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EXCHANGE OF LETTERS BETWEEN
THE COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES AND
THE OFFICE INTERNATIONAL DES EPIZOOTIES

Adopted by the EC and the OIE on 23 February 2004


Letter of the Commission of the European Communities


Sir,

I have the honour to refer to the discussions between the representatives of the Office international des epizooties and of the Commission of the European Communities on the establishment of official relations between the two organisations.

Following these conversations, it seems to me that relations between the Office international des epizooties and the Commission of the European Communities should be based on the following:

1. The Commission of the European Communities, hereinafter called the EC, and the Office international des épizooties, hereinafter called the OIE, agree that, with a view to facilitating the accomplishment of their respective tasks as defined by the relevant provisions of the Treaty establishing the European Community, in particular the Article 302, and by the International Agreement for the creation of an Office international des épizooties, signed in Paris on 25 January 1924, they will act in collaboration and keep one another informed concerning matters of common interest.

2. Representatives of the EC will be invited to attend the annual sessions of the International Committee and the meetings of the Regional Commissions of the OIE and to take part, without the right to vote, in the open discussions of these bodies on subjects on the agenda in which the EC is interested.

3. Each party will invite the other to participate in the work of relevant working groups, with respect to items on their agenda in which the EC and the OIE have a common interest, in conformity with their rules applicable to such participation.

4. Appropriate arrangements will be adopted to provide for the participation of the EC and the OIE in other meetings of a non-confidential nature held under the auspices of one of the organisations at which matters of common interest will be discussed, particularly in the context of those ensuing from the OIE's recognition by the World Trade Organisation as the world reference organisation for animal diseases and zoonoses.

5. The two organisations agree to inform one another of all projects and work programmes of common interest.

6. Subject to any arrangements, which might be necessary to safeguard the confidential nature of certain documents, the EC and the OIE will exchange technical documents.

7. The EC and the OIE can agree on any joint measures, in particular aimed at developing international cooperation in order to protect animal health, ensure the sanitary safety of foodstuffs of animal origin, combat zoonoses and in relation to animal welfare, as well as the preparation and implementation by developing countries of international standards and guidelines related to above mentioned fields. These measures will be the subject of special agreements.

If these principles are acceptable to your organisation, I propose that this letter and your reply, drafted in similar terms, be considered as determining the basis for relations between the Office international des epizooties and the Commission of the European Communities.


David Byrne

EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection

17 September 2003

Letter of the OIE


Sir,

I have the honour to refer to your attached letter ref D/001782 of 17 September 2003 on the establishment of official relations between out two organisations.

I agree with your proposal to reinforce relations between the Office international des epizooties and the Commission of the European Communities based on the following:

1. The Commission of the European Communities, hereinafter called the EC, and the Office international des épizooties, hereinafter called the OIE, agree that, with a view to facilitating the accomplishment of their respective tasks as defined by the relevant provisions of the Treaty establishing the European Community, in particular the Article 302, and by the International Agreement for the creation of an Office international des épizooties, signed in Paris on 25 January 1924, they will act in collaboration and keep one another informed concerning matters of common interest.

2. Representatives of the EC will be invited to attend the annual sessions of the International Committee and the meetings of the Regional Commissions of the OIE and to take part, without the right to vote, in the open discussions of these bodies on subjects on the agenda in which the EC is interested.

3. Each party will invite the other to participate in the work of relevant working groups, with respect to items on their agenda in which the EC and the OIE have a common interest, in conformity with their rules applicable to such participation.

4. Appropriate arrangements will be adopted to provide for the participation of the EC and the OIE in other meetings of a non-confidential nature held under the auspices of one of the organisations at which matters of common interest will be discussed, particularly in the context of those ensuing from the OIE's recognition by the World Trade Organisation as the world reference organisation for animal diseases and zoonoses.

5. The two organisations agree to inform one another of all projects and work programmes of common interest.


6. Subject to any arrangements, which might be necessary to safeguard the confidential nature of certain documents, the EC and the OIE will exchange technical documents.

7. The EC and the OIE can agree on any joint measures, in particular aimed at developing international cooperation in order to protect animal health, ensure the sanitary safety of foodstuffs of animal origin, combat zoonoses and in relation to animal welfare, as well as the preparation and implementation by developing countries of international standards and guidelines related to above mentioned fields. These measures will be the subject of special agreements.

I agree that your attached letter and my reply, which use similar terms, be considered as determining the basis for relations between the OIE and the Commission of the European Communities.


Bernard Vallat

Director General of the OIE

Paris, 23 February 2004

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