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2011/0194(COD) - 18/10/2013 Commission communication on Council's position

The Commission agrees with the Council position, as the compromise political agreement between the European Parliament and the Council maintains the main lines of the Commission's proposal, namely:

(1)     the simplification of legislation, procedures and reporting obligations, as well as the reduction of administrative burden for operators, national administrations and the Commission,

(2)     the immediate elimination of withdrawal mechanisms of fish from the market and introduction of one single storage aid mechanism for fishery products intended for human consumption,

(3)     the empowerment of the POs to play a greater role in collective planning and management of fishery and aquaculture activities to achieve sustainable fishing and aquaculture policy, including the elimination of discards.

The Commission can accept most of the new provisions introduced by the Council concerning the functioning of POs and inter-branch organisations, the mandatory information and the commercial designation. These changes as these do not alter the main objective of the Commission proposal. However, it regrets the deletion of 4 articles providing for delegated acts which would have enabled the Commission to react flexibly to the steadily changing situations on the market and would have allowed the Commission to bring more details of technical nature in the rules to be adopted to provide the sector with more precision about the obligations they have to observe.

In relation to labelling, the Commission regrets that the agreement between the co-legislators has removed from the Commission's proposal the obligation to indicate the "date of catch" and the "date of harvest" for fishery and aquaculture products, respectively.

The Commission also regrets that the colegislators have removed from the Commission's proposal the application of certain labelling requirements to preserved and prepared products, i.e. commercial name, production method and provenance.