Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-01-14-Speech-1-171"

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". Madam President, as rapporteur for the import and export of chemicals, I am pleased to be able to report here that we have achieved a good result at first reading. I would therefore like to thank everyone who collaborated on this. I am thinking particularly of the secretariat of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety and the shadow rapporteurs and their staff, who were outstanding in the support they gave me. I greatly appreciated the good cooperation with the Council, especially with the Portuguese Presidency, and the European Commission. It was a technically complex proposal, and the discussion sometimes became quite heated on the question of what exactly was best for the environment. The most important thing that we have achieved, in my view, is that through this new regulation the trade in dangerous chemicals will be dealt with in an ethically responsible manner. We especially wanted to operate from the principle that will be familiar to you as the golden rule: 'Do not do unto others what you would not want done to yourself’. Although this is an ancient principle, which we find in the Bible, as well as in other religions, this aspect led to the usual discussions. The original Commission proposal did actually contain very liberal arrangements for allowing the export of dangerous chemicals with tacit consent. This was proposed, while for developing countries especially it is important that there is complete transparency about what is being imported. After all, we are talking about substances that are banned in the European Union or severely restricted. I believe that we have got a good result in the agreement reached. It means that the protection and awareness-raising of developing countries is guaranteed when it comes to dangerous substances. Madam President, this new regulation properly implements the global Rotterdam Convention, which was adopted in 1998 but has only officially been in force since 2004. I can therefore wholeheartedly recommend that everyone vote tomorrow in favour of the agreement reached with the Council. Finally, Madam President, I would also like to make a case for the Council and the Commission to do as much as they can to extend the list of substances in the Rotterdam Convention. There are about 40 substances on the list of the Convention at the moment. There are certainly 200 substances that have been nominated to be assessed and possibly added to that list. To protect developing countries especially, we need to set to work energetically on the other substances."@en1

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