Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out

Doc. - Europa



                                      DAILY NOTEBOOK
Published by the
Directorate for the Media                        Thursday
Director: José Manuel                       Brussels, 26 May 2005

                                 Food labelling that tells the truth
Editor: Richard Freedman
PHS 00A028
43, rue Wiertz                   Addition of vitamins and minerals to food
B-1047 Brussels
Tel. (32-2) 28 41448
Fax (32-2) 28 46515
                                 MEPs call for more specific economic

During plenary sessions          Seat belts to be compulsory on buses
in Strasbourg:                    and lorries
IPE3 F02/001
Avenue Robert Schuman
F-67070 Strasbourg               Standard tests for frontal protection
Tel . (33) 388 1 73785            systems on cars
Fax (33) 388 1 79355

                                 MEPs worry about Russia's democracy
                                  but stress need for more cooperation

                                 New EU Agency to monitor respect for
                                  human rights in Europe
E-mail:                      Editor:        Richard Freedman                   +32 2 28 41448

                             Secretariat:   Sarah Donohoe

                             Close:         12.50pm


                                                                              PE 349.824
Thursday, 26 May 2005

Codes for parliamentary procedures
 A series          Reports and recommendations
 B series          Resolutions and oral questions
 C series          Documents of other institutions
 *                 Consultation procedure
 **I               Cooperation procedure (1st reading)
 **II              Cooperation procedure (2nd reading)
 ***               Assent procedure
 ***I              Codecision procedure (1st reading)
 ***II             Codecision procedure (2nd reading)
 ***III            Codecision procedure (3rd reading)


- Political groups: see next page

 BE           Belgium               IT         Italy         PL   Poland
 CZ           Czech Republic        CY         Cyprus        PT   Portugal
 DK           Denmark               LV         Latvia        SI   Slovenia
 DE           Germany               LT         Lithuania     SK   Slovakia
 EE           Estonia               LU         Luxembourg    FI   Finland
 EL           Greece                HU         Hungary       SE   Sweden
 ES           Spain                 MT         Malta         UK   United Kingdom
 FR           France                NL         Netherlands
 IE           Ireland               AT         Austria

Conversion rates

1 euro = £ sterling 0.68 as at 26.05.2005

2                                                                          PE 349.824
                                                                                                 Thursday, 26 May 2005

                    Political groups in the European Parliament
Situation as at: 26.05.2005
                                                     Greens /       GUE /        IND /
            EPP-ED          PES          ALDE          EFA          NGL          DEM           UEN            NA         Total
    BE         6             7             6             2                                                     3          24
    CZ         14            2                                        6            1                           1          24
    DK         1             5             4            1             1            1             1                        14
    DE         49            23            7            13            7                                                   99
    EE         1             3             2                                                                              6
    EL         11            8                                        4            1                                      24
    ES         24            24           2              3            1                                                   54
    FR         17            31           11             6            3            3                           7          78
     IE        5             1            1                           1            1             4                        13
     IT        24            15           12             2            7            4             9             4          77
    CY         3                          1                           2                                                   6
    LV         3                          1              1                                       4                        9
    LT         2             2            7                                                      2                        13
    LU         3             1            1              1                                                                6
    HU         13            9            2                                                                               24
    MT         2             3                                                                                            5
    NL         7             7             5             4            2            2                                      27
    AT         6             7                           2                                                     3          18
    PL         19            10            4                                      10             7             4          54
    PT         9             12                                       3                                                   24
     SI        4             1             2                                                                              7
    SK         8             3                                                                                 3          14
     FI        4             3            5              1            1                                                   14
    SE         5             5            3              1            2           3                                       19
    UK         28            19           12             5            1           10                           3          78
              268           201           88            42           41           36            27            28         731
Recent changes: Outgoing Members                                              Incoming Members
Ottaviano DEL TURCO (PES, IT) - 01.05.2005                        Vincenzo LAVARRA (PES, IT) - 24.05.2005
Theresa VILLIERS (EPP-ED, UK) - 10.05.2005                        Syed Salah KAMALL (EPP-ED, UK) - 12.05.2005
Christopher HUHNE (ALDE, UK) - 10.05.2005                         Sharon Margaret BOWLES (ALDE, UK) - 12.05.2005
Mercedes BRESSO (PES, IT) - 24.05.2005                            Giiovanni RIVERA (ALDE, IT) - 25.05.2005
Political groups
 EPP-ED             Group of the European People’s Party (Christian Democrats) and European Democrats (includes the British
                    Conservatives, the one Ulster Unionist MEP and Fine Gael from Ireland)
 PES                Socialist Group in the European Parliament (includes the British Labour MEPs and the one Irish Labour
                    Party MEP)
 ALDE               Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (includes the British Liberal Democrats and one
                    independent MEP from Ireland)
 GREENS/EFA         Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance (includes the British Greens, the Scottish National Party and
                    Plaid Cymru)
 GUE/NGL            Confederal Group of the European United Left – Nordic Green Left (includes the two Sinn Fein MEPs)
 IND/DEM            Independence and Democracy Group (includes 10 UKIP MEPs and one independent MEP from Ireland)
 UEN                Union for Europe of the Nations Group (includes the Irish Fianna Fail Members)
 NA                 Non-attached MEPs

