Procedure : 2006/0247(CNS)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A6-0083/2007

Texts tabled :

A6-0083/2007

Debates :

Votes :

PV 26/04/2007 - 8.2
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P6_TA(2007)0158

REPORT     *
PDF 329kWORD 287k
28 March 2007
PE 384.481v02-00 A6-0083/2007

on the proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

(COM(2006)0740 – C6-0505/2006 – 2006/0247(CNS))

Committee on Fisheries

apporteur: Freitas

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 OPINION of the Committee on Budgets
 OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development
 PROCEDURE

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

(COM(2006)0740 – C6-0505/2006 – 2006/0247(CNS))

(Consultation procedure)

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Commission proposal to the Council (COM(2006)0740)(1),

–   having regard to Articles 37 and 299(2) of the EC Treaty, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C6-0505/2006),

–   having regard to Rule 51 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Fisheries and the opinions of the Committee on Budgets and the Committee on Regional Development (A6-0083/2007),

1.  Approves the Commission proposal as amended;

2.  Calls on the Commission to alter its proposal accordingly, pursuant to Article 250(2) of the EC Treaty;

3.  Calls on the Council to notify Parliament if it intends to depart from the text approved by Parliament;

4.  Asks the Council to consult Parliament again if it intends to amend the Commission proposal substantially;

5.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council and Commission.

Text proposed by the Commission  Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 1

Title

Proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

Proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion, as a result of those regions' remoteness

(This amendment applies throughout the text.)

Amendment 2

Recital -1 a (new)

 

(-1a) The outermost regions have fragile economies, with permanent structural constraints on their development and few possibilities for diversification, in which the fisheries sector and ancient fishing communities play an important role in maintaining economic activity and employment, upstream and downstream, and in promoting economic and social cohesion.

Justification

The permanent structural constraints on the development of the outermost regions have to be taken into account, as does the socio-economic importance of the fisheries sector, which more often than not is one of the few economic alternatives available to these regions, and one that helps to foster economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 3

Recital -1 b (new)

 

(-1b) The specific features of the outermost regions and the differences in terms of their respective sectors of activity should be taken into account, given that these regions each have their own particular needs.

Justification

It has to be borne in mind that, for all the difficulties which the outermost regions have in common, there are also considerable differences from one region to the next, and the necessary allowance must accordingly be made in the regulation as such and in its implementation.

Amendment 4

Recital -1 c (new)

 

(-1c) The increase which the marked rise in oil prices has brought about, especially since 2003, in transport and other related costs should be taken into account, since its end effect is to add still further to the additional costs arising from remoteness.

Justification

Attention should be drawn to the increased transport costs resulting from higher oil prices, which have added to the additional costs arising from remoteness.

Amendment 5

Recital 1

(1) The fisheries sector in the outermost regions of the Community is facing difficulties, and in particular additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products due to the particular handicaps recognised by Article 299(2) of the Treaty, and resulting mainly from the transport costs to continental Europe.

(1) The fisheries sector in the outermost regions of the Community is facing difficulties, and in particular additional costs relating to the production and marketing of certain fishery products due to the particular handicaps recognised by Article 299(2) of the Treaty, and resulting in particular from the transport costs to continental Europe.

Amendment 6

Recital 5

(5) Member States should set the compensation amount at a level which allows appropriate off-setting of additional costs, arising from the specific handicaps of the outermost regions and in particular from the costs of transporting the products to the European mainland. To avoid overcompensation, the amount should be proportional to the additional costs the aid off-sets and in no case exceed a determined share of the transport and other related costs to the European continent. To this end, it should also take into account other types of public intervention having an impact on the level of additional costs.

(5) Member States should set the compensation amount at a level which allows appropriate off-setting of additional costs, arising from the specific handicaps of the outermost regions, for example from the costs of transporting the products to the European mainland. To avoid overcompensation, the amount should be proportional to the additional costs the aid off-sets. To this end, it should also take into account other types of public intervention having an impact on the level of additional costs.

Justification

The first change has been made because the compensation must take account of other costs that also affect the level of additional costs in addition to transport costs. See the previous amendment. Secondly, no maximum should be laid down for compensating additional costs, in parallel with Posei agriculture.

Amendment 7

Recital 5 a (new)

 

(5a) Due account should be taken of the socio-economic importance to the outermost regions of small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing and of the need to create the conditions required for their development.

Justification

The regulation also has to recognise that small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing are central to the development of the outermost regions and that special support needs to be given to the corresponding segments of their fleets.

Amendment 8

Recital 5 a (new)

 

(5a) It should be permissible to obtain supplies on the Community market, without exceeding existing production capacity, when catches by the outermost regions’ fishing fleets are insufficient to supply the local fish-processing industry.

Justification

Imports from within the Community should be allowed when catches by OR fleets fall short of what is needed for fish-processing plants in those regions to operate at a profit. In its report COM(2006)0734, page 7, the Commission points out that ‘It is clear that for some industries imports are necessary for economies of scale and to use the full capacity of the enterprise’.

Amendment 9

ecital 6

(6) In order to achieve properly the objectives of this Regulation and to guarantee the compliance with the Common Fisheries Policy, support should be limited to fishery products harvested and processed in accordance with its rules.

(6) In order to achieve properly the objectives of this Regulation and to guarantee compliance with the Common Fisheries Policy, support should be granted to fishery products harvested and processed in accordance with its rules, and to other raw materials used in fish processing.

Justification

In some of the outermost regions support also needs to be provided for raw materials used in fish processing. Olive oil and other types of oil, salt and other raw materials used in the processing sector constitute an extra cost for businesses in the outermost regions.

Amendment 10

ecital 7 a (new)

 

(7a) A derogation may be granted from the Commission's consistent policy of not authorising state operating aid for the production, processing and marketing of fishery products listed in the Treaty in order to mitigate the specific constraints on fishing in the outermost regions as a result of their remoteness, insularity and distant location, small area, mountainous terrain and climate and their economic dependency on a small number of products.

Justification

As for the Posei agriculture scheme, a derogation should be granted for the outermost regions as regards state aid in the fisheries sector.

Amendment 11

Recital 9

(9) To enable a decision to be taken on whether to continue the compensation scheme after 2013 the Commission should submit a report to the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Economic and Social Committee based on an independent evaluation in due time before the end of the scheme.

(9) To enable the compensation scheme to be revised, taking into account the real progress made in attaining the objectives of this Regulation, the Commission should, by 31 December 2011, submit a report to the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Economic and Social Committee based on an independent evaluation showing the impact of measures implemented under this Regulation, accompanied, where necessary, by appropriate legislative proposals.

