Written question – Continuing EU support for vine-planting authorisations after 15 October 2018 – P-008611/2016

If my understanding is correct, the Commission has indicated in its guidelines to Member States that planting authorisations transferred from planting rights that have not arisen as a result of clearance of the same grower’s vineyards, may receive restructuring and conversion aid under the national wine support programme only until 15 October 2018, irrespective of whether the right and the planting authorisation transferred from it can remain valid during the period covered by the next support programme.

This has harmed many European producers — particularly in Italy, Spain, France and Hungary — who on the basis of a literal interpretation of the legislation, have bought planting rights on the assumption that, if those rights are converted into planting authorisations, they will be usable throughout their period of validity, including during the subsequent support period.

In my view, by taking the above position, the Commission has exceeded the legislative framework based on Regulation 1308/2013/EU, the delegated legislative act adopted further to it and the delegation of powers to the Commission. Article 45(3) of Regulation 1308/2013/EU does not contain any clause restricting the transitional provisions laid down in Article 68 of the regulation. No similar provision can be derived from Articles 12 and 13 of Regulation 1149/2016/EU either.

1. From what EU legislative provision can the Commission derive the restriction indicated in the guidelines with regard to transferred planting authorisations?

2. When will the Commission correct the erroneous interpretation of the law given in its guidelines?

3. What feedback has the Commission so far received from trade associations with regard to this matter?

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