PE 349.824                                                                                                                       3
Thursday, 26 May 2005
                                                   like "light", "low fat" or "sugar-free", with the
     PUBLIC HEALTH AND                             specific levels to respect in order to use them
                                                   and with a general condition for every claim:
     CONSUMER AFFAIRS                              to label the nutrient profile (especially the
                                                   contents of fat, sugar and salt).
Food labelling that tells the
                                                   A minority of MEPs, as well as the European
truth                                              Commission and the health sector lobby
                                                   deplored the Committee vote, considering
Adriana POLI BORTONE (UEN, IT)                     that producers should not be allowed to
Report on the proposal for a regulation of the     highlight particular advantages of their
European Parliament and of the Council on          products if they hide high contents of fat,
nutrition and health claims made on foods          sugar or salt which are involved in large scale
(COM(2003)0424 – C5 0329/2003 –                    illnesses like cardiovascular diseases or
2003/0165(COD))                                    obesity. Some MEPs tried to restore the
Doc.: A6-0128/2005                                 principle of nutrient profiles, article 4 of the
Procedure :Codecision (1st reading)                proposed regulation, but did not succeed.
Debate : 25.05.2005
Vote : 26.05.2005                                  On the contrary, many producers and a
                                                   majority of MEPs feared that the compulsory
Parliament voted today, in first reading, on a     labelling of nutrient profiles could discriminate
draft regulation on nutrition and health claims    against individual products, which would be
made on foods. The plenary confirmed a             classified as "good" or "bad". They believe it
controversial vote in the Committee on             is not so much the composition of the product
Environment, Public Health and Food Safety,        that matters as the use made of it and above
which decided to delete a central provision of     all the balance of a person's diet.
the Regulation proposed by the European
Commission. For the EP, foods bearing              In     any  case,    during    the   debate,
nutrition or health claims do not need to          Commissioner Markos KYPRIANOU said
respect specific nutrient profiles. The report,    that he would not accept the deletion of
written by Adriana POLI BORTONE (UEN,              article 4 which he considered as the
IT) and substantially modified by the plenary,     cornerstone of the whole regulation.
was adopted by a clear majority. The
legislative resolution was adopted by 458          The European Commission also proposed to
votes in favour, 116 against and 15                submit the use of health claims to a prior
abstentions. The amendment deleting the            authorisation system, involving the European
compulsory nutrient profiles was adopted by        Food Safety Agency. On this point the
303 votes in favour, 286 against and 10            plenary has endorsed the Committee vote
abstentions.                                       opting in favour of a simple notification
                                                   procedure. Manufacturers or importers would
More and more consumers want to eat                only have to inform the authorities if they plan
healthy foods. And more and more producers         to start selling a product making nutritional
use health and nutritional claims to attract       claims. It would then be up to the authorities
them. This butter is good for your cholesterol     to object or issue a ban.
or that yoghurt is recommended to avoid
osteoporosis - is it true? And do those            The EP has also stressed or added particular
products have other and less positive              points to the draft regulation concerning small
effects? Some Member States have adopted           and medium size enterprises and children. In
national legislation to regulate the use of        their view, nutrition and health claims, unless
claims, others have not. Those discrepancies       scientifically substantiated, may not be
can act as commercial barriers in the single       exclusively directed at children. MEPs also
market and do not guarantee the best level of      added specific provisions for SMEs to reduce
consumer protection. That is why this              the burden of the new regulation.
regulation was initiated in order to protect the
consumer as well as to ensure free                 Press enquiries:
movement of foods in the EU. The                   André Riche
Regulation lists a number of common claims         (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 40992
4                                                                                      PE 349.824
                                                                     Thursday, 26 May 2005

Mobile: (32) 0498.983.585                        Press enquiries:
e-mail :        André Riche
                                                  (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 40992
                                                 Mobile: (32) 0498.983.585
Addition of vitamins                    and      e-mail :