Amendment 12

Article 1

This Regulation introduces a scheme for the period 2007 to 2013 to provide compensation for the additional costs incurred by the operators set out in Article 3 in the marketing of certain fishery products from the following regions as a result of those regions' specific handicaps (hereinafter referred to as ‘the compensation’):

This Regulation introduces a scheme to provide compensation for the additional costs incurred by the operators set out in Article 3 in the marketing of certain fishery products from the following outermost regions as a result of those regions' specific handicaps and remoteness (hereinafter referred to as ‘the compensation’):

Amendment 13

Article 3, paragraph 1, introductory part

1. The compensation shall be paid to the following operators who incur additional costs in the marketing of fishery products:

1. The compensation shall be paid to the following operators who incur additional costs in the marketing of fishery products in the regions referred to in Article 1 as a result of those regions’ remoteness:

Justification

Consistent with the proposed title for the regulation. See amendment 1.

Amendment 14

Article 3, paragraph 1, point (c)

(c) the operators in the processing and marketing sector or associations of such operators, who incur additional costs in marketing the products concerned.

(c) the operators in the processing and marketing sector or associations of such operators, who incur additional costs in producing, processing and marketing the products concerned.

Justification

Other factors should be taken into account where the outermost regions are concerned, including the fact that there are no economies of scale and the high production costs. That is why the specific focus of the regulation should not be confined to transport costs, but rather extend to other costs incurred in production and marketing. The additional costs incurred in processing fishery products will also need to be taken into account.

Amendment 15

Article 4, paragraph 3, point (c a) (new)

 

(ca) Monitoring.

Justification

The requirement to monitor fish in accordance with the CFP will have to be met.

Amendment 16

Article 4, paragraph 4, point (b)

(b) caught by Community fishing vessels that are not registered in a port of one of the regions referred to in Article 1,

(b) caught by Community fishing vessels that are not registered in a port of one of the regions referred to in Article 1, except where use is to be made of fish caught by Community vessels in cases where catches in the regions referred to in Article 1 are insufficient to supply those regions' processing industries,

Justification

As was provided for under the previous scheme, it should continue to be permissible – when catches by local fleets are insufficient – for local processing industries to be supplied by Community vessels, since this enables economic activity and employment to be maintained in the outermost regions.

Amendment 17

Article 4 a (new)

 

Article 4a

Other eligible products

Compensation may also be granted for products used in processing fishery products, provided that it does not overlap with Community aid for those products.

Justification

In its report COM(2006)734 on the outermost regions, the Commission states that 'for some industries imports are necessary for economies of scale and to use the full capacity of the enterprise' (p. 7, last paragraph). Products such as olive oil and salt, among others, that are used in fish processing should be eligible for support.

Amendment 18

Article 5, paragraph 2, point (a)

(a) for each fishery product the additional costs resulting from the specific handicaps of the regions concerned, in particular the expenditure for the transport to the European continent,

(a) for each fishery product, the additional costs resulting from the specific handicaps of the regions concerned, in particular the expenditure for transport to the European continent or between neighbouring regions referred to in Article 1,

Justification

The compensation for additional costs should also allow for marketing carried on between outermost regions.

Amendment 19

Article 5, paragraph 2, point (b)

(b) any other type of public intervention affecting the level of additional costs.

(b) for each fishery product, the additional costs arising from geographical fragmentation incurred in transport within each of the regions referred to in Article 1,

Justification

The amendment seeks to cover the higher transport costs in geographically fragmented outermost regions such as the Azores and the Canary Islands, the idea being to promote local markets.

Amendment 20

Article 5, paragraph 2, point (b a) (new)

 

(ba) the category of recipients, giving particular attention to small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing,

Justification

The level of compensation should be determined, in addition, according to the category of recipients, giving particular attention to small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing.

Amendment 21

Article 5, paragraph 2, point (b b) (new)

 

(bb) any other type of public intervention affecting the level of additional costs.

Justification

The compensation for additional costs should also take account of other factors affecting the level of additional costs.

Amendment 22

Article 5, paragraph 3

3. The compensation to the additional costs shall be proportional to the additional costs it intends to off-set and shall not exceed 75% of the transport and other related costs to the European continent.

3. The compensation to the additional costs shall be proportional to the additional costs it intends to off-set and shall cover the cost of transport to the European continent and between regions referred to in Article 1 and other related costs.

Justification

The compensation should be sufficient to fully offset the additional costs arising from remoteness, especially when economic and social cohesion is at stake; and Member States should be afforded the necessary flexibility in their decision-making when determining the amount of compensation.

Amendment 23

Article 5, paragraph 4, point (a)

(a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 283 992

(a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 855 314

Justification

Without altering the proportions to be allocated to the individual Member States, the amendment adds EUR 2 m to the annual overall budget in order to cover the increase in transport and energy costs since 2003 and allow for the new flexibility afforded by the regulation, which will make for a greater uptake of funds. The overall budget is thus being raised from about EUR 15 m to EUR 17 m, but even the latter figure is modest compared to the permanent structural handicaps affecting the outermost regions; the higher budget will help to further the aim of economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 24

Article 5, paragraph 4, point (b)

(b) Canary Islands: EUR 5 844 076

(b) Canary Islands: EUR 6 623 454

Justification

Without altering the proportions to be allocated to the individual Member States, the amendment adds EUR 2 m to the annual overall budget in order to cover the increase in transport and energy costs since 2003 and allow for the new flexibility afforded by the regulation, which will make for a greater uptake of funds. The overall budget is thus being raised from about EUR 15 m to EUR 17 m, but even the latter figure is modest compared to the permanent structural handicaps affecting the outermost regions; the higher budget will help to further the aim of economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 25

Article 5, paragraph 4, point (c)

(c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 4 868 700

(c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 5 518 000.

Justification

Without altering the proportions to be allocated to the individual Member States, the amendment adds EUR 2 m to the annual overall budget in order to cover the increase in transport and energy costs since 2003 and allow for the new flexibility afforded by the regulation, which will make for a greater uptake of funds. The overall budget is thus being raised from about EUR 15 m to EUR 17 m, but even the latter figure is modest compared to the permanent structural handicaps affecting the outermost regions; the higher budget will help to further the aim of economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 26

Article 5, paragraph 4 a (new)

 

4a. Each year the amounts referred to in paragraph 4 shall be subject to technical adjustment as laid down in point 16 of the Interinstitutional Agreement of 17 May 2006 between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on budgetary discipline and sound financial management1.

 

____________

1OJ C 139, 14.6.2006, p. 1.

