenditure can be covered even where the requirements could not easily have been foreseen when the financial perspective was drawn up:

    1. The monetary reserve is designed to offset the effects on agricultural spending of significant and unexpected movements in the dollar/euro parity, compared with the value used in drawing up the budget.
    2. The reserve for loan guarantees for non-member countries is used to transfer amounts to the budget lines, which cover payments to the guarantee fund and payments in the event of default by debtors.
    3. The emergency aid reserve is designed to enable the Community to react quickly to specific aid requirements in non-member countries, mainly in the form of humanitarian aid.

    Discharge: The European Parliament, acting on a recommendation by the Council, grants the Commission discharge for its implementation of the budget, after examining a series of reports, in particular that of the Court of Auditors. The purpose is to bring the financial year to a close in both formal and political terms. The discharge decision covers the accounts of all Community revenue and expenditure and the situation described in the balance sheet (statement of assets and liabilities). It consists of an appraisal of how the Commission has discharged its responsibility for budget management over the past financial year.

    II. Establishment of the budget

    The first stage in the process leading to the establishment of the budget is that each institution (Parliament, the Council, the Court of Justice, the Court of Auditors, the Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions and the Ombudsman) draws up estimates of its expenditure and revenue for the following year and sends them to the Commission.

    After receiving the various estimates, the Commission draws up the preliminary draft budget, which must be presented by 1 September and contains:

    • a general statement of the revenue of the Communities;
    • a statement of estimates;
    • a general introduction including financial tables covering the entire budget and a description of the policies for which the appropriations are requested;
    • an introduction to each section, drafted by the institution concerned;
    • a working paper on the staff of the institutions (staff policy, variation in staff numbers, etc);
    • a working paper on subsidies to decentralised bodies (agencies, European schools etc);
    • an analysis of financial management over the past year and a balance sheet setting out the Communities’ assets and liabilities;
    • an opinion on the estimates of the other institutions.

    During the procedure, the Commission may amend this preliminary draft by sending a letter of amendment to the Council at least 30 days before Parliament’s first reading of the draft budget.

    In exceptional circumstances, the Commission may present preliminary draft supplementary and/or amending budgets, which are examined according to the usual budgetary procedure. A preliminary draft supplementary budget either increases the total amount of appropriations or finances new operations without increasing appropriations. A preliminary draft amending budget makes technical changes, without increasing the overall budget or providing for new operations. These preliminary drafts must be accompanied by statements of justification.

    The budgetary procedure is laid down in Article 272 of the EC Treaty. After examining the preliminary draft budget, the Council sends Parliament a draft budget, accompanied by an explanatory memorandum explaining why it has departed from the preliminary draft budget, if it has done so.

    III. Structure and presentation of the budget

    The budget contains a general statement of revenue (estimated revenue of the Communities for the financial year in question and actual revenue in the previous financial year), plus a number of sections subdivided into statements of revenue (revenue for the financial year in question and the previous year, together with the relevant remarks) and expenditure. The various sections cover:

    1. The European Parliament
    2. The Council
    3. The Commission
    4. The Court of Justice
    5. The Court of Auditors
    6. The Economic and Social Committee
    7. The Committee of the Regions
    8. The Ombudsman.

    The Commission section contains a Part A (staff and administrative expenditure) and a Part B (operational expenditure). Part B is broken down into several sub-sections, according to requirements. These subsections, which correspond to European Union policies, are shown in the table below. The figures are taken from the 1999 budget.

    Policies (sub-sections) Amount in 1999 budget (EUR million) Percentage of the total budget
    Common agricultural policy (CAP)
    European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund, Guarantee Section
    40 940.0 42.2
    Structural operations
    structural and cohesion expenditure
    39 260.0 40.5
    Training, youth, culture, audiovisual media, information, social dimension and employment 812.0 0.8
    Energy and environment 235.4 0.2
    Consumer protection, internal market, industry and trans-European networks 1129.1 1.2
    Research and technological development 3450.0 3.6
    External action 6223.8 6.4
    Common foreign and security policy 30.0 0.0
    Guarantees and reserves 346.0 0.4

    Each section or subsection is divided into titles, chapters, articles and items. The statement of expenditure in each section (i.e. for each institution) includes, for the various titles, chapters, articles and items (each subdivision being accompanied by remarks):

    • the appropriations made available for the financial year in question;
    • the appropriations made available for the previous financial year;
    • actual expenditure in the last financial year (= actual payments plus carryovers to the following financial year).

    IV. Implementation of the budget

    The implementation of the budget is based on a fundamental principle – the need for a legislative basis – which has been both the cause and the result of a series of crises between the two arms of the budgetary authority. The implementation of appropriations entered in the budget for “significant” Community action requires the prior adoption of a basic act, i.e. a legal provision such as a regulation, a decision, etc., providing for the expenditure. Pilot schemes and certain kinds of information activities are deemed not to be “significant”, so that they can be put into effect merely on the basis of the relevant line in the Community budget.

    The Community budget is implemented by the European Commission, acting under its own responsibility, in accordance with the Financial Regulation and within the limits of the appropriations entered in the budget. But while the Commission’s implementing responsibilities cover its own internal operations and Community policies, the other institutions (Parliament and the Council, etc.) implement the sections of the budget which concern them. This power to implement the budget cannot be delegated to external bodies, at least in relation to the tasks of the European civil service (e.g. public procurement). Implementing powers may be delegated within the European administration so that certain officials act as authorising officers, accounting officers and financial controllers. In practical terms, it is they who implement the budget. This internal delegation of powers is subject to strict conditions in order to avoid conflicts of interest or abuse of power.

    Within the European administration the implementation of the Community budget rests on the existence of three different functions, which must be performed separately: authorising officer, accounting officer and financial controller.

    The authorising officer administersthe appropriations. He alone has the power to “commit” expenditure, i.e. to give the initial authorisation for expenditure. The authorising officer is liable to disciplinary action and may be held financially liable if he fails to comply with the Financial Regulation or neglects tasks relating to his function.
    The accounting officer makes the payments. He is the only person empowered to handle monies and other assets and is also responsible for their safekeeping. The accounting officer is liable to disciplinary action and may be held financially liable for payments in which a procedural error is detected. Officials performing accounting functions receive a special allowance to compensate for their increased responsibility vis-à-vis “ordinary” officials.
    The financial controller carries outmonitoring and audit tasks. He checks the commitment and authorisation of all expenditure and ensures that revenue is properly collected. In short, he checks the legality of operations. To carry out this task, the financial controller has access to all the necessary documents and information. In his capacity as auditor, he is also regularly consulted on and evaluates changes to financial management systems. Commission staff exercising this function are governed by special rules guaranteeing their independence (for example, in certain cases they may bring actions before the Court of Justice). The financial controller is liable to disciplinary action and may be held financially liable if he grants his approval to expenditure in excess of the budget appropriations.

    In a stricter sense, implementation of the Community budget consists mainly of expenditure, which, under budgetary law, is broken down into various stages: commitment, validation, authorisation and payment:

    1 Commitment Prior to any measure which may give rise to expenditure (in particular legal commitments vis-à-vis third parties), the authorising officer must draw up a proposal for a budgetary commitment on which the financial controller must grant his approval. The purpose of the financial controller’s approval is to establish that the appropriations are available and that the expenditure is consistent with the relevant legislation and correctly charged to the budget. If some of these conditions are not met, the financial controller may refuse to grant his approval. The superior authority may overrule such a refusal, informing the Court of Auditors of its decision, but this hypothetical facility is rarely used in practice.
    2 Validation Validation is the act whereby the authorising officer checks the claim of the creditor (the recipient of expenditure), the amount of that claim and the conditions under which payment falls due. Validation is subject to presentation of supporting documents.
    3 Authorisation Authorisation is the act whereby the authorising officer instructs the accounting officer to pay an item of expenditure which he has validated. Payment orders are sent for prior approval to the financial controller, the purpose being to establish, among other things, that the payment order agrees with the commitment of expenditure and that the amount is correct. After approval, the order is forwarded to the accounting officer.
    4 Payment Payment is the final action whereby the institution is discharged of its obligations towards its creditors. It is carried out by the accounting officer.