minerals to food
                                                  ECONOMIC & MONETARY
Report on the proposal for a regulation of the
European Parliament and of the Council on
the addition of vitamins and minerals and of
certain other substances to foods                MEPs call for more specific
(COM(2003)0671 – C5 0538/2003 –
2003/0262(COD))                                  economic guidelines
Doc.: A6-0124/2005
Procedure : Codecision (1st reading)             Robert GOEBBELS (PES, LU)
Vote : 26.05.2005                                Report on the Commission recommendation
                                                 on the broad guidelines for the economic
National rules vary widely concerning            policies of the Member States and the
addition of vitamins or minerals to food. A      Community in the framework of the
new European regulation has been                 integrated guidelines for growth and jobs
welcomed by Parliament, in first reading, to     (2005-2008)
avoid discrepancies in the internal market       (COM(2005)0141 – 2005/2017(INI))
and to offer useful information to consumers     Doc.: A6-0150/2005
in order to avoid imbalances in their diet or    Procedure : Own-initiative
even vitamin overdose. The report by Karin       Vote : 26.05.2005
SCHEELE (PES, AT) was adopted by the
plenary by 516 votes in favour, 69 against       Parliament has adopted by 388 votes in
and 6 abstentions.                               favour to 69 against with 45 abstentions a
                                                 report from Robert GOEBBELS (PES, LU)
The new regulation establishes positive lists    on the broad economic policy guidelines for
of vitamins and minerals (more than 100          the Member States, calling for a more
substances) which may be added to food.          specific approach to the particular challenges
Fortified foodstuffs are marketed by             of individual countries.
producers as products that are beneficial and
this could lead the consumers to increase        While welcoming the fact that the economic
their intake and to exceed recommended           policy guidelines have been integrated with
levels. That is why the regulation               the employment guidelines, MEPs are
recommends to define daily intakes of            unhappy that the two documents do not pay
specific substances. A negative list of "other   more attention to the environment. They also
substances" added to food, mentioning only       say the guidelines are excessively general in
forbidden     substances,      will  also   be   nature and encourage the Commission to
established. With this regulation, fortified     produce a tailored set of recommendations
foods should be labelled in order to offer the   for each Member State. They call for
useful information needed by the consumer if     adequate interaction between coordinated
he wants to know the other nutritional           budgetary policies and an independent
properties of the fortified product.             monetary policy that maintains the objective
                                                 of price stability and further pursues the
Foods and beverages containing more than         Union's general goals.
1.2% by volume of alcohol may not be
fortified with an exception voted by the EP      Parliament highlights the major role of the EU
concerning      some    traditional products     in world trade and underlines the need for a
marketed prior to the adoption of the            labour market which is open to all citizens
Regulation.                                      and flexible enough to help people opt into
                                                 the market and which does not force older
PE 349.824                                                                                    5
Thursday, 26 May 2005
people willing to work out of their jobs. It       the more controversial areas of research
stresses the need to focus on modernising          such as genetic modification and embryo
the economy, knowledge and social welfare          stem cell research. Member States should
as well as institutional arrangements. It also     use environmental policies pro-actively, to
notes that labour productivity, efforts to         enhance growth and employment by
strengthen competitiveness, investment and         developing      eco-technology    and     eco-
growth are prerequisites for higher wages          innovation, especially investments needed to
and an equitable distribution of the fruits of     meet the Kyoto targets, including the efficient
growth, employment and social cohesion.            use of traditional forms of energy, especially
MEPs stress the importance of job creation in      those which do not pose a risk to the
the personal and community services sectors        objectives of the Kyoto protocol.
in a society of high female employment with
an ageing and urbanised population. They           Press enquiries:
point to the importance of diversification and     Ralph Pine
increased competition in a sector where it is      (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 42941
important for citizens to enjoy the highest        Mobile: (32) 0498.983.587
possible level of service and a range of           e-mail :

The report proposes a range of specific            Quarterly                non-financial
changes to the Commission's draft
guidelines. One of these is a call for Member      accounts
States to redirect public spending towards
budget categories that support the objectives      Astrid LULLING (EPP-ED, LU)
of the Lisbon Strategy. MEPs also say there        Report on the Council common position for
should be measures to stimulate private            adopting a regulation of the European
investment, creating a fiscal environment          Parliament and of the Council on the
favourable to SMEs which offers incentives to      compilation    of     quarterly   non-financial
create jobs. This could in part be achieved by     accounts by institutional sector
ensuring greater access to microcredit             (15235/1/2004      -    C6      0091/2005    –
schemes and venture capital funds, and             2003/0296(COD))
reform of the tax systems to stimulate             Doc.: A6-0152/2005
investment, beginning by the harmonisation         Procedure : Codecision (2nd reading)
of the corporate tax base.                         Vote : 26.05.2005

MEPs also want to prevent young                    Parliament approved the second reading of a
entrepreneurs who do not succeed in their          regulation    on   quarterly  non-financial
first venture being stigmatised. They call for     accounts, without amendment.
special attention to be given to the flexibility
and security of the labour market, and for         Press enquiries:
reforms to maintain strict fiscal procedures,      Ralph Pine
stimulate investment and enterprise and            (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 42941
foster consumer confidence. Member States          Mobile: (32) 0498.983.587
should ensure better coordination of their         e-mail :
economic and budgetary policies, initially by
harmonising their budgetary timetables.
Member States should also complete the
reform of the Stability and Growth Pact and
ensure it is strictly applied so as to re-
establish confidence.

The report also calls for greater efforts by
Member States to promote the sciences of
the future, including information society,
preventive healthcare and biotechnology, in
particular by promoting more objective
information on the advantages and risks in
6                                                                                    PE 349.824
                                                                       Thursday, 26 May 2005

                                                  Parliament and Council have agreed that
             TRANSPORT                            side-facing seat belts should not be allowed
                                                  in small buses and coaches, even if these
                                                  seats have safety seat belts and anchorages.
                                                  The two institutions agreed that the so-called
Seat belts to be compulsory                       conference buses should be exempted from
on buses and lorries                              these new rules.

