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The Governments  of  the  Member  States  and the  European  Commission  were
represented as follows:

Belgium:
Ms Miet SMET                  Minister for Employment and Labour

Denmark:
Ms Jytte ANDERSEN             Minister for Labour
Mr Henning OLESEN             State Secretary for Labour

Germany:
Mr Werner TEGTMEIER           State Secretary for Labour and
                              Social Affairs
Mr Heribert SCHARRENBROICH    State Secretary for Family Affairs and
                              Senior Citizens

Greece:
Mr Ioannis SKOULARIKIS        Minister for Labour

Spain:
Mr José Antonio GRIÑAN        Minister for Labour and Social Security

France:
Mr Jacques BARROT             Minister for Labour, Social Dialogue and
                              Participation

Ireland:
Mr Proinsias de ROSSA         Minister for Social Affairs
Ms Eithne FITZGERALD          Minister   of  State   at  the   Department  of
                              Enterprise and    Employment    with    special
                              responsibility for Labour Affairs

Italy:
Mr Tiziano TREU               Minister for Employment and Social Security

Luxembourg:
Mr Jean-Claude JUNCKER        Prime Minister, Minister for Labour
Ms Mady DELVAUX-STEHRES       Minister for Social Security

Austria:
Mr Franz HUMS                 Minister for Labour and Social Affairs

Netherlands:
Mr Lambert HANRATH            Deputy Permanent Representative

Portugal:
Mr José FALCÃO e CUNHA        Minister for Employment and Social Security

Finland:
Ms Liisa JAAKONSAARI          Minister for Labour

Sweden:
Mr Anders SUNDSTRÖM           Minister for Employment
Ms Ann-Christin TAUBERMAN     State Secretary for Health and
                              Social Affairs

United Kingdom:
Mr Michael PORTILLO           Secretary of State for Employment
Ms Anne WIDDECOMBE            Minister of State, Department of Employment

Commission:
Mr Pádraig FLYNN              Member

FOLLOW-UP TO THE ESSEN EUROPEAN COUNCIL - PART ON EMPLOYMENT

The  Council noted the information from  the Presidency on the outcome of the
European Council in Cannes (26 and 27 June 1995), as regards employment.

It also  noted information  from the  incoming Spanish Presidency  concerning
its  intentions on the first  annual report from the  Council to be submitted
to the European Council in Madrid (15 and 16 December 1995).

An  ad hoc  Working Party  of personal  representatives of  the Ministers for
Labour was instructed to prepare the report.

MEDIUM-TERM SOCIAL ACTION PROGRAMME (1995-1997)

The Council heard a  Commission submission concerning its Medium-term  social
action programme (1995-1997).

There was  a  wide-ranging  discussion  on  the matter,  which  aroused  much
interest, and the crucial role of employment  was underlined.  The need for a
medium-term  vision  of  the  kind  of  actions  that  could  be  implemented
throughout Europe was widely acknowledged.

The Council  instructed the  Permanent Representatives  Committee to  examine
the  Commission communication further,  both in  the light  of the discussion
and of the concrete proposals to be submitted by the Commission.

DIRECTIVE AMENDING THE DIRECTIVE ON WORK EQUIPMENT

The  Council  was  unanimous  (the  United  Kingdom  and Italian  delegations
abstained)  on its  common  position with  a view  to adopting  the Directive
amending Directive 89/655/EEC  of 30 November 1989 on  the minimum safety and
health requirements for the use of work equipment by workers at work.

The  common position will  be adopted  definitively at  a forthcoming meeting
after  the text has  been finalized.   It will then  be sent  to the European
Parliament for second reading as part of the cooperation procedure.

The amending Directive  places an obligation on  the employer to  ensure that
work equipment is inspected  when first  installed and after every  assembly,
where  the safety of  the equipment  depends on  the installation conditions,
and to carry out periodic inspections. 

It also  lays down  that the  employer must  take full  account of  ergonomic
principles when applying the minimum safety and health requirements.

The Directive  supplements  the Annex  to the  1989  Directive as  laid  down
therein   by  adding  minimum  requirements  which  apply  to  specific  work
equipment,  to  mobile work  equipment  in particular,  whether or  not self-
propelled and to equipment used for lifting loads.

There is also  a new Annex  II with provisions covering  both the use of  all
work equipment  in  general  and  mobile  equipment and  equipment  used  for
lifting loads.   It is for the  Member States to decide after  consulting the
social partners  and in the light  of national  laws and/or practices  how to
achieve the level of  safety corresponding to the  objectives referred to  in
the provisions of Annex II.

The new  provisions in Annex  I specify  that mobile work  equipment must  be
operated so as to reduce  the risks for workers during  transport, to prevent
the  blockage of  energy  transmission  units and  to  limit the  risks  from
tilting or  overturning.   Some  minimum requirements  refer specifically  to
fork-lift trucks and self-propelled mobile equipment.

As  regards  equipment  for  lifting loads,  Annex  I  lays  down  that their
strength and stability must be  safeguarded while they are in  use, that they
indicate their  nominal load  and they  must be installed  so as  to minimize
the risk of the load crushing workers.

A derogation  clause lays down that  the specific work  equipment referred to
in Annex I and already supplied to workers three years after  the adoption of
the Directive  must meet the minimum  requirements laid  down in Annex  I not
later than four years after that date.

