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Procedure : 2003/0110(CNS)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A5-0384/2003

Texts tabled :

A5-0384/2003

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Texts adopted :

P5_TA(2003)0513

REPORT     *
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6 November 2003
PE 329.328 A5-0384/2003
on the proposal for a Council decision establishing a Community action programme for bodies promoting reciprocal understanding of relations between the European Union and certain non-industrialised regions in the world
(COM(2003) 280 – C5‑0350/2003 – 2003/0110(CNS))
Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy
Rapporteur: Lennart Sacrédeus
Draftsperson (*): Bárbara Dührkop Dührkop, Committee on Budgets
(*) Enhanced cooperation between committees – Rule 162a
PROCEDURAL PAGE
 DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
 OPINION OF THE COMMITTEE ON BUDGETS (*)

PROCEDURAL PAGE

By letter of 28 July 2003 the Council consulted Parliament, pursuant to Article 308 of the EC Treaty, on the proposal for a Council decision establishing a Community action programme for bodies promoting reciprocal understanding of relations between the European Union and certain non-industrialised regions in the world (COM(2003) 280 – 2003/0110(CNS)).

At the sitting of 1 September 2003 the President of Parliament announced that he had referred the proposal to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy as the committee responsible and the Committee on Budgets, the Committee on Budgetary Control, the Committee on Industry, External Trade, Research and Energy and the Committee on Development and Cooperation for their opinions (C5‑0350/2003).

At the sitting of 25 September 2003 the President of Parliament announced that the Committee on Budgets, which had been asked for its opinion, would be involved in drawing up the report under Rule 162a.The Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy had appointed Lennart Sacrédeus rapporteur at its meeting of 8 July 2003.

The committee considered the Commission proposal and draft report at its meetings of 6 October 2003 and 3-4 November 2003.

At the last meeting it adopted the draft legislative resolution unanimously.

The following were present for the vote Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne acting chairwoman), Geoffrey Van Orden (vice-chairman), Christos Zacharakis (vice-chairman), Lennart Sacrédeus (rapporteur), Alexandros Baltas, Bastiaan Belder, Cees Bremmer (for Arie M. Oostlander),Véronique De Keyser, Hélène Flautre (for Per Gahrton), Michael Gahler, Gerardo Galeote Quecedo, Jas Gawronski, Vitaliano Gemelli (for Alain Lamassoure), Alfred Gomolka, Ulpu Iivari (for Catherine Lalumière), Joost Lagendijk, Pedro Marset Campos, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez (for Rosa M. Díez González), Pasqualina Napoletano, Bill Newton Dunn (for Ole Andreasen pursuant to Rule 153(2)), Jacques F. Poos, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Elisabeth Schroedter, Ioannis Souladakis, Ursula Stenzel, Ilkka Suominen, Hannes Swoboda, Charles Tannock, Gary Titley (for Richard Howitt), Joan Vallvé, Karl von Wogau and Jan Marinus Wiersma.

The opinion of the Committee on Budgets is attached. The Committee on Budgetary Control decided on 24 September 2003 not to deliver an opinion. The Committee on Industry, External Trade, Research and Energy decided on 2 October 2003 not to deliver an opinion and the Committee on Development and Cooperation decided on 1 October 2003 not to deliver an opinion.

The report was tabled on 6 November 2003.


DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the proposal for a Council decision on establishing a Community action programme for bodies promoting reciprocal understanding of relations between the European Union and certain non-industrialised regions in the world

(COM(2003) 280 – C5‑0350/2003 – 2003/0110(CNS))

(Consultation procedure)

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Commission proposal to the Council (COM(2003) 280)(1),

–   having regard to Article 308 of the EC Treaty, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C5‑0350/2003),

–   having regard to Rule 67 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy and the opinion of the Committee on Budgets (A5‑0384/2003),

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.   Calls for initiation of the conciliation procedure under the Joint Declaration of 4 March 1975 if the Council intends to depart from the text approved by Parliament;

5.   Considers that the financial statement of the Commission proposal is compatible with the ceiling of heading 5 of the financial perspectives 2000-2006;

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

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

Text proposed by the Commission   Amendments by Parliament
Amendment 1
Recital 3

Special attention should be given to the regional dimension of Community assistance, taking account of the divergence of needs and priorities among the main regions covered by the aforementioned regulations and stepping up regional cooperation.

