Belgium condemned over European GMO laws

Commission wins European Court judgement for continued non-transposition of directives

Belgium has been condemned by the European Court of Justice for failure to implement two EU laws on the deliberate release and contained use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). All EU countries were bound to transpose the 1990 deliberate release directive into national law by October 1991, and a 1994 directive modifying the 1990 contained use law by April 1995. Though rules to comply with the deliberate release directive have been passed in Belgian's Flemish region and the Federal and regional administrations have signed a "cooperation agreement" for transposition of both measures, Belgium has still not implemented the laws at national level. Last week's court judgement follows a Commission final warning to Belgium last week that it is prepared to take further legal action over non-transposition of a 1997 directive updating the deliberate release law, the deadline for adoption for which was 31 July last year (ENDS Daily 3 July). Greece is being sent a reasoned opinion for the same reason, while Portugal is facing a trip to the European Court.

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