Brussels, 26 Feb 2004
No. Cion prop.: 5124/04
Subject: Proposal for a Council Regulation establishing a Community programme on the conservation, characterisation, collection and utilisation of genetic resources in agriculture
1. At its meeting of 5 February 2004, the Working Party on Genetic Resources in Agriculture examined the above-mentioned proposal, which had been submitted to the Council on 7 January 20041.
2. The aim of the proposal is to launch a second Community programme for the period 2004- 2006, as the first five-year programme (1994-1999) terminated on 31 December 1999.
1 One delegation entered a parliamentary scrutiny reservation and some delegations made linguistic comments, to be forwarded in writing to the General Secretariat of the Council.
3. As the Commission representative emphasised, the main elements of the proposal are:
- an enhanced role of the Commission as regards the co-ordination, the implementation and management of the programme;
- the Community programme will be financed through Heading 3 (Internal Policies) of the Financial Perspectives for the period 2004-2006;
- increased EC financing rates (50% of the cost of the targeted actions; 80% of the cost of the concerted and accompanying actions; 100% of the cost of the assistance on evaluation of proposals, technical assistance and evaluation of the Community programme). The budgetary amount for this action is 10 Mio ;
II. OUTCOME OF PROCEEDINGS
4. Delegations largely supported the Commission's proposal as its representative highlighted the new elements presented in this initiative. However, some amendments to Article 4(2) and Annex I were suggested (cf. Annex of this report)2.
5. Several delegations expressed concerns about the amount of 10 Mio which was considered to be too limited.
6. Delegations broadly welcomed clarifications concerning specific implementing measures that were given by the Commission representative, who also noted that some technical questions should be discussed in the framework of a meeting of the Committee on Genetic Resources on Agriculture, to be held by the end of March 2004.
7. At the end of the discussion the Chairman concluded that a report on the outcome of proceedings would be submitted to the Special Committee on Agriculture3 with a view to confirming the agreement achieved at Working Party level.
2 An amended text was agreed following the end of a deadline allowing delegations and the Commission to forward written remarks. The changes made by the WP are indicated in bold.
3 The opinions of the European Parliament and the Economic and Social Committee are expected by the end of March 2004.