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Postup : 2006/0262(CNS)
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Stadia projednávání dokumentu : A6-0161/2007

Předložené texty :

A6-0161/2007

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PV 21/05/2007 - 21
CRE 21/05/2007 - 21

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PV 22/05/2007 - 9.7
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Přijaté texty :

P6_TA(2007)0192

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Pondělí, 21. května 2007 - Štrasburk Revidované vydání

21. Dohoda mezi Evropským společenstvím na jedné straně a vládou Dánska a místní vládou Grónska na straně druhé o partnerství v odvětví rybolovu (rozprava)
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  El Presidente. El siguiente punto es el informe de Joop Post, en nombre de la Comisión de Pesca, sobre la propuesta de Reglamento del Consejo sobre la celebración del Acuerdo de asociación en materia de pesca entre la Comunidad Europea, por una parte, y el Gobierno de Dinamarca y el Gobierno Autónomo de Groenlandia, por otra (COM(2006)0804 - C6-0506/2006 - 2006/0262(CNS)) (A6-0161/2007).

 
  
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  Joe Borg, Member of the Commission. Mr President, I would first of all like to thank Mr Maat, who started the work on this subject, and the rapporteur, Mr Post, for their excellent work.

As you know, on 2 June 2006, the Commission, on behalf of the Community and Greenland, initialled a new Fisheries Partnership Agreement after three years of long and complex negotiations. The Agreement came into effect as of 1 January 2007 for a period of six years. Currently, a provisional application of the Agreement is in force through a Council decision which was adopted on 21 December 2006.

Before making a short presentation of the new Fisheries Partnership Agreement with Greenland, I would like to outline just a few points relating to the previous agreement, which dated back to 1985 when Greenland had left the Community. Shortly after the Fourth Protocol entered into force on 1 January 2001, the Court of Auditors and Parliament strongly criticised the protocols under the Greenland Fisheries Agreement for including ‘paper fish’, for not including the ship owners’ payment and for not being transparent enough. As a consequence, the Commission emphasised the need for adjustments during the mid-term review of the Fourth Protocol in order to make a clearer distinction between the value for fish and support for the development of Greenland’s fisheries sector. The revision of the Fourth Protocol led to a division of funds, under which 25 % of the financial contribution was earmarked for budgetary support to the fisheries sector. ‘Paper fish’ were removed, real fish quotas and licence fees were introduced and provisions for an annual scientific review of the quotas were incorporated. These important changes were also incorporated into the new agreement. On this basis, during negotiations on the new agreement, the Commission has insisted on obtaining quotas for real fish and eliminating ‘paper fish’, on maintaining and even increasing the shipowners’ payment and on having a clear sectoral policy programme for the fisheries sector to be supported by the Community.

Another outcome of the mid-term review was the Council conclusions of February 2003, in which the Council stated that future cooperation between the Community and Greenland would be based on a two-pillar approach with a broader cooperation arrangement in areas other than fisheries and a fisheries agreement. The broader agreement takes the form of a Council decision including a joint declaration and will provide up to EUR 25 million per year to Greenland on the basis of cooperation in areas other than fisheries. Therefore, one can conclude that the initialling of the Fisheries Partnership Agreement does not merely represent the closure of the negotiations conducted over the past year, but also the closure of what was initialled back in 2003 with the mid-term review of the Fourth Fisheries Protocol and the Council conclusions of February 2003.

Turning now to the new agreement, let me outline the following. The financial contribution of the previous Protocol was EUR 42.8 million per year, making it one of the biggest bilateral fisheries agreements. The value of the new protocol has decreased considerably given the changes to the Community quotas. Some have decreased due to the poor state of the stocks, the needs of Greenland’s fishing industry and the rate of utilisation by the Community, while others have increased due to the sound state of the stocks and based on the needs of Community industry. As a result of these changes to the quotas, the Community’s financial contribution is now EUR 15.85 million per year. This sum includes a specific sum of EUR 3.26 million to be used for a multiannual fisheries policy programme in Greenland. In addition to this contribution, a payment from ship owners of EUR 2 million in the form of licences is also expected.

With regard to the amendments put forward by Parliament, I would like to stress that the Commission fully shares the concern of the Parliament on each amendment proposed. However, with respect to amendments 1-3, we feel that these are already covered in the Protocol itself and we therefore consider them unnecessary. Furthermore, in relation to amendments 4 and 6 on the reporting requirements to Parliament, I would like to stress that the Commission already complies with the transmission of this information in line with the current interinstitutional arrangement. Moreover, concerning amendment 5 on the Member States’ compliance with reporting requirements, it should be stressed that the Commission already examines whether catch reporting is respected. In addition, it is stated in the annex and the appendix to the Protocol that vessels must comply with the reporting requirements of the previous fishing year in order to obtain a licence. On this basis, therefore, the amendment is not necessary.

