Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Questions (61)

Michael Moynihan

Question:

61. Deputy Michael Moynihan asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the progress he has made in creating a mechanism across Government to accelerate implementation of European directives, involving relevant Departments and the Attorney General’s office; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41211/13]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

The timely transposition of EU Directives is a priority for the Government. The Government has established an Interdepartmental Committee on EU Engagement (ICEE) to ensure active oversight of progress by Departments in transposition and implementation of EU legislation. The Committee is also charged with examining and improving overall working methods and the exchange of best practice in handling transposition cases. The Committee is chaired by the Minister of State for European Affairs and is attended by senior official representatives of all Government Departments, the Offices of the Attorney General and the Parliamentary Counsel and the Houses of the Oireachtas Service.

We have a much-improved record in the transposition of EU Directives since this Government took office. Much of the improvement is down to the work of the ICEE in proactively engaging with Departments on an ongoing basis in order to accelerate the implementation of EU law. In 2003, for example, Ireland’s transposition deficit stood at 2.4%, well above the EU average. This placed us seventh out of 15 Member States in terms of transposing EU Directives on time.

By December 2012, we had achieved a zero% transposition deficit score in the Internal Market Scoreboard as a result of transposing all Directives on time. We were only the second Member State to achieve this level of compliance since the Scoreboard was first compiled in 1997. We have since achieved a score of 0.3% - much better than the EU-wide average of 0.6% - in the most recent, May 2013, Scoreboard.

The work of the ICEE is a concrete example of the proactive and forward thinking engagement on EU matters which is a priority for the Government, and I wish the Committee continued success in its work.