Rede von EP-Präsident Pat Cox beim Europäischen Rat in Barcelona

"United we stand, divided we fall"

Wien (OTS) - In seiner Rede vor den Staats- und Regierungschefs
beim Gipfel von Barcelona ruft EP-Präsident Pat Cox zur Zusammenarbeit auf, betont die Rolle des Europäischen Parlaments für den Lissabonner Prozess und gibt sein Bekenntnis zur Erweiterung ab. Es folgen die wichtigsten Auszüge dieser Rede:

The European Parliament as partner for change

"The citizens of Europe look to the European Union institutions to demonstrate and deliver the added value provided by the European Union; on freedom and security, on growth and employment, on research and innovation, on fair deals for everybody."

"The challenge now is to deliver the implementation of commitments made. The Summit participants will find the European Parliament a reliable partner for reform and progress."

"You will be aware that the success of the Lisbon process depends on the adoption of legislation which comes under co-decision, in other words where the Treaty gives the European Parliament an equal say with the Council."

"I am convinced that the European Parliament can make a decisive contribution to driving forward that process of economic reform linked with social justice."

"I therefore wish to state Parliament's case for change, and to seek both your advice and your support, in identifying points of intersection and communality of interest between our Institutions."

Building confidence: better inter-institutional dialogue

"Our citizens are rightly more interested in "output" and delivery than in process. That process of delivery is nevertheless crucial to the output. If the institutions are not working properly together the result is poor output."

"Consequently, we need to improve the way we work together as institutions. The European Parliament wants to contribute to a climate of confidence between the three institutions. The European Parliament wants to be a reliable partner. We must consider the creation of a framework for inter-institutional dialogue, which provides legitimacy, efficiency and confidence."

"Allow me to draw your attention to a matter of particular urgency for all of the institutions; the issue of better lawmaking. All three institutions, the Parliament, the Council and the Commission must come together to agree on a set of guidelines to achieve more efficiency and transparency in the way we, together, make European laws. I am looking forward to a decision in Barcelona on establishing the forum for this discussion to take place."

Closing the delivery gap

"The Parliament is a co-legislator with the Council of Ministers on most of the issues on the Lisbon Agenda. The co-decision powers of the Parliament are equal to those of the combined 15 Member States."

"The European Parliament is a reliable partner for reform. The European Parliament has shown that it is ready to deliver on its legislative responsibility and to work quickly."

"In his letter to you and the President of the European Parliament in November 2001, President Prodi identified a number of legislative issues, which needed to be closed in order to maintain the momentum of the Lisbon agenda:

Today, I am happy to be able to report to you, that the European Parliament has closed the delivery gap as far as it is concerned."

Environment and sustainability

"An overall strategy for sustainable development is badly needed, and it must not be treated as an appendix to economic and social reform. We have to look at all components together. An environmental mainstreaming approach must be developed. We need to think about effects on the environment for everything we do, maybe even see if it is possible to make a "sustainability analysis" of all legislative proposals."

Enlargement

"Parliament appreciates the attempt by the Commission to find a pragmatic balance between the budget possibilities and constraints on the one part and the anxieties on the other part to connect with enlargement in a meaningful way. And we have a big choice: we can unbundle that perspective and dispute with each other, among the fifteen and all over Europe, about what the next budget should be, or we can accept the current budget ceilings and maximise the opportunity with them. In terms of realpolitik I should like to have "a win-win situation" - to manage to pay for what we need with urgency and to get on with an early enlargement. That would broadly commend itself to the European Parliament. I cannot yet declare the detail as the Parliament has not yet declared its hand but I expect it to broadly commend the package that is there."

"The act of transformation of Europe itself, which we contemplate in the next few months, is bigger than the small change of the budget - big as the small change debate will be. So we must make sure that we do not confuse the budget arithmetic in all of our debates with the essentials - these are part of the oil which get the wheels to turn - but the essentials are something much larger and more challenging."

"For my part I am doing what I can to create the optimal conditions for future members of the European Parliament from candidate states: inviting them to the plenary this year for our enlargement debates and frontloading the budget provisions for observers so that we can invite the 'Nice number' (147) observers from the 10 probable future members once the Treaties of accession are signed."

The International context

"The European Union's standing not just in the world but also in the eyes of our own people will be determined by our effectiveness in dealing with several critical issues facing us in the international context."

"I am convinced that foreign policy is an area where the great majority of our fellow European citizens see the EU as having particularly significant added value. In today's globalized world more than ever, united we stand and divided we fall."

"My Presidency will attach a particular priority to relations with the US, and specifically to improving the quality of legislative dialogue between the European Parliament and the US Congress. No-one can or should deny that we have disagreements, sometimes very serious disagreements, with the US on a number of specific issues, in the fields of both trade and foreign policy. But precisely because of these very real problems and the considerable amount of static which they generate, and also to take account of the deep wounds inflicted on 11 September and which remain painfully raw, we must strongly resist any manifestation of primal cultural animosity towards our natural allies in the US."

"Through these various actions, with my colleagues and with your assistance, I shall endeavour to convey the same message both in our House and further afield: the European Parliament is offering a new partnership for political dialogue and pragmatic change."

Rückfragen & Kontakt:

David Harley, Tel: 0032-496-599453
Pressesprecher des Präsidenten
Alison Suttie, Tel: 0032-478-359596
Büro des Präsidenten, Presse
Monika STRASSER, Tel: 01-51617-201
Informationsbüro des Europäischen Parlaments für Österreich
mstrasser@europarl.eu.int

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