Finally, on amendment 7, I would like to make it clear that, given the previous criticism put forward by both the Court of Auditors and the European Parliament itself of the Commission’s financial management of the external fisheries agreements, the Commission finds it hard to understand this amendment, which, in essence, is no different to the mechanism found under the modified Fourth Protocol and does not make it possible for the Commission to manage the under-utilised fishing opportunities in the best possible way. Therefore, taking the financial responsibility of the Commission into consideration, the Commission cannot accept this amendment.

In conclusion, let me thank Parliament and, in particular, the members of the Committee on Fisheries and the rapporteur for their constructive engagement on this important fight.

 
  
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  Joop Post, Rapporteur. – Voorzitter, ik heb denk ik geen vijf minuten nodig. Het verhaal, de introductie van de commissaris is helder. Het verslag dat door mijn voorganger Albert Jan Maat is geschreven, toch voor een belangrijk deel, gaat met name in op de doelstelling van het visserijbeleid in het algemeen. Duurzame visserij dus, en de term "duurzaam" is helder en de betekenis ervan blijkt ook duidelijk uit hetgeen de heer Borg zo-even heeft gezegd en uit hetgeen in de overeenkomst en het protocol staat.

Hoofddoel van de partnerschapsovereenkomst met Groenland is de betrekkingen tussen de Unie en Groenland te versterken. De samenwerking op basis van wederzijds vertrouwen is nu, Voorzitter, meer dan ooit noodzakelijk. We weten immers allemaal al langere tijd dat de visserij de komende jaren voor ingrijpende veranderingen staat. Door de afname van visbestanden en het zich verplaatsen van visbestanden - met name door de opwarming van de zee, denk maar aan kabeljauw - maar ook door de ingezette verlaging van vangstquota moet de visserijsector anders opereren. Dat is de sector ook duidelijk gemaakt en duidelijk geworden en de sector neemt ook in toenemende mate maatregelen.

Voor veel vissers is het een ingrijpende verandering in hun ondernemerschap. Het nieuwe ondernemerschap moet in de toekomst uiteindelijk leiden tot een verbetering van de visopbrengst, maar dan wel op langere termijn. Duurzame visserij dus, waarbij de vangsten in de zee in evenwicht zijn met de productie aldaar en waarbij de visserij bovendien een zo min mogelijk effect heeft op de natuur onder water.

Vissers, zo lees ik ook in het verslag, moeten meer beheerder worden van de zee dan alleen maar jagen op visgronden en visbestanden. Daarvoor is samenwerking nodig, en niet alleen onderling, en met onderling bedoel ik dan tussen lidstaten en zelfs met partners als Groenland, met name om op langere termijn verbeteringen in de productieketen tot stand te brengen.

Als rapporteur stel ik vast dat dit de inzet is van de Commissie, en van de commissaris in het bijzonder, en ik heb geconstateerd dat onze Commissie visserij dit ook heeft geconcludeerd.

Ik dank mijn collega's voor de constructieve inbreng en beveel het verslag dat destijds door Albert Jan Maat voor mij is voorbereid, van harte aan.

Dat was mijn bijdrage en ik hoop dat het verslag tijdens de volgende plenaire vergadering zal worden aangenomen.

 
  
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  Helga Trüpel (Verts/ALE), Verfasserin der Stellungnahme des mitberatenden Haushaltsausschusses. – Herr Präsident, sehr geehrter Herr Kommissar! Auch ich begrüße, dass es bei den beiden Säulen – nämlich einerseits dem Fischereiabkommen mit Grönland und andererseits dem breiteren Kooperationsabkommen – klare Regelungen geben soll. Für den Haushaltsausschuss möchte ich Folgendes feststellen: Für uns geht es natürlich darum, ob das europäische Steuergeld so korrekt ausgegeben wird, wie wir es uns wünschen müssen.

Das bedeutet auf der einen Seite – und da möchte ich Sie sehr ermutigen, Herr Kommissar Borg –, dass wirklich sehr genau überprüft wird, was die einzelnen Schiffe fangen, und auf der anderen, dass illegale Fischerei, der Sie ja den Kampf angesagt haben, auf jeden Fall vermieden wird.

