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Procedure : 2005/2248(INI)
Document stages in plenary
Select a document :

Texts tabled :

A6-0238/2006

Debates :

PV 05/09/2006 - 14
CRE 05/09/2006 - 14

Votes :

PV 06/09/2006 - 7.5
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P6_TA(2006)0340

Debates
Wednesday, 6 September 2006 - Strasbourg OJ edition

8. Explanations of vote
PV
  

– Capoulas Santos report (A6-0242/2006)

 
  
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  Glyn Ford (PSE), in writing. I voted in favour of this report on the Fisheries Agreement between the EC and the Union of the Comoros. The last time we voted on this subject some years ago I inserted an amendment asking for joint action between the EC and the Union of the Comoros to protect that ‘fish out of time’, the Coelacanth, which, although thought to have been extinct for tens of millions of years, was rediscovered in deep water off the Comoros in the 1940s. As far as I am aware, little was done. I hope this time around real attempts will be made to protect this unique remnant of the world’s deep time.

 
  
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  Duarte Freitas (PPE-DE), in writing. (PT) I voted in favour of this report on the conclusion of the Partnership Agreement between the Union of the Comoros and the European Community.

The Agreement forms part of the new partnership approach to the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy, which the EU is seeking to implement. The objective of the Agreement is to develop and improve fishing conditions in the Union of the Comoros, which should benefit from part of the funding granted by the EU for the purpose of providing new infrastructure and technology that is better equipped for the sustainable management of the country’s fisheries resources.

For its part, the EU will guarantee, in another third country, fishing opportunities that will help keep its long-distance fishing fleet operational.

One sour note is the fact that only now is Parliament being called on to deliver its opinion on the legislative proposal on this Agreement, when the annexed protocol relating thereto was adopted by Parliament itself in October 2005 as part of a separate procedure.

 
  
  

– Estévez report (A6-0241/2006)

 
  
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  Duarte Freitas (PPE-DE), in writing. (PT) In light of the conclusions of the July 2004 Council on the new approach to international fisheries agreements, there is a need to retrieve formulas that have disappeared, such as the inexplicably removed joint enterprise scheme, which enjoyed great success in developing the fishing economies of various countries.

Accordingly, it has become essential to adapt the current agreements to the philosophy adopted and enshrined in the conclusions of the 2004 Fisheries Council.

One of the factors that I believe is vital to the success of these new agreements is greater involvement of the authorities of third countries in more environment-focused monitoring of their resources.

I therefore believe that this report should be adopted. That way, the principles enshrined in the Common Fisheries Policy will be upheld.

 
  
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  Alyn Smith (Verts/ALE), in writing. Mr President, these fisheries agreements do little more than export our own disastrous policies to the developing world. They are only justifiable in the looking glass world of the Common Fisheries Policy, a policy which has done so much damage to fishing communities, fish stocks and the wider environment within our own waters. Accordingly I have voted against this report.

 
  
  

– Ilves report (A6-0246/2006)

 
  
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  Marco Cappato (ALDE).(IT) Mr President, ladies and gentlemen, we voted for the Ilves report on the stabilisation agreement between the European Union and Albania and believe that only greater integration, and even the urgent incorporation of Albania into the European Union, will be the best response to the problems of the Balkans and also, of course, those of Albania.

The events that convulsed the Balkans in the 1990s should have taught us that the self-interest of nation states is never part of the solution. After Kosovo, the Cham issue is the last major national issue concerning Albanian-speaking peoples. On the Cham question, as in the case of Kosovo, we radicals are among the first in this Chamber to denounce the violation of that people’s rights.

This agreement lays the foundations for a dialogue about the cultural rights of Chams living in Greece and the return of their property; this dialogue must not be based solely on the idea of a confrontation between opposing national interests, but rather on the involvement of Europe and international institutions.