    Appropriations are classified under chapters and articles. Parliament and the Council may transfer appropriations from one chapter to another and from one article to another within their own section of the budget. The Commission may, within its section of the budget, transfer appropriations from one article to another within each chapter and from one chapter to another within each of the titles relating to staff and administrative expenditure. The Commission informs the budgetary authority of these transfers, giving a statement of the grounds.

    The balance from each financial year is entered in the budget of the following financial year as revenue or expenditure, depending on whether it represents a surplus or a deficit.

    During the financial year, the Commission sends Parliament, the Council and the Court of Auditors figures on the implementation of the budget in the form of:

    • monthly reports on both revenue and expenditure, together with information on the use of appropriations carried over from previous financial years;
    • a report every four months on revenue and expenditure, together with information on the use of appropriations carried over from previous financial years.

    In the course of the year, following a given financial year, the Commission produces several documents describing its financial activities in that financial year. By no later than 1 May of the following year, it draws up a consolidated revenue and expenditure account comprising:

    1. a table of revenue;
    2. tables showing movements in appropriations for the financial year, indicating payment appropriations and non-differentiated appropriations;
    3. tables of expenditure showing the use of appropriations allocated for the financial year, indicating payment appropriations and non-differentiated appropriations;
    4. tables showing the use of the appropriations available from previous years;
    5. a document showing capital operations and debt management.

    The revenue and expenditure account encompasses all revenue and expenditure operations relating to the past financial year for each institution. It is presented in the same form as the budget. At the same time, the Commission presents a consolidated balance sheet setting out the Communities’assets and liabilities, including borrowing and lending operations, and an analysis of financial management.

    The institutions comply with existing European legislation regarding public procurement.

    The Communities’ movable and immovable property is recorded in an inventory, which is used in drawing up each institution’s balance sheet.

    The Community accounts are kept in euros, using the double entry method, on the basis of the calendar year. The accounts show all revenue and expenditure for the financial year and are supplemented by supporting documents.

    The Court of Auditors monitors the implementation of the Community budget. The institutions send it all the supporting documents required for that purpose. The object of the Court’s supervision is to ensure that revenue and expenditure is legal and consistent with the Treaties, the budget and Community legislation. The Court also ensures that sound financial management is practiced. The Court’s comments are set out in its annual report. It may present special reports when it wishes to comment on specific matters. Special reports may also be drawn up at the request of an institution.

    V. Special status of certain areas of the Community’s financial activities

    The very nature of certain operations or policies means that their financial management receives special treatment:

    1. Research and technological development (R&TD) appropriations

      Appropriations earmarked for projects under the framework programme of R&TD activities are entered separately in a special subsection in Part B of the Commission section of the budget.
    2. European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund, Guarantee Section (EAGGF)

      One of the peculiarities of the agricultural budget is that provisional overall commitments are made corresponding to the advances to be paid to Member States. There is also an early warning system designed to rein in agricultural spending.
    3. External aid

      External aid is granted as part of the Community’s cooperation policy, either under cooperation agreements or independently. In many cases financing agreements are drawn up between the Commission and the government of the recipient country.
    4. Financial contributions from third parties
      As an exceptionto the principles of specification and non-assignment, contributions to the Community budget from third parties constitute revenue earmarked for specific purposes. This applies in particular to countries which are parties to the Agreement on the European Economic area.
    5. Office for Official Publications of the European Communities
      The budget appropriations relating to the Publications Office are shown in an annex setting out its expenditure and revenue, as it is the only Community body to generate revenue.

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

    Not applicable.

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

    • Financial Regulation of 21 December 1977:
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1252/79: 01.07.1979
    • Regulation (EEC, Euratom, ECSC) No 80/1176: 12.05.1980
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1600/88: 13.06.1988
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 2049/88: 18.07.1988
    • Regulation (Euratom, ECSC, EEC) No 610/90: 19.03.1990
    • Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 1923/94: 02.08.1994
    • Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 2730/94: 19.11.1994
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2333/95: 10.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2334/95: 10.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2335/95: 10.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC) No 2444/97: 18.12.1997
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2548/98: 05.12.1998
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2779/98: 01.01.1999
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2673/1999: 01.01.2000

    6) References

    • Financial Regulation of 21 December 1977: Official Journal L 356, 31.12.1977
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1252/79: Official Journal L 160, 28.06.1979
    • Regulation (EEC, Euratom, ECSC) No 80/1176: Official Journal L 345, 20.12.1980
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 1600/88: Official Journal L 143, 10.06.1988
    • Regulation (ECSC, EEC, Euratom) No 2049/88: Official Journal L 185, 15.07.1988
    • Regulation (Euratom, ECSC, EEC) No 610/90: Official Journal L 70, 16.03.1990
    • Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 1923/94: Official Journal L 198, 30.07.1994
    • Regulation (ECSC, EC, Euratom) No 2730/94: Official Journal L 293, 12.11.1994
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2333/95: Official Journal L 240, 07.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2334/95: Official Journal L 240, 07.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC, Euratom, ECSC) No 2335/95: Official Journal L 240, 07.10.1995
    • Regulation (EC) No 2444/97: Official Journal L 340, 11.12.1997
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2548/98: Official Journal L 320, 28.11.1998
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2779/98: Official Journal L347, 23.12.1998
    • Regulation (EC, ECSC, Euratom) No 2673/1999: Official Journal L 326, 18.12.1999

    7) Follow-Up Work

    8) Commission Implementing Measures

    New interinstitutional agreement and financial perspective

    New interinstitutional agreement and financial perspective

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about New interinstitutional agreement and financial perspective

    Topics

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

    Budget

    New interinstitutional agreement and financial perspective (2000-2006)

    The purpose of the agreement is to implement, on a multiannual basis, budgetary discipline at Community level. It seeks to improve the functioning of the annual budgetary procedure and cooperation between the institutions on budgetary matters.

    Document or Iniciative

    Interinstitutional Agreement of 6 May 1999 between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on budgetary discipline and improvement of the budgetary procedure.

    This Agreement repeals and replaces the following measures:

    Joint Declaration by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of 30 June 1982 [Official Journal C 194 of 28.07.1982];
    Interinstitutional Agreement of 29 October 1993 [Official Journal C 331 of 07.12.1993];
    Declaration by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of 6 March 1995 [Official Journal C 102 of 04.04.1996];
    Joint Declaration of 12 December 1996 [Official Journal C 20 of 20.01.1997];
    Interinstitutional Agreement of 16 July 1997 [Official Journal C 286 of 22.09.1997];
    Interinstitutional Agreement of 13 October 1998 [Official Journal C 344 of 12.11.1998].

    Decision 2003/429/EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 19 May on the adjustment of the financial perspective for enlargement.

    Summary

    Since 1988 Community expenditure and the annual budgetary procedure have been based on interinstitutional agreements on budgetary discipline and the improvement of the budgetary procedure.

    These agreements, which cover several years and have been adopted jointly by Parliament, the Council and the Commission, have been traditionally divided into two types of provision:

    • the financial perspective, which sets the budgetary ceilings for the major categories of Union expenditure in order to keep expenditure within the limits of the own resources available (“budgetary discipline”);
    • arrangements between the institutions to improve the annual budgetary procedure (“functioning of the budgetary procedure”).

    Under Agenda 2000, and with a view to the expiry of the financial perspective (1993-99), a new interinstitutional agreement has been adopted for the period 2000-2006. This agreement, which is the core of the Agenda 2000 financial package, should enable the Union to expand and strengthen its policies while remaining within a rigorous financial framework.

    Financial perspective

    The first part of the agreement consists of the financial perspective and its implementing details.

    The 2000 to 2006 financial perspective establishes, for each of the years covered and for each heading and subheading, the amounts of expenditure in terms of appropriations for commitments. Overall annual totals of expenditure are also shown in terms of both appropriations for commitments and appropriations for payments.
    The institutions undertake to comply with the various annual expenditure ceilings during each budgetary procedure and when implementing the budget for the year concerned.

    The ceilings in the financial perspective were set initially in 1999. They were adapted for enlargement of the Union to include ten new Member States (Europe 25) in 2003.

    The new perspective contains eight main headings (agriculture, structural operations, internal policies, external action, administration, reserves, pre-accession strategy, compensations), divided in some cases into subheadings. Ceilings are expressed in 1999 prices.

