Strasbourg, 31 Mar 2004
Alexander RADWAN (EPP-ED, D)
on the proposal for a Council Regulation on the establishment of structures for the management of the European satellite radionavigation programme
( COM(2003) 471 - C5-0391/2003 - 2003/0177(CNS))
Doc.: A5-0209/2004 [may not be available yet]
Because of the strategic nature of the Galileo European satellite navigation system and the shortage of time before the operational phase starts in 2008, there is an urgent need to set up an efficient and reliable management structure as soon as possible, to safeguard public interests. Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution drawn up by Alexander RADWAN (EPP-ED, D) which broadly welcomes the Commission proposal on the establishment of Galileo's management structures. On the key question of a potential security threat to the Union arising from the use of Galileo, MEPs acknowledge that it is the Council and the High Representative who are competent to act in this area. They also recognise that the Council is preparing a joint action setting out these powers. The Commission proposal on establishing a management structure is concerned with the deployment phase, which is planned to begin in 2006, and with the ensuing operational phase from 2008. In fact, the Commission proposes setting up two authorities, a Supervisory Authority and a Security Centre. The proposed Supervisory Authority is to be a Commission institution; as the Commission owns the Galileo infrastructure it is also to be responsible for controlling the satellite navigation system. The Supervisory Authority will also monitor the use of the frequencies for which it holds user rights, for the period these are allocated by the ITU. There will also be a private partner who will probably be one of the consortia of firms which have applied to the Joint Undertaking for an operator concession and are still in the process of selection. It will be responsible for the commercial success of the system. The Security Centre that is to be set up will guarantee the operational and external security of the system. It is to be based in the Council Secretariat, will not meet in public and will give the operator any necessary security instructions.
MEPs adopted amendments to the Commission proposal which aim to avoid delays in the setting up of the Supervisory Authority. As to the future ownership of Galileo post 2006, the House underlines that due to the fact the system will have been substantially paid for by public money, all assets should be transferred to the Supervisory Authority (under control of the Commission). Parliament also adopted amendments calling for an MEP to be given observer status on Galileo's administrative board and stressing that the Supervisory Authority's seat should be close to the concessionaire and not necessarily in Brussels.
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