Dieter-Lebrecht KOCH (EPP-ED, DE)                 In conference buses (vehicles of category
Report on the Council common position for         M3, class III or B), side-facing seats are
adopting a directive of the European              grouped together to form an integrated
Parliament and of the Council amending            saloon with a maximum of 10 seating
Council Directive 74/408/EEC relating to          positions at the rear of the vehicle. In the
motor vehicles with regard to the seats, their    compromise amendment (am 6) it was
anchorages and head restraints                    agreed that such side fitting seats shall be
(11935/3/2004      –   C6     0031/2005     –     fitted with, at least, a head restraint and a
2003/0128(COD))                                   two-point belt with type-approved retractor.
Doc.: A6-0115/2005
Procedure : Codecision (2nd reading)              This exemption shall have effect for five
&                                                 years from the date of adoption of this
Paolo COSTA (ALDE, IT)                            directive. It may be extended if reliable
Report on the Council common position for         accident statistics are available and there has
adopting a directive of the European              been further development of restraint
Parliament and of the Council amending            systems.
Council Directive 77/541/EC on the
approximation of the laws of the Member           Dieter-Leberecht KOCH (EPP-ED, DE) and
States relating to safety belts and restraint     Paola COSTA (ELDR, IT) saw there reports
systems of motor vehicles                         adopted by a large majority.
(11934/3/2004      –   C6     0029/2005     –
2003/0130(COD))                                   Press enquiries:
Doc.: A6-0120/2005                                Ton Huyssoon
Procedure : Codecision (2nd reading)               (Brussels)   tel.(32-2) 28 42408
&                                                 e-mail :
Report on the Council common position for
adopting a directive of the European              Standard tests for frontal
Parliament and of the Council amending
Council Directive 76/115/EEC on the
                                                  protection systems on cars
approximation of the laws of the Member
States relating to anchorages for motor-          Ewa HEDKVIST PETERSEN (PES, SE)
vehicle safety belts                              Report on the proposal for a directive of the
(11933/3/2004      –   C6     0030/2005     –     European Parliament and of the Council
2003/0136(COD))                                   relating to the use of frontal protection
Doc.: A6-0117/2005                                systems on motor vehicles and amending
Procedure : Codecision (2nd reading)              Council Directive 70/156/EEC
Vote : 26.05.2005                                 (COM(2003)0586 – C5 0473/2003 –
Parliament adopted three recommendations          Doc.: A6-0053/2005
for second reading on a package of                Procedure : Codecision (1st reading)
measures to make seat belts compulsory in         Vote : 26.05.2005
all vehicles. Seat belts will in future have to
be fitted not only in private cars but also in    MEPs are calling for tougher safety
minibuses, buses, coaches, light commercial       standards for frontal protection systems on
vehicles and lorries.                             road vehicles in a legislative report on a
                                                  Commission proposal setting out tests for
                                                  such systems, which include bull bars. Car
PE 349.824                                                                                     7
Thursday, 26 May 2005
manufacturers have already made a                 will be required to be carried out on these
voluntary agreement with the Commission           systems in order for them to be acceptable
not to install "rigid bull bars" on new cars.     for use. Parliament, in amendments adopted,
This new draft directive, however, details the    tightens up some of these tests.
tests for approving all frontal protection
systems. MEPs are anxious that frontal            Parliament stresses that tests should require
protection systems should be designed in a        that frontal protection systems be designed in
way that improves pedestrian safety and           a way that improves pedestrian safety and
reduces the number of injuries.                   reduces the number of injuries. Furthermore,
                                                  MEPs emphasise that the directive is aimed
Parliament adopted a series of compromise         at improving pedestrian and vehicle safety
amendments agreed with the Council, which         through passive measures.           Parliament
means that the directive can be adopted in        agrees that the scope of the directive should
first reading. On the scope of the directive,     be limited to vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes. MEPs
the compromise amendment states that this         also introduce a review clause, stating that
Directive does not affect the Member States'      the Commission should review the technical
competence to ban or to restrict the use of       provisions of the directive, in the light of
those frontal protection systems which were       technical progress and experience, no later
placed on the market as separate technical        than four years and nine months after it has
units before the entry into force of this         been published.
Directive. (AM 23)       This paragraph is
designed to ensure that EU legislation is not     Systems      providing    additional    frontal
applied retroactively and that bull bars          protection of motor vehicles have been
already in existence are not covered by the       increasingly used in recent years. Some of
proposed legislation.                             these systems constitute a risk to the safety
                                                  of pedestrians and other road users in the
Member States have to publish, at the latest,     case of a collision with a motor vehicle. It is
nine months afters publication of the directive   estimated that ”pedestrian-friendly” car
the laws and regulations necessary to comply      designs could avoid up to 2000 pedestrian
with the directive.                               and cyclist deaths each year in the EU.