Special attention should be given to the regional dimension of Community assistance, taking account of the divergence of needs and priorities among the main regions covered by the aforementioned regulations and stepping up regional cooperation in a balanced and co-ordinated manner.

Justification

There is a wide range of associations and bodies active in the field of regional cooperation and it is increasingly important to ensure the co-ordination of their activities to avoid "double use" and to optimise their impact.

Amendment 2
Recital 4

Increased reciprocal knowledge between the European Union and partners receiving assistance from it should be promoted.

Increased reciprocal knowledge and understanding between the European Union and partners receiving assistance from it should be promoted as well as their visibility.

Justification

Increased visibility will contribute to improve the perception of bodies' activities by the local population.

Amendment 3
Recital 5

Strengthening reciprocal knowledge between the EU and its partners will be assisted by the work of bodies specialising in the analysis of relations between the European Union and the regions concerned.

Strengthening reciprocal knowledge and understanding between the EU and its partners will be assisted by the work of bodies specialising in the analysis of relations between the European Union and the regions concerned and disposing of the necessary cultural background.

Justification

To achieve the objective of strengthening reciprocal knowledge and understanding, the bodies must be deeply acquainted with the cultural and historical characteristics of the regions concerned.

Amendment 4
Recital 7a (new)
 

The European Parliament, the Council and the Commission undertook, at the time of the adoption of the Financial Regulation, to achieve the objective of ensuring that this basic act enters into force as from the financial year 2004.

Justification

In the negotiations of the new Financial Regulation, a common agreement was reached to preserve EP's rights to identify beneficiaries of grants through earmarking in the budget. This right has been formalised in the statement to article 108 of the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 5
Article 1, paragraph 1

1.   A Community action programme is hereby established for the promotion of centres, institutes and networks specialising in the analysis of relations between the European Union and certain regions.

1.   A Community action programme is hereby established for the promotion of centres, institutes and networks specialising in the analysis of relations between the European Union and certain regions thereby promoting dialogue of cultures and civilisations and the universal value of human rights.

Justification

Dialogue between cultures and civilisations has now more than ever a crucial role to play in securing peace and stability in the world as well as the universal human rights.

Amendment 6
Article 1, paragraph 2

2.   The general objective of this programme shall be to support the activities of these bodies. The activities shall consist of the annual work programme of a centre, institute or network and must be in keeping with those described in the Annex. The activities supported must contribute to increasing understanding and dialogue between the European Union, the regions covered by the ALA, MEDA, TACIS and CARDS Regulations and the candidate countries.

2.   The general objective of this programme shall be to support the activities of these bodies. The activities shall consist of the annual work programme of a centre, institute or network and must be in keeping with those described in the Annex. The activities supported must contribute to increasing understanding and dialogue between the European Union, the regions covered by the ALA, MEDA, TACIS and CARDS Regulations and the candidate countries and to reinforcing social, cultural and human partnership.

Justification

The activities of the bodies should contribute not only to political and cooperation's process but to the building of a real partnership of people.

Amendment 7
Article 2 , indent -1 (new)

-   its activities must be in keeping with the principles underlying Community external relations action and take account of the priority areas identified in Article 5.

-   its activities must be in keeping with the principles underlying Community external relations action and take account of the priority areas identified in Article 5 of the Annex.

(The third indent in the Commission text becomes first indent in Parliament's text with modification).

Justification

The condition sine qua non for the applicant body should be to comply with the principles underlying community external relations action as established by the Treaty of the European Union (Article 11).

Amendment 8
Article 2, first indent

-   it must be an independent and non-profit making legal entity active chiefly in promoting understanding of relations between the EU and the regions concerned, with an objective that serves the public good.

-   it must be an independent and non-profit making legal entity active chiefly in promoting understanding of relations between the EU and the regions concerned, with an objective that serves the public good and the dignity of the human person.

Amendment 9
Article 4, paragraph 1a (new)
 

The programme covers one type of awarding procedure by means of a call for proposals for all beneficiaries.