Amendment 27

Article 7, paragraph 1

1. Within four months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1) and the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1), hereinafter jointly referred to as "the compensation plan".

1. Within four months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1), the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1) and a detailed list of measures to be applied to ensure that the provisions of Articles 4(2) to (4) are respected, hereinafter jointly referred to as "the compensation plan".

Justification

Amendment aims at ensuring that only legally caught fish benefits from compensations foreseen in the regulation.

Amendment 28

Article 7, paragraph 4

4. If a Member State makes amendments pursuant to Article 6, it shall submit its amended compensation plan to the Commission and the procedure laid down in paragraph 2 and 3 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

4. If a Member State makes amendments pursuant to Article 6, it shall submit its amended compensation plan to the Commission. If the Commission fails to react within the period of four weeks after receiving the amended plan, the amended plan shall be deemed to have been approved.

Amendment 29

Article 7 a (new)

 

Article 7a

Modulation of amounts

A modulation may be made among regions belonging to a Member State within the limits of the overall financial framework for this Regulation.

Amendment 30

Article 7 b (new)

 

Article 7b

State aid

1. For the fishery products to which Articles 87, 88 and 89 of the Treaty apply, the Commission may authorise operating aid in the sectors producing, processing and marketing those products with a view to mitigating the specific constraints on the outermost regions as a result of their remoteness, insularity and distant location.

 

2. In such cases, the Member States shall notify the Commission of the aid as part of the compensation schemes and it shall be approved by the Commission in accordance with Article 7. Aid thus notified shall be deemed to meet the obligation to provide information laid down in the first sentence of Article 88(3) of the Treaty.

Amendment 31

Article 8, paragraph 1

1. Each Member State concerned shall draw up an annual report on the implementation of the compensation and submit it to the Commission by 30 April of each year.

1. Each Member State concerned shall draw up an annual report on the implementation of the compensation and submit it to the Commission by 30 June of each year.

Justification

Some Member States such as France will require more time if they are to draw up their report on the basis of firm information.

Amendment 32

Article 8, paragraph 2

2. By 31 December 2011 at the latest, the Commission shall on the basis of an independent evaluation report to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Economic and Social Committee on the implementation of the compensation, accompanied where necessary, by legislative proposals.

2. By 31 December 2011 at the latest, and thereafter every five years, the Commission shall, on the basis of an independent evaluation, report to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Economic and Social Committee on the implementation of the compensation, accompanied where necessary by legislative proposals.

Amendment 33

Article 10

Member States shall adopt appropriate provisions to ensure compliance with the requirements set out in this Regulation and the regularity of operations.

Member States shall adopt appropriate provisions to ensure compliance with the requirements set out in this Regulation and the regularity of operations. Provisions on the traceability of fisheries products shall be sufficiently detailed to allow the identification of products that are not eligible for compensation.

Justification

More detailed requirements should be introduced in order to ensure that only legal fisheries products can be covered by the compensations.

Amendment 34

Article 14, paragraph 2

It shall apply from 1 January 2007 until 31 December 2013.

It shall apply from 1 January 2007.

Justification

The scheme to be introduced must not be limited in time, given that the compensation is intended to offset permanent structural handicaps caused by remoteness. It is thus difficult to understand why this regulation, contrary to the procedure employed for the Posei agriculture programmes (Regulation (EC) No 247/2006), should specify an expiry date.

(1)

Not yet published in OJ.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

Introduction

Since 1992 the European Union has provided support for the production, processing and marketing of 'fishery products' in the outermost regions in order to offset the additional costs of transporting fisheries products from the outermost regions to the mainland Community market. This compensation scheme, introduced in 1992 and extended in 1994, 1995, 1998 and 2002, was initially granted to the archipelagos of the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands, and was extended to the French territories of Guiana in 1994 and Réunion in 1998.

The present proposal for a Council regulation seeks to renew this support scheme, established for the period up to 31 December 2006 by Council Regulation (EC) No 2328/2003, with the new scheme applying from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2013.

General context of the proposal

-     This proposal provides for a support scheme for the outermost regions for the period from 2007 to 2013 designed to compensate for the additional costs incurred by operators in relation to the marketing of certain 'fishery products', defined in accordance with Article 1 of Council Regulation (EC) No 104/2000.

-     Support may be granted to:

     * Fish producers

      * Owners or operators of fishing vessels

      * Operators in the fish processing or marketing sector.

-     The Member States concerned are to determine, for their regions eligible for compensation, the lists of fishery products and the quantities of those products covered by Community compensation. Each Member State will also determine for its regions the level of support for each fishery product, whereby that level may vary within a region or between different regions belonging to the same Member State.

-     In total, the amount of compensation per year may not exceed:

      (a)       Azores and Madeira:                   EUR 4 283 992;

      (b)       Canary Islands:                           EUR 5 844 076;

      (c)       French Guiana and Réunion:          EUR 4 868 700.

-     Account is to be taken of changing circumstances, and the Member States concerned may adapt the list and quantities of eligible fishery products, as well as the levels of compensation, provided that the total amounts are respected.

-     Given that it is not structural in nature, the support provided by the EU will be financed by the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) for a total of EUR 15 million per year.

-     Each Member State concerned is to draw up an annual report on the implementation of the compensation and submit it to the Commission by 30 April of each year.

Characteristics of the outermost regions

Due to their remoteness, insularity and isolated situation, small size and difficult topography and climate, the Community's outermost regions are lagging behind in socio-economic terms. Their economic dependence on a small number of products, their limited markets, their dual nature as both Community regions and territories situated in an environment of developing countries affect the economic and social fabric of these regions. This applies also to the fisheries sector: with limited absorption capacity on the local markets, this sector has to cope with the additional costs incurred in marketing these products on the Community's mainland territory.

In this context, consideration should be given to a number of fundamental points linked to the economic and social situation in these regions:

- per capita GDP below the Community average;

- significant unemployment rates in some regions and serious problems of precarious employment;

- primary sector largely dependent on traditional industries and employing a large part of the population. Family firms are particularly important, especially in the fishing industry;

- additional costs in relation to supplies, transport and logistics linked to the dynamics of firms involved in catching and processing fish, the limitations of local markets and difficulties as regards access to the outlets where their products are marketed.

Importance of the compensation scheme for the outermost regions

Even though no quantitative impact indicators are available across all the outermost regions concerned, it appears to be justified to say that the scheme fosters the conditions under which economic operators in the sector can continue trading, resulting in socio-economic benefits for the local communities. The continued existence of a fisheries sector guarantees jobs in regions where alternative employment is limited. The fishery products covered by the scheme account for a significant share of exports from the outermost regions.

