Green MEP Judith Sargentini was today awarded the title of Fair Politician of year 2012 – 2013. The prize is for the MEP who puts the most effort into making EU policies more fair towards developing countries Sargentini was awared the title for her focus on multiple topics mostly in relation to trade, such as the TRIPs agreement, which endangers access to medicine in developing countries. She was rapporteur on the Economic Partnership Agreements dossier in which she clearly pointed out the negative side effects for the Eastern and Southern African states. Sargentini also expressed her concern for the malpractices of EU companies operating abroad and the need for stricter Coporate Social Responsibility regulations. Finally she addressed the issue of conflict minerals, where she aims for an EU equivalent to the US Dodd Frank Act. In total Sargentini scored 14 points in the ranking system. Commenting on the award, Sargentini said: “The title of Fair Politician is a great encouragement to keep on pushing for a fair and coherent European trade policy. It is high time that Europe puts an end to trade agreements that undermine the economy of developing countries. European trade should benefit the people of developing countries instead of corrupt regimes, armed rebel groups or European multinationals. Europe can play an important role in making trade fair." Development goes beyond aid. To really make development work, all EU policies, like those on trade, migration or agriculture, must be coherent with development goals. You cannot take with one hand what you give with another. Since 2009 the Foundation Max van der Stoel (previously called the Evert Vermeer Foundation), as part of its Fair Politics programme, monitors MEPs on its website www.fairpolitics.eu and rewards the MEP who has most actively sought to take the interests of developing countries into account in EU policies, with the title of Fair Politician of the Year.
The previous three Fair Politicians of the year were also Green MEPs: