Further action by the European Commission against France for failure to lift its ban on UK beef exported under the Date-Based Export Scheme (DBES) has been welcomed by Secretary of State Margaret Beckett. The Commission wrote to the French Government on 20 March seeking an explanation within 30 days for its failure to comply with the ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on 13 December that its ban on UK DBES beef was illegal. This is the first stage in a process which may result in a further case in the ECJ against France for failure to comply with the Judgement of the Court.