    Agriculture and structural operations (headings 1 and 2) account for the bulk of expenditure under the financial perspective.
    The reform of the common agricultural policy under Agenda 2000 will require an initial increase in agricultural expenditure (from EUR 40.92 billion in 2000 to EUR 45.8 billion in 2006), following the adaptation of the financial perspective for Europe 25, which has raised the amounts for this heading provided for in 1999. Approximately one tenth of the agricultural expenditure will be used for rural development.
    Enlargement also has a highly visible impact on expenditure for structural operations, which the 2003 decision raises from the initial 1999 amounts to EUR 37.94 billion in 2006.
    Given the importance of some of the Union’s internal policies (trans-European networks, research and innovation, education and training, measures in support of small and medium-sized enterprises) heading 3 of the financial perspective will have its financial allocation increased from EUR 5.93 billion in 2000 to EUR 8.21 billion in 2006.
    The same applies to external action (from EUR 4.55 billion to EUR 4.61 billion) and administrative expenditure (from EUR 4.56 billion to EUR 5.71 billion).
    With regard to the reserves, the monetary reserve was abolished in 2003, as provided in 2006. The emergency aid reserve and the loan guarantee reserve will remain at a steady level (EUR 200 billion in both cases) throughout the period 2000-2006.
    The seventh heading, “Pre-accession strategy“, is allocated EUR 3.12 billion per year.

    Heading 8, “Compensations”, covers transitional budgetary compensations for the ten new Member States decided on at the Copenhagen European Council on 12 and 13 December 2002.

    The table below traces the development of the headings of the financial perspective for 2004-2006 following adaptation to Europe 25, in million euros at 1999 prices.

    2004 2005 2006
    1) Agriculture 42760 – 44657 41930 – 45677 41660 – 45807
    2) Structural operations 29595 – 35665 29595 – 36502 29170 – 37940
    3) Internal policies 6370 – 7877 6480 – 8098 6600 – 8212
    4) External action 4590 4600 4610
    5 Administration 4900 – 5403 5000 – 5558 5100 – 5712
    6) Reserves 400 400 400
    7) Pre-accession strategy 3120 3120 3120
    8) Compensations 0 – 1273 0 – 1173 0 – 940

    This adaptation of the financial perspective also includes the figures emerging from the technical adjustment for 2004 to trends in gross national income (GNI) and prices. The following are the figures at 2004 prices:

    2004 2005 2006
    1) Agriculture 49305 50431 50575
    2) Structural operations 41035 41685 42932
    3) Internal policies 8722 8967 9093
    4) External action 5082 5093 5104
    5 Administration 5983 6154 6325
    6) Reserves 442 442 442
    7) Pre-accession strategy 3455 3455 3455
    8) Compensations 1410 1299 1041

    In accordance with the recommendations made in the Commission report, the interinstitutional agreement also provides for various mechanisms enabling the financial perspective to be adjusted along the way, thereby increasing its flexibility.

    As before, the agreement, in addition to the annual technical adjustment to movements in prices and GNI, makes provisions for a revision of the ceilings in the event of unforeseen circumstances.
    These revisions will be adopted by joint decision of the Council (acting on a qualified majority in the case of revisions of less than 0.03% of Community GNP and unanimously in other cases) and Parliament (acting by a majority of its members and 3/5 of the votes) on a proposal from the Commission.

    Revision may take the form of a reallocation of appropriations between different headings or subheadings of the financial perspective. Amounts available under headings 1 to 6 cannot at any time be used for heading 7 (pre-accession strategy) of the financial perspective. Expenditure provided for the Union of Fifteen and that for enlargement are thus kept rigorously separate.
    The interinstitutional agreement specifies that any revision of the compulsory expenditure may not lead to a reduction of the amount available for non-compulsory expenditure.

    The three reserves appearing in heading 6 of the financial perspective make for flexibility in the management of the Union’s finances. They are the monetary reserve (to cover the impact of unforeseen movements in the euro/dollar parity on agricultural expenditure, abolished in 2003), the loan guarantee reserve for non-member countries (to provision the Guarantee Fund) and the emergency aid reserve (to meet specific and unforeseen aid requirements of non-member countries).

    In addition, a general flexibility instrument with an annual ceiling of EUR 200 million is intended to cover specific expenditure which cannot be financed within the limits of the ceilings set. The unused part of the instrument may be carried over to the following two years’ budgets. A decision to use this instrument is taken during the budgetary procedure by joint agreement between Parliament and the Council, on a proposal from the Commission. It must as a rule avoid being used to cover the same needs two years running. This instrument was drawn on fully in December 1999 in respect of the 2000 budget in order to finance the reconstruction of Kosovo following an examination of all the possibilities for reallocating appropriations (Parliament and Council Decision of 16 December 1999, to reallocate appropriations in order to finance the reconstruction of Kosovo, Official Journal C 41 of 14.02.2000).

    The Interinstitutional Agreement provides for two types of procedure to meet requirements which exceed the ceiling of a heading in the financial perspective: the flexibility instrument and revision of the financial perspective. The order in which the various financing sources are to be mobilised is as follows:

    (1) reallocate appropriations within the heading in question;

    (2) if that is not enough, mobilise all or part of the flexibility instrument subject to the conditions governing its use;

    (3) if that is not enough or if the criteria for using the flexibility instrument are not met, revise the financial perspective, raising the ceiling of the heading in question and offsetting this by lowering the ceiling of another heading;

    (4) if that cannot be done, increase the ceiling of the heading in question with no offsetting compensation, provided the overall own resources ceiling is not exceeded.

    Improvement of the budgetary procedure

    The second part of the agreement lays down the rules designed to improve the functioning of the annual budgetary procedure.
    These rules relate to interinstitutional cooperation in general and to more specific problems (classification of expenditure, the matter of legal bases, incorporation of financial provisions in legislative acts, etc.) which had not been resolved by the 1993 agreement or which were dealt with under other arrangements (agreements or joint declarations) agreed between the institutions.

    The agreement strengthens interinstitutional collaboration.
    Trialogue meetings (between the President of the Council (Budget), the Chairman of Parliament’s Committee on Budgets and the Member of the Commission with responsibility for the budget), generally followed by conciliation between the Council and a delegation from Parliament with the Commission as a participant, are planned in accordance with the following schedule:

    • before the establishment of the preliminary draft budget by the Commission;
    • before the establishment of the draft budget by the Council;
    • before the first reading by Parliament;
    • after the first reading by Parliament;
    • the day preceding the second reading in the Council.

    The conciliation procedure, which has to date been limited to non-compulsory expenditure, is extended to include all expenditure and the classification of expenditure as compulsory or non-compulsory expenditure.
    This is facilitated by the inclusion in the Agreement of a definition of “compulsory expenditure” and a list classifying each heading or subheading of the financial perspective.

    With regard to the incorporation of financial provisions in legislative acts, the agreement makes a distinction between acts concerning multiannual programmes adopted under the co-decision procedure and other legislative acts.
    Only the first category of acts can contain financial provisions (financial allocation to the programme for its entire duration) which are binding on the institutions during the budgetary procedure.
    If financial provisions are incorporated in other kinds of acts, they serve only as an illustration.

    The agreement also clarifies to what extent the utilisation of appropriations entered in the budget require the prior adoption of a basic act. Only four categories of appropriations are exempt from the general requirement of a legal basis:

    • appropriations for pilot schemes of an experimental nature: these appropriations may be entered in the budget for no more than two financial years and may not exceed EUR 32 million.
    • appropriations relating to preparatory acts intended to prepare legislative proposals: these proposals may not be entered for more than three years and may not exceed EUR 30 million per year and EUR 75 million in all;
    • appropriations concerning actions carried out by the Commission by virtue of tasks resulting from its prerogatives at institutional level or specific powers conferred upon it by the EC Treaty (studies and opinions relating to social policy, initiatives to boost coordination with regard to trans-European networks, etc.);
    • appropriations intended for the operation of each institution under its administrative autonomy.

    The Interinstitutional Agreement also contains provisions making it possible to distribute expenditure relating to fisheries agreements between the budget headings concerned and the reserve on the basis of the date of entry into force of the agreements during the budgetary procedure. All expenditure relating to new or renewable agreements which enter into force after 1 January of the year in question is placed in the reserve until the time comes to transfer it to the corresponding budget heading.