The general provisions in Annex II lay  down that all work equipment must  be
installed, located  and used in such a way  as to reduce the risk to workers,
that they must be erected and  dismantled under safe conditions and that they
must be protected against lightning strike.

As regards the use  of mobile work equipment, the provisions of the new Annex
refer in particular  to driving of self-propelled  equipment, the presence of
workers  on foot in the  work area, the transport  of workers on mechanically
driven  work equipment  and the  air  quality in  work areas  where  there is
equipment with a combustion engine.

The provisions in Annex  II in  respect of the use  of equipment for  lifting
loads refers inter alia to the stability of movable or  mobile equipment, the
lifting  of workers,  the presence of  workers under suspended  loads and the
choice  and  storage of  lifting  accessories.   Specific provision  is made,
moreover, for equipment designed for lifting non-guided loads.

The  timetable for  implementing the  Directive is  three years  after  it is
finally adopted by the Council.

SAFEGUARDING EMPLOYEES' RIGHTS IN THE EVENT OF TRANSFERS

The  President of the Council outlined the  current situation on this matter.
It  will be examined further by the Permanent Representatives Committee under
the incoming Spanish Presidency.

The aim  of the  proposal is  to revise  Council Directive  77/187/EEC of  14
February  1977  in  the light  of  the  impact of  the  internal  market, new
tendencies in  Member States' laws on the rescue  of undertakings in economic
difficulties, the case-law of  the Court of Justice, the adopted  revision of
the  Directive  on  collective redundancies  and  the legislation  already in
force in most Member States.

The following are the main changes proposed by the Commission:  

-    to  clarify the  application  of  the obligations  of  the Directive  to
     transnational transfer decisions and to groups of undertakings;
-    to make provision for  greater flexibility for transfers  carried out in
     the context of insolvency proceedings;
-    to  reformulate and clarify  the scope  and definitions of  the existing
     Directive;
-    to clarify the  laws on the  transfer of  one part of  the undertaking's
     activity.

PROGRAMME TO COMBAT SOCIAL EXCLUSION

The Council noted that the German and United  Kingdom delegations were unable
to withdraw their general reservation.

Following a  wide-ranging discussion,  the President  said that some  thought
should  be given to the  approach to be adopted  to achieve Union-wide action
in this area.

The aim of the  programme proposed by the Commission is to  contribute to the
improvement  of measures in the Member States for the effective participation
of the less-privileged in economic and  social life.  It should follow up the
three previous programmes  to combat poverty  the last of which  ended on  30
June 1994.

COMMUNITY SUPPORT FOR ACTIONS IN FAVOUR OF OLDER PEOPLE

The Council  examined the proposal  for a Decision  on community  support for
actions in favour of older people.

The Presidency noted that  since the  German delegation still maintained  its
general reservation  there  was  not  the  unanimity required  to  adopt  the
Decision.

The Council  instructed the  Permanent Representatives  Committee to  examine
the matter further and to report back to the next meeting of the Council.

The aim  of  the proposed  programme  is  to provide  Community  support  for
actions carried out  in the Member States  to meet challenges  represented by
the ageing  of the population.   It would cover  the period  from 1 September
1995 to 31 December 1999.

EMPLOYMENT OF OLDER WORKERS

Following a  Presidency initiative, the  Council and  the Representatives  of
the Member  States meeting  within the  Council adopted  a Resolution on  the
employment of older workers (see Annex I).

QUALITY OF VOCATIONAL TRAINING

The  Council  noted  an agreement  [1]    following  an initiative  from  the
Presidency  on the  substance of  the conclusions  on the  importance and the
significance  of the  quality of  vocational  training (see  Annex II).   The
conclusions will be adopted formally at a forthcoming meeting.

POSTING OF WORKERS

At the request  of the Commission the Council  had a brief discussion  on the
proposal for a Directive concerning  the posting of workers in  the framework
of the provision of services.

Commissioner FLYNN  said he  was prepared  to make  one last  effort to  help
reach agreement on this important directive.

The Council instructed  the Permanent Representatives  Committee to  continue
the discussion under the Spanish Presidency.

                                                                      ANNEX I

RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL  AND OF THE REPRESENTATIVES  OF THE GOVERNMENTS  OF
THE MEMBER STATES, MEETING WITHIN THE COUNCIL, of
ON THE EMPLOYMENT OF OLDER WORKERS

  "THE  COUNCIL  OF  THE  EUROPEAN  UNION  AND  THE  REPRESENTATIVES  OF  THE
  GOVERNMENTS OF THE MEMBER STATES, MEETING WITHIN THE COUNCIL,

  Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community,

  Whereas  demographic changes are causing the job situation of older workers
  to become a matter of concern in most European countries;

  Whereas  those changes will have major economic and social consequences for
  expenditure to improve the functioning of the job market, the financing  of
  retirement  pensions  and   the  balance   of  the   age  pyramids   within
  undertakings;

  Whereas  Governments, social  partners and  undertakings  should anticipate
  those changes  by placing  emphasis on,  for example,  part-time work,  the
  adjustment of  working conditions  and vocational  training throughout  the
  working life;

  Having  regard to the action already put in  hand by Member States in those
  areas notably  in order  to eliminate  any obstacles  to the employment  of
  older workers;

  Whereas   certain  early  retirement  schemes   have  resulted  in  several
  Member States  in  instability   for  older  workers   who  have   received
  compensation under  varied and changing schemes, and have  led to a loss of
  know-how  in undertakings; whereas  abolition of  official early-retirement
  schemes would not stem the spate  of ever earlier withdrawals from the  job
  market observed in certain Member States;

