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Commission Opinion of 20 August 2013 on the application, with regard to intermodal containers, of the prohibition of the import and export of equipment containing or relying on substances controlled by Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council on substances depleting the ozone layer Text with EEA relevance

OJ C 241, 22.8.2013, p. 1–2 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, HR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)
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22.8.2013   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 241/1


COMMISSION OPINION

of 20 August 2013

on the application, with regard to intermodal containers, of the prohibition of the import and export of equipment containing or relying on substances controlled by Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council on substances depleting the ozone layer

(Text with EEA relevance)

2013/C 241/01

THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Article 288 thereof,

Whereas:

(1)

Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 September 2009 on substances that deplete the ozone layer (1), in particular its Articles 15 and 17, lays down rules restricting the import and export of substances depleting the ozone layer listed in Annex I to the Regulation and referred to as ‘controlled substances’, as well as of products and equipment containing or relying on controlled substances.

(2)

Article 28 of Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 requires Member States to conduct inspections on the compliance of undertakings with that Regulation.

(3)

In accordance with the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (2), the continued use of hydrochlorofluorocarbons is still permitted, including in the production of intermodal containers.

(4)

The import and placing on the market of intermodal containers containing or relying on hydrochlorofluorocarbons is prohibited in the European Union since 2004 but decommissioning of such containers is not required.

(5)

Therefore, intermodal containers used in international trade still commonly contain ozone-depleting substances in insulation foam or in attached or integrated refrigeration equipment using controlled substances as refrigerant.

(6)

Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 is stricter than the Montreal Protocol and prohibits the placing on the market of intermodal containers containing or relying on controlled substances.

(7)

Under international conventions such as the Convention relating to Temporary Admission (3), or the Convention on Customs Treatment of Pool Containers used in International Transport (4), the free movement of intermodal containers should not be restricted.

(8)

Pursuant to the Convention relating to Temporary Admission which was ratified by the Community and all the Member States, certain goods imported in connection with a commercial operation, including containers, are to be granted temporary admission. Articles 553, 554, 555 and 557 of Commission Regulation (EEC) No 2454/93 laying down provisions for the implementation of the Customs Code (5) provide inter alia that containers benefit from total relief from import duties under certain conditions. In particular, the customs authorities shall ensure that, unless specific exemptions are granted, the total period for which the containers remain under the arrangements for the same purpose and under the responsibility of the same holder does not exceed 24 months.

(9)

Pursuant to the constant case-law of the Court of Justice, legal acts of the institutions must be interpreted consistently with international agreements to which the Union is a Party,

IS OF THE OPINION:

1.

That in applying Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009, Member States should not consider the entry into, or exit from, the customs territory of the Union of an intermodal container as an import or an export for the purposes of Articles 15 and 17 of that Regulation if intermodal containers are under temporary admission.

2.

That when inspecting intermodal containers containing or relying on controlled substances in accordance with Article 28 of Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009, Member States should verify that intermodal containers entering into the customs territory of the Union under temporary admission comply with Articles 553, 554, 555 and 557 of Regulation (EEC) No 2454/93 and that those containers are not placed on the market in the Union.

3.

This Opinion is addressed to the Member States.

Done at Brussels, 20 August 2013.

For the Commission

Connie HEDEGAARD

Member of the Commission


(1)  OJ L 286, 30.10.2009, p. 1.

(2)  OJ L 297, 31.10.1988, p. 8.

(3)  OJ L 130, 27.5.1993, p. 4.

(4)  OJ L 91, 22.4.1995, p. 46.

(5)  OJ L 253, 11.10.1993, p. 1.


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