    With regard to the operational expenditure of the common foreign and security policy (CFSP), the institutions will endeavour to secure each year, by means of the conciliation procedure, agreement on the amount to be charged to the Community budget and on the distribution of this amount between the articles of the CFSP budget chapter (observation and organisation of elections, prevention of conflicts, financial aid to the enlargement process, urgent actions, etc.). The amount allocated to urgent actions may not exceed 20% of the overall amount of the CFSP budget chapter.
    Whenever it adopts a decision in the field of CFSP entailing expenditure, the Council will immediately send the European Parliament an estimate of the costs envisaged.
    The Commission will inform the budgetary authority about the implementation of CFSP actions and the financial forecasts for the remaining period of the year.

    Several declarations are attached to the agreement.
    The following should be mentioned, among others, the Declaration on the agricultural guideline (which confirms the principles and mechanisms) and the Declaration on the Balkan situation (which points to a possible revision of the financial perspective in order to cover additional expenditure).

    References

    Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Interinstitutional Agreement of 6 May 1999 01.01.2000 OJ C 172 of 18.06.1999
    Decision 2003/429/EC 19.05.2003 OJ L 147 of 14.06.2003

    Related Acts

    of 10 February 2004, Building our common Future – Policy challenges and Budgetary means of the Enlarged Union, 2007-2013 [COM(2004) 101 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

     

    European Anti-Fraud Office

    European Anti-Fraud Office

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about European Anti-Fraud Office

    Topics

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

    Fight against fraud > Anti-fraud offices

    European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF)

    Acts

    Commission Decision 1999/352/EC, ECSC, Euratom of 28 April 1999 establishing the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

    Operating modalities:

    Regulation (EC) No 1073/1999 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 May 1999 concerning investigations conducted by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

    Council Regulation (EURATOM) No 1074/1999 of 25 May 1999 concerning investigations conducted by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

    Interinstitutional Agreement of 25 May 1999 between the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the Commission of the European Communities concerning internal investigations by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

    Summary

    This Decision establishes the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), which is part of the European Commission with a special independent status for conducting anti-fraud investigations. Two Regulations and an Interinstitutional Agreement stipulate how it is to operate.

    OLAF’s competences

    The Commission Decision establishes OLAF and sets out its powers, which are to:

    • carry out external administrative investigations as part of the fight against fraud, corruption and any other illegal activity that adversely affects the Community’s financial interests and for the purpose of combating fraud involving any other act or activity in breach of Community provisions;
    • carry out internal administrative investigations for the purposes of:
      1. combating fraud, corruption and any other illegal activity that adversely affects the Community’s financial interests,
      2. investigating serious situations relating to the discharge of professional duties that may constitute a failure to comply with the obligations of officials and servants of the Communities liable to result in disciplinary or, where appropriate, criminal proceedings, or a failure to comply with the analogous obligations of the members of the institutions, bodies, offices or agencies or their staff who are not subject to the Staff Regulations of Officials of the European Communities and the Conditions of Employment of Other Servants of the European Communities,
    • carry out investigative assignments in other areas at the request of Community institutions and bodies;
    • help strengthen cooperation with the Member States in the field of fraud prevention;
    • develop strategies for the fight against fraud (preparing legislative and regulatory initiatives in the areas of activity of the Office);
    • set in motion any other operational activity in the fight against fraud (developing infrastructure, collecting and analysing information, providing technical support);
    • maintain direct contact with the national law enforcement and judicial authorities;
    • represent the Commission in the field of fraud prevention.

    OLAF’s external investigative powers are mainly those that were conferred upon the Commission under Regulations (EC, Euratom) Nos 2988/95 (the European Communities’ financial interests) and 2185/96 (on-the-spot checks and inspections carried out by the Commission in order to protect the European Communities’ financial interests). Furthermore, OLAF works on the basis of Regulation (EC) 515/97 on mutual administrative assistance.

    How OLAF goes about its investigations

    The two Regulations on investigations by OLAF, one applying to the EC and the other to Euratom, restate the Office’s main functions and define the practical arrangements for carrying out the administrative investigations for which it is responsible.

    The checks and verifications OLAF carries out externally (in the Member States and in certain non-member countries with which the Community has cooperation agreements) and internally (inside the institutions and bodies established by or on the basis of the Treaties) do not affect the powers of the Member States in the area of criminal prosecution.

    The Director of OLAF launches and directs investigations on his own initiative or at the request of a Member State with an interest in the matter (in the case of external investigations) or of the institution or body concerned (in the case of internal investigations).

    As part of its external investigations, OLAF carries out the on-the-spot checks for which the Commission is responsible under Regulations (EC, Euratom) Nos 2988/95 and 2185/96.

    For its internal investigations, OLAF has the right of immediate and unannounced access to any information held by the Community institutions, bodies, offices and agencies. It may also ask anyone concerned for oral information, and carry out on-the-spot checks on economic operators.

    Where the Office discovers, in the course of an internal investigation, that a member, manager, official or other servant may be personally involved, it informs the institution, body, office or agency to which that person belongs, unless divulging such information is incompatible with the need to maintain complete strict confidentiality for the purposes of the investigation or a possible national investigation.

    At the request of OLAF or on their own initiative, the Member States, institutions, bodies, offices and agencies are required to provide the Office with any document or information they hold that relates to an investigation under way.

    All information passed on to the Office will be properly protected.

    On completion of an investigation, OLAF draws up a report including recommendations as to the action to be taken. The report is sent to the Member States in the case of external investigations and to the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies in the case of internal investigations.

    Information may also be sent to the competent authorities in the Member States and to the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies concerned, while an investigation is still under way (the Office is in direct contact with the national law enforcement and judicial authorities).

    OLAF’s operational independence is protected by a Supervisory Committee consisting of five independent outsiders appointed by common agreement of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission. Furthermore, if the Director considers that a measure taken by the Commission calls his independence in question, he is entitled to bring an action against it before the Court of Justice.

    Any member of the staff of a Community institution, body, office or agency who feels that his interests are adversely affected in the course of an internal investigation may submit a complaint to the Director of OLAF or bring an action before the Court of Justice.

    Interinstitutional Agreement between the Parliament, the Council and the Commission

    The object of the Interinstitutional Agreement between the European Parliament , the Council and the Commission is to guarantee that internal investigations can be carried out under equivalent conditions in the three institutions and in all the other Community bodies, offices and agencies, including the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Central Bank (ECB).

    To bring this about, the three institutions have agreed to adopt an internal decision based on the standard model annexed to the Agreement, and to call on the other institutions, bodies, offices and agencies to accede to the Agreement.

    The model decision requires the Secretary-General, departments and all members of staff of the institution, body, office or agency concerned to cooperate fully with OLAF’s agents and to supply all useful information.

    Where there is a presumption of fraud, corruption or any other illegal activity detrimental to the Communities’ interests:

    • any member who becomes aware of such evidence must without delay inform his Head of Service or Director-General or, if he considers it useful, his Secretary-General or OLAF directly;
    • the Secretary-General, the Directors-General and the Heads of Service or managers must transmit to OLAF without delay any evidence from which the existence of irregularities may be presumed;
    • members of the institutions, bodies, offices or agencies must inform the President or, where appropriate, OLAF directly.

    Where it becomes clear during an internal investigation that a member, manager, official or other servant is involved, the person concerned is informed rapidly. He/she will be called upon to give his/her views on the matters concerning him/her. The invitation may be deferred where necessary for the purposes of the investigation or any subsequent national judicial inquiries.

    OLAF delivers an opinion on any request for a waiver of immunity from the police or judicial authorities in a Member State, if the request relates to a manager, official or other servant of an institution, body, office or agency. If a request concerns a member of an institution or body, the Office is informed.

    Background

    The EC Treaty provides an explicit legal basis for operations by the Community and the Member States to combat fraud and other unlawful activities that are damaging to the Community’s financial interests (Article 280). The entry into force of the Amsterdam Treaty has given the Community much more substantial means for combating fraud and stamping out economic and financial crime.

    The Commission’s Task Force for the Coordination of Fraud Prevention was thus replaced by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), which, in addition to carrying out investigations, is responsible for devising and preparing legislation for the protection of the Community’s financial interests and the fight against fraud. OLAF enjoys greater independence than its predecessor in conducting investigations.

