Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-04-23-Speech-1-219"

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"Mr President, as we debate the potato starch production quota system we would do well to recall a couple of key factors concerning this market. The arguments adduced by those opposed to increasing quotas, alleging potential difficulties for the market and the emergence of significant surpluses of potato starch bear no relation to reality. In addition, the arguments relating to WTO negotiations are not very relevant. One of the results of these negotiations is supposed to be the end of export refunds, probably after 2013, whereas we are discussing quotas for the next two years 2007-2009. It seems to me that not everyone is aware of the wide and varied applications of potato starch. I would remind the House that this starch is used in the food, feed, paper, pharmaceutical and textile industries. It is even used in the steel industry too. As the starch product market is growing, and the demand for many starch products increasing, I see no reason why the damaging low Polish and Lithuanian quotas should not be increased. Incidentally, there are over 600 starch products Mrs Fisher Boel, the quality of Polish starch products is high, and they can therefore compete on the external market. Your declared aim is to make the Union’s agriculture competitive at global level, Commissioner, but how is this to be achieved if production is restricted through low quotas? If the signals from the market are that there is a growing need for this product, it would be appropriate to allow higher quotas for the countries requesting an increase. In view of the fact that the 2003 reforms aimed to make the Union’s agricultural sector more market orientated, the quotas should be increased."@en1

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