Justification

The legal act should identify with more transparency the different awarding criteria in respect of the provisions of the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 10
Article 5

1.   The operating grants awarded under this programme may not finance the body's entire eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

1.   The operating grants awarded under this programme may not finance the body's entire eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded. The principles of degressivity in real terms and cofinancing apply to all beneficiaries as follows:

2.   The amount of an operating grant awarded may not exceed 70% of the organisation's eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

2.   The amount of an operating grant awarded under the programme may not exceed 80% of the eligible expenditure of the body for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

3.   Pursuant to Article 113(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002, where such operating grants are renewed, they shall be gradually decreased in real terms. If a grant is awarded to a body having already received an operating grant the preceding year, the percentage of Community cofinancing represented by the new grant shall be at least 10 percentage points lower than the Community cofinancing percentage represented by the grant in the preceding year.

3.   Pursuant to Article 113(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002, where such operating grants are renewed, they shall be gradually decreased in real terms. If a grant is awarded to a body having already received an operating grant the preceding year, degressivity applies at a rate of 2,5% from the third year onward.

Justification

The legal acts should provide the opportunity to harmonise those principles with the awarding procedures foreseen by the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 11
Article 6, paragraph 1

This programme shall start on 1 January 2004 and end on 31 December 2006.

This programme shall start on 1 January 2004 and end on 31 December 2008.

Amendment 12
Article 6, paragraph 2a (new)
 

The appropriations scheduled after the year 2006 are subject to an agreement of the budgetary authority on the financial perspective beyond 2006.

Justification

The financial perspective under the Interinstitutional Agreement covers the period 2000-2006. Appropriations after the year 2006 are subject to an agreement of the budgetary authority on the next financial framework for the year 2007 and beyond.

Amendment 13
Article 7

By 31 December 2005 at the latest the Commission shall report to the Council on the achievement of the objectives of the programme. The report shall be based on the results obtained by the beneficiaries and assess, in particular, their relevance, effectiveness and usefulness in achieving the objectives defined in Article 1 and the Annex.

By 31 December 2007 at the latest the Commission shall report to the European Parliament and to the Council on the achievement of the objectives of the programme. The report shall be based on the results obtained by the beneficiaries and assess, in particular, their relevance, effectiveness and usefulness in achieving the objectives defined in Article 1 and the Annex.

Justification

Evaluation should be postponed towards the end of the duration of the programme.

Given its budgetary prerogatives, the European Parliament should be informed about the achievement of the objectives of the programme at the same time as the Council.

Amendment 14
Article 8

The principle of the gradual decrease of the rate of Community cofinancing provided for in Article 5 in the case of renewal of an operating grant to bodies having received such a grant for the same activities the year before the entry into force of this Decision and for the two preceding years shall apply only from the third year following the entry into force of this Decision.

The principle of the gradual decrease of the rate of Community cofinancing provided for in Article 5 in the case of renewal of an operating grant to bodies having received such a grant for the same activities the year before the entry into force of this Decision and for the two preceding years shall apply only from the third year following the entry into force of this Decision provided that these bodies have fully satisfied all requirements regarding a sound management.

Justification

This measure favours the activities of bodies which are already operational. It is however necessary to make sure that there is no objection concerning their efficiency, management and accountability.

Amendment 15
Annex, point 3

Bodies entitled to receive an operating grant shall be selected on the basis of calls for proposals, as provided for in the Financial Regulation. These calls for proposals will be launched at the beginning of this programme in order to select the partners with which the European Union will implement it.

Bodies entitled to receive an operating grant shall be selected on the basis of calls for proposals, as provided for in the Financial Regulation. These calls for proposals will be launched at the beginning of this programme in order to select the partners with which the European Union will implement it.

 

The priority themes and types of activity of calls for proposals will be communicated to the European Parliament before proceeding to the calls for proposal.

Justification

In order to keep control over the Commission's priorities when issuing a call for proposals the priorities, themes and actions must be communicated to the EP so that there can be a dialogue between the Commission and the relevant committees.

(1)Not yet published in OJ..