  Whereas  many  Member  States have  introduced  phased  retirement schemes,
  thereby  enabling the changeover  by older workers to  part-time work to be
  offset by  recruitment of persons in difficulty on the job market and young
  workers;

  Whereas  the  organization  of work  must  take  into  account productivity
  requirements;

  Whereas it is important  to take account  of the availability of  financial
  resources, national priorities and balances within national systems;

  Whereas account  should  be taken  of  specific national  unemployment  and
  demographic situations;

  Whereas  older,  experienced  workers  also  contribute  to  the  necessary
  competitiveness   of   undertakings,  including   small   and  medium-sized
  undertakings;

  Having   regard   to  the   Resolution  of   the  European   Parliament  of
  24 February 1994 on measures for the elderly in the European  Community [2]
  ;

  Having regard  to the conclusions of  the Essen  European Council on  9 and
  10 December 1994,   and  in   particular  to   the  conclusions  concerning
  employment,

  I.   UNDERLINE THE FOLLOWING PRINCIPLES:

   1.  The demographic trend  towards ageing  of the  working population  has
       already  prompted  national  measures in  this  area  but necessitates
       increased  efforts to adjust  the conditions  in which  workers in the
       latter  part of their working lives work and are vocationally trained,
       taking account also of the competitiveness of undertakings.

   2.  Older workers must benefit from  adequate resources and from  measures
       to prevent their exclusion from the labour market.

       In this  respect,  due account  should be  taken, in  pay systems,  of
       workers' experience and,  in general, the best  possible use should be
       made of professional experience.

  II.  CALL ON THE MEMBER  STATES AND/OR  THE SOCIAL PARTNERS, ACTING  WITHIN
       THEIR RESPECTIVE SPHERES OF COMPETENCE, TO:

   3.  Encourage work  to be  organized in  a way  which allows  the jobs  of
       older workers  to be adapted and makes the best  possible use of their
       experience.  It is necessary in particular to:

       (a)  continue  the improvements in taking  account of the requirements
            of workers,  including older workers,  with regard to  health and
            family life;

       (b)  continue the  efforts made by undertakings to ensure that working
            conditions  make  allowance  for  the  specific  needs  of  older
            workers,  especially where  they  have  spent  their  careers  in
            arduous jobs;

       (c)  foster mobility within  undertakings, by means also of continuing
            vocational  training, for  workers in  the latter  part of  their
            working lives, whose  careers should  evolve towards tasks  which
            they find  more congenial and suitable and  which make better use
            of their experience;

       (d)  implement appropriate  support arrangements for workers  for whom
            vocational training may be the starting point for a new career;

       (e)  promote  in accordance  with  national laws  and/or  practice the
            combination  of  periods  of work,  vocational  training  and, if
            necessary retraining.

   4.  Endeavour to ensure,  in accordance with  national legislation  and/or
       practice, sufficient resources for older workers, inter alia:

       (a)  by  providing  compensation  for  the  growing  number  of  older
            workers who have lost their jobs;

       (b)  by financing early retirement,  if necessary by means  of schemes
            which  safeguard  the  rights acquired  by  workers  during their
            working lives.

   5.  Make use of early retirement taking  into account acquired experience,
       in accordance with national practice, for example by:

       (a)  making more  use  of internal  flexibility  measures,  inter alia
            with  regard to  working  hours,  for  further  restructuring  of
            undertakings  in  the context  of seeking  to be  competitive and
            getting people back to work;

       (b)  striving to gear,  where appropriate, early retirement schemes in
            particular  to workers  who have  spent long  careers in  arduous
            jobs, or as an accompaniment to mass lay-offs;

   6.  Facilitate  phased retirement,  for  example by  developing  for older
       workers the possibility  of part-time work and activities  making good
       use  of  their  skills,  while ensuring  that  workers  in  comparable
       situations  receive equal  treatment  in principle,  in  particular as
       regards access to social protection.

  III. CALL ON THE SOCIAL PARTNERS TO:

   7.  Develop  continuing vocational training,  which is  the best  means of
       encouraging workers to adapt to  changes in technology and  production
       methods  and  support   the  initiatives  taken  in  this   field,  in
       accordance with the  Council Recommendation of 30  June 1993 on access
       to continuing vocational training. [3] 

   8.  Implement, at  the appropriate  level, measures designed  to meet  the
       specific needs of older workers:

       (a)  ensure  that suitable  teaching  methods are  used  in vocational
            training programmes for older workers;

       (b)  encourage  tutoring   both  inside   and  outside   undertakings,
            including small and medium-sized undertakings, and also  honorary
            appointments, whereby experienced workers  can participate in the
            training effort by  passing on their  know-how to young  workers,
            for example via apprenticeship schemes.

  IV.  CALL ON THE MEMBER STATES TO:

   9.  Take appropriate measures, based on the  requirements of the different
       labour markets, to:

       (a)  eliminate  any  legal   and  administrative   obstacles  to   the
            employment of older workers;

       (b)  make   employers   aware   of  the   individual   or   collective
            consequences of dismissing older workers;

       (c)  facilitate  the return to work  of the older long-term unemployed
            through  aid  for  recruitment  and  through  genuine  vocational
            retraining;

       (d)  reinforce  the  efforts  of the  bodies  in  charge  of placement
            policy to retrain and reintegrate the older unemployed;

       (e)  where  the State  acts  as employer,  give  positive examples  of
            getting older workers back to work and keeping them in work. 

