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21.12.

1999 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 370/105

It was in this context that the supply of a simulator for Medzamor was decided. The basic software was
already developed for other relevant plants. Due to the urgency of the situation, the most practicable
solution was to supply the equipment and software from the same supplier of all other VVER multi-
functional simulators. Hence the Commission took the decision to proceed in that way.

(1999/C 370/150) WRITTEN QUESTION P-0775/99


by W.G. van Velzen (PPE) to the Commission

(16 March 1999)

Subject: Construction of radio masts by Delta Radio in the North Sea

Delta Radio intends to build two 400 m high radio masts in the North Sea off the province of Zealand,
just outside the Netherlands 12 mile zone. Delta Radio intends use these masts to broadcast chiefly to the
United Kingdom using the 171 kHz frequency. This frequency has been allocated under the International
Telecommunications Convention for broadcasts to The Netherlands. Delta Radio has chosen this location
because the procedures for establishment in the North Sea are considerably simpler than those on land,
and in particular because the environmental impact assessment procedure does not apply there.

1. Since the Netherlands Government was far too late in adopting a law on the establishment of the
Exclusive Economic Zone, it hardly has any instruments at its disposal to prevent Delta from carrying out
its plans. To what extent do the European directives on environmental impact assessments and on habitats
offer the possibility of opposing the construction of such a radio station?

2. Does the EU have any means at all of regulating the construction of buildings, installations etc, at sea
between EU Member States but outside their territorial limits, or can anyone set up installations at sea
regardless of damage to fisheries and birds, risks to shipping etc?

3. Delta Radio 171 BV is registered as a Netherlands company. It has opted to beam its broadcasts from
extraterritorial waters to the UK. Which legal system applies?

4. Is Delta Radio entitled to use a frequency allocated to The Netherlands for broadcasts to the UK?

5. Does the Commission propose to consult with Member States bordering the Wadden Sea, the North
Sea and the Mediterranean Sea on the need for legislation to regulate such plans and to prevent the
principles of regional planning such as the environmental impact assessment directive from being
circumvented?

Answer given by Mr Bangemann on behalf of the Commission

(23 April 1999)

1., 2. and 5. The Honourable Member refers to Delta Radio’s intention to build two 400 metre high
radio masts in the North Sea off the province of Zeeland, just outside the Netherlands’ 12 mile zone and
raises the interpretation of Council Directive 85/337/EEC of 27 June 1985 on the assessment of the effects
of certain public and private projects on the environment as amended by Directive 97/11/E (1) (environ-
ment impact assessment (EIA) Directive) and Directive 92/43/EEC of 21 May 1992 on the conservation of
natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora (Habitats Directive (2).

In its exclusive economic zone in the North Sea close to Zeeland, the Netherlands has not proposed any
Natura 2000 site as mentioned in Article 4 of the Habitats Directive; nor is it evident that the conservation
interests envisaged for protection under that Directive are here at stake. However, in general, if the planned
activity is likely to have a significant effect on a site protected under the Habitats Directive and would lead
to the deterioration of natural habitats and the habitats of species as well as disturbance of the species
protected by the Directive, the Habitats Directive then applies, even if it concerns the exclusive economic
zone of a Member State.
C 370/106 Official Journal of the European Communities EN 21.12.1999

The planned activity is not mentioned in the EIA Directive and is therefore not regulated by that Directive.
However, if a certain activity did fall under the scope of the EIA Directive, being mentioned in either
Annex I or II of that Directive, then the Directive would in principle also apply to the exclusive economic
zone of a Member State. Member States then have to make this activity subject to development consent
and an assessment with regard to its effects.

3. Given its transboundary aspects, the situation the Honourable Member describes is likely to come
under free movement of services as defined in the EC Treaty.

4. Delta Radio may use the 171 kHz frequency to broadcast to the United Kingdom provided that (1) it
has obtained a broadcasting licence from the Dutch authorities and (2) the Dutch authorities have
completed appropriate co-ordination with the United Kingdom to avoid harmful interference. If these
conditions are met, there is no technical (i.e. frequency management) reason to prohibit Delta Radio from
broadcasting to the United Kingdom.

(1) OJ L 73, 14.3.1997.


(2) OJ L 206, 22.7.1992.

(1999/C 370/151) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0779/99


by Cristiana Muscardini (NI) to the Commission

(29 March 1999)

Subject: Privatisation and monopoly in the dairy sector

The company Parmalat has recently acquired a series of Italian companies operating in the dairy sector,
ranging from Polenghi to the Rome milk depot in Italy, and has begun a policy of expansion abroad,
particularly in Brazil. These acquisitions have led to an increase in the company’s level of debt and a de
facto monopoly in the milk sector.

Since the Commission rightly intervened at the time of the first sale of the Rome milk depot, which it
considered to be an instance of state aid, will it say whether it now intends to intervene in order to stop an
acquisition that will create a monopoly, or at the very least a dominant position, in the dairy sector which
will be contrary to the interests of consumers and the principle of free competition?

Answer given by Mr Van Miert on behalf of the Commission

(4 May 1999)

Under the Merger Regulation (1) the Commission has sole competence for all concentrations, i.e. mergers,
acquisitions and full function joint ventures, which have Community dimension, that is, involving
enterprises whose turnover meets the thresholds prescribed in the Merger Regulation. Below these
thresholds Member States may apply their own merger laws.

All concentrations to which the Merger Regulation applies must be notified to the Commission before they
are put into effect.

The Commission investigates all notified concentrations to assess whether or not they will create or
strengthen a dominant position which significantly impedes competition in the common market or a
substantial part of it. According to the result of this investigation, the Commission adopts a decision on
the compatibility or incompatibility of the concentrations with the common market.

As regards the acquisitions by the undertaking Parmalat mentioned by the Honourable Member, the
Commission has so far not received any notification thereof. Indeed, these acquisitions would have no
Community dimension, and the Commission is aware that the Italian competition authority (Autorità
Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato) is carrying out investigation procedures on them. In particular,
the authority has already decided to close the procedure on the acquisition of the Rome milk depot, while
as regards Polenghi the examination is still pending.