`Italy Failed to Fulfil Obligations to Prevent Spread of Xylella, EU Court Finds

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Italy Failed to Fulfil Obligations to Prevent Spread of Xylella, EU Court Finds

Sep. 5, 2019
Ylenia Granitto

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The Court of Jus­tice of the Euro­pean Union found that Italy had failed to ful­fill two of its oblig­a­tions under the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion deci­sion to pre­vent the spread of the bac­terium Xylella fas­tidiosa. In its judg­ment in Case C‑443/18, Com­mis­sion v Italy (Xylella fas­tidiosa bac­terium),’ the court found Italy is liable for the pay­ment of court costs for the pro­ceed­ings.

Accord­ing to the rul­ing, which con­cludes the first phase of an infringe­ment pro­ce­dure opened in 2015, Italy had not imme­di­ately removed, in the con­tain­ment area, at least all the infected plants in the 20-kilo­me­tre strip of the infected zone bor­der­ing the buffer zone,” and where those had been removed, this was done only sev­eral months after those plants had been found to be infected.” More­over, the Court found that Italy failed to con­duct annual sur­veys at appro­pri­ate times of the year.

On the other hand, the Court rejected the Commission’s request to estab­lish that Italy has per­sis­tently and gen­er­ally failed to ful­fill the oblig­a­tion to pre­vent the spread of Xylella.”

We are con­fi­dent for the future, since the newly elected Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture, Teresa Bel­lanova put the con­trast to the bac­terium and the recon­struc­tion of the infected area at high­est pri­or­ity, ” the pres­i­dent of Italia Olivi­cola, Gen­naro Sicolo told Olive Oil Times, while urg­ing the Euro­pean Union to play its part by allo­cat­ing funds to restore the pro­duc­tive poten­tial of the ter­ri­tory hit by the dis­ease.”

The pres­i­dent of Coldiretti Ettore Pran­dini called for an uni­vo­cal and shared strat­egy between regional, national, and com­mu­nity bod­ies to stop Xylella and restore hope for the future of the ter­ri­to­ries that have lost their olive and land­scape her­itage.”

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