The scheme thus stimulates local production, processing and marketing activities and enables firms working with fishery products to compete with their Community counterparts.

The results of the study published by the Commission show that, overall, the scheme has allowed the fisheries sector to face up to increasing competition on the common market, which is being opened up more and more to third countries, and to the ACP countries in particular. Compensation enables the beneficiaries to make economies of scale and obtain significant financial income, allowing them to compete at equal cost with companies in mainland Europe. The scheme has allowed the recipients to maintain a market share that competition would otherwise have seized.

The compensation scheme has also facilitated the development and consolidation of certain activities. The aquaculture sector in the Canary Islands, for instance, produces chiefly for the mainland market and has benefited significantly from the scheme. The same applies to the tuna canning industry in the Azores, tuna loins and black scabbard fish in Madeira and the shrimp industry in Guiana. As a consequence, employment has been stabilised or even increased.

Particular cases of:

- Azores and Madeira -

Concerning the Azores and Madeira, it should be stressed that the local canning industry consumes a volume of production equivalent to almost half of the exports, and the processing industry employs a considerable portion of the active population. These products are chiefly destined for mainland Portugal, Italy, and a new market which appears to be emerging in central Europe.

Nevertheless, the specific conditions in these regions, arising from their small size and geographical situation as recognised by Article 299(2) of the Treaty, mean that additional costs are incurred in the production, processing and marketing of fishery products. This situation weakens these regions' position when competing with other similar firms in mainland Europe.

The fact that these regions are islands located at a great distance from the Community's mainland territory results in a range of additional costs:

- high transport costs

- additional charges for raw materials (salt, olive oil and other oils, cans, etc.)

- more expensive energy

- transport insurance

- etc.

It should also be noted that the Azores are among the 30 European Union regions most heavily dependent on fishing!

- Canary Islands -

All the above remarks relating to the Portuguese islands also apply to the tuna, sardine, mackerel, cephalopod and aquaculture sectors in the Canary Islands, which also incur additional costs in relation to raw materials, energy and transport.

- Guiana and Réunion -

The departments of Guiana and Réunion face similar problems, aggravated by factors such as:

-     the lack of maritime credit for financial charges;

-     the need to build up considerable stocks of spare parts for vessels;

-     higher prices for vessels than on the mainland;

-     direct competition from exports from third countries in Central and South America.

Rapporteur's remarks

General considerations

The rapporteur welcomes the fact that the Commission proposal finally recognises Article 299(2) of the Treaty as its legal basis.

Article 299(2) of the Treaty establishing the European Community introduces the concept of outermost regions into European Union primary law (remoteness, insularity, small size, difficult topography and climate and economic dependence on a few products) and constitutes the legal basis on which the Council, acting on a proposal from the Commission and after consulting the European Parliament, may adopt specific measures applicable to the outermost regions.

The particular characteristics of the outermost regions, recognised by the authors of the Maastricht Treaty, with the introduction of declaration No 26, the Treaty of Amsterdam (Article 299(2) cited above), and a specific legal basis for the outermost regions, recently confirmed in the Constitutional Treaty, provide the foundations for positive Community action differentiating these regions and aimed at mitigating the permanent handicaps facing them and facilitating their development and convergence with the rest of the EU.

The rapporteur concurs with the strategic vision of the Council, reiterated by the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, which acknowledged the need to adopt a genuine specific strategy to support and develop the outermost regions, particularly in the fisheries sector, as outlined in the Commission communication on a stronger partnership for the outermost regions (COM(2004)343).

Despite the gradual removal of trade barriers within the European single market, which has done much to boost economies of scale, the natural barriers to trade which still exist in the outermost regions weaken the position of firms located there compared with those in regions which enjoy full access to the Community market. Firms in the outermost regions work within a limited local market which is fragmented and remote and which does not enable them to benefit from economies of scale on equal terms.

Specific case of fisheries

The rapporteur considers it fundamental to the survival of the fishing industry in the outermost regions that the compensation scheme which the present proposal is intended to implement should take account of the current specific situation of the market. He would therefore suggest a number of changes to the basic text submitted by the Commission.

The rapporteur takes the view that:

- The Posei-Fisheries scheme (programme of options specifically relating to remoteness and insularity for fisheries) should, like the Posei-Agriculture scheme, be a permanent scheme that is not limited in time, since the geographical and structural constraints that justify its application cannot be altered.

- Compensation should not be based only on transport costs and should not be restricted to 75% of those costs (there is no limit in the Posei-Agriculture scheme), whilst accepting the principle of avoiding over-compensation.

- Recourse to imports should be authorised where catches by the fleets of the outermost regions are not sufficient to ensure the profitability of fish-processing structures in these regions. In its report COM(2006)734 (p. 7), the Commission itself points out that 'for some industries imports are necessary for economies of scale and to use the full capacity of the enterprise'.

- The support granted under this scheme should have a wider spectrum and not be targeted solely at the transport costs incurred in marketing fishery products. There are other additional supply and logistics costs associated with the catching and processing of fish and transport to the destination markets which should be duly taken into account.

- The additional costs linked to the use of raw materials such as olive and other oils, salt etc. should also be eligible for support.

- Within the limits of the annual appropriations granted to the regions concerned, it should be possible for the amounts of compensation to be modulated among regions belonging to the same Member State and between Member States so as to maximise their utilisation.

- The Commission should introduce exceptional arrangements for the outermost regions in relation to state aid to support the fisheries sector, as was decided as part of the recent review of Posei-Agriculture.

- The rapporteur agrees with the proposal put forward by the Commission as regards greater flexibility for the Member States to allow them to determine which fishery products will be eligible and the corresponding quantities and to set the corresponding compensation amounts, adjusted for their various regions, within the limits of the annual allocation for the regions concerned.


OPINION of the Committee on Budgets (21.3.2007)

for the Committee on Fisheries

on the proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

(COM(2006)0740 – C6-0505/2006 – 2006/0247(CNS))

Draftswoman: Helga Trüpel

SHORT JUSTIFICATION

In the years 2003-2006, in line with article 299(2) of EC Treaty on specific measures for outermost regions and Council Regulation no 2328/2003, Community budget has provided for compensation of additional costs incurred in the marketing of fisheries product from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, French Guiana and Reunion. The aim of the current proposal for the new Council regulation is to extend the period of compensation of those costs for the years 2007-2013 and to introduce some modifications of the scheme.