    References

    Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Decision 1999/352/EC, CECA, Euratom

    28.4.1999

    OJ L 136 of 31.5.1999

    Regulation (EC) No 1073/1999

    1.6.1999

    OJ L 136 of 31.5.1999

    Regulation (Euratom) No 1074/1999

    1.6.1999

    OJ L 136 of 31.5.1999

    Interinstitutional Agreement

    1.6.1999

    OJ L 136 of 31.5.1999

    Related Acts

    Proposal for a European Parliament and Council Regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 1073/1999 concerning investigations conducted by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) [COM(2006) 244 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    In substance, the proposal has the following main objectives:

    • Governance, cooperation between the institutions and the Supervisory Committee. The Commission sees a need for political governance regarding priorities related to investigative activities. It proposes regular meetings between the Supervisory Committee and the other European institutions as part of a structured dialogue, without interfering in the investigative activities.
    • Guarantee of the rights of persons implicated. The Commission proposes including in the Regulation a detailed provision on the procedural guarantees to be respected in the conduct of internal and external investigations.
    • Improved monitoring of investigations. Monitoring that ensures the specific procedures are followed should be improved and the possibility of requesting an opinion should be introduced. A review adviser is provided for to fulfil such a role.
    • Improving the information flow. With this proposal, the Commission intends to improve the flow of information between OLAF and European bodies and institutions, between OLAF and the Member States, as well as between OLAF and whistleblowers.
    • Strengthening OLAF’s operational efficiency. The Commission is proposing measures that will allow OLAF to concentrate on its priority actions. For example, the opening and closing of investigations need clarification.
    • Improving the effectiveness of OLAF’s investigations. The Commission proposes to clarify OLAF’s powers of investigation in the context of external investigations involving economic operators receiving Community funds on the basis of contracts, agreements or grant awards (direct expenditure).
    • Term of office of the Director-General. A non-renewable term of office should be introduced for the OLAF Director-General in order to strengthen independence.

    Codecision procedure (COD/2006/0084)

    Activity reports:

    Report of the European Anti-Fraud Office – Eighth Activity Reportfor the period 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2007 [Not published in the Official Journal].
    This eighth activity report substantiates the principal trends of previous years. The volume and quality of information received by OLAF has steadily increased in the past years, confirming the public’s confidence in the Office. In the course of 2007, OLAF opened more cases than in 2006. Similarly, the number of cases closed increased as well, as opposed to previous years that have been characterised by a declining number of closed cases. Furthermore, the amount of “own investigations” OLAF carries out has exceeded the amount of investigations in which it merely provides assistance to national authorities. The average duration of cases increased slightly in 2007, due to the complexity of the cases the Office faces nowadays and to the necessity of involving Member States or outside partners in the investigations. OLAF has actively continued its cooperation with Member States, EU bodies in charge of police and judicial cooperation and international partners in the fight against fraud.

    Report of the European Anti-Fraud Office – Seventh Activity Reportfor the period 1 January 2006 to 31 December 2006 [Not published in the Official Journal].

    This report follows on from the sixth activity report. In it, the Commission assesses the irregularities committed and presents the most important measures taken in 2006 by the Member States and by itself to improve fraud prevention and the fight against fraud. The report also describes in detail the way OLAF decides to open an anti-fraud investigation and explains how cases are managed.

    Report of the European Anti-Fraud Office – Sixth Activity Reportfor the period 1 July 2004 to 31 December 2005 [Not published in the Official Journal].

    Evaluation report: Commission Report of 2 April 2003 – Evaluation of the activities of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) [COM(2003) 154 final – Official Journal C 76 of 25.3.2004].

    Decisions by the institutions:

    Council Decision 1999/394/EC of 25 May 1999 concerning the terms and conditions for internal investigations in relation to the prevention of fraud, corruption and any illegal activity detrimental to the Community’s interests [Official Journal L 149 of 16.6.1999].

    As laid down in the Interinstitutional Agreement, this Decision states that the Council is to cooperate with the Office and keep it informed; it also requires the Security Office to assist OLAF’s staff in their work. In return, OLAF is required to inform anyone implicated in one of its investigations.

    Commission Decision 1999/396/EC of 2 June 1999 concerning the terms and conditions for internal investigations in relation to the prevention of fraud, corruption and any illegal activity detrimental to the Community’s interests [Official Journal L 149 of 16.6.1999].

    As laid down in the Interinstitutional Agreement, this Decision states that the Commission is to cooperate with the Office and keep it informed; it also requires the Security Office to assist OLAF’s staff in their work. In return, OLAF is required to inform anyone implicated in one of its investigations.

    Decision of the European Parliament of 18 November 1999 concerning the terms and conditions for internal investigations in relation to the prevention of fraud, corruption and any illegal activity detrimental to the Community’s interests [European Parliament Rules of Procedure, Annex XI – Official Journal L 44 of 15.2.2005].

    As laid down in the Interinstitutional Agreement, this Decision states that the European Parliament is to cooperate with the Office and keep it informed. The Decision obliges Parliament’s Security Office to assist OLAF staff in their work. It also obliges OLAF to inform anyone who is implicated in one of its investigations.

    Decision 1999/726/EC of the European Central Bank of 7 October 1999 on fraud prevention – [Official Journal L 291 of 12.11.1999].

    The Decision seeks to provide adequate protection against fraud and other illegal activities at the European Central Bank (ECB), while maintaining the distribution and balance of responsibilities between the ECB and the European institutions.
    Accordingly, the Decision sets up an anti-fraud committee to be responsible for monitoring the independence and functioning of the ECB Directorate for Internal Audit. The anti-fraud committee is also responsible for relations with the Supervisory Committee of OLAF. These relations are governed by the principles established by an ECB decision.

    Decision of the Court of Justice of 26 October 1999 concerning the terms and conditions for internal investigations in relation to the prevention of fraud, corruption and any illegal activity detrimental to the Community’s interests [Not published in the Official Journal].

    In accordance with the provisions of the Regulations setting up OLAF, this Decision requires the Court to cooperate with the Office and to keep it informed. It also lays down the procedures to be followed by OLAF staff when carrying out internal investigations. In line with the principle of confidentiality, it denies OLAF access to documents held in connection with legal proceedings that are in progress or have been terminated.

    Judgment of the Court of Justice of 10 July 2003 setting aside Decision 1999/726/EC of the European Central Bank on fraud prevention and protection of the Communities’ financial interests (Case C-11/00).

    Animal by-products not intended for human consumption

    Animal by-products not intended for human consumption

    Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Animal by-products not intended for human consumption

    Topics

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

    Food safety > Animal nutrition

    Animal by-products not intended for human consumption

    The food crises of the 1990s highlighted the part played by animal by-products not intended for human consumption in the spread of certain infectious diseases. Such by-products must be kept out of the food chain. This Regulation therefore establishes strict health rules for their use, so as to ensure a high level of health and safety. In particular, it prohibits intra-species recycling.

    Document or Iniciative

    Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 October 2002 laying down health rules concerning animal by-products not intended for human consumption [See amending acts].

    Summary

    Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 constitutes the cornerstone of the new European legislation on food safety. Adopting the “from farm to table” approach, it aims, by drawing on the latest scientific opinions, to guarantee a high standard of health and safety throughout the food chain.

    Animal by-products are defined as the entire bodies or parts of bodies of animals or products of animal origin not intended for human consumption, including ova, embryos and sperm. They represent more than 15 million tonnes of meat, dairy products and other products, including manure . These materials are then disposed of or processed and re-used in many different sectors, including the cosmetics or pharmaceuticals sectors, as well as being used for other technical purposes.

    Following the food crises of the 1990s, such as the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) epidemic, the role of these by-products in propagating transmissible animal diseases was brought to light. Composed of eight independent scientific experts, the Scientific Steering Committee then concluded that products derived from animals declared unfit for human consumption must not enter the food chain. Moreover, the administration to any animal of proteins obtained by processing carcasses of the same species – or cannibalism – may constitute an additional risk of disease propagation.

    This Regulation sets out the measures to be implemented for the processing of animal by-products.

    SCOPE

    This Regulation lays down the health and surveillance rules applicable to:

    • the collection, transport, storage, handling, processing and use or disposal of animal by-products;
    • the placing on the market and, in certain specific cases, the export and transit of animal by-products and products derived therefrom.