OPINION OF THE COMMITTEE ON BUDGETS (*)

3 November 2003

for the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy

on the proposal for a Council decision on establishing a Community action programme for bodies promoting reciprocal understanding of relations between the European Union and certain non-industrialised regions in the world

(COM(2003) 280 – C5‑0350/2003 – 2003/0110(CNS))

Draftsman: Bárbara Dührkop Dührkop

PROCEDURE

The Committee on Budgets appointed Bárbara Dührkop Dührkop draftsman at its meeting of 10 July 2003.

It considered the draft opinion at its meetings of 3 November 2003.

At the last meeting it adopted the following amendments unanimously.

The following were present for the vote: Terence Wynn (chairwoman), Reimer Böge (vice-chairwoman), Anne Elisabet Jensen (vice-chairwoman), Franz Turchi (vice-chairman), Bárbara Dührkop Dührkop (draftswoman), Ioannis Averoff, Joan Colom i Naval, James E.M. Elles, Salvador Garriga Polledo, Neena Gill, Catherine Guy-Quint, María Esther Herranz García, John Joseph McCartin, Juan Andrés Naranjo Escobar, Giovanni Pittella and Ralf Walter.

SHORT JUSTIFICATION

Content

Following the entry into force of the new Financial Regulation which requires a basic act for the actions covered by the subsidies of former chapter A-30 (plus subsidies provided under some B lines), the Commission has presented seven proposals establishing action programmes. The subsidies have been grouped according to the articles of the Treaty they refer to. All of them will become multiannual programmes with a financial amount (reference amount for codecisions).

Nevertheless, the rapporteur underlines that four proposals fall under the codecision procedure and three under the conciliation procedure.

Concerning the timetable, the following declaration was agreed at the conciliation of 16 July:

"The European Parliament and the Council will attempt to finalise their respective positions in the relevant legislative procedures before the end of November 2003, and to keep each other and the Commission informed of the progress of these works.


The three institutions agree to convene a trialogue before the Council's second reading of the budget, with the objective to reach a common approach and, if possible, to finally adopt the legal bases before the end of the year 2003."

The rapporteur therefore regrets Commission's late adoption of this proposal, which was only at the end of May 2003, and draws attention to the possible difficulties of completing the procedure within the agreed timetable, not to mention possible difficulties during the conciliation procedure with Council.

In view of a possible delay, the Commission in its Communication which accompanies the package of proposals to replace the current A-lines states the following: "In the event of failure to achieve that objective, the Commission will propose transitional derogations enabling grants to be awarded in 2004, pending adoption of the basic acts".

Consequently, the rapporteur considers that the Commission should be prepared to put the transitional provisions in place, if needed.

At its meeting of 25 September, the Conference of Presidents decided that article 162a) of the rules of procedure, enhanced Cupertino, should apply to all aspects resulting from the provisions of the Financial Regulation and that article 63a) would apply to the aspects relating to the financial framework.

The rapporteur will have to look at the coherence of the proposals in close cooperation and the agreement with the specialised committees as required by this article.

Moreover, the rapporteur cannot avoid mentioning that these proposals intend to give a legal response to an old contentious item in the EU budget and therefore is convinced that the responsibility of Parliament as a co-legislator, adopting a solid legal framework for the future, should prevail over the necessity of the limitation of a timetable.

Contents of the proposals in respect of the provisions of the Financial Regulation

The new Financial Regulation contains a specific title while ruling the scope, the awarding procedure, the payment and the implementation provisions of grants financed by the budget (title VI, articles 108 to 110 and articles 162 to 168 of the implementing rules).

Article 110, paragraph 1(1) of the Financial Regulation foresees that all types of grants are submitted to the rule of call for proposals "save in duly substantiated exceptional cases of urgency or where the characteristics of the beneficiary leave no other choice for a given action".

Article 168, paragraph 1(2) of the implementing rules clarifies the exceptions and in particular the case of organisations identified in a special legal act.

The rapporteur recalls that these provisions directly result from the negotiations with the Commission and the Council on the Financial Regulation. In fact, the Commission proposals legitimate specific and limited exceptions to the general rules of the Financial Regulation. As a consequence, differentiated awarding conditions are set up between three groups of “bodies” who may be eligible for a subsidy according to different awarding procedures as described below:

Group 1:   organisations pre-assigned in the legal act itself for the support of operating grants: awarded without a call for proposals on the condition that it respects the criteria laid down in the annex of the regulation and general principles of the Financial Regulation (case of the College of Bruges).