 
  
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  Koenraad Dillen (NI). – (NL) Mr President, corruption, nineteenth-century mafia practices, Islamism ... today, Albania is still suffering the after effects of 50 years of Stalinist dictatorship. Not in any way is it ready to join the European Union, even though, unlike Turkey for example, it does, of course, historically speaking, belong to the European civilisation community. Sound neighbourhood policy should, however, be sufficient to cultivate this historical European tie. This neighbourhood policy should also be sufficient to address the enormous problems which that country is facing and which rule out any prospect of joining the EU. We should therefore not foster any false expectations among the Albanians.

Accordingly, I have voted against this resolution on the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with Albania, on the grounds that it represents a first step – and let us not labour under any misconceptions here – towards Albanian accession, and Europe, as in the case of Turkey, chooses to ignore the opinion of its public.

 
  
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  Carl Schlyter (Verts/ALE), in writing. (SV) In spite of its sound references to a social economy, this report, which appears to extol growth, unfortunately has a preponderance of negative features. The public propaganda campaigns it proposes for selling the message that the world community is in need of reform are out of keeping with the times, as are the demands for a more extensive internal market in pursuit of unsustainable growth. There are references identifying the draft Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe as a means of strengthening social Europe, when the draft Constitution, on the contrary, entailed further steps towards the neo-liberal internal market and military rearmament. In this way, voters are being lied to.

 
  
  

– Silva Peneda – De Rossa report (A6-0238/2006)

 
  
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  Milan Cabrnoch (PPE-DE).(CS) Mr President, the MEPs from the Czech Civil Democratic Party have voted against the report on a European social model for the future. The report correctly points out that there is no genuine European social model, and yet, significantly, it describes a series of values that we jointly recognise and sets out the problems that each country must resolve in its social policy. The report is a good starting point for future debate, but we do not support the solution that it puts forward. We do not agree with the report’s backing for the proposed European Constitution, which has now been rejected. In our view, the report will lead to restrictions on competition in the social and tax fields, and to a loss of Member State sovereignty over these areas.

 
  
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  Andreas Mölzer (NI). – (DE) Mr President, I voted against the Peneda/De Rossa report on the grounds that the European Social Model is an achievable proposition only if the number of the unemployed and of those living below the poverty line is reduced. What we need to do, inter alia, is to take long-term action to address the problems of dismantled social services and of wage dumping, and, in particular, to become clear in our own minds about the fact that a social model cannot be founded upon part-time working and subsistence wages, which is why we need more people in full-time employment and high minimum standards across Europe.

It is the states in which social security provides a strong safety net – of which Austria is one – that are reaching the limits of their financial viability, and that is why it is vital in terms of the survival of the social model and of any country’s workforce that the transitional periods for the labour market, for workers from the new eastern Member States, be strictly adhered to.

 
  
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  Jean-Pierre Audy (PPE-DE), in writing. (FR) I voted for the report by my colleagues Mr Silva Peneda and Mr De Rossa on the European Social Model, because it is crucial that our fellow citizens understand that European integration provides our ambitions to build a humanist civilisation with a social dimension. Clearly, work remains to be done on the coherence of our sustainable development model bringing together economic growth, social ambition and respect for the environment. This report outlines some very promising initiatives which I support, while being satisfied that, in its wisdom, the European Parliament has rejected the proposal to legislate on services of general interest, since at present it is clear that the time is not right for such a step. I sincerely believe that a fair and balanced social model is a key element of the Union’s economic performance, while, on the other hand, over-emphasis on social policy will destroy economic growth and will in time be counter-productive, as there will be insufficient means to finance social measures. In this matter, let us be clear about the use that we will make of the European Union, and let us not hide the reality from our fellow citizens, and from young people in particular.

 
  
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  Philip Bushill-Matthews (PPE-DE), in writing. There are many points Conservative MEPs oppose in this report, such as references to tax coordination and to the Constitution which is why I requested separate roll-calls on these paragraphs to make our position crystal clear. It would have been easy to vote against the whole report because of these points alone. However on the plus-side, we had worked hard to include references to the Lisbon Agenda, the completion of the internal market, and the involvement of national parliaments: this is the first time that such points have been accepted within such a social affairs report.

