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Parliamentary questions
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5 September 2017
Answer given by Mr Andriukaitis on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-004955/2017

1. Article 12 of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/262(1) stipulates that equidae must be identified not later than 12 months following the date of birth and in any event before leaving permanently the holding of birth. Member States may, however, decide to limit the maximum period for identification to 6 months or to the calendar year of birth.

Member States are required to set time limits for the submission of applications for identification documents. Articles 29 and 32 of the regulation stipulate that the equine animal has to be classified as not intended for slaughter for human consumption in the duplicate or replacement document where the animal has not been identified within the set time limits.

2. The latest Commission audit to evaluate traceability controls of beef and beef products was carried out in September 2010 and concluded that the system for the registration of bovine holdings and the identification of bovine animals in general meets the requirements of EU legislation. However, the audit report(2) also identified deficiencies and made recommendations for improvements.

3. The system for the identification of equidae must serve animal and public health as well as animal breeding and welfare purposes, and must be compatible with international standards for the participation in competitions and races. It must also prevent fraud and be sufficiently resilient to cope for a long life with frequent movements, varying uses, changing owners and the documentation of veterinary medicinal treatments.

The methods of identifying equidae require particular skills and professional qualifications. Therefore, an identification system similar to the one applicable for bovine animals is not foreseen in the Animal Health Law(3).

(1)Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/262 of 17 February 2015 laying down rules pursuant to Council Directives 90/427/EEC and 2009/156/EC as regards the methods for the identification of equidae (Equine Passport Regulation) (OJ L 59, 3.3.2015, p. 1).
(3)Regulation (EU) 2016/429 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 March 2016 on transmissible animal diseases and amending and repealing certain acts in the area of animal health (‘Animal Health Law’) (OJ L 84, 31.3.2016, p. 1).

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