    It does not apply to:

    • raw petfood originating from retail shops;
    • liquid milk and colostrum used on the farm of origin;
    • entire bodies (or parts) of healthy wild animals, except for fish landed for commercial purposes and animals used to produce game trophies;
    • raw petfood for use on site, derived from animals slaughtered on the farm of origin for use as foodstuffs by the farmer and his family only, in accordance with national legislation;
    • catering waste, unless it is destined for animal consumption, it is destined for use in a biogas plant or for composting or it comes from means of transport operating internationally;
    • ova, embryoes and sperm intended for breeding purposes;
    • transit by sea or by air.

    CLASSIFICATION OF ANIMAL BY-PRODUCTS

    Category 1 material

    Category 1 material comprises the following animal by-products:

    • all body parts body, including hides and skins, of animals suspected of being infected by a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) or in which the presence of a TSE has been confirmed, animals killed in the context of TSE eradication measures, pet animals, zoo animals and circus animals, experimental animals, wild animals suspected of being infected with a communicable disease;
    • specified risk material as tissues likely to carry an infectious agent;
    • products derived from animals that have absorbed prohibited substances or substances containing products dangerous for the environment;
    • all animal material collected when treating waste water from category 1 processing plants and other premises in which specified risk material is removed;
    • catering waste from means of transport operating internationally;
    • mixtures of category 1 with category 2 and/or category 3 material.

    Intermediate handling and storage of category 1 material must take place in approved intermediate establishments of the same category. Collected, transported and identified without delay, this material shall be:

    • directly disposed of as waste by incineration in an approved incineration plant;
    • processed in an approved plant by a specific method, in which case the resulting material shall be marked and finally disposed of as waste by incineration or co-incineration;
    • with the exclusion of material coming from carcasses of animals infected (or suspected of being infected) with a TSE, processed by a specific method in an approved plant, in which case the resultant material shall be marked and finally disposed of as waste by means of burial in an approved landfill;
    • in the case of catering waste, disposed of by burial in a landfill.

    Category 2 material

    Category 2 material comprises the following animal by-products:

    • manure and digestive tract content;
    • all animal materials other than those belonging to category 1 collected when treating waste water from slaughterhouses;
    • products of animal origin containing residues of veterinary drugs and contaminants in concentrations exceeding the Community limits;
    • products of animal origin, other than category 1 material, that are imported from third countries and fail to comply with the Community veterinary requirements;
    • animals other than category 1 that have not been slaughtered for human consumption;
    • mixtures of category 2 and category 3 material.

    Except in the case of manure, the intermediate handling and storage of category 2 material must take place in approved intermediate establishments of the same category. Collected, transported and identified without delay, this material shall be:

    • directly disposed of as waste by incineration in an approved incineration plant;
    • processed in an approved plant by a specific method, in which case the resultant material shall be marked and finally disposed of as waste;
    • ensiled or composted in the case of material derived from fish;
    • in the case of manure, digestive tract content, milk and colostrum not presenting any risk of spreading a communicable disease, either a) used without processing as raw material in a biogas or composting plant or treated in a technical plant, or b) applied to land;
    • used in a technical plant to produce game trophies.

    Category 3 material

    Category 3 material comprises the following animal by-products:

    • parts of slaughtered animals which are fit for human consumption but are not intended for human consumption for commercial reasons;
    • parts of slaughtered animals which are rejected as unfit for human consumption but are not affected by any sign of a communicable disease;
    • hides and skins, hooves and horns, pig bristles and feathers originating from animals that are slaughtered in a slaughterhouse and were declared fit for human consumption after undergoing an ante mortem inspection;
    • blood obtained from animals declared fit for human consumption after undergoing an ante mortem inspection, other than ruminants slaughtered in a slaughterhouse;
    • animal by-products derived from the production of products intended for human consumption, including degreased bones and greaves;
    • former foodstuffs of animal origin, other than catering waste, which are no longer intended for human consumption for commercial reasons or due to problems of manufacturing or packaging defects;
    • raw milk originating from animals that do not show any signs of a communicable disease;
    • fish or other sea animals, except sea mammals, caught in the open sea for the purpose of fishmeal production, and fresh by-products from fish from plants manufacturing fish products for human consumption;
    • shells of eggs originating from animals that do not show any signs of a communicable disease;
    • blood, hides and skins, hooves, feathers, wool, horns, hair and fur originating from healthy animals;
    • catering waste other than category 1.

    Intermediate handling and storage of category 3 material must take place in approved intermediate establishments of the same category. Collected, transported and identified without delay, this material shall be:

    • directly disposed of as waste by incineration in an approved incineration plant;
    • used as raw material in a petfood plant;
    • processed by a specific method in an approved processing, technical, biogas or composting plant;
    • composted or processed in a biogas plant in the case of category 3 catering waste;
    • in the case of raw material of fish origin, ensiled or composted.

    COLLECTION, TRANSPORTATION, STORAGE, DISPATCH

    With the exception of category 3 catering waste, animal by-products and processed products shall be collected, transported and identified. The regulatory procedure concerns identification and labelling of raw materials in the three categories, equipment of vehicles and containers, commercial documents, health certificates and transportation conditions. Records must be kept of all dispatches.

    For the dispatch of animal by-products and processed products, the Member State of destination must have authorised the receipt of category 1 and 2 material and of processed animal proteins. Duly identified, any batch of animal by-products must be conveyed directly to the plant of destination. Information is exchanged between the Member States’ competent authorities via the TRACES system.

    APPROVAL

    Intermediate and storage establishments

    Category 1, 2 and 3 intermediate and storage establishments shall be subject to approval by the competent authority. To be approved, they must meet the requirements of the Regulation aimed at preventing any risk of transmissible disease propagation.

    Hygiene requirements relate to: the layout of premises, the type of facilities, staff hygiene, protection against pests (insects, rodents and birds), waste water disposal, storage temperature, cleaning and disinfection of containers and transport vehicles other than ships.

    The competent authority must check these establishments regularly; in addition, intermediate establishments must apply specific own-check procedures. The competent authority shall suspend approval immediately if the conditions under which it was granted are no longer fulfilled.

    Incineration and co-incineration plants

    Directive 2000/76/EC defines the conditions for the incineration of waste from processed products. Where this Directive does not apply to certain animal by-products, they are disposed of in accordance with the present Regulation.

    The competent authority shall approve high- and low-capacity plants. Used only for the disposal of pet animals, specified risk material and category 2 and/or category 3 material, low-capacity plants must meet strict requirements regarding the equipment and maintenance of premises, operating conditions (gaseous releases, temperature), waste water, residues (ash, slag, dust), temperature measurement and the conditions for incinerating specified risk material.

    Approval shall be suspended immediately if the requirements in force are no longer met.

    Category 1 and 2 processing plants

    Category 1 and 2 processing plants shall be subject to approval by the competent authority, which validates and checks the manufacturing processes. To be approved, these plants must meet the requirements of the Regulation regarding: the layout of premises, the type of facilities, staff hygiene, protection against pests (insects, rodents and birds), waste water disposal, storage, cleaning and disinfection of the site and vehicles.

    Depending on the category of animal by-products, seven processing methods may be used. Described in Annex V, these methods vary according to the particle size of the raw material, the temperature reached during heat treatment, the pressure applied and the duration of the process, one of them being specific to animal by-products of fish origin. Method No 1 shall be applied to:

    • category 2 material – other than manure, digestive tract content, milk and colostrum – destined for a biogas or composting plant or intended for use as organic fertilisers or soil improvers;
    • category 1 and 2 material to be disposed of in a landfill;
    • processed mammalian proteins.

    The methods numbered from 1 to 5 are applied to:

    • category 2 raw material intended for incineration after processing;
    • category 1 and 2 material intended for incineration.

    For each of the processing methods, identification of the critical points determining the intensity of heat treatment is essential. These critical points include: the particle size of the raw material, the temperature reached during heat treatment, the pressure applied and the duration of the process.

    Approval shall be suspended immediately if the conditions under which it was granted are no longer fulfilled.

    Category 3 processing plants

    Category 3 processing plants shall be subject to approval by the competent authority. To be approved, these plants must meet the requirements regarding the layout of the premises, the type of facilities, hot water production capacity, heat treatment, protection against pests, waste water disposal, cleaning and disinfection of the site.