Group 2:   the general rule is the call for proposal.

However two exceptions are admitted in the field of culture and citizenship only (Com (2003) 275 and Com (2003) 276). Operating grants, allocated to beneficiaries explicitly named in the budget remarks of budget lines entirely pre-assigned, can be allocated without a call for proposal in accordance with the criteria laid down in the annex (former budget lines A-3021, A-3026 and A-3042).

Group 3:   organisations eligible for a EU subsidy on a specific activity awarded with a call for proposals in accordance with the overall criteria laid down in the annex (other cases).

Not all of the seven basic acts contain the three strands. The conditions for the call for tender

are defined in the annex of each of the seven proposals for regulation.

The rapporteur recognises the efforts made by the Commission to respect Parliament's prerogatives through the budget; however she considers that the exceptions should remain limited and that the calls for proposals should remain the general rule.

The rapporteur is of the opinion that group 2 (ear-marking) is dubious from a legal point of

view.

Degressivity and co-financing

In accordance with article 113, paragraph 1 of the new Financial Regulation, the grant may not finance the entire costs of the action, subject to Title IV of part two, nor the entire operating expenditure of the beneficiary body.

In accordance with article 113, paragraph 2 of the new Financial Regulation, degressivity should apply to all operating grants except those bodies pursuing an objective of general European interest. However, article 113 foresees the exception of legal acts which provide for different measures.

The proposals of the Commission do not present a homogeneous approach with respect to the different organisations in these two aspects.

The rapporteur is in favour of harmonising the provisions on a more equal manner.

Annual Report

The Commission will publish an annual report with the list of beneficiaries and the amounts received. The rapporteur agrees on this transparency provision.

Implementation

All the programmes contained in the legal acts (except relations between EU and third countries and organisations working for equality between men and women), will be managed through an executive agency. The others will be managed internally.

The rapporteur supports the Commission's intention to delegate executive tasks to the new executive agencies however she is of the opinion that any attempt at introducing commitology should be rejected.

Budgetary Aspects

Duration of the Programmes

The proposals foresee different durations.

The rapporteur proposes a similar duration for all the programmes until 2008 in order to harmonise the length of the programmes, on the basis of a mid term evaluation, to maintain more coherence between them and to facilitate the budgetary forecasts.

Financial framework

Particularly in the case of codecisions, the rapporteur stresses the advantage of a global decision in the negotiations with Council.

The Commission has calculated the amounts of the different envelopes on B'2003 with a deflator of 2% per year. The envelopes take on board the figure entered in the A and B parts however they also include additional amounts for technical assistance and comitology as the actions become programmes. This generates additional administrative costs which should not reduce the share of operational appropriations.

The rapporteur considers that the amounts entered in the Budget 2004 should be the basis to evaluate further needs during the period.

AMENDMENTS

The Committee on Budgets calls on the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following amendments in its report:

Amendment 1
AMENDMENT TO THE LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
[The European Parliament]
Considers that the financial statement of the Commission proposal is compatible with the ceiling of heading 5 of the financial perspectives 2000-2006.

Justification

According to the common declaration of 20 July 2000, the budgetary authority is entitled to evaluate the compatibility of new proposals in relation with the expenditure foreseen to maintain existing policies. If, in the course of the adoption of the decision, other amounts were to be proposed by the legislative authority, the budgetary authority would need to be consulted again. In this case, the Committee on Budgets would re-examine the impact on the ceiling under the current financial perspective according to article 63a) of the rules of procedure.

Text proposed by the Commission

Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 2
Recital 7a (new)
 

The European Parliament, the Council and the Commission undertook, at the time of the adoption of the Financial Regulation, to achieve the objective of ensuring that this basic act enters into force as from the financial year 2004.

Justification

In the negotiations of the new Financial Regulation, a common agreement was reached to preserve EP's rights to identify beneficiaries of grants through earmarking in the budget. This right has been formalised in the statement to article 108 of the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 3
Article 4, paragraph 1a (new)
 

The programme covers one type of awarding procedure by means of a call for proposals for all beneficiaries.