  V. CALL ON THE COMMISSION TO:

       - organize,  in  liaison  with   the  Member States,  an  exchange  of
         information, experience and good practice concerning the  employment
         of older workers, on the basis of existing Community programmes."

                                                                     ANNEX II

DRAFT COUNCIL CONCLUSIONS  ON THE IMPORTANCE AND  IMPLICATIONS OF THE QUALITY
OF VOCATIONAL TRAINING

  "THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,

  1.   RECALLS   the  Council   Resolution  of   11 June 1993  on  vocational
       education  and training  in  the  1990s [4]    which  states that  the
       quality  of  vocational  training  in  the  Member  States  should  be
       strengthened  in  order  to  encourage  continuing  opportunities  for
       individuals to develop their knowledge and skills and  thus contribute
       to   increased  economic   and   social   cohesion  as   well   as  to
       competitiveness of the European economies.

  2.   RECALLS the Council Resolution  of 5 December 1994 on the quality  and
       attractiveness  of  vocational  education  and  training [5]  ,  which
       affirmed  that there is a need for high-quality vocational training in
       order to respond to the needs  and aspirations of all young people and
       adults.

  3.   STRESSES  that Article 127  of  the Treaty  establishing  the European
       Community  confers on it responsibility  for implementing a vocational
       training  policy which  supports  and supplements  the action  of  the
       Member States.

  4.   RECALLS  that the  main  objective  of the  action  programme for  the
       implementation  of a  European  Community  vocational training  policy
       Leonardo da Vinci  established by  Council Decision 94/819/EC [6]   is
       to support and supplement the action of the Member States  in order to
       improve the quality  of vocational training  systems and  arrangements
       in  accordance with  the common framework  of objectives  of Community
       policy  provided for  in Article 127  of the  Treaty establishing  the
       European Community.

  5.   RECALLS that  the promotion of  investment in  vocational training  is
       the first  of the five  areas in  which the conclusions  of the  Essen
       European  Council recommend  that  measures be  taken to  improve  the
       employment situation.

  6.   NOTES  that all Member  States share a number  of concerns relating to
       the quality of vocational training, namely:

       (a)  making  effective   use  of   public  and/or   private  financial
            resources to  meet the  vocational training  needs of  public and
            private  undertakings,  in  particular  small  and   medium-sized
            undertakings, and the needs of individuals;

       (b)  creating an appropriate  framework for the vocational training on
            offer;

       (c)  evaluating  the vocational training  on offer and  its results in
            order to ensure that, as far as possible, it  satisfies demand on
            the part of public and  private undertakings, in particular small
            and medium-sized undertakings, and individuals.

       Interest in the quality  of vocational  training is indeed growing  in
       all  countries  of  the  European  Union   through  the  diversity  of
       organization of vocational training systems.

  7.   UNDERLINES the  consensus which is  emerging on  the way  in which  to
       approach the quality criteria for vocational training.

       The quest for quality demands constant attention to ensure that  a set
       of measures  is consistent.  The  act of  teaching is not  an isolated
       act;  the quality of vocational training  is the result of a series of
       actions,  starting with analysis of a need, development of content and
       organization of training  and ending  with the assessment  of results.
       These actions require the involvement of many people.

  8.   NOTES that  taking  account  of  quality  in the  area  of  vocational
       training has  led  those  involved,  depending  on the  way  in  which
       vocational   training   systems   are   organized   in   the   various
       Member States, to take various initiatives, such as the following:

       (a)  undertakings seek to  organize the relationship with providers of
            vocational   training   according   to   the   pattern   of   the
            customer/supplier relationship;

       (b)  vocational training bodies  have begun to define quality criteria
            and/or charters on the basis  of commitments entered into  vis-à-
            vis their customers; some are tending towards certification by  a
            third party;

       (c)  the public authorities  and/or the two  sides of industry  and/or
            other partners, depending  on national practice, have  introduced
            quality criteria when  laying down rules and objectives, defining
            strategies  and  setting  action  and  management frameworks  for
            vocational training.

  9.   INVITES  the  Member  States,  the  two  sides  of  industry  and  the
       competent bodies,  in accordance  with national  practice, to  develop
       exchange of  information and experience  on the quality of  vocational
       training, while fully respecting  national practice and Member States'
       responsibility   for  the  content   and  organization  of  vocational
       training, by supporting measures to:

       (a)  promote  access  to  information on  the  vocational  training on
            offer suited to the needs of the consumer;

       (b)  improve  requests for  vocational training,  whether  they derive
            from the public authorities or  from undertakings, for example by
            formulating objectives;

       (c)  encourage  those providing  vocational  training  to improve  the
            quality of their  services through further vocational training of
            their  staff  and  by research  and  development  initiatives and
            initiatives to propagate innovations in the area of quality;

       (d)  promote methods and tools for evaluating vocational training.

       This  effort  to increase  the quality  of vocational  training should
       thus help to reduce the proportion of young people  and adults without
       appropriate vocational training.

  10.  INVITES the Commission, on the basis  of the above points, to  promote
       experiments  in this area  and their  transfer and  propagation in the
       European Union, particularly  through the  various existing  Community
       initiatives and programmes.
   