European,        Japanese       and      Korean   Press enquiries:
manufactures made a voluntary commitment          Richard Freedman
with the Commission not to install so-called       (Brussels)   tel.(32-2) 28 41448
”rigid bull bars” as frontal protection systems   e-mail :      region-
on new vehicles from 2002. The European               
Parliament, in June 2002, adopted a non-
binding resolution welcoming the ban. This
new proposal goes further and lays down
tests that must be complied with by frontal
protection systems, either as originally fitted
to a vehicle or put on the market as separate
technical units. The aim is to improve the
protection of pedestrians and mitigate the
severity of injuries to them and other
vulnerable road users in the event of a
collision with a vehicle fitted with such a

In order to comply with the proposal, frontal
protection systems will have to pass a
number     of   tests    with   regard     to
aggressiveness towards pedestrians and
vulnerable road users. The requirements
consist of four tests (based on the
recommendations of the European Enhanced
Vehicle safety Committee, or EEVC) which
8                                                                                   PE 349.824
                                                                     Thursday, 26 May 2005

EC-Chile air services                           system for political goals. However, they also
                                                acknowledged Russia's potential as a
                                                strategic partner, not only in the economic
Paolo COSTA (ALDE, IT)                          and trade areas, but also in fighting
Report on the proposal for a Council decision   international terrorism, trafficking in drugs,
on the conclusion of the Agreement between      arms      and    people,     and    addressing
the European Community and the Republic         environmental and nuclear hazards.
of Chile on certain aspects of air services
(COM(2004)0829 – C6 0011/2005 –                 Mentioning Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova and
2004/0289(CNS))                                 Georgia, MEPs said they rejected "foreign
Doc.: A6-0100/2005                              policies aimed at creating spheres of
Procedure : Consultation                        influence" and asked Russia to see the
Vote : 26.05.2005                               spread of democracy in neighbouring
                                                countries and the development of stronger
Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution     ties to the EU in these countries not as a
on the conclusion of the Agreement between      threat but as "a chance to renew political and
the European Community and the Republic         economic cooperation with those countries".
of Chile on certain aspects of air services.
                                                Parliament remains deeply concerned about
Press enquiries:                                the "continuing failure to end lawlessness in
Ton Huyssoon                                    Chechnya" and called for a political solution.
 (Brussels)   tel.(32-2) 28 42408               It urged the Council again to be prepared to
e-mail :        give assistance to a peaceful and
                                                constructive dialogue.

                                                On the other hand, MEPs welcomed the
   EXTERNAL RELATIONS                           outcome of the latest EU-Russia summit, at
                                                which road maps were adopted for the
MEPs worry about Russia's                       creation of the "four common spaces" - of
                                                freedom, security and justice, of external
democracy but stress need                       security, of research, education and culture
for more cooperation                            and a common economic space.

                                                Parliament underlined the importance of
Cecilia MALMSTRÖM (ALDE, SE)                    Russia's support for the International Criminal
Report on EU-Russia relations                   Court and the Kyoto Protocol. MEPs stressed
(2004/2170(INI))                                the importance of cooperation in the field of
Doc.: A6-0135/2005                              external security. They welcomed plans for
Procedure : Own-initiative                      the EU and Russia to cooperate in future in
Vote : 26.05.2005                               resolving regional conflicts, such as those in
                                                Transdnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and
The European Parliament called for further      Nagorno-Karabakh. They also called for
integration of Russia into the world economy    further cooperation in the field of maritime
and closer involvement of the country in        safety, especially on a ban for single-hull
European security, while voicing concern        tankers in the Baltic and Black Seas. And
over human rights and the development of        they urged the EU to offer Russia help in the
democracy.                                      dismantling of its nuclear arsenal, while
                                                calling on Russia to contribute to worldwide
In a resolution adopted by 488 votes in         non-proliferation and disarmament, especially
favour, 20 votes against and 63 abstentions,    concerning Iran. They also advocated the
MEPs warned of the "apparent weakening of       opening of negotiations with Russia on a free
Russia's commitment to democracy, the           trade area as soon as it has joined the WTO.
market economy and the protection of human      However, MEPs urged Russia to end
rights".  They    highlighted   reports    of   discriminatory rail tariffs favouring Russian
discrimination and antisemitism, restrictions   ports in the Baltic.
on the media and the use of the judicial

