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Parliamentary questions
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26 March 2014
Answer given by Mr Cioloş on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-000994/2014

As from the 2003 CAP reform, direct support has been decoupled from production and is granted per eligible hectare to farmers holding payment entitlements. Consequently, farmers are free to undertake any legal economic activity, including animal breeding.

Under the Rural Development policy there is also no specific support for bullfighting-related activities. Farmers in this sector may receive support under certain measures of Rural Development (farm modernisation, agri-environment schemes, etc.). Projects financed under these measures have to comply with applicable Union and national law.

Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) on the Union policy on animal welfare states that ‘in formulating and implementing the Union's agriculture, fisheries, transport, internal market, research, and technological development and space policies, the Union and Member States shall, since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals, while respecting the legislative or administrative provisions and customs of the Member States relating in particular to cultural traditions and regional heritage’. It is important to note that Article 13 of TFEU recognises explicitly that ‘customs of the Member States relating in particular to cultural traditions and regional heritage’ constitute the limitation to the principle of animal welfare as enunciated thereby. Therefore, such practices remain under the sole competence of the Member States concerned.

OJ C 353, 07/10/2014
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