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Parliamentary questions
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11 December 2019
P-004368/2019
Priority question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 138
Heidi Hautala (Verts/ALE)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Conformity checks for products originating from Western Sahara

Member State competent authorities are responsible for ensuring that ‘conformity checks are carried out selectively, based on a risk analysis, and with appropriate frequency, so as to ensure compliance with the marketing standards’ (Regulation No 543/2011) for fresh fruits and vegetables. EU marketing standards for such goods require the indication, ‘legibly and obviously’ and the ‘legible and conspicuous’ display of information particulars, including country of origin (Regulation No 543/2011).

In light of CJEU judgment C-104/16 P, Regulation No 1169/2011, and Directive 2005/29/EC, can the Commission confirm that:

1. It considers that produce originating from Western Sahara, and consignments containing such produce, conform to those marketing standards requirements when their indicated or displayed origin reads ‘Morocco’, ‘Kingdom of Morocco’ or equivalent terms in the language of the relevant Member State?

2. The approval of Morocco’s conformity checks by the Commission does not apply to products originating from Western Sahara, or to conformity checks carried out by Morocco’s Food Export Control and Coordination Organisation on such products prior to their export to the EU?

3. Member States may not, for conformity certificates for marketing standards covering products originating from Western Sahara, ‘consider’ the existence of such certificates as a factor reducing the risk of non-conformity?

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