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MEPs approve Track & Trace bill on tobacco

By February 21, 2018February 26th, 2018No Comments

EU Observer reports that MEPs have rejected the last minute attempt by French MEP Younous Omarjee to object the Delegated Act adopted in December last year. The proposal to veto the bill was supported by seven MEPs, with 45 rejecting the veto, and one abstaining.

While there are serious problems with the Commission’s proposed track and trace legislation, the objections of MEPs such as Omarjee wildly miss the mark. The referred Delegated Act on contracts with data storage providers is not the problem. It is rather the fact that the Commission was allowed to adopt in camera an Implementing Regulation that lacks coherence and which sets standards where no competency exists but fails to do so in areas where they are badly needed. This Implementing Regulation has led to a system which is unworkable for mid-sized and smaller firms, forcing them to reorganise their business practices far beyond what is required for a track and trace system. The only consequence of the MEPs objection and the scheduling of an unnecessary vote is a further delay in the publication and entry into force of the Regulation. The Commission expects Member States and companies to implement this incredibly complex system by 20 May 2019, whilst official publication is still 2 months away.

ESTA Secretary General Peter van der Mark said: “The Commission’s proposed track and trace system must surely be one of the most poorly designed pieces of legislation to ever pass from the halls of the Berlaymont. The objections raised by MEPs on the ENVI committee are merely a distraction from the deep structural problems with the track and trace bill. These problems are wide ranging, and include not least the fact that there is no possibility that the system can be fully implemented on time for May 2019. This is the scandal that MEPs should be up in arms about.

Read more about track and trace.


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