The key to our final vote was the need for reform. My Amendment 1 spelled this out specifically and was readily embraced by colleagues within the EPP-ED Group. In return for our agreement to abstain at the end rather than voting against, the Socialists agreed to let this amendment pass. The prize has been formal recognition for the very first time by the majority of MEPs that the European social model does indeed need to be reformed. This is a real achievement, led by the UK Conservatives. The challenge now is for us to work together to make this happen.

 
  
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  Ilda Figueiredo (GUE/NGL), in writing. (PT) We are very disappointed that, once again, those who talk such a great deal about a decent European social model have actually adopted a report that, in reality, gives the go-ahead for, and legitimises, a process already under way in a number of Member States, namely the dismantling of high social standards, the scaling back of the rights of the workers and the people to a public, universal and high-quality social security system, and the erosion of universal access to high-quality public services, in areas such as health, education and housing.

We regret the rejection of the amendments that we tabled, in which we registered our deeply held belief that a State with sound social protection based on high environmental, social and labour standards and characterised by progressive taxation and the redistribution of the income and wealth generated is conducive to good economic performance.

We also regret the rejection of our proposal for a macroeconomic framework to support sustainable development, with stronger internal demand that is environmentally friendly and compatible with full employment, in such a way as to deliver economic and social cohesion.

We therefore voted against the report.

 
  
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  Hélène Goudin (IND/DEM), in writing. (SV) In this report, the rapporteurs propose a host of measures that should be taken in order to solve problems relating to employment and social policy. Parts of these proposals may be commendable in themselves, but we in the June List are emphatic in stressing that, in our view, the political areas dealt with by the report should fall exclusively within the competence of the Member States. I reject references to the Constitution, perspectives on the Member States’ tax systems, views on pension reforms and lectures on the action Member States should take in order to achieve increased prosperity.

I share the view in recital N that the Member States should have competence when it comes to funding services of general interest and to taking decisions in this area, but I was forced to vote against this recital because of the reference to the Constitution.

I have thus voted against the report as a whole.

 
  
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  Jean Lambert (Verts/ALE), in writing. The Verts/ALE Group supported the final report today on the European social model not because the report is perfect but because it sets down an important marker for Parliament on the importance of the social dimension of EU development.

We regret the continuing emphasis on economic growth without regard to the quality and effect of that growth. The Lisbon process is, for my Group, not the only way forward as it takes insufficient account of the importance of the social dimension in its widest sense – it is not only about employment but about the voluntary and social part of our lives. We regret that the Framework Directive for Services of General Interest did not gain majority support: we do need to find a way to differentiate core essential services provided for the public good from the services we choose as individuals.

However, the report recognises the need for any reform of social systems to be non-regressive and to meet essential needs: a core income is essential to that goal. We hope that this report will be a valuable tool in our discussions with the Council and Commission and that other legislation will protect, not undermine, social Europe.

 
  
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  Carl Lang (NI), in writing. – (FR) For a long time, Western Europe constituted a model of economic and social success, based on thriving agriculture, powerful industry, dynamic and homogeneous peoples, and solid nation-states that guaranteed their nationals both free enterprise and social protection.

For twenty years, the Europe of Brussels without borders, in collusion with our governments, has been abandoning our industries to competition from the Asian economies, which practice social dumping, letting in more than a million non-European immigrants each year, practising a genuine form of Malthusianism against our farmers and dismantling our social protection systems and our family policies.

We are talking here about widespread social regression, with more than 20 million people unemployed, industrial disintegration, hundreds of thousands of hectares left fallow, European countries in which the death rate is higher than the birth rate and entire regions that are being fragmented. That is a summary of this Europe that the people of France and the Netherlands rejected last year during the referendums on the European Constitution.

Only a Europe of nations, based on the principles that made our civilisation great – the nation, the family and freedom – will enable our continent once again to constitute a social model.

 
  
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  Claude Moraes (PSE), in writing. In voting for the De Rossa and Silva Peneda report on a European social model for the future, Labour MEPs are expressing support for social and economic policies which generate employment, productivity and fairness at work.

Labour MEPs analyse each legislative proposal on a case-by-case basis in relation to their impact on UK business and the workforce. Nothing in our voting for the De Rossa report runs counter to this approach.

Specifically, Labour MEPs believe firmly that taxation policy is a matter for individual Member States and we have voted accordingly in the De Rossa and Silva Peneda report.

 
  
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  Luís Queiró (PPE-DE), in writing. (PT) The European social model is in need of reform. The question, though, is how to reform something that is virtually ‘emblematic’ of today’s Europe.

The answer is: without fear.

We must become more competitive and help to improve our citizens' quality of life. We must not flinch, therefore, when it comes to taking decisions aimed at improving our citizens’ lives.

There is no doubt in my mind that one of the most effective measures will be the completion of the internal market.

We must comply with Lisbon to ensure economic coordination measures and employment and social protection policies, which will, in turn, deliver economic growth, increased competitiveness and the creation of more and better jobs, in a sustainable fashion.

Much remains to be done, both here and in our capital cities.

It is not enough merely to announce reforms and to promise more jobs.

It is not enough merely to talk among ourselves. We must achieve our targets on employment, education and training.

A new culture is needed, information must be exchanged, the effectiveness of companies and training must be maximised and a qualified workforce must be made available if we are finally to be able to uphold the social values of solidarity and social justice in Europe.

 
  
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  Catherine Stihler (PSE), in writing. The European social model is unique. In the EU we can balance the single market with social justice. We must do all that we can to keep this balance.

 
  
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  Georgios Toussas (GUE/NGL), in writing. – (EL) The Greek Communist Party voted against the report on the European social model, the product of the agreement between the Group of the European People's Party (Christian Democrats) and European Democrats and the social democrats, reveals in the most cynical manner the nightmarish future being prepared by euro-unifying capital for the workers. The political and ideological mouthpieces of capital are developing a huge propaganda campaign, using the problem of unemployment and brandishing threats about demographic ageing and the risk of collapse of social insurance systems in order to present the 'reform' of existing social protection systems as an urgent necessity. The promotion of capitalist restructurings, within the framework of the Lisbon Strategy, calls for the complete dismantling of all the rights (which, of course, were also below the level of grassroots needs) won by the workers through the fight of the workers' movement and pressure from the existence of the socialist camp. Thus, the greatest possible exploitation of the working class is being promoted through the full deconstruction of employment relations and the spread of flexible forms of employment, the dismantling of pension, healthcare, welfare and social protection systems (unemployment protection, maternity protection, housing and so on) and the abolition of free state public services. The only thing that will remain in place will be the lowest possible level of protection from absolute impoverishment, in order to avoid social uprisings.

 
  
  

– Bowis report (A6-0249/2006)

 
  
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  Andreas Mölzer (NI).(DE) Mr President, I also voted against the Bowis report, my reason for doing so being that we really should not be surprised at the increase in mental illness. People are under constantly increasing pressure at work and at school, and this stress means that we do not perform at our full capacity.

Improved psychoactive medications can at best address the symptoms but not the causes. It will be more helpful to build up European people’s feelings of self-worth by communicating to them our authentic, real and Christian fundamental values. That those who have deep roots in family-mindedness, patriotism and their national identity are less prone to mental illness is not a matter of doubt.

 
  
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  Carlo Fatuzzo (PPE-DE).(IT) Mr President, ladies and gentlemen, I voted for the report on acknowledging the importance of mental illness in Europe, the rapporteur of which is my friend John Bowis, who alone has ensured that this important topic will be addressed in the best possible manner.