 OTHER DECISIONS

(Adopted  without discussion.   Where  legislative acts  are involved,  votes
against or abstentions are indicated)

European Agency for Safety and Health at Work

The  Council  adopted  the  Regulation  amending  Regulation (EC)  No 2062/94
establishing  the  Agency   in  order  to  adjust   the  composition  of  its
Administrative  Board  to  take  account  of  the  recent  enlargement.   The
representation of both  the employers' and employees'  organizations is  also
changed.  In future there  will be 48 members on  the Agency's Administrative
Board,  15 representing the Governments of the Member States, 15 representing
the   employers'   organizations   and   15   representing   the   employees'
organizations   and   three   representatives   representing   the   European
Commission.

Internal market

The  Council adopted the  common position  concerning the  introduction of an
exchange of  information procedure on  national measures derogating from  the
principle of  the free  movement of goods  within the Community.   The German
and Netherlands  delegations voted  against.   Their  explanations for  their
vote  were published in  Press Release  No 7568/95 - Presse 162.   The common
position  of  the  Council  will  be  sent  to  the  European  Parliament  in
accordance with the co-decision procedure.

The Council finally adopted  the Resolution on effective  uniform application
of  Community Law  and of  penalties  for breaches  of Community  Law  in the
internal market on  which there had been  political agreement at  the meeting
on  6 June 1995.  The text of the Resolution can be found in Press Release No
7568/95 - Presse 162.

Agriculture

Further to the political agreement reached by qualified  majority [7]  at its
meeting from  19 to  22 June 1995 (Press  Release 8134/95,  Presse 195) on  a
three-part overall compromise, namely:

(I)  the agrimonetary system;

(II) prices  and  related  measures  for  1995/1996,  reform  of  the  cotton
     arrangements, milk quotas package;

(III)  the transport of animals,

the Council adopted  the following Regulations and Directive  transposing the
agreement into legal form:

I. AGRIMONETARY SYSTEM

  Regulation  regulating  compensation for  reductions  in  the  agricultural
  conversion rates of certain national currencies

II.  PRICES   AND  RELATED   MEASURES   FOR  1995/1996,   REFORM   OF  COTTON
     ARRANGEMENTS, MILK QUOTAS

  (a)  Cereals - rice

   - Regulations:

     = amending Regulation  (EEC) No 1766/92  on the  common organization  of
       the market in cereals;

     = fixing  the monthly  price  increases for  cereals for  the  1995/1996
       marketing year;

     = amending Regulation  (EEC) No 1418/76  on the  common organization  of
       the market in rice;

     = fixing the  intervention  prices  for  paddy rice  for  the  1995/1996
       marketing year;

     = fixing the monthly price increases for paddy rice and  husked rice for
       the 1995/1996 marketing year.

  (b)  Sugar

   - Regulations:

     = fixing certain sugar  prices and the standard quality  of beet for the
       1995/1996 marketing year;

     = fixing  the  derived   intervention  prices  for   white  sugar,   the
       intervention  price  for raw  sugar, the  minimum prices  for A  and B
       beet,  the threshold prices and the amount of compensation for storage
       costs of the 1995/1996 marketing year;

  (c)  Olive oil

   - Regulation  fixing  the  prices,  aids  and  percentages  of  aid to  be
     retained in the olive oil sector for the 1995/1996 marketing year;

  (d)  Textiles

   - Regulations:

     = fixing  the aid  for fibre flax  and hemp  and the  amount withheld to
       finance measures  to promote the use  of flax fibre  for the 1995/1996
       marketing year;

     = fixing the  aid in  respect of  silk worms  for the 1995/1996  rearing
       year.

  (e)  Milk products

   - Regulations:

     = amending  Regulation (EEC) No 804/68 on the common organization of the
       market in milk and milk products;

     = fixing  the  target price  for  milk and  the intervention  prices for
       butter and  skimmed-milk powder  for the  period  from 1 July 1995  to
       30 June 1996.

  (f)  Sheepmeat and goatmeat

   - Regulation fixing the basic  price and  the seasonal adjustments to  the
     basic price for sheepmeat for the 1996 marketing year.

  (g)  Pigmeat

   - Regulation  fixing the basic price and defining the standard quality for
     pig carcases for the period 1 July 1995 to 30 June 1996.

  (h)  Fruit and vegetables

   - Regulations:

     = fixing  the basic and  buying-in prices  for fruit  and vegetables for
       the 1995/1996 marketing year;

     = derogating,    for     the    1995/1996     marketing    year,    from
       Regulation No 3119/93  laying down  special measures  to encourage the
       processing of certain citrus fruits.

  (i)  Wine

   - Regulations:

     = amending Regulation (EEC) No 822/87 on the common organization of  the
       market in wine;

     = fixing the guide prices for wine for the 1995/1996 wine year;

     = amending Regulation  (EEC) No 2046/89  laying down  general rules  for
       distillation  operations  involving   wine  and  the   by-products  of
       wine-making;

     = amending  Regulation (EEC)  No 2332/92  as   regards  sparkling  wines
       produced  in  the  Community and  Regulation (EEC)  No 4252/88  on the
       preparation and marketing of liqueur wines produced in the Community;

     = amending  Regulation  (EEC)  No 1442/88   on  the  granting,  for  the
       1988/1989  to 1995/1996 wine years,  of permanent abandonment premiums
       in respect of wine-growing areas;

     = amending   Regulation (EEC)   No 2392/86  establishing   a   Community
       vineyard register.

