6th Framework Research Programme: work continues

May 30, 2002

Brussels, 29 May 2002

There was already a clear sense of relief before a long voting session in the Industry Committee when MEPs were told that on Monday Coreper had finally agreed to the compromise package on the 6th Framework Programme for Research and Development hammered out between the Spanish Presidency and Parliament and adopted at Parliament's plenary session of 15 May. The reason for the delay in the Council was the question of including 'ethical amendments' (mainly on stem cell research) as Austria, Germany, Ireland and Italy were not entirely happy with the common position and the compromise package.

However, by adopting the package Coreper paved the way for a detailed vote by the Industry Committee on Tuesday on the key report on rules for participation (codecision procedure, first reading) as well as on the reports on specific programmes (consultation procedure). The rapporteur on the rules for participation is Godelieve QUISTHOUDT-ROWOHL (EPP-ED, D) and those for the specific programmes are W. G. VAN VELZEN (EPP-ED, NL), Myrsini ZORBA (PES, GR), Yves PIÉTRASANTA (Greens/EFA, F), Konstantinos ALYSSANDRAKIS (EUL/NGL, GR) and Konrad SCHWAIGER (EPP-ED, D).

The committee, which was keen to get the 6th Framework Programme up and running as soon as possible, adhered to the agreement with Council and did not introduce any new ethical amendments to the specific programmes. Research Commissioner Philippe BUSQUIN stressed after the vote that the 6th Framework Programme will be implemented in a way which takes account of each Member State's ethical laws and national culture.

On the rules for participation, the committee adopted a number of compromise amendments. MEPs insist that the evaluation of projects must follow a two-stage procedure. Many potential participants are deterred by the disproportionate cost-benefit ratio, and a two-stage procedure, particularly in the case of very complex tenders, would mean that expensive, detailed applications would not have to be made until benefits were likelier.The scientific and technological quality of an application and the degree of innovation should be the first criterion for selection, according to the MEPs, as this reflects the strategic objectives of the Lisbon summit. However, in applying the main criteria the Commission should also be able to take into account completely new criteria proposed by the committee such as synergies with education at all levels, capacity to engage with actors beyond the research community, and activities to increase the role of women in research.

The committee also wants calls for tender to be publicised as widely as possible, including on the internet.

The plenary vote on all the above reports will be held at Parliament's June Strasbourg plenary session.

The Council is likely to adopt the 6th Framework Programme on 3 June as an A-point at the Employment and Social Affairs' Council meeting.

28.05.2002 Committee on Industry, External Trade, Research and Energy       
In the chair: Carlos WESTENDORP Y CABEZA (PES, E)

Press enquiries:Leena Maria Linnus - tel. (32-2) 28 42825
e-mail: indu-press@europarl.eu.int

European Parliament News Report 2002-05-29

http://www.europarl.eu.int/home/default _en.htm

Register to continue

Why register?

  • Registration is free and only takes a moment
  • Once registered, you can read 3 articles a month
  • Sign up for our newsletter
Please Login or Register to read this article.