Mr Bowis’s fame has spread throughout Europe. An admirer of his by the name of Silvana Moggi has come from Italy, specifically from the town of Salsomaggiore (the town where Miss Italy was elected), to be here in the gallery because she wanted to be present when her great idol John Bowis presented his extremely important proposal for debate, so that all of us in Europe can be treated in the best possible way even when we have the misfortune of having mental illnesses and not just physical illnesses.

 
  
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  Jean-Pierre Audy (PPE-DE), in writing.(FR) I voted in favour of the excellent report by Mr Bowis on the motion for a resolution of the European Parliament – towards a strategy on mental health for the European Union. One out of every four people will suffer from a mental health problem during their life. Physical and mental weaknesses increase with age, and this is linked to longer life expectancies. In a world which is becoming more complicated under pressure from enormous, dramatic and rapid changes, we are faced with the collective challenge to understand, prevent and treat mental health problems while avoiding the stigmatisation, rejection or, worse still, contempt, of sufferers. The European Union must offer an example by guaranteeing its citizens a mentally healthy life. In this regard, I am proud to belong to a Member State, France, which, under the leadership of President Jacques Chirac, has always implemented the most lucid, ambitious and, ultimately, humane policy on the treatment of mental disabilities.

 
  
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  Liam Aylward (UEN), in writing. Mental health is an extremely important issue for each of us, whether we are sufferers, carers or service providers in this field. The role of legislators in this area is even greater as we in the EU and Member States can with consultation and partnership create a better and brighter future for sufferers, family and carers.

For too long mental illness has not been at centre stage in our legislative process and, as is clear from the Commission’s Green Paper and its startling findings, public consciousness through more informed communication is slowly coming to realise that mental illness and its consequences affect the core of our population. 25% of the EU’s and Ireland’s population experience at least one significant episode of mental ill health during their lives.

It is time to react! I warmly welcome this Green Paper as a European debate-launcher on learning disabilities, major depression, suicide, imprisonment of suffers and the affect of inappropriate imprisonment so that Member States can share research and best practice for the benefit of our citizens.

Since the 1980s Ireland has advocated a policy of de-institutionalisation, aiming to develop a modern mental health service via a community-based system, promoting mental health, giving the mentally ill as independent a life as possible and providing comprehensive healthcare, moving away from psychiatric hospitals.

(Abbreviated in accordance with Rule 163(1) of the Rules of Procedure)

 
  
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  Hélène Goudin (IND/DEM), in writing. (SV) The mental health of the population of each Member State is an issue that should be dealt with exclusively at national level. There are no reasons why the European Parliament should have views on what appropriations should be granted to the mental health world and on what measures should be taken in this area. The proposal that the Commission should establish a Mental Health Coordinating and Monitoring Group is just one of several unnecessarily detailed and expensive proposals. I have thus voted against this report.

 
  
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  Ole Krarup, Kartika Tamara Liotard, Erik Meijer, Esko Seppänen, Jonas Sjöstedt and Eva-Britt Svensson (GUE/NGL), in writing. The report has many strong points with respect to mental health issues concerning women and children.

That is why we give our support to the report.

However we do want to stress that, in principle, measures and decisions with respect to healthcare are within the competence of the individual Member States.

 
  
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  Alyn Smith (Verts/ALE), in writing. Mr President, I warmly congratulate our Rapporteur on this report, which highlights often painful lack of progress in dealing with mental health issues across the Union. Too often mental health is the Cinderella of our health services, yet the implications of poor mental health are a drain on all resources as well as personally disastrous. I welcome the conclusions of this report and am very happy to support them.

 
  
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  Catherine Stihler (PSE), in writing. Mental health has for too long been ignored and neglected. The report today, although an own-initiative report, allows mental health to be placed on the European political agenda. I welcome this debate.