According to the Commission, general purpose of modifications proposed in the new regulation as compared to the previous one is to tighten up conditions for awarding compensations while, at the same time, to give Member States a certain flexibility to decide on species and quantities eligible for compensation. The best example of tightening the conditions is the limit for the compensations established at the level of 75% of actual transport costs - indeed, this measure would provide a clearer basis for determining the amount of aid granted than it was the case before, which is to be welcomed.

Regarding eligibility of fisheries products caught by vessels under the Venezuelan flag (article 4(4) point a), which may seem surprising, according to the information from the Commission there are currently 45 Venezuelan vessels licensed to fish in the waters of French Guiana. As they are required to land 50-75% of their catches in Guiana and compensations are provided only to processing companies based in Guiana (and not to the owners of vessels), this provision seems to be acceptable.

In general, your rapporteur approves of the proposal: the support for the ultra-peripheral regions is a measure agreed upon and confirmed in the Treaty and most of the fishing conducted in these waters, or fish landed there, is the result of local and relatively small-scale fishing and, as such, should be given aid to reach the mainland EU market. However, it is of fundamental importance to ensure that funds from EU budget are used in line with the objectives determined in the Treaty. Indeed, one port - Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, widely recognized as a port of convenience, acts as a gateway for illegally-caught fish coming into the EU. While the local fishing conducted in the waters of the Canary Islands deserves to be supported by the fund proposed by the Commission, under no circumstances should illegal fishing be covered by these subsidies.

The Commission has decided that one of its major priorities for 2007 is the fight against illegal fishing and is currently drafting a new action plan, to be accompanied by a wide-ranging and ambitious legislative proposal. One of the principle components of the proposal will be to strengthen controls in ports to keep illegally-caught fish out of the EU. The current proposal for the ultra-peripheral regions thus includes a condition that compensation shall not be granted to fishery products "derived from illegal, unreported or unregulated (IUU) fishing" (Article 4(4) point d). Your rapporteur fully supports this approach.

In line with the Commission's emphasis on the fight against illegal fishing, two amendments to this proposal are suggested, both of which are designed to complement this laudable objective and ensure that Communities´ budget is not used for support for illegal fisheries products.

Article 7 requires the Member States concerned to submit compensation plans to the Commission, indicating type and quantity of fish products that are eligible for aid, as well as the amount of compensation. An amendment has been included to require the Member States to give an indication of the controls that are to be implemented to ensure that only fish that is caught legally, under the provisions of the Common Fisheries Policy (Article 4.3), benefit from the compensation covered by the present regulation.

Article 10 states that Member States must adopt the necessary provisions to ensure compliance with the regulation. Since the fight against illegal fishing is so important, and given the Commission's excellent efforts in that direction, a few details are suggested concerning the type of controls that Member States should foresee in order to keep illegal fish out of the EU.

AMENDMENTS

The Committee on Budgets calls on the Committee on Fisheries, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following amendments in its report:

Text proposed by the Commission(1)  Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 1

Article 5, paragraph 1

1. Each Member State concerned shall determine for its regions referred to in Article 1 the level of compensation for each fishery product in the list referred to in Article 4. That level may be differentiated for individual regions or between regions belonging to one Member State.

1. Each Member State concerned shall determine for its regions referred to in Article 1 the level of compensation for each fishery product in the list referred to in Article 4. That level may be differentiated for individual regions or between regions belonging to one Member State. The Commission shall establish a common methodology for calculating the level of compensation.

Amendment 2

Article 5, paragraph 4

4. The total amount of compensation per year shall not exceed:

a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 283 992;

b) Canary Islands:        EUR 5 844 076;

c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 4 868 700

4. The total amount of compensation per year shall not exceed:

a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 546 207 ;

b) Canary Islands:        EUR 6 201 780 ;

c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 5 166 703.

Justification

The Commission proposed maintaining the 2003 value for this programme. The present proposal takes account of the technical adjustment under heading 1 of the financial perspective - see point 15 of the 1999 interinstitutional agreement on budgetary discipline between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission (in force until last year).

Amendment 3

Article 5, paragraph 4a (new)

 

4a. The sums referred to in paragraph 4 shall be subject to the annual technical adjustments specified in point 16 of the interinstitutional agreement between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on budgetary discipline and sound financial management1.

______________________

1OJ C 139, 14.6.2006, p. 1.

Amendment 4

Article 7, paragraph 1

1. Within four months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1) and the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1), hereinafter jointly referred to as "the compensation plan".

1. Within four months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1), the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1) and a detailed list of measures to be applied to ensure that the provisions of Articles 4(2), 4(3) and 4(4) are respected, hereinafter jointly referred to as "the compensation plan".

Justification

Amendment aims at ensuring that only legally caught fish benefits from compensations foreseen in the regulation.

Amendment 5

Article 10

Member States shall adopt appropriate provisions to ensure compliance with the requirements set out in this Regulation and the regularity of operations.

Member States shall adopt appropriate provisions to ensure compliance with the requirements set out in this Regulation and the regularity of operations. Provisions on the traceability of fisheries products shall be sufficiently detailed so as to allow for the identification of products that are not eligible for compensation.

Justification

More detailed requirements should be introduced in order to ensure that only legal fisheries products can be covered by the compensations.

PROCEDURE

Title

Compensation for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Guiana and Réunion (2007-2013)

References

COM(2006)0740 - C6-0505/2006 - 2006/0247(CNS)

Committee responsible

PECH

Opinion by

       Date announced in plenary

BUDG

17.1.2007

 

 

 

Drafts(wo)man

       Date appointed

Helga Trüpel

20.9.2004

 

 

Discussed in committee

21.3.2007

 

 

 

Date adopted

21.3.2007

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

25

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Reimer Böge, Simon Busuttil, Paulo Casaca, Gérard Deprez, Brigitte Douay, James Elles, Hynek Fajmon, Göran Färm, Salvador Garriga Polledo, Ingeborg Gräßle, Louis Grech, Catherine Guy-Quint, Jutta Haug, Monica Maria Iacob-Ridzi, Anne E. Jensen, Janusz Lewandowski, Vladimír Maňka, Jan Mulder, Francesco Musotto, Esko Seppänen, Nina Škottová, László Surján, Helga Trüpel, Kyösti Virrankoski, Ralf Walter

(1)

Not yet published in OJ.


OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development (21.3.2007)

for the Committee on Fisheries

on the proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

(COM(2006)0740 – C6-0505/2006 – 2006/0247(CNS))

Draftsman: Pedro Guerreiro

SHORT JUSTIFICATION

The proposal for a regulation dealt with in this opinion stems from the implementation report submitted by the Commission on 30 November 2006 to comply, albeit belatedly, with Article 12 of Council Regulation (EC) No 2328/2003 of 22 December 2003 introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion, as a result of those regions’ remoteness(1). The implementation report was based on an external study, published in mid-September 2006, which concluded that the compensation scheme for the period from 2003 to 2006 had served to reduce the additional costs resulting from remoteness and paved the way for the development and consolidation of up- and downstream economic activities, thus helping to stabilise, and even increase, employment in areas where there are few economic alternatives. Among the examples which might be mentioned are the tuna-canning industry in the Azores, the tuna loin and black scabbardfish industry in Madeira, and the shrimp industry in Guiana.

The scheme was set up in 1992 for the Azores, Madeira, and the Canary Islands; its target groups were producers, owners or operators of vessels registered at those regions’ ports, and operators in the processing or marketing sectors. It was subsequently extended to cover the French departments of Guiana, in 1994, and Réunion, in 1998, and renewed for the first time in 2003 under Regulation (EC) No 2328/2003, which expired on 31 December 2006. During this last period of validity, the funding for the scheme totalled EUR 60 m, about EUR 15 m a year, the forecasts having indicated that budget out-turn would be high – approximately 85% – even though Regulation (EC) No 2328/2003 was in some respects not being enforced flexibly enough.

The Community’s outermost regions(2) are constrained in their social and economic development by their distinguishing characteristics, in other words their remoteness, the fact that they are islands, their small local markets, their geographical fragmentation, their small size, and their difficult topography and climate, factors which likewise affect the fisheries sector, in some cases one of their main economic activities. These obstacles to development are of a structural nature and permanent: that being the case, bearing in mind Article 299(2) and the status of the outermost regions, and given that the proposal is to be welcomed inasmuch as it will maintain the present compensation scheme while making changes affording greater flexibility to Member States as regards enforcement, it is hard to understand why the scheme should not remain open ended like the Posei agriculture programmes, that is to say, not subject to a time limit. Other points that will need to be challenged are the (low) limit imposed on the compensation for additional costs, namely 75% of actual transport costs and other related costs, and the fact that the scheme focuses too much on transport costs – rather than on the concept of marketing in the broadest sense, whereby the costs specifically entailed in producing goods and placing them on the market in the outermost regions would have to be taken into account. To help achieve this latter end, and in view of the increase in these costs – especially transport costs since 2003 – and of the flexibility that the future scheme will offer, the proposed overall budget should be raised, without altering the current share-out among the individual Member States.

The draftsman would also point out that it should continue to be permissible under the future regulation, for the purposes of compensation for processed products, to use fish caught by Community vessels, when catches by local fleets are insufficient to supply the local processing industry.

AMENDMENTS

The Committee on Regional Development calls on the Committee on Fisheries, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following amendments in its report:

Text proposed by the Commission(3)  Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 1

Title

Proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion from 2007 to 2013

Proposal for a Council regulation introducing a scheme to compensate for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, and the French departments of Guiana and Réunion, as a result of those regions’ remoteness

Justification

The proposal is intended to continue the existing scheme to offset the additional costs incurred, as a result of the remoteness of the regions concerned, in the marketing of certain fishery products from particular ORs, as laid down in Regulation (EC) No 2328/2003, which expired on 31 December 2006: that being the case, there is no reason to change the title.

Furthermore, the scheme was introduced in order to compensate for the additional costs which operators who market fishery products from these ORs have to bear on account of the specific handicaps affecting the regions in question; given that those handicaps are permanent, the scheme must not be limited in time.

Amendment 2

Recital -1 (new)

 

(-1) The outermost regions have fragile economies, with permanent structural constraints on their development and few possibilities for diversification, in which the fisheries sector and ancient fishing communities play an important role in maintaining economic activity and employment, upstream and downstream, and in promoting economic and social cohesion.

Justification

The permanent structural constraints on the development of the outermost regions have to be taken into account, as does the socio-economic importance of the fisheries sector, which more often than not is one of the few economic alternatives available to these regions, and one that helps to foster economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 3

Recital -1 a (new)

 

(-1a) The specific features of the outermost regions and the differences in terms of their respective sectors of activity should be taken into account, given that these regions each have their own particular needs.

Justification

It has to be borne in mind that, for all the difficulties which the outermost regions have in common, there are also considerable differences from one region to the next, and the necessary allowance must accordingly be made in the regulation as such and in its implementation.

Amendment 4

Recital -1 b (new)

 

(-1b) The increase which the marked rise in oil prices has brought about, especially since 2003, in transport and other related costs should be taken into account, since its end effect is to add still further to the additional costs arising from remoteness.

Justification

Attention should be drawn to the increased transport costs resulting from higher oil prices, which have added to the additional costs arising from remoteness.

Amendment 5

Recital 1

(1) The fisheries sector in the outermost regions of the Community is facing difficulties, and in particular additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products due to the particular handicaps recognised by Article 299(2) of the Treaty, and resulting mainly from the transport costs to continental Europe.

(1) The fisheries sector in the outermost regions of the Community is facing difficulties, and in particular additional costs incurred in the production and marketing of certain fishery products due to the particular handicaps recognised by Article 299(2) of the Treaty, and resulting in part from the costs incurred in transport to continental Europe.

Justification

Other factors should be taken into account where the outermost regions are concerned, including the fact that there are no economies of scale and the high production costs. That is why the specific focus of the regulation should not be confined to transport costs, but rather extend to other costs incurred in production and marketing.

Amendment 6

Recital 5 a (new)

 

(5a) Due account should be taken of the socio-economic importance to the outermost regions of small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing and of the need to create the conditions required for their development.

Justification

The regulation also has to recognise that small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing are central to the development of the outermost regions and that special support needs to be given to the corresponding segments of their fleets.

Amendment 7

Recital 5 b (new)

 

(5b) It should be permissible to obtain supplies on the Community market, without exceeding existing production capacity, when catches by the outermost regions’ fishing fleets are insufficient to supply the local fish-processing industry.

Justification

Imports from within the Community should be allowed when catches by OR fleets fall short of what is needed for fish-processing plants in those regions to operate at a profit. In its report COM(2006)0734, page 7, the Commission points out that ‘It is clear that for some industries imports are necessary for economies of scale and to use the full capacity of the enterprise’.

Amendment 8

Recital 7 a (new)

 

(7a) The Commission’s consistent policy of refusing State operating aids for the production, processing, and marketing of the fishery products covered by the Treaty should be possible to waive in order to offset the specific constraints affecting fishery production in the outermost regions owing to their remoteness, insularity, small size, topography, climate, and economic dependence on a few products.

