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European Parliament gives green light for twelve of the specific programmes of the Fourth Framework Programme

On Thursday 5 May 1994, the European Parliament voted to adopt twelve of the specific programmes of research and technological development which will implement the EU's Fourth Framework Programme (1994-1998). This means that, less than two weeks after the adoption of the Four...

On Thursday 5 May 1994, the European Parliament voted to adopt twelve of the specific programmes of research and technological development which will implement the EU's Fourth Framework Programme (1994-1998). This means that, less than two weeks after the adoption of the Fourth Framework Programme by the European Council on 26 April 1994, the way is now open for these twelve specific programmes to be adopted by the Council at its next meeting on 27 June 1994. Under the terms of the Maastricht treaty a simple consultation procedure between the European Parliament and the Council is required for the adoption of the specific programmes. The more complex codecision procedure which was required for the adoption of the Fourth Framework programme does not apply to the specific programmes. Speaking after the European Parliament vote, Commissioner Ruberti said that the excellent cooperation between the Commission, Parliament, and Council meant that this result was achieved with a minimum of delay. Thanks to the work already accomplished, it is now guaranteed that the EU research areas covered by these specific programmes will continue after the 31 December 1994, the date when the current programmes expire. The specific programmes on which the European Parliament voted concern the following areas: - Telematics; - Advanced communications technologies and services; - Information technologies; - Industrial and materials technologies; - Measurement and testing; - Marine sciences and technologies; - Agriculture and fisheries; - Non-nuclear energy; - Targeted socio-economic research; - Cooperation with third countries; - Stimulation of the training and the mobility of researchers; - Non-nuclear research activities of the Joint Research Centre (JRC). It remains now for the Council of Ministers to examine the different specific programmes and to adopt a Decision on each of them. On the assumption that the Council does adopt the specific programmes at its meeting on 27 June 1994, the Commission will then begin its implementation procedure. Although the timetable and components in this procedure are subject to alteration, the most significant development will be the establishment of a management committee for each. The management committees have the legal authority and responsibility to implement the specific programmes and to issue calls for tender associated with them. The committees will meet approximately one month after the Council Decision. The first calls can be expected on 15 September 1994. The specific programmes of the Fourth Framework Programme which remain to be voted on by the Parliament in the autumn are the following: - Environment and climate; - Biotechnology; - Biomedicine and health; - Transport; - Dissemination and exploitation of results. In addition the Parliament will also be called to vote on the following specific programmes of the Framework Programme for European Atomic Energy Community: - Nuclear fission safety; - Controlled thermonuclear fusion; - Nuclear Research activities of the JRC. The CERT committee will meet to examine these programmes in September, prior to the next plenary session of the Parliament. Once they have been voted on by the Parliament, and assuming an early decision by the Council, it is probable that the Commission could implement procedures before the end of this year.