  (j)  Tobacco

   - Regulation fixing,  for  the 1995  harvest, the  premiums and  guarantee
     thresholds for leaf tobacco by group of tobacco varieties.

  (k)  Seeds

   - Regulation  fixing the  amounts of aid  for seeds for  the 1996/1997 and
     1997/1998 marketing years.

  (l)  Milk quotas

   - Regulation  (EC) amending  Regulation (EEC)  No 3950/92 establishing  an
     additional levy in the milk and milk products sector.

  (m)  Cotton

   - Regulations:

     = adjusting,   for  the  fifth  time,  the  system  of  aid  for  cotton
       introduced  by  Protocol No 4  annexed to  the  Act  of  Accession  of
       Greece;

     = laying down  the general rules for  the system  of aid for  cotton and
       repealing Regulation (EEC) No 2169/81.

III. TRANSPORT OF ANIMALS

  Directive  amending   Directive 91/628/EEC  concerning  the  protection  of
  animals during transport.

Fisheries

The Council  adopted the regulation setting a Community  quota of 5013 tonnes
of Greenland halibut in the 3 LMNO NAFO area for the period from 16  April to
31  December 1995 as provided  for in the agreement signed  with Canada on 20
April 1995.

This  Regulation  amends  Regulation 366/94  laying  down  for  1995  certain
conservation  and  management  measures  for fishery  resources  in  the NAFO
Regulatory Area (Northwest Atlantic).

The Council  also adopted  Regulations concluding  protocols setting out  the
fishing  opportunities  and  financial   contribution  provided  for  in  the
agreements between  the  Community  and  some  third countries.    All  these
protocols were  already being  applied provisionally  subject to  conclusion.
The  following is a list of  the relevant countries together with information
on  the period  of validity  of  the  protocols and  reference  to the  Press
Release (PR) summarizing the content:

-     Senegal,  from 2 October 1994 to 1 October 1996 (PR 4381/95, Presse 20,
      23.01.95);

-     Equatorial  Guinea, from  1 July  1994  to 30  June 1997  (PR 10627/94,
      Presse 227, 10.11.94);

-     Comoros,  from 20 July 1994  to 19 July 1997  (PR 10627/94, Presse 227,
      10.11.94);

-     Cape Verde,  from 6 September  1994 to 5  September 1997 (PR  10627/94,
      Presse 227, 10.11.94);

-     Cote  d'Ivoire, from 1 July  1994 to 30 June  1997 (PR 10627/94, Presse
      227, 10.11.94).

The Council also adopted

-     a Decision for  the adaptation following  enlargement of the  Fisheries
      Agreement,  signed  in  Brussels   on  2  December  1991  between   the
      Community, of the one part, and the Government of  Denmark and the Home
      Government of the Faroe Islands, of the other part;

-     the Regulation amending  Regulation No 3699/93 laying down the criteria
      and  arrangements  regarding  Community  structural  assistance  in the
      fisheries  and aquaculture sector  and the processing  and marketing of
      their products.
      The aim of the amendments is to:

      =   readjust a certain number of provisions in Regulation 3699/95 (FIFG
          implementing  Regulation), where  the  GRT  unit (gross  registered
          tonnage)  is used  to measure vessels'  tonnage as  a parameter for
          structural fund  assistance, in order to take  account of the entry
          into  force  of  the  London  Convention  (ITC 69)  concerning  the
          remeasuring of vessels' tonnage in gross tonnage  requiring the use
          of a new unit for measuring vessels, namely gross tonnage;

      =   reduce the  activity threshold whereby  a fishing vessel  qualifies
          for  permanent withdrawal  measures in  respect of  fishing vessels
          registered  in  north Baltic  ports given  the  particular climatic
          conditions in  that  region where  the  lightly salted  waters  are
          frozen for a large part of the year.

Transport

The Council adopted  the decision authorizing the  Commission to negotiate an
Additional Protocol to  the Agreement between the  Community and the Republic
of Slovenia in the field of transport.

Energy

Following the political  agreements reached at the  Energy meeting on  1 June
1995 (see Press Release  7565/95, Presse  159), the Council formally  adopted
the common positions on the guidelines  and measures aimed at creating a more
favourable context  for the  development of  trans-European  networks in  the
energy sector.

Consumer protection

Following the  political agreement  reached at  the Consumers  meeting on  30
March  1995  (see Press  Release  6120/95, Presse  99), the  Council formally
adopted its  common position  on the  proposal  for a  Directive on  distance
selling.

The  aim  of  the  proposal  is to  approximate  the  laws,  regulations  and
administrative provisions of the  Member States concerning distance contracts
between  consumers and  suppliers  with  the  aim  of raising  the  level  of
consumer protection in this area.

Telecommunications

The  Council  formally   adopted  the  resolution  on   mobile  and  personal
communications   in  the  European  Union,   thus  confirming  the  political
agreement  reached  at  its  meeting  on  13 June 1995.    The  text  of  the
Resolution can be found in Press Release No 7840/95, Presse 175.

Protection of the financial interests of the Communities

Following the  agreement on principle reached  at the  ECOFIN Council   on 19
June  1995  (see Press  Release  8132/95, Presse  193), the  Council formally
adopted  the common  guideline on  the Regulation  on the  protection of  the
financial interests of the Communities.

