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Parliamentary questions
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7 December 2018
Answer given by Mr Andriukaitis on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-005308/2018

1. Concerning bull festivals and bullfighting, the Commission informs the Honourable Member that these practices remain under the sole competence of the Member States.

Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union(1) (TFEU) on the Union policy on animal welfare states that ‘in formulating and implementing the Union's agriculture, fisheries, transport, internal market, research, and technological development and space policies, the Union and Member States shall, since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals, while respecting the legislative or administrative provisions and customs of the Member States relating in particular to cultural traditions and regional heritage’.

Bullfighting or bull festivals do not relate to any of the EU policies mentioned above. Furthermore, Article 13 of TFEU explicitly recognises that ‘customs of the Member States relating in particular to cultural traditions and regional heritage’ constitute the limitation to the principle of animal welfare as enunciated thereby.

2. In the framework of the common agricultural policy (CAP), there is no specific European aid designed to support the breeding of bulls for fighting, neither under the ‘first pillar’ of the CAP which refers to market measures and direct support, nor under the second pillar, dealing with Rural Development. EU support through Rural Development measures can be granted to holdings in order to improve their competitiveness, the environment and the countryside, independently from the final use of the agricultural produce of the farm.

3. In light of the answer provided under point 1, the Commission is not taking any initiatives in relation to the matter raised by the Honourable Member.


Last updated: 7 December 2018Legal notice