Decisions on national bans on GMOs to be referred to Council

December 1, 2004

Brussels, 30 Nov 2004

A draft decision to lift national bans on certain authorised genetically modified organisms currently in place in five EU Member States will pass on the Council of Ministers.

The draft decisions concern the GM maize varieties T25 and MON810 banned in Austria, GM maize Bt176 banned in Austria, Germany and Luxembourg, the oilseed rape varieties MS1xRF1 banned in France and Topas 19/2 banned in France and Greece. The Regulatory Committee, which is set up under Directive 2001/18/EC and representing the Member States, did not reach the qualified majority necessary to support the Commission proposal to ask the five Member States to lift their national measures.

The Commission will now, in the coming weeks, formally transmit the proposals to the Council of Ministers for decision. The Council can either adopt or reject the proposals with a qualified majority.

If no decision is taken after three months, the file returns to the Commission who can then adopt it. If adopted, the Member States in question would have to repeal their national bans at the latest 20 days after they are formally notified of the respective decisions.

Midday Express MEX/04/1130

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