Der Haushaltsausschuss ist der Meinung, dass, wenn diese beiden Tatbestände nicht gegeben sind, auch kein weiteres Geld fließen soll. Denn wir müssen dafür Sorge tragen, dass das europäische Geld auch bei den Fischereiabkommen wirklich im Geiste dieser Fischereiabkommen verausgabt wird, das heißt keine illegale Fischerei und Schutz der Fischbestände, weil es ohne den Schutz der Fischbestände für die Fischer in Zukunft keine Arbeit mehr geben wird. Deswegen ist es hier klug, Ökonomie und Ökologie zu verbinden.

 
  
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  Carmen Fraga Estévez, en nombre del Grupo PPE-DE. – Señor Presidente, es una gran satisfacción para mí poder debatir, por fin, un Acuerdo de pesca con Groenlandia que comienza a respetar las reglas mínimas de transparencia financiera y no discriminación entre armadores y Estados miembros.

Hay que reconocer los avances experimentados desde los acuerdos anteriores, incluyendo la modificación a medio plazo del año 2003, para adaptarlos —como muy bien ha dicho el Comisario— a las directrices del Consejo de Ministros y a las reclamaciones del Tribunal de Cuentas y de este Parlamento, centradas fundamentalmente en esa falta de transparencia presupuestaria, cuyo máximo exponente era la costumbre institucionalizada de pagar sumas astronómicas por «pescado inexistente» o cuotas de papel.

De todas formas, este Acuerdo sigue teniendo demasiada letra pequeña y un contenido que continúa separándose en exceso de otros acuerdos.

Por ello, y para no tener que revivir situaciones pasadas, querría preguntar al señor Comisario si puede comprometerse a garantizar que no volveremos a tener que oir hablar de cuotas de papel ni a vivir situaciones esperpénticas como la ocurrida con la pesca del cangrejo de las nieves –cuyas cuotas, solicitadas reiteradamente por armadores comunitarios, se devolvieron finalmente a Groenlandia sin usar y pagadas a precio de oro–, y si, efectivamente, las posibilidades de pesca no aprovechadas por los Estados miembros a los que han sido asignadas podrán ser utilizadas por los que las soliciten, como ocurre con el resto de los acuerdos.

Dicho lo cual, sólo me queda, señor Presidente, felicitar al ponente, señor Post, que ha tenido la complicada misión de continuar un informe iniciado por otro colega, el señor Maat, y que que ha hecho una espléndida labor.

Señor Presidente, como me quedan unos segundos, quisiera quejarme, una vez más, de que, en esta Cámara, los informes de pesca se traten siempre al final de una sesión nocturna. Pido a usted, que es Vicepresidente y español, que intente hacer algo para que esto no se repita en el futuro.

 
  
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  El Presidente. Señora Fraga, discutir a estas horas tiene la ventaja de que intervienen sólo colegas mujeres, porque a estas horas de la noche parece que sólo las mujeres trabajan, aparte del ponente y de quien está presidiendo.

 
  
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  Rosa Miguélez Ramos, en nombre del Grupo PSE. – Señor Presidente, yo quería simplemente, en un minuto, decir que me alegro mucho de lo que ha dicho el Comisario Borg con respecto a este Acuerdo.

Esta misma tarde he repasado intervenciones mías en el Pleno de esta Cámara, sobre Groenlandia, del año 2003 e incluso del año 2002, y yo creo que nos vamos acercando a lo que en ese momento expresamos y hemos venido expresando: que queremos que el Acuerdo de pesca con Groenlandia se parezca lo más posible a cualquier otro acuerdo de pesca que haya suscrito la Comunidad.

En este sentido, no puedo por menos que congratularme de que, por fin, exista un reparto equilibrado de su coste entre armadores y presupuesto comunitario. No puedo por menos de felicitarme y alegrarme por el ajuste de la compensación financiera a las posibilidades reales de pesca que ofrece Groenlandia y, desde luego, estoy completamente de acuerdo con el Comisario en rechazar la enmienda 7, porque es necesario permitir a las flotas que no tienen cuota aprovechar las posibilidades de pesca que no se utilizan.

 
  
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  Elspeth Attwooll, on behalf of the ALDE Group. – Mr President, Commissioner, the ALDE Group welcomes the fisheries partnership agreement with Greenland. We take this opportunity to repeat our thanks to the home rule government for the very fruitful discussions on this and other issues that a delegation from the group had with them when it visited Greenland last autumn. We are clear that the agreement is a matter of mutual benefit.

