Written Answers. - International Agreements.

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

378 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the proposed international multilateral agreements under the auspices of his Department being negotiated or prepared; the international organisation, if any, in each case through whose machinery the agreement is being negotiated; if it is proposed to ratify or accede to the agreement, if adopted; if so, if legislation will be required; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19545/00]

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

379 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the international multilateral agreements under the auspices of his Department which have not been signed by the State; the date and place it was opened for signature in each case; the international organisation, if any, through whose machinery the agreement was negotiated; if it is proposed to sign the agreement; if so, when; if legislation is required; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19560/00]

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

380 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the inter national multilateral agreements under the auspices of his Department which have been signed but not ratified or acceded to by the State; the date and place it was opened for signature in each case; the international organisation, if any, through whose machinery the agreement was negotiated; if it is proposed to ratify or accede to the agreement; if so, when; if legislation is required; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19575/00]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 378, 379 and 380 together.

A new international coffee agreement and a new international cocoa agreement are currently being negotiated by the European Commission on behalf of the Community and the member states. It is expected that the new agreements, once adopted, will be ratified by Ireland. This will not require new legislation. The EU Commission is negotiating in the forum of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on the liberalisation of trade in agricultural goods in accordance with a mandate adopted by the Council of Ministers. On behalf of member states, the EU Commission is conducting negotiations in the Council of Europe to revise the European Convention for the Protection of Animals during International Transport.

The following international multilateral agreements have not been signed by the State: (a)The Protocol of Amendment to the European Convention for the Protection of Animals Kept for Farming Purposes. This protocol was agreed by the Council of Europe and opened for signature on 6 February 1992. The advice of the Office of the Attorney General as to whether legislation is required before Ireland can ratify and sign the Protocol is awaited; and (b) The European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals. This convention was agreed by the Council of Europe and opened for signature on 13 November 1987. The ratification and signing of this convention is under consideration.

There are no international multilateral agreements under the auspices of my Department which have been signed but not ratified or acceded to by the State.