Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

EU-Israel Agreements on ACAAs

24th October 2012

Speaking at a meeting in the European Parliament in Brussels, Charles Tannock MEP led for the British Conservatives in a heated debate on EU-Israel Agreements on Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Products.

ACAAs are a specific type of mutual recognition agreement based on the alignment of the legislative system and competent authorities of the country concerned with those of the European Union.

The EU-Israel ACAA would facilitate the import of high-quality and affordable medicines into Europe, but is being held up in the European Parliament because the legislative process has been hijacked by anti-Israel sentiment.

Dr Tannock said: “The ACAA Protocol is not about human rights, the occupied territories, or Israel's approach to the Middle East peace process. It is about trade, and unblocking the technical barriers that currently exist between producers and consumers, one of the most fundamental objectives of the EU.”

Dr Tannock said he had received assurances that there are no pharmaceutical products made in the settlements, and supporting ACAA does not endorse the expansion of settlements, or increase the importation of other industrial goods from the settlements.

He added: “It does not in fact endorse any Israeli policy. It enables Israel's advanced regulatory authorities to certify medical products, a task for which it is more than equipped, to the benefit of all EU citizens. People who have sought to block it are cutting off their nose to spite their face.

“Israel is a global leader in producing cheap and safe generic medicines. Those opposed to ACAA are more interested in bashing Israel than promoting the welfare of Europe's sick.”