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Interactive Policy Making (IPM) online consultation on the Proposal concerning Amendments made to the Council Directive 91/414/EEC of 15 July 1991 concerning the Placing of Plant Protection Products on the Market

DG Health and Consumer Protection is revising Directive 91/414/EEC concerning Plant Protection Products. In order to get an input from the public, DG Health and Consumer Protection is launching on Thursday 10 March 2005 an Interactive Policy Making (IPM) online consultation. The Proposal deals with Amendments made to this Directive.

Any information collected in this questionnaire that could enable recognition of an individual contributor falls under Regulation (EC) No 45/2001.

Directive 91/414/EEC provides for the establishment of a positive list of active substances for the use in plant protection products, which have been evaluated to be safe for humans and which do not present an unacceptable risk to the environment. Member States are only permitted to authorise the placing on the market and the use of plant protection products if the active substance is on the positive list, except where transitional arrangements apply. The Directive also makes provision for a system, based on mutual recognition of the Member States' authorisations, provided that the agricultural, plant health and environmental conditions in the Member States concerned are comparable.

Ten years after its adoption, the Commission presented an extensive report on the functioning of the above Directive to the Council and the European Parliament ( COM 2001/444) pdf. The Council and the Parliament called on the Commission to present a proposal to amend the Directive.

This inquiry should be considered as a fine tuning of the consultation process. The objective of this exercise is not to address health and environmental issues, since they have been addressed previously. It is open to all stakeholders both within the EU and outside.

Identification of the main issues

  • Mutual recognition does not function well and national authorisations of products leads to duplication of work in the Member States and to differences in the availability of plant protection products across the European Union. The proposal would set up a more harmonised approach;
  • Sharing of data, developed by the companies to support the safety evaluation of pesticides, needs to be further clarified;.
  • Consumer, operator and environmental protection are key elements in the Directive. Criteria for acceptance of pesticides and the principle of comparative assessment will be considered;
  • More than half of all existing active substances were withdrawn from the market in 2003. There is a strong possibility that, in addition, niche substances will also disappear in the years to come, unless special provisions are made to keep this market attractive to industry.



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