PE 349.824                                                                                   9
Thursday, 26 May 2005
MEPs called for "solidarity and unity within    Monitoring     Centre    on     Racism     and
the EU between the old and the new member       Xenophobia and to extend its mandate to
states" whenever Russia tries to divide them.   make it a Human Rights Agency". MEPs
                                                welcome this initiative and consider that the
Other points raised in the resolution were a    creation of an agency to promote the respect
call for Russia to ratify the border            of human rights on EU territory will be a
agreements with Estonia and Latvia, to          positive step, as long as its activities do not
delete from its social security legislation a   interfere with existing bodies inside and
reference that Russian troops can be based      outside the EU, such as the office of the High
and come to harm in Baltic states, and for an   Commissioner for Human Rights in the
agreement between LUKOIL and Lithuania          Council of Europe. They also ask for the
on compensations in the case of oil spills      agency to be created under the co-decision
which may damage the Curonian Split.            procedure, giving legislative power to the EP.
                                                Commissioner Franco FRATTINI hinted that
Parliament also says that the Yukos case        the Commission will probably recommend
represents a fundamental test of Russia's       using the consultation procedure for the
respect for the rule of law, property rights,   creation of the Agency.
transparency and a fair and open market for
investors.                                      The main activities of the Agency should be
                                                the collection, analysis and processing of
Press enquiries:                                information regarding the respect of
Marjory van den Broeke                          fundamental rights in Member States with the
 (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 44304              view to achieving three main objectives:
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.586                       promoting fundamental rights, monitoring the
e-mail :       foreign-                         situation in Member States and raising the
                 awareness of the key players. As part of the
                                                promotion activities, the Agency will identify
                                                legislative gaps in the different EU countries
         HUMAN RIGHTS                           and monitor the implementation of existing
                                                laws to protect human rights. The new
                                                Agency should also have an "advisory and
                                                consultative role".
A new EU Agency to monitor
respect for human rights in                     Finally, the main areas of concern for the
                                                Agency should be those mentioned in the
Europe                                          Charter of Fundamental Rights: freedom of
                                                expression; fight against racism; gender
Kinga GÁL (EPP-ED, HU)                          equality; fight against human trafficking or the
Report on promotion and protection of           protection of the linguistic diversity, for
fundamental rights: the role of national and    example. A special mention was made of
European      institutions,  including    the   protecting rights of national minorities.
Fundamental Rights Agency (2005/2007(INI))
Doc.: A6- 0144/2005                             Conflict of interests
Procedure : Own-initiative                      The Agency should be designed as a
Vote : 26.05.2005                               "network of networks" with horizontal
                                                competences according to the members, and
MEPs adopted an own-initiative report in        it should absorb not only the existing
which they analyse the current human rights     monitoring centre against racism in Vienna
situation in the Member States and the future   but also other bodies dealing with
tasks of the new European Agency on             fundamental rights, like the future "Gender
Fundamental Rights which is due to start        Institute" on women rights - which has not yet
work in 2007.                                   been created.

The decision to set up the agency was taken     Press enquiries:
by the European Council on December 2003        Maria Andrés Marìn
in Brussels, the aim is described as follows:   (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44299
"to build upon the existing European            Mobile: (32) 0498.983.590
10                                                                                 PE 349.824
                                                                       Thursday, 26 May 2005

e-mail :          Stricter checks will be required where the risk
                                                  of money laundering is higher, e.g. where
                                                  there is no face-to-face contact with the
      JUSTICE AND HOME                            customer or in relations with "politically
                                                  exposed persons" from (individuals holding
           AFFAIRS                                important public positions, their direct
                                                  relatives or persons known to be close
                                                  associates).      If customers cannot be
Money laundering directive                        identified, the business relationship must be
                                                  terminated and the accounts examined.
to cover funding of terrorism                     Clients must never be informed that their
                                                  transactions are under investigation.
Report on the proposal for a directive of the     Each Member State will have to decide under
European Parliament and of the Council on         what circumstances a financial operation
the prevention of the use of the financial        poses a high risk of money laundering or of
system for the purpose of money laundering,       financing terrorism.     In such cases, the
including terrorist financing                     financial institution or any other players -
(COM(2004)0448 – C6 0143/2004 –                   such as insurers or lawyers - will be legally
2004/0137(COD))                                   obliged to report the transaction immediately
Doc.: A6-0137/2005                                to a national "financial intelligence unit",
Procedure : Codecision (1st reading)              which will process the information and deliver
Vote : 26.05.2005                                 it to the competent authorities. Member
                                                  States must penalise anyone who fails to do
The European Parliament gave its backing to       this. The only exception counts for lawyers
Commission proposals to revise the current        representing a client in legal proceedings: in
money laundering directive so that it covers      such cases they are not obliged to report
the funding of terrorism. However, MEPs           suspicions of money laundering or terrorist
adopted amendments to define more clearly         financing.
the responsibilities of financial institutions,
lawyers, insurance agents and others              Among their amendments, MEPs added to
involved in money laundering or the funding       the Commission proposal a requirement for
of terrorism.                                     financial institutions to identify not only the
                                                  director of a company, casino or trust which
The original 1991 directive set up a warning      carries out a transaction but also all
system to prevent financial transactions          "beneficial owners" who control at least 25%
being used for money laundering, mainly by        of those entities. The Commission had set
imposing the financial institutions their         the threshold at 10%.
obligation to identify their customers. The
new proposal declares the financing of            Since all the Parliament's amendments follow
terrorist activities a criminal offence, like     an agreement with Council, the directive is
money-laundering, and brings it within the        likely to be adopted at first reading.
scope of the directive.
                                                  Press enquiries:
Banks, credit companies and other financial       Maria Andrés Marìn
institutions will have to check a customer's      (Strasbourg) tel.(33-3) 881 73603
identity when they open an account or             (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 44299
whenever the customer carries out a               (32) 0498.983.590
transaction of €15,000 or more. Anonymous         e-mail :
accounts and those opened under false
names will be banned. Casinos should also
identify those customers gambling more than
€2,000 - the Commission had set the
threshold at €1,000.

