Every year in Yulin, tens of thousands of dogs are treated cruelly as they are killed, inter alia, for their meat. But Yulin is just the tip of the iceberg: every year, this despicable practice is behind the slaughter of 30 million dogs in many countries across the globe. Each year, it is estimated that between 10 and 20 million dogs are consumed in China alone.
In view of the amendments to Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union:
1.Has the Commission looked into whether animal trade with other countries is linked, even if indirectly, to cruel practices and dog meat consumption?
2.Does it consider it within its powers to impose a ban on the sale of animals such as cats and dogs to countries which allow their slaughter and consumption?
1. The Commission does not have knowledge whether dogs are exported from EU Member States to China.
Under the existing EU animal welfare legislation, the welfare of cats and dogs is regulated only in limited circumstances, in particular during transport in connection with an economic activity within the EU. Any remaining aspects concerning the welfare of cats and dogs is subject to Member States’ national legislation. The question raised by the Honourable Member is therefore to be investigated at Member States’ level.
The Commission is planning to revise the EU legislation on animal welfare and is considering options in order to develop further requirements for the welfare of companion animals within the EU.
2. At present, the Commission cannot impose a ban on sales, of these animals, to countries which allow their slaughter and consumption. However, the Commission exerts all possible efforts to promote EU animal welfare standards and best practices internationally, also in the framework of the World Organisation for Animal Health. Furthermore as the Commission pointed out in its replies to written questions P-004562/2018 and E-005366/2018, ‘the setting of animal welfare rules in non-EU countries and their enforcement is under the competence of the respective national competent authorities. An export ban on live [animals] to non-EU countries would also need very careful examination under World Trade Organisation rules, which are binding upon the Union and its Member States’.