    Only category 3 raw material – apart from blood, hides and skins, hooves, feathers, wool, horns, hair and fur of animals unfit for human consumption but not show any signs of a communicable disease, as well as catering waste – may be used for the production of processed animal proteins and other raw material for animal feed. Prior to any processing, the animal by-products must be subjected to a check to detect the presence of foreign bodies such as packaging material or pieces of metal.

    For each of the processing methods used, the critical points determining the intensity of the heat treatment must be identified: particle size, temperature, pressure, duration of the process. Specific requirements are applicable, depending on whether the method involves processed animal proteins (e. g. method No 1 for mammalian proteins), blood products, rendered fats and fish oils, (products based on) milk and colostrum, gelatine and hydrolysed proteins, dicalcium or tricalcium phosphate.

    The competent authority shall approve and inspect processing plants and shall suspend approval immediately if the requirements of the Regulation are no longer met. The plants must also introduce own-check procedures.

    Category 2 and 3 oleochemical plants

    Oleochemical plants shall be subject to approval by the competent authority. To be approved, these plants must process rendered fats derived from category 2 or 3 material in accordance with the standards laid down in the Regulation and establish and implement critical point monitoring and control methods. The authority shall inspect the plants and suspend approval if the conditions under which it was granted are no longer fulfilled.

    Biogas and composting plants

    Biogas and composting plants shall be subject to approval by the competent authority. The conditions for obtaining approval relate to the nature and equipment of the plants. In addition, these plants must implement critical point monitoring and control methods. Approval shall be suspended immediately if the conditions under which it was granted are no longer fulfilled.

    Only the following animal by-products may be processed in a biogas or composting plant:

    • category 2 material subjected to processing method No 1 in a category 2 processing plant;
    • manure and digestive tract content separated from the digestive tract, milk and colostrum;
    • category 3 material.

    There are specific hygiene and processing requirements for biogas and composting plants.

    Petfood plants and technical plants

    Plants producing petfood, articles for chewing and technical products shall be subject to control and approval by the competent authority.

    The Regulation sets out the hygiene rules specific to:

    • petfood and articles for chewing;
    • manure;
    • blood and blood products;
    • serum from equidae;
    • hides and skins of ungulates;
    • game trophies;
    • wool;
    • unprocessed hair, unprocessed pig bristles, unprocessed feathers and parts of feathers;
    • apiculture products;
    • bones, horns, hooves intended for purposes other than as raw material for animal feed, organic fertilisers or soil improvers;
    • animal by-products intended for the manufacture of petfood, pharmaceuticals and other technical products;
    • rendered fats intended for an oleochemical use;
    • fat derivatives;
    • flavouring innards used in the manufacture of petfood.

    The plants must establish and implement critical point monitoring and control methods on the basis of the process used. Depending on the products, they must take samples for laboratory analysis. The competent authority shall carry out checks and suspend approval if the conditions under which it was granted are no longer fulfilled.

    PLACING ON THE MARKET AND USE OF PROCESSED PROTEINS

    The Member States must be able to guarantee that animal by-products and processed products do not come from a geographical zone subject to health restrictions. In certain cases, animal by-products may originate from such a zone if they are neither infected nor suspected of being infected, are correctly identified and meet the hygiene requirements laid down in the Regulation.

    Placing on the market and export of processed animal proteins used as feed material

    Only animal proteins handled, processed, stored and transported in accordance with the provisions of the Regulation may be placed on the market. Produced in a category 3 processing plant, they must be prepared exclusively from material of the same category.

    Placing on the market and export of petfood, articles for chewing and technical products

    Only petfood, articles for chewing and technical products which meet the specific requirements of the Regulation and come from approved and inspected plants may be placed on the market.

    Fat derivatives, placed on the market or exported, must be produced from category 2 or 3 material and prepared in an oleochemical plant; they must meet the requirements of the Regulation relating to processing and handling.

    Safeguard measures

    In the event of an outbreak of an epizootic disease that may constitute a risk to health, the Member State of dispatch must take – in accordance with the legislation in force – all necessary measures to eradicate the disease and, in particular, must demarcate the affected area. The Member State of destination must take the preventive measures laid down in Community legislation. These provisions apply to movements of animal by-products.

    It is prohibited to:

    • feed a species with processed animal proteins derived from the bodies or parts of bodies of animals of the same species (cannibalism);
      Following a consultation of the Scientific Committee, which came out in favour, fish and fur animals are exempt from this ban.
    • feed farmed animals other than fur animals with catering waste;
    • apply organic fertilisers and soil improvers, other than manure, to pasture land.

    DEROGATIONS

    Derogations regarding the use of animal by-products

    Under the supervision of the competent authority, the Member States may authorise the use of animal by-products for diagnostic, educational and research purposes, as well as for taxidermy purposes in approved technical plants.

    Animal by-products derived from category 2 and 3 material – except for blood, hides and skins, hooves, feathers, wool, horns, hair and fur from animals unfit for human consumption but not showing any signs of a communicable disease – may be used for the feeding of the following animals:

    • zoo and circus animals;
    • reptiles and birds of prey;
    • fur animals;
    • wild animals the meat of which is not destineded for human consumption;
    • dogs from recognised kennels or packs of hounds;
    • maggots for fishing bait.

    Following a consultation of the Scientific Committee, which expressed a favourable opinion, the Member States may authorise the use of entire bodies of category 1 animals containing specified risk material for the feeding of endangered or protected species of necrophagous birds (griffon vultures).

    Member States must inform the Commission of the use made of the derogations and the verification arrangements introduced. They must draw up a list of authorised users and collection centres registered on their territory and assign them an official number.

    Derogations regarding the disposal of animal by-products

    The direct burial of dead pet animals is authorised only in limited cases.

    Certain animal by-products originating in remote areas may be disposed of as waste by burning or burial on site. This concerns the bodies of pet animals and category 1 animals containing specified risk material, category 2 and 3 material originating in remote areas or animal by-products that can be burnt or buried on site in the event of an outbreak of a disease included in list A of the International Office for Epizootics (OIE).

    No derogation may be granted for animals suspected of being infected with a TSE.

    CONTROLS AND INSPECTIONS

    Plants’ own checks

    Operators and owners of intermediate establishments and processing plants must put in place a permanent procedure developed in accordance with the principles of the system of hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP). They must:

    • identify the critical points in order to establish a monitoring and control method;
    • in the case of a processing plant, take samples for analysis;
    • record the results of checks and tests and keep them for a period of at least two years;
    • introduce a system ensuring the traceability of each batch dispatched.

    Where the results of a test on samples do not comply with the provisions of the Regulation, the operator of the plant must notify the competent authority immediately, establish the causes of failures of compliance, stop the dispatch of contaminated material, increase the frequency of testing of production and take appropriate steps to decontaminate the plant.

    Official controls and lists of approved establishments and plants

    The competent authority shall inspect approved establishments and plants at regular intervals. In the case of processing plants, the supervision of production covers the following:

    • general conditions of hygiene of the premises;
    • equipment and staff;
    • the efficacy of the own checks carried out by the plant;
    • the standards of the products after processing;
    • storage conditions;
    • description of the process;
    • identification of critical control points (CCP).

    The frequency of inspections and supervision shall depend on the size of the establishments and plants, the type of products manufactured and the risk assessment in accordance with the principles of the HACCP system.

    Each Member State shall draw up a list of the approved establishments and plants within its territory and assign them an official identification number. It shall sends copies of the list and updated versions to the Commission and the other Member States.

    Community controls in the Member States

    Experts from the Commission experts may make on-the-spot checks in cooperation with the competent authorities of the Member States. The Commission shall inform the Member State’s competent authority of the results of the checks made.

    IMPORTATION AND TRANSIT OF CERTAIN ANIMAL BY-PRODUCTS

    The provisions applicable to the importation of animal by-products from third countries shall provide equivalent guarantees to those applicable to the production and marketing of these products in the Community.

    Imported products must come from a third country on an updated list which takes account of criteria relating to that country’s legislation and health situation. Similarly, establishments and plants producing for export to the European Union shall be approved by the competent authority in the third country and entered on a Community list. Pending the compilation of such lists, the Member States may maintain the controls provided for in Directive 97/78/EC.

    A health certificate, which may be drawn up according to various models shown in the Regulation, shall identify the product and certify that it is safe.