 
  
  

– Morillon report (A-0228/2006)

 
  
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  Marie-Arlette Carlotti (PSE), in writing. – (FR) The CFP no longer meets the expectations of Mediterranean fishermen. That is why I welcome this plan, which includes several positive guidelines: a crucial reduction in costs and constraints for the fishermen; a revision and harmonisation of the control and monitoring provisions, under the auspices of the Community Fisheries Control Agency, which is something that Mediterranean fishermen, who all too often feel ‘harassed’, have been specifically waiting for; and closer involvement for those working in the sector in the definition of the guidelines (management of fishing efforts, control measures and catch limits), which echoes a strong demand that I am voicing at the European Parliament on behalf of Mediterranean fishermen.

I also support Parliament’s request to play its full role by denying the European Commission the opportunity to decide on ‘technical measures’ by itself. The fishermen know only too well how these ‘technical measures’ have a direct and immediate impact on their activity.

I will therefore vote in favour of this report, even though I would have liked it to have gone further in terms of demanding a specific plan for Mediterranean fisheries. I, for my part, will continue to wage this fight at the European Parliament, alongside the fishermen from my region.

 
  
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  Duarte Freitas (PPE-DE), in writing. (PT) I fully endorse the objectives set out by the Commission, namely the action plan in priority areas such as conservation policy and the monitoring of fishing activities.

This proposal is, to my mind, a vital factor in adapting the CFP to the current reality of fisheries in the EU. Among its key points are the following: the frontloading (prior consultation at an early stage) of the institutions directly or indirectly involved in the assessment of fisheries resources, that is to say consultation with the Regional Advisory Councils and the Advisory Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture; more frequent use of impact analysis of measures that may be implemented; and the revision of the legal structure of existing provisions with a view to making texts clearer, more consistent, more understandable and easier to read, deleting obsolete provisions.

I should also like to highlight the need for the Commission to extend its process of improving the procedures as regards the partnership agreements, more specifically the process of monitoring and implementing those agreements.

I shall be voting in favour of this proposal.

 
  
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  Hélène Goudin (IND/DEM), in writing. (SV) The June List has on numerous occasions made it clear that we oppose the Common Fisheries Policy. We believe that the EU’s destructive and immoral fisheries agreements should be abolished. I am highly critical of paragraph 22 of the report, which points out the importance of Community aid for funding technical facilities on fishing vessels.

However, the report emphasises the value of increased flexibility, clearer legislation, simplified rules and the need for increased consultation with parties affected. These objectives are commendable. I have thus voted in favour of the report.

 
  
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  Pedro Guerreiro (GUE/NGL), in writing. (PT) In view of issues relating to the multiplicity and the readability of Community legislation on the Common Fisheries Policy, it is crucial that this legislation be improved and simplified.

The simplification of procedures, clear and comprehensible wording for all interested parties, the allowance of sufficient time between the adoption and implementation of legislation and, too, the assessment of its economic, social and environmental impact are issues that must be thought through clearly in the interests of transparency and fairness in implementing legislation.

This process must not, however, act as a pretext for trying to undermine what has been regulated, and there must be monitoring on the part of national parliaments, the European Parliament and the sector and its organisations representing the workers.

The fact that we accept that the process must be simplified does not automatically imply that we agree on the content of the Common Fisheries Policy; indeed, we have some serious objections. For example, the rapporteur advocates a Community inspection system. We are opposed to this because we feel that it should fall to the Member States, as part of sovereignty over their exclusive economic area. Furthermore, we fail to understand the rapporteur's concerns as regards extending the principle of the Member States being able to adopt conservation and resource management measures in their waters beyond 12 nautical miles.

 
  
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  Ian Hudghton (Verts/ALE), in writing. I voted in favour of the amendment, which would have allowed ACP countries to opt out of fisheries agreements, if they considered such agreements to be harmful to their interests.

Simplification of the Common Fisheries Policy is an attractive notion, given the centralised, cumbersome and often secretive processes under which management decisions are made.

My view, and that of many Scots, is that the CFP should be concerned with the market in fisheries products, but that control and management of the resource and of catching opportunities should be returned to Scotland.

