Plenary week, 11-14 June 2018
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Multiannual Financial Framework
- Iran nuclear deal
- Netherlands PM Mark Rutte on the Future of Europe
- Poland: independence of the judiciary
- Renewable Energy Directive
- Circular economy at the heart of cohesion policy
- Tax justice: transparency of big companies
- FIFA: Play Fair – Fight for the forgotten
- Climate change photo exhibition
MFF: the EU’s vision for the world must be more than border management
Commission proposals, Tuesday 12 to Thursday 14 June
The European Commission published the final batch of MFF sectoral proposals throughout the week. The European Commission’s plans to merge 12 external finance instruments into one “External Action” instrument is unacceptable. In addition, we reject the plans as they propose to cut money available for civilian conflict prevention and peacebuilding to less half of what is being spend today (from 2,3 Billion to less than 1 Billion) while more than a dozen Billion EUR are offered to the defence industry via the European Defence Fund. We want to see separate instruments for human rights, civilian conflict prevention and development to make sure the EU remains active in these crucial fields and that funds are not diverted into migration control. The next MFF is an opportunity to correct the trend of foreign and development policy being driven by short-term interests, particularly on migration control.
- Press release (DE/EN)
- Greens/EFA counterproposal to the “single” External Instrument for the post-2020 Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF)
Tobias Heider - Advisor on Security and Defence
Brexit: UK’s “temporary” backstop is not fit for purpose
Debate on Tuesday 12 June
MEPs held a debate Tuesday in preparation of the June 28-29 Council meeting, which will seek to make progress on Britain's future customs relationship with the EU and the issue of the Irish border. The UK’s latest proposals on the backstop are seriously flawed - a temporary solution is in contradiction with the concept of a backstop solution.
Helena Argerich i Terradas - Advisor on Constitutional Affairs
Iran: EU must ensure future of nuclear deal
Debate on Tuesday 12 June
The European Parliament held a debate Tuesday in the presence of Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. President Trump's decision has seriously endangered the future of the Iran deal and the efforts to stop nuclear proliferation via peaceful means. To avoid escalation in this unstable region, the European Union must re-double its efforts to make sure that deal is maintained.
Paula Lopez Reig - Advisor on Foreign Affairs
Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, on the Future of Europe
Wednesday 13 June
The European Parliament held a debate on the Future of Europe with Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte. For the Greens, Europe needs solidarity, not tax giveaways. The European Union is not just a market place for corporations. Greens/EFA Co-President, Ska Keller said: “The Prime Minister is happy to give lectures to others about not keeping their budgets in order. But in continuing to position the Netherlands as one of Europe's top tax havens, and by blocking and delaying European action against tax avoidance, he is actively undermining the economies of his neighbours.
Mélanie Vogel - Advisor on constitutional affairs
Composition of the European Parliament for 2019-2024
Vote Wednesday 13 June
MEPs agreed by a large majority on the composition of the European Parliament for the next term (2019-2024).
The next Parliament will be composed of 705 seats, distributed in proportion of Member States’ population. Of the 73 seats held by the UK, 27 have been redistributed and 46 kept available. In this new distribution, no Member State will lose seat.
Mélanie Vogel - Advisor on constitutional affairs
Poland: the independence of the judiciary must be re-established
Debate on Wednesday 13 June
On a Greens/EFA initiative, the Parliament heard Council and Commission statements on the independence of the judiciary in Poland. The Polish government has repeatedly undermined rule of law, showing little respect for the fundamental values that bind Europe together, and needs to urgently change direction. The Greens/EFA group has organised a cross-party letter calling on the European Commission to take immediate steps to put the brakes on Polish judicial reforms.
Aleksejs Dimitrovs - Advisor on legal affairs, civil liberties, justice and home affairs
Nicholas Hernanz - Advisor on legal affairs, civil liberties, justice and home affairs
Renewable Energy Directive: breakthrough hoped for on palm oil
Trilogue negotiations, Wednesday 13 June
Negotiators have reached a deal Wednesday on the revision of the Renewable Energy Directive. The final deal includes a 32% renewables target for 2030, the right to self-consumption for EU citizens and a ban on palm oil. The European Parliament voted on its position in January, calling for palm oil fuels to no longer be counted as renewable as of 2021. While the negotiations with the Council have been contentious on this point, the new Spanish and Italian governments may mean an end to the deadlock.
Charlotte Kellner - Energy Policy Advisor
Circular economy needs to be at the heart of cohesion policy
Debate on Tuesday 12, vote on Wednesday 14 June
The European Parliament adopted by a large majority a report from Greens/EFA rapporteur Davor Škrlec on how cohesion policy can be aligned with the Circular Economy. For the Greens, cohesion policy is one of the best tools we have to reduce social and economic inequality across Europe. Its power must be aligned with the enormous potential of the circular economy by matching EU spending power with climate and environmental goals.
The report calls for conditionalities related to the achievement of circular economy objectives and for greater spending in circular economy and climate-related investments in post-2020 cohesion policy.
Alan Keckes - Advisor on Regional Development
Tax justice: government experts to discuss transparency of big companies' tax activities
Thursday 14 June
Corporate transparency experts from Member States met Thursday in Brussels to discuss Public Country-by-Country reporting, a crucial tool to ensure companies disclose where they pay taxes and for fighting injustice in the tax system. Unfortunately, no progress has been achieved. The Greens/EFA group is concerned that this means loosing crucial months and the reform may never see the light of day. The Austrian Presidency starting in July has already made it clear that this is not one of its priorities. We are calling on Member States to stop blocking this much needed reform and take a big step forward for tax justice.
František Nejedlý – Tax Justice Campaigner
FIFA: Play Fair – Fight for the forgotten
Campaign for Human Rights in Russia
The World Cup kicks off Thursday. While the world's best footballers compete in the stadiums, over 150 political prisoners are in jails in Russia.
Sign our petition to ask FIFA to engage with the Russian Government and ensure the fate of these prisoners is not ignored. Human rights are not a game!
Photo exhibition shows effects of climate change on our lives
Monday 11 to Thursday 14 June, North Gallery, European Parliament
Greens/EFA MEPs Marco Affronte, Pascal Durand and Yannick Jadot hosted an exhibition on audio-visual and photography exhibition Humans and Climate Change Stories. The project follows 12 families from around the world who are directly impacted by the effects of climate change. Through their stories and an analysis of the social, economic and political dynamics, the exhibition gives a better understanding of the effects of climate change on our daily lives, and our capacities of resilience and adaptation.
For more information on the project, see www.humansclimatechange.com
Greens/EFA motions for resolutions
- Russia, notably the case of Ukrainian political prisoner Oleg Sentsov
- Human rights situation in Bahrain
- Georgian occupied territories 10 years after the Russian invasion
- Situation of the Rohingya refugees, in particular the plight of children
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Next issue of Greens/EFA Plenary debriefing : 6 July 2018