Justification

The Commission should lay down special arrangements for the ORs as regards State aids in the fisheries sector, modelled on the provisions resulting from the recent revision of the Posei agriculture programmes.

Amendment 9

Recital 9

(9) To enable a decision to be taken on whether to continue the compensation scheme after 2013 the Commission should submit a report to the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Economic and Social Committee based on an independent evaluation in due time before the end of the scheme.

(9) To enable the compensation scheme to be revised, taking into account the real progress made in attaining the objectives of this Regulation, the Commission should, no later than 31 December 2011, submit a report to the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Economic and Social Committee based on an independent evaluation, accompanied, if necessary, by legislative proposals.

Justification

The scheme to be introduced must not be limited in time, given that the compensation is intended to offset permanent structural handicaps caused by remoteness. It is thus difficult to understand why this regulation, contrary to the procedure employed for the Posei agriculture programmes (Regulation (EC) No 247/2006), should specify an expiry date.

Amendment 10

Article 1

This Regulation introduces a scheme for the period 2007 to 2013 to provide compensation for the additional costs incurred by the operators set out in Article 3 in the marketing of certain fishery products from the following regions as a result of those regions’ specific handicaps (hereinafter referred to as ‘the compensation’):

This Regulation introduces a scheme to provide compensation for the additional costs incurred by the operators set out in Article 3 in the marketing of certain fishery products from the following outermost regions as a result of those regions’ specific handicaps (hereinafter referred to as ‘the compensation’):

Justification

The scheme to be introduced must not be limited in time, given that the compensation is intended to offset permanent structural handicaps caused by remoteness. It is thus difficult to understand why this regulation, contrary to the procedure employed for the Posei agriculture programmes (Regulation (EC) No 247/2006), should specify an expiry date.

Amendment 11

Article 3, paragraph 1

1. The compensation shall be paid to the following operators who incur additional costs in the marketing of fishery products:

1. The compensation shall be paid to the following operators who, because of the remoteness of the regions referred to in Article 1, incur additional costs in the marketing of fishery products:

Justification

Self-explanatory.

Amendment 12

Article 3, paragraph 1, point (c)

(c) the operators in the processing and marketing sector or associations of such operators, who incur additional costs in marketing the products concerned.

(c) the operators in the processing and marketing sector or associations of such operators, who incur additional costs in producing and marketing the products concerned.

Justification

Other factors should be taken into account where the outermost regions are concerned, not least the fact that there are no economies of scale and production costs are high. That is why the regulation must not focus specifically on transport costs alone, but rather allow for other categories of production and marketing costs.

Amendment 13

Article 4, paragraph 4, point (b)

(b) caught by Community fishing vessels that are not registered in a port of one of the regions referred to in Article 1,

(b) caught by Community fishing vessels that are not registered in a port of one of the regions referred to in Article 1, except where use is to be made of fish caught by Community vessels in cases where catches in the regions referred to in Article 1 are insufficient to supply those regions' processing industries,

Justification

As was provided for under the previous scheme, it should continue to be permissible – when catches by local fleets are insufficient – for local processing industries to be supplied by Community vessels, since this enables economic activity and employment to be maintained in the outermost regions.

Amendment 14

Article 5, paragraph 2

2. The compensation shall take into account:

2. The compensation shall take into account:

(a) for each fishery product the additional costs resulting from the specific handicaps of the regions concerned, in particular the expenditure for the transport to the European continent,

(a) for each fishery product, the additional costs resulting from the specific handicaps of the regions concerned, in particular the expenditure for transport to the European continent or between regions referred to in Article 1,

(b) any other type of public intervention affecting the level of additional costs.

(b) for each fishery product, the additional costs arising from geographical fragmentation incurred in transport within each of the regions referred to in Article 1,

 

(ba) the category of recipients, giving particular attention to small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing,

 

(bb) any other type of public intervention affecting the level of additional costs.

Justification

The compensation for additional costs should also allow for marketing carried on between outermost regions. The amendment likewise seeks to cover the higher transport costs in geographically fragmented outermost regions such as the Azores and the Canary Islands, the idea being to promote local markets. The level of compensation should be determined, in addition, according to the category of recipients, giving particular attention to small-scale inshore fishing and non-industrial fishing.

Amendment 15

Article 5, paragraph 3

3. The compensation to the additional costs shall be proportional to the additional costs it intends to off-set and shall not exceed 75% of the transport and other related costs to the European continent.

3. The compensation for the additional costs shall be proportional to the additional costs it is intended to offset.

Justification

The compensation must not be based solely on transport costs, nor should it be limited to 75% thereof (there is no limit under the Posei agriculture programmes), although overcompensation should, of course, be avoided.

Amendment 16

Article 5, paragraph 4

4. The total amount of compensation per year shall not exceed:

4. The total amount of compensation per year shall not exceed:

(a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 283 992

(a) Azores and Madeira: EUR 4 855 314

(b) Canary Islands: EUR 5 844 076

(b) Canary Islands: EUR 6 623 454

(c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 4 868 700

(c) French Guiana and Réunion: EUR 5 518 000

Justification

Without altering the proportions to be allocated to the individual Member States, the amendment adds EUR 2 m to the annual overall budget in order to cover the increase in transport and energy costs since 2003 and allow for the new flexibility afforded by the regulation, which will make for a greater uptake of funds. The overall budget is thus being raised from about EUR 15 m to EUR 17 m, but even the latter figure is modest compared to the permanent structural handicaps affecting the outermost regions; the higher budget will help to further the aim of economic and social cohesion.

Amendment 17

Article 6 a (new)

 

Article 6 a

 

Graduated apportionment of amounts

 

Compensation amounts may be apportioned to regions belonging to the same Member State according to a graduated scale, without exceeding the financial framework established by this Regulation.

Amendment 18

Article 7, paragraphs 1, 2, and 3

1. Within four months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1) and the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1), hereinafter jointly referred to as “the compensation plan”.

1. Within three months of the entry into force of this Regulation the Member States concerned shall submit to the Commission the list and quantities referred to in Article 4(1) and the level of compensation referred to in Article 5(1), hereinafter jointly referred to as “the compensation plan”.

2. If the compensation plan does not meet the requirements set out in this Regulation, the Commission, within two months, shall ask the Member State to adapt the plan accordingly. In that event the Member State shall submit its adapted compensation plan to the Commission.

2. If the compensation plan does not meet the requirements set out in this Regulation, the Commission, within one month, shall ask the Member State to adapt the plan accordingly. In that event the Member State shall submit its adapted compensation plan to the Commission.