 
  
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  Fernand Le Rachinel (NI), in writing. – (FR) The plans are coming thick and fast, the European Fisheries Fund is replacing FIFG, the advisory committees are multiplying, and the Community Fisheries Control Agency is developing its activities, but none of that is leading to an improvement in the fishermen’s work situation. European legislation is in the process of killing off fishing and French fishermen just as agricultural legislation is going to force out our farmers.

Two key problems have been overlooked in this report, even though, in the long term, they will determine whether or not the French fishing fleet stays: the unfair competition from non-EU fishing vessels that do not comply with all of the restrictions imposed on our fishermen in matters concerning legislation, control and monitoring, and the cost of fuel ever since Brussels called on France to do away with the fund for the prevention of risks to fishing, or fuel fund.

The legislation certainly needs to be simplified, but that will do nothing to improve the situation of our fishermen. Once again, the European Commission is taking them for a ride, if I may say so. There now remain only 5 500 fishing vessels. How many will remain in 2010 with the new Common Fisheries Policy?

 
  
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  José Ribeiro e Castro (PPE-DE), in writing. (PT) It is undeniably important that the rules on the Common Fisheries Policy be simplified. Accordingly, I welcome the measures put forward in this proposal aimed at addressing the lack of clarity of the existing texts and at making the wording simpler, as this would bring the interested parties closer together and would lead to the fisheries sector identifying more closely with the legislation.

In spite of the numerous calls that have been made, fishermen continue to have difficulty in terms of their awareness and understanding of the Common Fisheries Policy. It needs to become easier both to understand and to implement.

I welcome the gradual adaptation of new technologies on board fishing vessels and the undertaking to grant Community aid for the development of these technologies and the specific training required.

These measures will bring benefits for both the fishing community and consumers.

I also feel it is necessary to clarify the processes for administering fishing authorisations outside Community waters.

 
  
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  Alyn Smith (Verts/ALE), in writing. Mr President, the Common Fisheries Policy has done so much damage to fishing communities, fish stocks and the wider environment within our own waters it is incapable of meaningful reform and should be scrapped wholesale. However, even minimal progress remains progress and this report does contain some useful suggestions, so I have supported the report while protesting that it does not go nearly far enough.

 
  
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  Catherine Stihler (PSE), in writing. Although I believe more work needs to be conducted on third-party fish agreements, I cannot on this occasion support Amendments 1 and 2. Both amendments go outside the objective of the Action Plan.

 
  
  

– Capoulas Santos report (A-0242/2006) and Fraga Estévez report (A-0241/2006)

 
  
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  Alyn Smith (Verts/ALE), in writing. Mr President, these fisheries agreements do little more than export our own disastrous policies to the developing world. They are only justifiable in the looking glass world of the Common Fisheries Policy, a policy which has done so much damage to fishing communities, fish stocks and the wider environment within our own waters. Accordingly I have voted against this report.

 
  
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  Margie Sudre (PPE-DE), in writing. – (FR) The European Parliament is giving its verdict today on two fishing agreements that are of importance in relation to the Indian Ocean: one with the Republic of Seychelles and the other with the Republic of the Comoros.

These agreements, which are scheduled to last for six and seven years respectively, on a renewable basis, have the following objectives: economic, financial, technical and scientific cooperation in the fisheries sector; the laying down of conditions for Community fishing vessels to access the territorial waters of the Seychelles and the Comoros; and the setting up of partnerships between companies with the aim of developing, in the common interest, economic activities coming under the fisheries sector and any activities related thereto. A financial contribution will be paid to the Seychelles and the Comoros in return for the exploitation of their fishery resources.

As an elected representative from overseas who is aware of the role of fishing in the overseas economy, and particularly that of Réunion, I am pleased that Europe is helping to establish both a responsible form of fishing in the Indian Ocean and the sustainable exploitation of its fishery resources. That is why I voted in favour of these two agreements.

 
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