PE 349.824                                                                                    11
Thursday, 26 May 2005

Europol staff salaries                           challenges posed by immigration and the
                                                 need to reduce accidents in the workplace.

Claude MORAES (PES, UK)                          A set of integrated guidelines for the period
Report on the initiative by the Grand Duchy      2005-2008 has for the first time been
of Luxembourg with a view to adopting a          proposed by the Commission, as called for
Council decision adjusting the basic salaries    by the 2005 Spring European Council. While
and allowances applicable to Europol staff       endorsing the objectives and content of the
(5429/2005      –      C6     0037/2005     –    employment guidelines, MEPs adopted a
2005/0803(CNS))                                  number of amendments to introduce
Doc.: A6-0139/2005                               improvements to the proposal.
Procedure : Consultation
Vote : 26.05.2005                                One of the issues the report emphasises is
                                                 the need for measures to assist the
Following the advice of the rapporteur and       occupational integration of people whose
the Civil Liberties Committee, Parliament        participation in the labour market is too low,
rejected a resolution on basic salaries and      whilst ensuring that they stay in work. These
allowances of Europol staff. The matter now      include women, the elderly, young people,
returns to the Committee.                        people with disabilities, immigrants and
                                                 minorities. At the same time, the report
Press enquiries:                                 stresses the need to promote decisions that
Maria Andrés Marìn                               help reconcile work and family life by, for
(Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44299               example, using flexible working models for
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.590                        both men and women.
e-mail :
                                                 MEPs do not only want to increase labour
                                                 market participation, they also want to
SOCIAL AND EMPLOYMENT                            improve the quality of employment. This
                                                 should be done by developing training and
        POLICY                                   lifelong learning policies, promoting equality
                                                 between men and women, as well as tackling
Call   for  more   specific                      labour and wage gaps. Health and safety
                                                 risks at the workplace should be reduced,
measures in the employment                       especially via agreements at the European
guidelines                                       level on risk prevention. Moreover, the
                                                 incidence of early retirement due to
                                                 permanent invalidity or as a result of
                                                 industrial accidents or occupational disease
Report on the proposal for a Council decision
                                                 has to be reduced.
on guidelines for the employment policies of
the Member States
                                                 Parliament also wants to put pressure on the
(COM(2005)0141 – C6 0111/2005 –
                                                 Member States to implement measures
                                                 promoting     equal    treatment,   including
Doc.: A6-0149/2005
                                                 between legal immigrants and non-
Procedure : Consultation
                                                 immigrants, and combating all kinds of
Vote : 26.05.2005                                discrimination, both in the workplace and in
According to MEPs, the proposed integrated
guidelines covering growth and employment        Finally, Members also want to ensure the
do not sufficiently set out specific guiding     promotion of good industrial relations,
measures for Member States. By adopting a        improved information and consultation of
consultation report drafted by Ana MATO          workers, as well as cooperation with the
ADROVER (EPP-ED, ES), Members called             social partners.
for greater focus on issues including the
reconciliation of family and working life, the   Press enquiries:
circumstances of people with disabilities, the   Constanze Beckerhoff
                                                 (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 44302
12                                                                                PE 349.824
                                                                    Thursday, 26 May 2005

Mobile: (32) 0498.983.550
e-mail :
                                                 EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES /
Social policy agenda
                                                   WOMEN'S RIGHTS

Report on the Social Policy Agenda for the
                                                Gender equality programmes
period 2006-2010                                to be extended
Doc.: A6-0142/2005                              Rodi KRATSA-TSAGAROPOULOU (EPP-
Procedure : Own-initiative                      ED, EL)
Vote : 26.05.2005                               Report on the proposal for a decision of the
                                                European Parliament and of the Council
Parliament adopted an own-initiative report,    amending Council Decision 2001/51/EC
by 243 votes in favour to 131 against with 56   establishing a Programme relating to the
abstentions, on the Social Policy Agenda for    Community framework strategy on gender
the period 2006-2010.                           equality and Decision No 848/2004/EC of the
                                                European Parliament and of the Council
Press enquiries:                                establishing a Community action programme
Constanze Beckerhoff                            to promote organisations active at European
(Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44302              level in the field of equality between men and
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.550                       women
e-mail :       (COM(2004)0551 – C6 0107/2004 –
                                                Doc.: A6-0132/2005
                                                Procedure : Codecision (1st reading)
Cross border services                           Vote : 26.05.2005

                                                Parliament adopted a legislative resolution on
Proinsias DE ROSSA (PES, IE)
                                                extending a Community action programme to
Motion for a resolution on the proposal for a
                                                promote organisations active at European
Council directive on the agreement between
                                                level in the field of equality between men and
the Community of European Railways (CER)
and the European Transport Workers'
Federation (ETF) on certain aspects of the
                                                Press enquires:
working conditions of mobile workers
                                                Lena Kraft
assigned to interoperable cross-border
                                                Brussels        tel.:(32-2) 28 43411
services (COM(2005) 0032)
                                                e-mail :
Doc.: B6-0319/2005
Vote : 26.05.2005

Parliament adopted a resolution on the
agreement between the Community of
European Railways (CER) and the European
Transport Workers' Federation (ETF) on
certain aspects of the working conditions of
mobile workers assigned to interoperable
cross-border services.