However, we have serious concerns about one aspect of the regulation, namely Article 3(2). This would allow the Commission to reallocate licences between Member States in cases where fishing opportunities have not been fully taken up. We understand the Commission’s wish to ensure full value for sums expended by the Community, but we do not believe that the same procedure can be used in the case of agreements where access to resources is based on vessels and tonnage.

The Greenland agreement is based on the purchase of quota. It also differs from other agreements in allowing for quota exchanges with Norway, Iceland and the Faeroes for which there is no monetary compensation.

In addition, the parent regulation for the setting of quota entitlements allows only for Member States to exchange quota with other parties. Article 3(2) is therefore of dubious legality. It also undermines the principle of relative stability. Amendment 7 offers an alternative mechanism to achieve the optimal use of fishing opportunities and one that does not give rise to such problems.

We hope that the Commission will accept that the grounds for concern are justified and that Parliament will give its support to the amendment.

 
  
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  Catherine Stihler (PSE). – Mr President, I should like to thank the rapporteur.

In Article 3(2) of the proposal the Commission has suggested that, should quotas be under-utilised, the Commission could reallocate Member States’ licences to other Member States. This appears to be legally questionable, a point underlined by the Council’s Legal Service in a recent working group. As uptake is already high, it is also unnecessary and would undermine the principle of relative stability and remove the opportunity for Member States to swap quota with other Member States rather than seeing the Commission reallocate it.

I want to keep the current mechanism, which brought about much higher rates of utilisation and preserved the respective rights and responsibilities of each party. The concept of relative stability is vital to the Scottish fleet and gives our fishermen the historic rights that they have enjoyed for centuries. Undermining this amendment puts all of this at risk and ignores the basic differences between southern fisheries agreements, where fishing licences are at stake, and northern agreements, where quota is at stake. I urge colleagues to support Amendment 7, which upholds the principle of relative stability and historic fishing rights.

 
  
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  Joe Borg, Member of the Commission. Mr President, first of all, thank you all for your comments and for your overall support of the Commission’s proposal for a revised agreement with Greenland, which is an important part of the network of fisheries partnership agreements that are currently in place.

As I have already stated, the review was necessary for two primary reasons. First, we needed to ensure value for our money through better and full utilisation of fishing possibilities and second, further to a critical assessment by the Court of Auditors and by this Parliament, the Commission is obliged to inject transparency into the agreement, and we hope to have managed to do so.

I agree that there will be scrupulous checking of the use of the fishing possibilities under this agreement and the use of the funds provided. I would like to stress that, regarding the financial contribution to be paid under the protocol, the Commission cannot guarantee sound financial management without having the legal basis. This means, in other words, that there is a need for a transfer mechanism which habilitates the Commission in case of under-utilisation and with due respect to the principle of relative stability and to Article 25 of the basic regulation to transfer in due time unutilised fishing opportunities to ensure their optimum utilisation.

I would also underline that the new mechanism of the agreement provided in Article 3(2) is specifically to make possible maximum utilisation of fishing possibilities and to eliminate ‘paper fish’. On the question of relative stability, raised by Ms Attwooll and by Ms Stihler, the temporary transfer of fishing possibilities from one Member State to another by the Commission is not contrary to the principle of relative stability, which, in accordance with Article 21 of Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002, governs the allocation of fishing possibilities amongst Member States. Such a transfer will not have any effect on the allocation of fishing possibilities between the Member States in Greenland’s waters in the future. Each year the allocation will be done on the basis of the allocation keys – that is, on the basis of relative stability.

The intention behind Article 3(2) is to ensure the highest possible utilisation without affecting relative stability. This article exists and is implemented in all other third country agreements with financial compensation. The only agreement which does not have this article is the current Greenland agreement. As the new FPA is an agreement with financial compensation and involves a significant amount of public funding, it is crucial that the Commission has the legal means to act.

I would also like to underline that, notwithstanding the improvements that have been achieved under the existing agreement, the rate of utilisation is still not the optimum. Taking into account the transfers to Norway, it ranks at around 80 %. If one eliminates the transfers to Norway, it will go down to about 65 % utilisation, and I think that we owe it to the public to achieve much better results than that. Indeed, this article is subject to discussions in the Council and will be debated in the Council and decided upon, hopefully, on 11 June. Admittedly, the wording could be clearer and improved upon, maintaining the principle of relative stability while ensuring the highest utilisation of possibilities.

So, we will do our utmost to achieve an agreement in the Council whereby we will polish the wording so that, without prejudicing the principle of relative stability, we will ensure the maximum utilisation of the fishing possibilities under this new agreement.

 
  
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  El Presidente. Se cierra el debate.

La votación tendrá lugar el martes 22 de mayo.

 
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