Justification

The legal act should identify with more transparency the different awarding criteria in respect of the provisions of the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 4
Article 5

1.   The operating grants awarded under this programme may not finance the body's entire eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

2.   The amount of an operating grant awarded may not exceed 70% of the organisation's eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

3.   Pursuant to Article 113(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002, where such operating grants are renewed, they shall be gradually decreased in real terms. If a grant is awarded to a body having already received an operating grant the preceding year, the percentage of Community cofinancing represented by the new grant shall be at least 10 percentage points lower than the Community cofinancing percentage represented by the grant in the preceding year.

1.   The operating grants awarded under this programme may not finance the body's entire eligible expenditure for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded. The principles of degressivity in real terms and cofinancing apply to all beneficiaries as follows:

2.   The amount of an operating grant awarded under the programme may not exceed 80% of the eligible expenditure of the body for the calendar year for which the grant is awarded.

3.   Pursuant to Article 113(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002, where such operating grants are renewed, they shall be gradually decreased in real terms. If a grant is awarded to a body having already received an operating grant the preceding year, degressivity applies at a rate of 2,5% from the third year onward.

Justification

The legal acts should provide the opportunity to harmonise those principles with the awarding procedures foreseen by the Financial Regulation.

Amendment 5
Article 6, paragraph 1

This programme shall start on 1 January 2004 and end on 31 December 2006.

This programme shall start on 1 January 2004 and end on 31 December 2008.

Justification

The seven new programmes should have the same duration in order to evaluate the needs over mid term.

Amendment 6
Article 6, paragraph 2a (new)
 

The appropriations scheduled after the year 2006 are subject to an agreement of the budgetary authority on the financial perspective beyond 2006.

Justification

The financial perspective under the Interinstitutional Agreement covers the period 2000-2006. Appropriations after the year 2006 are subject to an agreement of the budgetary authority on the next financial framework for the year 2007 and beyond.

Amendment 7
Article 7

By 31 December 2005 at the latest the Commission shall report to the Council on the achievement of the objectives of the programme. The report shall be based on the results obtained by the beneficiaries and assess, in particular, their relevance, effectiveness and usefulness in achieving the objectives defined in Article 1 and the Annex.

By 31 December 2007 at the latest the Commission shall report to the Council on the achievement of the objectives of the programme. The report shall be based on the results obtained by the beneficiaries and assess, in particular, their relevance, effectiveness and usefulness in achieving the objectives defined in Article 1 and the Annex.

Justification

Evaluation should be postponed towards the end of the duration of the programme.

Amendment 8
Annex, point 3

Bodies entitled to receive an operating grant shall be selected on the basis of calls for proposals, as provided for in the Financial Regulation. These calls for proposals will be launched at the beginning of this programme in order to select the partners with which the European Union will implement it.

Bodies entitled to receive an operating grant shall be selected on the basis of calls for proposals, as provided for in the Financial Regulation. These calls for proposals will be launched at the beginning of this programme in order to select the partners with which the European Union will implement it.

The priority themes and types of activity of calls for proposals will be communicated to the European Parliament before proceeding to the calls for proposal.

Justification

In order to keep control over the Commission's priorities when issuing a call for proposals the priorities, themes and actions must be communicated to the EP so that there can be a dialogue between the Commission and the relevant committees.

(1)Grants shall be subject to an annual programme, to be published at the start of the year, with the exception of crisis management aid and humanitarian aid operations.
This work programme shall be implemented through the publication of calls for proposals save in duly substantiated exceptional cases of urgency or where the characteristics of the beneficiary leave no other choice for a given action
(2)Grants may be awarded without a call for proposals only in the following cases:
(a) for the purposes of humanitarian aid, within the meaning of Council Regulation No 1257/96 and aid for crisis situations within the meaning of paragraph 2;
(b) in other exceptional and duly substantiated emergencies;
(c) to bodies with a de jure or de facto monopoly, duly substantiated in the Commission's award decision;
(d) to bodies identified by a basic act as recipients of a grant.

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