3. If the Commission fails to react within the period of two months after receiving the compensation plan referred to in paragraph 1 and 2, the compensation plan shall be deemed to have been approved.

3. If the Commission fails to react within the period of one month after receiving the compensation plan referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2, the compensation plan shall be deemed to have been approved.

Justification

To enable the regulation to be implemented properly and promptly in 2007, bearing in mind that the Commission did not submit the proposal until late, and to ensure that the compensation plans will be submitted and approved more rapidly, it is proposed to shorten every time limit by one month.

Amendment 19

Article 7, paragraph 4

4. If a Member State makes amendments pursuant to Article 6, it shall submit its amended compensation plan to the Commission and the procedure laid down in paragraph 2 and 3 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

4. If a Member State makes amendments pursuant to Article 6, it shall submit its amended compensation plan to the Commission and that plan shall be deemed to have been approved if the Commission fails to react within four weeks of receiving it.

Justification

A more rapid procedure should be followed when compensation plans are to be amended.

Amendment 20

Article 7 a (new)

 

Article 7a

 

State aids

 

1. As regards the fishery products to which Articles 87, 88, and 89 of the Treaty apply, the Commission may authorise aid for the continuing operation of the production, processing, and marketing sectors in order to offset the specific handicaps, deriving from remoteness and insularity, affecting fishery production in the outermost regions, having regard to Article 299(2) of the Treaty.

 

2. Member States may grant additional funding for the implementation of the compensation plans referred to in Article 7. In that event the State aids must be notified by the Member States and approved by the Commission, in accordance with this Regulation, as part of the compensation plans. Aid thus notified shall be deemed to have been notified under Article 88(3), first sentence, of the Treaty.

Justification

Following the example of the Posei agriculture programmes and bearing in mind the handicaps affecting the outermost regions, it must be permitted to top up the measures provided for in the regulation with national State aids, without departing from the Community-wide State aid framework.

Amendment 21

Article 8, paragraph 1

1. Each Member State concerned shall draw up an annual report on the implementation of the compensation and submit it to the Commission by 30 April of each year.

1. Each Member State concerned shall draw up an annual report on the implementation of the compensation and submit it to the Commission by 30 June of each year.

Justification

Taking into account the fact that statistical data are difficult to obtain before the end of the first quarter.

Amendment 22

Article 8, paragraph 2

2. By 31 December 2011 at the latest, the Commission shall on the basis of an independent evaluation report to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Economic and Social Committee on the implementation of the compensation, accompanied where necessary, by legislative proposals.

2. By 31 December 2011 at the latest and every five years thereafter, the Commission shall on the basis of an independent evaluation submit a report to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Economic and Social Committee on the implementation of the compensation, accompanied where necessary by legislative proposals.

Justification

Following on from the removal of the references to a period of validity (2007-2013) and of the expiry date, this amendment inserts a review clause along the lines of those provided for in the Posei agriculture programmes.

Amendment 23

Article 14, paragraph 2

It shall apply from 1 January 2007 until 31 December 2013

It shall apply from 1 January 2007.

Justification

The scheme to be introduced must not be limited in time, given that the compensation is intended to offset permanent structural handicaps caused by remoteness. It is thus difficult to understand why this regulation, contrary to the procedure employed for the Posei agriculture programmes (Regulation (EC) No 247/2006), should specify an expiry date.

PROCEDURE

Title

Compensation for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Guiana and Réunion (2007-2013)

References

COM(2006)0740 - C6-0505/2006 - 2006/0247(CNS)

Committee responsible

PECH

Opinion by

       Date announced in plenary

REGI

17.1.2007

 

 

 

Drafts(wo)man

       Date appointed

Pedro Guerreiro

1.2.2007

 

 

Discussed in committee

27.2.2007

 

 

 

Date adopted

20.3.2007

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

38

3

2

Members present for the final vote

Alfonso Andria, Stavros Arnaoutakis, Elspeth Attwooll, Tiberiu Bărbuleţiu, Jean Marie Beaupuy, Rolf Berend, Jana Bobošíková, Vasile Dîncu, Gerardo Galeote, Iratxe García Pérez, Pedro Guerreiro, Gábor Harangozó, Marian Harkin, Mieczysław Edmund Janowski, Gisela Kallenbach, Tunne Kelam, Evgeni Kirilov, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez, Yiannakis Matsis, Miroslav Mikolášik, Jan Olbrycht, Maria Petre, Markus Pieper, Wojciech Roszkowski, Elisabeth Schroedter, Stefan Sofianski, Grażyna Staniszewska, Kyriacos Triantaphyllides, Oldřich Vlasák, Vladimír Železný

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Jan Březina, Brigitte Douay, Den Dover, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Ljudmila Novak, Mirosław Mariusz Piotrowski, Zita Pleštinská, Christa Prets, Toomas Savi, László Surján, Károly Ferenc Szabó, Nikolaos Vakalis

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Věra Flasarová

(1)

OJ L 345, 31.12.2003, p. 34.

(2)

The regions specified in Article 299(2) of the Treaty are the French overseas departments, the Azores, Madeira, and the Canary Islands.

(3)

Not yet published in OJ.


PROCEDURE

Title

Compensation for the additional costs incurred in the marketing of certain fishery products from the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Guiana and Réunion (2007-2013)

References

COM(2006)0740 - C6-0505/2006 - 2006/0247(CNS)

Date of consulting Parliament

20.12.2006

Committee responsible

       Date announced in plenary

PECH

17.1.2007

Committee(s) asked for opinion(s)

       Date announced in plenary

BUDG

17.1.2007

REGI

17.1.2007

 

 

Rapporteur(s)

       Date appointed

Duarte Freitas

17.1.2007

 

 

Discussed in committee

27.2.2007

 

 

 

Date adopted

22.3.2007

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

24

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Alfonso Andria, Stavros Arnaoutakis, Elspeth Attwooll, Marie-Hélène Aubert, Iles Braghetto, Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos, Paulo Casaca, Zdzisław Kazimierz Chmielewski, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Carmen Fraga Estévez, Duarte Freitas, Ioannis Gklavakis, Pedro Guerreiro, Ian Hudghton, Heinz Kindermann, Rosa Miguélez Ramos, Marianne Mikko, Philippe Morillon, Seán Ó Neachtain, Willi Piecyk, Struan Stevenson, Catherine Stihler, Daniel Varela Suanzes-Carpegna

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Vincenzo Aita, Ole Christensen, Jan Mulder, Thomas Wise

Date tabled

27.3.2007

Last updated: 12 April 2007Legal notice