27 September 2004 00:01 [Source: ICB]
‘We must avoid conflict re-emerging between economic and environmental interests, especially on Reach,’ Pieter Van Geel, the Netherlands environment minister, told the European Parliament’s environment committee in Paris, France, last week.
In a meeting, he stressed the need for a balanced approach towards the proposed Reach (registration, evaluation and authorisation of chemicals) control scheme, taking account of industrial and environmental concerns. He said that under the Dutch European Union presidency, he wanted Reach to be further refined to take account of the needs of small and medium-sized firms in the chemicals industry.
Van Geel told members of the European Parliament he wanted the parliament and the Council of Ministers to give Reach a first reading in the first half of 2005, under the next UK presidency of the EU.
He agreed to allow MEPs access to Council of Ministers’ working documents in Reach, saying he wanted to avoid this complex issue becoming even trickier for them to understand.
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