It also decided to consult  the European Parliament again on the  text with a
view to  its adoption in the  conciliation procedure  laid down in  the Joint
Declaration  by the European  Parliament, the  Council and  the Commission of
4 March 1975.

Financial  Regulation  applicable  to the  general  budget  of  the  European
Communities

The  Council  adopted  two  joint  guidelines  concerning  amendments  to the
Financial Regulation of 21 December 1977 applicable to the general budget  of
the  European Communities  with  a  view  to  their being  forwarded  to  the
European Parliament  as part of the  conciliation procedure laid  down in the
Joint  Declaration by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission
of 4 March 1975.

The aim  of both drafts  is to  improve the conditions  for implementing  the
budget, particularly as regards control and book-keeping requirements.

The first  deals with fines, the  role of the Financial  Controller, recovery
of debts, regularization  after closure, while the  second deals with special
provisions   applicable    to   research    and   technological   development
appropriations which  are a consequence  of the  new activities of  the Joint
Research  Centre as part  of the new  competitive approach  introduced by the
4th framework programme.

The  proposed amendments are the  3rd and 5th package of  a wider revision of
the Financial Regulation comprising 6 amendment packages.

6th VAT Directive: request from United Kingdom for a derogation

The  Council authorized the  United Kingdom  to introduce  special derogation
measures regarding the hirer's or lessee's right to deduction.  This  measure
is  based on Article 27  of the 6th Directive  which allows specific measures
to be  taken to simplify tax  collection and to avoid certain  forms of fraud
or tax evasion.

This authorization follows a  request from  the United Kingdom Government  to
be allowed both to  limit the right of  deduction of a  hirer or lessee of  a
saloon car when it is used for private purposes and  not to charge VAT on the
private use of such cars.

ECSC products

The  Council adopted  the  Decision  on the  gradual  dismantling of  certain
quantitative  restrictions  applicable  to the  importation  of  certain ECSC
products.

Thus,  the national restrictions  applied by the Kingdom  of Spain to imports
originating in third countries  falling within  CN codes 2701 11,  2701 12 90
and 2701 19 will be eliminated by 31 December 1997 at the latest.

The Kingdom of  Spain will be able  to apply  the following annual limits  to
imports of the products listed therein:

 Member Product     CN code  1995     1996     1997     1998
 State                       (tonnes) (tonnes) (tonnes) (tonnes)

 Spain  Anthracite  270111   )        )        )        )
                             )        )        )        )
        Other       27011290 10600000 10800000 11100000 free
        butiminous           )        )        )        import
        coal                 )        )        )        )
                             )        )        )        )
        Other coal  270119   )        )        )        )

Intellectual property

The Council decided to sign, subject to approval, on behalf  of the Community
the Trademark Law Treaty,  adopted on  27 October 1994 under the auspices  of
the World Intellectual Property  Organization (WIPO).   The President of  the
Council was authorized to nominate  the persons empowered to sign  the Treaty
before 27 October 1995.

International Grains Agreement, 1995

The Council decided to sign - in New York on 30 June 1995  - the Grains Trade
Convention  and Food Aid Convention,  together constituting the International
Grains  Agreement,  1995, thus  allowing the  provisional application  of the
Agreement.

Customs Union

The Council  adopted two  Regulations temporarily  suspending the  autonomous
common customs tariff duties on
-   a  number of industrial  products (microelectronics  and related sectors)
    and 
-   certain industrial products (chemical and related sectors)
given that production  of the products in  question is currently insufficient
or nonexistent  in the  Community and that  producers are unable  to meet the
needs of the Community's consumer industries.

The  suspensions are valid: from  1 July 1995 to 31 December 1995 for certain
products and until 30 June 1996 for others.

The  Council also adopted  the Regulation  suspending totally  for the period
from 1 July 1995 to 30 June 1996  autonomous Common Customs Tariff duties  on
a number  of agricultural  products (peas  in pods,  mushrooms, white  beans,
dates, fruit of the species Vaccinium and rose-hips).

The Council adopted the Decision on  the extension of the legal protection of
topographies of semiconductor  products to persons from  the United States of
America for  the  period  from  2 July 1995  to 1 January 1996.    The  legal
protection provided  for in  Directive 87/54/EEC,  i.e. Community  treatment,
continues to be extended to  natural persons who are nationals  of the United
States  of America or have their  normal residence there and to companies and
other legal  persons of the United States of America  which have an effective
and genuine industrial or commercial establishment there.

From  1 January 1996,  Council Decision 98/824/EC on  the  extension  of  the
legal protection  of topographies of  semiconductor products to nationals  of
member countries of the  World Trade  Organization (WTO) will be  applicable;
the United States is a member of the WTO.

Canada: Negotiations under Article XXIV.6 of GATT

The  Council adopted the Regulation fixing the duties applicable to newsprint
in rolls  or sheets in  CN position 4801 00 10  and 4801 00 90  following the
accession of Austria, Finland and Sweden to the European Union.

Following  the conclusions of  the General  Affairs Council  of 12 June 1995,
the  Commission obtained assurances from the Canadian authorities that Canada
would  not take  unilateral measures as  it had  said it  would, provided the
Council adopted this concession on newsprint.

The  aim of the Regulation is  to accelerate autonomously the reduction to 0%
already provided for  of duties applicable  to newsprint to assist  Canada in
particular,  without  prejudice  however   to  the  outcome  of  the  current
negotiations under Article XXIV.6 of GATT.