Press enquiries:
Constanze Beckerhoff
(Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44302
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.550
e-mail :

PE 349.824                                                                                 13
Thursday, 26 May 2005

CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS                                       INDUSTRY

MEPs warmly welcome new                        Enterprise policy, SMEs:
framework agreement with                       extending the multiannual
Commission                                     programme      until   31
                                               December 2006
Report on the framework agreement on
                                               Britta THOMSEN (PES, DK)
relations between the European Parliament
                                               Report on the proposal for a decision of the
and the Commission
                                               European Parliament and of the Council
Doc.: A6-0147/2005
                                               amending Council Decision 2000/819/EC on
Procedure: Assent
                                               a multiannual programme for enterprise and
Vote : 26.05.2005
                                               entrepreneurship, and in particular for small
                                               and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) (2001-
Parliament adopted a report on the             2005)
framework agreement on relations between       (COM(2004)0781 – C6 0242/2004 –
the    European  Parliament    and    the      2004/0272(COD))
Commission.                                    Doc.: A6-0118/2005
                                               Procedure : Codecision (1st reading)
Press enquiries:                               Vote : 26.05.2005
Federico de Girolamo
 (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 31389
                                               Parliament adopted a legislative resolution on
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.591
                                               a multiannual programme for enterprise and
e-mail :
                                               entrepreneurship, and in particular for small
                                               and medium-sized enterprises.

European           External        Action      Press enquiries:
Service                                        Constanze Beckerhoff
                                               (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44302
                                               Mobile: (32) 0498.983.550
Motion for a resolution on the institutional   e-mail :
aspects of the European External Action
Doc. B6-0320/2005
Debate : 11.05.2005
Vote : 26.05.2005

Parliament adopted a resolution on the
European External Action Service.

Press enquiries:
Federico de Girolamo
 (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 31389
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.591
e-mail :       constit-

14                                                                              PE 349.824
                                                                        Thursday, 26 May 2005

                                                   (Brussels)    tel.(32-2) 28 32017
           AGRICULTURE                             e-mail :

Common Agricultural Policy                         EEC-Côte d'Ivoire                  fishing
financing                                          agreement
Agnes SCHIERHUBER (EPP-ED, AT)                     Philippe MORILLON (ALDE, FR)
Report on the proposal for a Council               Report on the proposal for a Council
regulation on the financing of the common          regulation on the conclusion of the Protocol
agricultural policy                                setting out, for the period from 1 July 2004 to
(COM(2004)0489 – C6 0166/2004 –                    30 June 2007, the fishing opportunities and
2004/0164(CNS))                                    financial contribution provided for in the
Doc.: A6-0127/2005                                 Agreement        between       the    European
Procedure : Consultation                           Community and the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire
Vote : 26.05.2005                                  on fishing off the coast of Côte d’Ivoire
                                                   (COM(2004)0619 – C6 0138/2004 –
Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution        2004/0211(CNS))
on the financing of the common agricultural        Doc.: A6-0114/2005
policy.                                            Procedure : Consultation
                                                   Vote : 26.05.2005
Press enquiries:
Jean-Yves Loog                                     Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution
(Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44652                 on the conclusion of the Protocol setting out,
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.589                          for the period from 1 July 2004 to 30 June
e-mail :          2007, the fishing opportunities and financial
                                                   contribution provided for in the Agreement
                                                   between the European Community and the
              FISHERIES                            Republic of Côte d’Ivoire on fishing off the
                                                   coast of Côte d’Ivoire.

                                                   Press enquiries:
Financing fisheries studies                        Nikos Salliarelis
                                                   (Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 32017
Philippe MORILLON (ALDE, FR)                       e-mail :
Report on the proposal for a Council decision
amending Decision 2000/439/EC of 29 June
2000 on a financial contribution from the
Community towards the expenditure incurred          SECURITY AND DEFENCE
by certain Member States in collecting data,
and for financing studies and pilot projects for
carrying out the common fisheries policy
(COM(2004)0618 – C6 0243/2004 –                    Small arms (UN prepcom)
Doc.: A6-0113/2005                                 Joint motion for a resolution on small arms
Procedure : xxx                                    and light weapons
Vote : 26.05.2005                                  Doc. B6-0321/2005, B6-0322/2005, B6-
                                                   0323/2005, B6-0324/2005, B6-0325/2005,
Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution        B6-0326/2005
by 574 votes in favour to 15 against and 10        Debate : 10.05.2005
abstentions on financing common fisheries          Vote : 26.06.2005
policy studies and pilot projects.
                                                   Parliament adopted a resolution             on
Press enquiries:                                   preventing the spread of small arms.
Nikos Salliarelis
PE 349.824                                                                                     15
Thursday, 26 May 2005
Press enquiries:
Marjory van den Broeke
(Brussels)     tel.(32-2) 28 44304
Mobile: (32) 0498.983.586
e-mail :       foreign-

16                                     PE 349.824

To top