    Experts from the Commission may make on-the-spot checks with a view to drawing up the list of third countries and verifying compliance with import and/or transit conditions. The Commission shall meet the costs incurred for these checks. If a check reveals a serious infringement of the health rules, the Commission shall immediately ask the third country to take appropriate measures or shall suspend consignments to the Union and immediately inform the Member States.

    According to the product concerned, the lists of third countries from which the Member States may authorise imports of animal by-products are given in Annex XI of the Regulation.

    FINAL PROVISIONS

    After consultation of the appropriate scientific committee on any question that could have an impact on animal health or public health, the Annexes may be amended or supplemented and any appropriate transitional measures may be adopted by a decision of the Commission.

    The Commission shall be assisted by the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health and by the appropriate scientific committees.

    National provisions

    Within one year of the entry into force of the Regulation, the Member States shall communicate to the Commission the text of the provisions of any national law that they adopt in order to comply with the new Community provisions.

    On the basis of the information received, the Commission shall submit to the European Parliament and the Council a detailed report accompanied, if appropriate, by legislative proposals. It shall also prepare a report on the financial arrangements in by the Member States for the processing, collection, storage and disposal of animal by-products.

    The Member States may adopt or maintain more restrictive national rules concerning the use of organic fertilisers and soil improvers and of fat derivatives produced from category 2 raw material.

    Repeal

    Directive 90/667/EEC and Decisions 95/348/EC and 1999/534/EC shall be repealed with effect from six months after the entry into force of the Regulation.

    References

    Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 30.10.2002 OJ L 273 of 10.10.2002

    DEROGATION

    Decision 2003/324/EC [Official Journal L117 of 13.05.2003]

    This derogation is granted to Finland and Estonia with regard to the intra-species recycling of fur animals (fox and raccoon dog) with processed animal protein derived from the bodies or parts of bodies of animals of the same species.

    See consolidated version (pdf)

    Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 13.05.2003 OJ L 117 of 13.05.2003

    Successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 have been incorporated into the original text. The consolidated version (pdf ) is intended purely as a documentation tool.

    CHANGES TO THE ANNEXES

    Annexe I – Specific definitions:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003];
    Regulation (EC) No 668/2004 [Official Journal L 112 of 19.04.2004];
    Regulation (EC) No 181/2006 [Official Journal L 29 of 2.2.2006];
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007];
    Regulation (EC) No 1432/2007 [Official Journal L 320 of 6.12.2007].

    Regulation (EC) No 777/2008 [Official Journal L 207 of 5.8.2008].

    Annexe II – Hygiene requirements for collection and transport:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 du 13.05.2003];
    Regulation (EC) No 93/2005 [Official Journal L 19 du 21.01.2005].
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007];
    Regulation (EC) No 1432/2007 [Official Journal L 320 of 6.12.2007].

    Annexe III – Hygiene requirements for intermediate and storage plants:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003].

    Annexe IV – Requirements for incineration and co-incineration plants to which Directive 2000/76/EC does not apply:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003];

    Annexe V – General hygiene requirements for the processing of category 1, 2 and 3 material:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003];
    Regulation (EC) No 93/2005 [Official Journal L 19 of 21.01.2005].
    Regulation (EC) No 777/2008 [Official Journal L 207 of 5.8.2008]

    Annexe VI – Specific requirements for the processing of category 1 and 2 material and for the production of biogas, for composting as well as for the marking of certain processed products:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003];
    Regulation (EC) No 208/2006 [Official Journal L 36 of 08.02.2006];
    Regulation (EC) No 1432/2007 [Official Journal L 320 of 6.12.2007].

    Annexe VII – Specific hygiene requirements for the processing and placing on the market of processed animal protein and other processed products that could be used as feed material:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003] ;
    Regulation (EC) No 668/2004 [Official Journal L 112 of 19.04.2004].
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007].
    Regulation (EC) No 437/2008 [Official Journal L 132 of 22.5.2008].

    Regulation (EC) No 777/2008 [Official Journal L 207 of 5.8.2008].

    Annexe VIII – Requirements for the placing on the market of petfood, dogchews and technical products:
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003] ;
    Regulation (EC) No 668/2004 [Official Journal L 112 of 19.04.2004];
    Regulation (EC) No 208/2006 [Official Journal L 36 of 08.02.2006].
    Regulation (EC) No 2007/2006 [Official Journal L 379 of 28.12.2006];
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007].

    Regulation (EC) No 399/2008 [Official Journal L 118 of 6.5.2008].

    Regulation (EC) No 523/2008 [Official Journal L 153 of 12.6.2008].

    Annexe IX – Rules applicable to the use of certain category 2 and category 3 material for the feeding of certain animals in accordance with Article 23(2):
    Regulation (EC) No 808/2003 [Official Journal L 117 of 13.05.2003].

    Annexe X – Model health certificates for the importation from third countries of certain animal by-products and products derived therefrom:
    Regulation (EC) No 668/2004 [Official Journal L 112 of 19.04.2004].
    Regulation (EC) No 2007/2006 [Official Journal L 379 of 28.12.2006];
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007].

    Regulation (EC) No 437/2008 [Official Journal L 132 of 22.5.2008].

    Regulation (EC) No 523/2008 [Official Journal L 153 of 12.6.2008].

    Annexe XI – List of third countries from which member states may authorise imports of animal by-products not intended for human consumption:
    Regulation (EC) No 668/2004 [Official Journal L 112 of 19.04.2004];
    Regulation (EC) No 416/2005 [Official Journal L 66 of 12.03.2005].
    Regulation (EC) No 829/2007 [Official Journal L 191 of 21.7.2007].

    Regulation (EC) No 437/2008 [Official Journal L 132 of 22.5.2008].

    Regulation (EC) No 523/2008 [Official Journal L 153 of 12.6.2008].

    Related Acts

    PROPOSALS

    Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down health rules as regards animal by-products not intended for human consumption (“Animal by-products Regulation”) [COM (2008) 345 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

    In this proposal the basic framework of safeguards applicable to animal by-products (ABP) is maintained. Nevertheless, the regulations will be clarified and a more risk-based approach will be introduced. The proposal also aims to ensure that the health rules on ABP are consistent with other Community legislation. Finally this proposal specifies the circumstances and methods related to the implementation of environmental legislation and facilitates the use of materials of animal origin for technical uses.

    Codecision Procedure (COD/2008/0110).

    Commission Regulation (EC) No 1192/2006 of 4 August 2006 implementing Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards lists of approved plants in Member States [Official Journal L 215 of 5.8.2006].

    Category 1 material

    Commission Regulation (EC) No 92/2005 of 19 January 2005 implementing Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards means of disposal or uses of animal by-products and amending its Annex VI as regards biogas transformation and processing of rendered fats [Official Journal L 19 of 21.1.2005].

    Commission Regulation (EC) No 811/2003 of 12 May 2003 implementing Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards the intra-species recycling ban for fish, the burial and burning of animal by-products and certain transitional measures [Official Journal L 117 of 13.5.2003].

    Commission Decision 2003/322/EC [Official Journal L 117 of 13.5.2003]

    (Use of category 1 materials for the feeding of certain necrophagous birds)

    See consolidated text (pdf ).

    Category 3 material

    Commission Regulation (EC) No 79/2005 [Official Journal L 16 of 20.1.2005]

    (the use of milk, milk-based products and milk-derived products, defined as Category 3 material).

    See consolidated version (pdf ).

    TRANSITIONAL MEASURES

    Commission Regulation (EC) No 197/2006 of 3 February 2006 on transitional measures under Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 as regards the collection, transport, treatment, use and disposal of former foodstuffs [Official Journal L 32 of 4.2.2006].
    Member States can authorise the collection, transport, treatment and use and disposal of former foodstuffs of animal origin or containing products of animal origin not intended for human consumption, which carry no risk for human or animal health. This transitional measure is valid until 31 July 2009.

    Regulation (EC) No 878/2004 [Official Journal L 162 of 30.4.2004]

    (importation and placing on the market of certain by-products from categories 1 and 2.

    REPORTS

    Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 21 October 2005 on the measures taken by Member States to ensure compliance with regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 October 2002 laying down health rules concerning animal by-products not intended for human consumption [COM(2005) 521 – Official Journal C 49 of 28.02.2006].

     

    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.