The  duties  fixed  by this  Regulation  -  which comes  into  force  the day
following its publication in the Official Journal - will be applicable  until
the  Council, acting  by qualified  majority, decides  that the  negotiations
with Canada under Article XXIV.6 of GATT are concluded.

The new rates of the autonomous duties are set out in Annex I.

United States: tariff quotas

The Council  amended Regulation  (EC) No 3361/94 of  29 December 1994 with  a
view to extending certain tariff quotas with respect  to Austria, Finland and
Sweden.

The Regulation prolongs the  same quotas at the same  duties and on the  same
products  from 1 July  to  31 December 1995  for the  benefit  of the  United
States  in particular, since  the negotiations  under Article  XXIV.6 of GATT
examining  the global impact of the application  of the CCT by the new Member
States are not yet concluded.

GSP - South Africa

The Council noted that, since there was no Commission proposal,  it could not
re-examine, as laid down  in Article 6(2)  of the Regulation, the  conditions
for  the  application  to   South  Africa  of  Regulation (EC) No 3282/94  of
19 December 1994.

The Council  agreed to examine this  question as a matter of  urgency as soon
as the Commission had forwarded a proposal.

Relations with Turkey and Israel

The Council adopted the  Regulation establishing  certain concessions in  the
form  of Community tariff  quotas in  1995 for  certain agricultural products
including processed products opened for Israel and Turkey.

Certain  concessions laid  down  in the  preferential Agreements  between the
Community  of the one part and Israel and Turkey of the other part  following
the  enlargement  of the  European  Union  need  to be  adapted  pending  the
conclusion  of negotiations  on additional protocols  to be drawn  up to that
end.

Concessions  in the form  of tariff quotas,  applicable from  1 January 1995,
concern  inter  alia  the   following  products:  flowers,  Chinese  cabbage,
mandarins, hazelnuts. 

Relations with the associated CCEEs

The  Council adopted the  Regulation laying  down certain  concessions in the
form of Community tariff  quotas in  1995 for certain agricultural  products,
including  processed products, to  assist Bulgaria,  the Czech  Republic, the
Republic of Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Romania.

Pending the conclusion of  the negotiations  with those countries which  were
initiated following the enlargement of the  European Union to take account of
the existing  trade  arrangements  between  them  and the  three  new  Member
States, the aim of  the Regulation - applicable  from 1 January 1995 - is  to
implement autonomous tariff measures.

The quotas concern honey, certain vegetables, fruit and wine.

Community aid for Madeira following the cyclone in 1993

The Council adopted the  Decision relating  to exceptional Community aid  for
the reconstruction of the areas stricken  by the cyclone which hit Madeira in
October 1993.

This  decision provides that the Community grants an interest-free subsidy of
3 percentage points  a year  for a period not  exceeding twelve years  on the
loans accorded by the EIB from  its own resources and according to  the usual
criteria for financing investment projects in the affected regions.

The total amount of the interest-free loans may not exceed  the equivalent of
ECU 15,85 million as a principle sum.

Appointments

The  Council adopted the Decision  appointing Mr Joergen MOHR  as a member of
the Court  of Auditors  for the  period from  1 July 1995 to  9 February 2000
inclusive to replace Mr Ole WARBERG, who has resigned.

                                                 

                                                                      ANNEX I

                         Autonomous rates of duty
 CN Code   Description   applicable

                         1995  1.1.1996  1.1.1997  1.1.1998

 48010010  Newsprint,    4,5%    4,5%      4,0%
           in rolls or
           sheets,                                 }
           mentioned                               }
           in the                                  } 3,5%
           additional                              }
           note 1 to                               }
           chapter 48
 48010090  Newsprint,    6,5%    5,5%      4,5%
           in rolls or
           sheets,
           other than
           that
           mentioned
           in the
           additional
           note 1 to
           chapter 48

                            Autonomous rates of duty
 CN Code   Description      applicable

                         1.1.99  1.1.2000  1.1.2001   1.1.2002

 48010010  Newsprint,
           in rolls or
           sheets,       }       }        }          }
           mentioned     }       }        }          }
           in the        }2,5%   } 1,5%   }  0,5%    }  0,0%
           additional    }       }        }          }
           note 1 to     }       }        }          }
           chapter 48
 48010090  Newsprint,
           in rolls or
           sheets,
           other than
           that
           mentioned
           in the
           additional
           note 1 to
           chapter 48

[1]  The  German  delegation  still  maintained  its  parliamentary  scrutiny
reservation.
[2] OJ No C 77, 14.3.1994, p. 24.
[3] OJ No L 181, 23.7.1993, p. 37.
[4] OJ No C 186,   8.  7.1993, p. 3.
[5] OJ No C 374, 30.12.1994, p. 1.
[6] OJ No L 340, 29.12.1994, p. 8.
[7]  The Danish,  Netherlands  and Luxembourg  delegations voted  against the
proposal to grant definitive milk quota increases to Italy and Greece.
The United  Kingdom delegation was  opposed to the agrimonetary  part and the
Spanish  delegation  dissociated itself  from  part of  the solution  for the
agrimonetary system.
The  Austrian and Danish delegations and the Italian delegation voted against
the transport of animals.
The Swedish  delegation voted  against all  parts of  the overall  compromise
solution.

* * *

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