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Parliamentary questions
PDF 103kWORD 20k
17 September 2018
Question for written answer E-004677-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Pascal Durand (Verts/ALE) , Tilly Metz (Verts/ALE)

 Subject:  Obsolete animal testing figures
 Answer in writing 

The Commission’s seventh report on animal testing statistics(1) states that:

‘[Its] objective is to present statistical data on the number of animals used for scientific purposes in the Member States of the European Union during the year 2011 in accordance with provisions of Article 26 of Directive 86/609/EEC of 24 November 1986. […] In the EU, the total number of animals used for experimental and other scientific purposes from the data collected in 2011 […] is just under 11.5 million.’

This 11.5-million figure has since been used as a reference. However, Eurogroup for Animals recently collected official data on the number of animals used in some Member States, and the results differed. A simple calculation of the figures provided by just 13 Member States for 2011 yielded a total of 12 618 700 animals. The figures provided by the Commission in 2013 are therefore clearly incorrect and should not be used as a reference.

This raises two questions:

How does the Commission explain this error and the fact that the figures had never been updated?

More importantly, when the Commission presents its new summary report in November 2019 on the statistical information submitted by Member States under Article 54(2) of Directive 2010/63/EU, how will an anomaly such as this not be repeated?

(1)Commission report of 5 December 2013 on the Statistics on the Number of Animals used for Experimental and other Scientific Purposes in the Member States of the European Union (COM(2013)0859).

Last updated: 29 October 2018Legal notice