One year on from Brussels terrorist attacks

Following the terrorist attacks in France and Brussels, the EPP Group set out to achieve 10 measures to prevent the repetition of these attacks in Europe. Six of these have been achieved: implementation of the EU Passenger Name Record system (PNR); development of strategies against radicalisation; adoption of legislation on terrorism; prevention of new forms of terrorism financing; systematic checks on external borders; and better support for victims of terrorism. The EU is delivering but will not stop the efforts to secure a safer Europe for its citizens. Stepping up information exchange and modernising security and intelligence equipment, stopping the trafficking of illegal firearms, creating a common criminal records system and developing cooperation with third countries in the fight against terrorism are the next steps on the agenda. The debate will t ake place on Wednesday on the inititative of the EPP Group.


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845372 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175372

Twitter: @gonzalezpons

David Stellini, Tel: +32 473 541 926


European Council conclusions

On Wednesday, MEPs will debate the results of the European Council and discuss the future of Europe ahead of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome. Manfred Weber MEP, Chairman of the EPP Group, will call on EU leaders to give Europe the necessary tools for today’s global challenges. “We should keep Europe together. But the external dimension is forcing us to speed up towards more integration with a common foreign policy and a common defence policy. We cannot always wait on the slowest countries.”

Manfred WEBER

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845890 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175890

Twitter: @ManfredWeber

Marion Jeanne, Tel: +32 479 840 293


No obstacles to a European Defence Union

No state is able to answer the ongoing threats and risks the EU faces alone, such as the ongoing wars on its border in Ukraine or in Syria. The Lisbon Treaty offers all the necessary tools to increase the security of EU citizens and of the EU, but it is high time that Member States commit to it and start implementing its provisions in the field of security and defence. A Report authored by Michael Gahler and Esteban González Pons on the constitutional, legal and institutional implications of a Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) to be voted on Wednesday, gives clear recommendations on the way forward. It calls for a European Defence Union based on permanent structured cooperation (PESCO) in the areas of training, development of capabilities, material and infrastructure; proposes that the EU finances peacetime military cooperation; calls for the us e of the existing EU battle groups; and the establishment of European Integrated Forces. It also supports an increase of the defence expenditure to 2% of GDP.

Michael GAHLER

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845977 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175977


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845372 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175372

Twitter: @gonzalezpons

Agata Byczewska, Tel: +32 473 841 093


5G for 2018

Coordinating the release of the 5G frequency band in all Member States is crucial to allow innovative mobile services, such as remote healthcare, smart cities and connected cars to work across the European Union. And the 700 MHz band is vital for widespread fifth generation mobile network (5G) deployment across the European Union. China, the US, South Korea and Japan are taking steps towards rolling out commercial 5G starting as early as 2018. We need to make sure that Europe is at the forefront of this development. The debate will take place on Tuesday, vote on Wednesday.


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845822 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175822

Twitter: @ghokmark

Lars Ole Løcke, Tel: +32 470 474 838

Lina Stenlund, Tel: +32 485 911 164


EU Budget 2018: vote on political priorities

The European Parliament will set out its political priorities for the 2018 EU budget for the European Commission. "It is crucial to continue to strengthen our economies and invest more in the areas which bring real added value: research, innovation, infrastructure and job creation. At the same time, we have to acknowledge that if our citizens and companies do not feel safe or secure it will be much more difficult to obtain sustainable economic growth. This is why securing our borders, providing sufficient resources for the EU agencies in the field of justice and home affairs and investing more in the countries of origin of migrants and refugees is imperative", stated Siegfried Mureşan MEP, general Rapporteur for the European Commission budget. "We also want to secure funds for the EPP Group-led Interrail initiative. This project has the potenti al to become a key component in increasing European consciousness and identity, especially in the face of threats such as populism and the spread of misinformation", concluded Mureşan.

Siegfried MUREŞAN

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845154 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175154

Twitter: @SMuresan

Francisco Correia Da Silva, Tel: +32 470 830 567


Conflict Minerals

Tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold, the so-called conflict minerals, are used in the production of many high-tech devices. On Wednesday, the European Parliament will vote on the Conflict Minerals dossier, which aims to stop the financing of armed groups and human rights abuses through trade in all conflict-affected and high risk areas in the world, of which the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Great Lakes area are the most obvious examples. In the future, all EU importers will have to carry out 'due diligence' checks on their suppliers and the big manufacturers will also have to disclose how they plan to monitor their sources to comply with the rules. “The interests of communities and people caught in war and conflicts must be our priority. The new Conflict Minerals Regulation has the power to improve reality on the ground in war zones" ;, said Rapporteur Iuliu Winkler.


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845406 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175406

Meike Bogdan, Tel: +32 473 850 507

Eugen Sandu, Tel: +32 472 547 584


Circular Economy

In Europe, we currently use 16 tonnes of material per person per year, of which 6 tonnes become waste. Turning waste into a resource is key to a circular economy. The European Parliament Plenary is about to adopt a package of four Reports on waste on Tuesday. "If we reuse and recycle, and if one industry's waste becomes another's raw material, we can move to a more circular economy where waste is eliminated and resources are used in an efficient and sustainable way. The reform of European waste legislation must be used to harmonise standards and definitions so that competition can be improved", says Karl-Heinz Florenz MEP who is leading the dossier on behalf of the EPP Group.

Karl-Heinz FLORENZ

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845320 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175320

Taina Mertalo, Tel: +32 477 311 515


Step further towards better gun control in the EU

The European Parliament and the European Commission have reached an agreement with Member States on the revision of the Firearms Directive. The revised Directive, which will be voted on in the European Parliament on Tuesday, includes elements that will enable the tracking of deactivated arms, such as those of a historical nature, and improve the sharing of registers across borders between Member States. The EPP Group wants to make sure European citizens' public safety is intact.


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845128 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175128

Twitter: @AnnaMariaCB

Marta Osojnik, Tel: +32 473 625 868


Better food security and consumer protection

In the EU, the agri-food industry is the second largest sector with total food chain production amounting to some €750 billion per year and employing over 48 million people, from primary production through to retail and catering. The EPP Group wants to offer security to citizens concerning food products and to avoid scandals such as the horsemeat scandal. The aim of the new Regulation is to make controls more efficient and less bureaucratic. The Debate will take place on Tuesday, vote on Wednesday.


BRU: +32 (0)2 2845398 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175398

Twitter: @ayuso_pilar

Javier Jimenez Arbelo, Tel: +32 475 48 04 46


Chairman's agenda

Wednesday: Live chat on the EPP Group's Facebook page

Marion Jeanne, Tel: +32 479 840 293


Press Conferences (13-17 March)

Tuesday @ 11.10 EPP Group Chairman Manfred Weber MEP will give the Plenary briefing

Tuesday @ 14.00 Iuliu Winkler MEP, Rapporteur, on the Conflict Minerals Regulation


  • Source : eppgroup.eu
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