Juncker’s investment fund is approved by a grand EP coalition

 

A rather large majority of EU Parliamentarians (76%) approved the establishment of the European Strategic and Investment Plan (EFSI)[1], also known as the “Juncker Plan”.

 

 

How the EFSI will work

 

After the green light by the MEPs, the fund will be approved by the Council and then launched this summer to boost EU’s economy and jobs creation by releasing and estimated €315 billion in public and private investment.

 

The report was jointly drafted by co-rapporteurs of the two biggest EP groups, the center-right People’s Party and center-left Socialists, in order to ensure a broad support among the backbenchers.

Continue Reading

How will EP plenary shape the new EU corporate governance law ?

By Doru Frantescu, Director and co-founder of VoteWatch Europe 

On 10 June, the EP plenary will vote on a proposal to reshape the EU company law (the Cofferati report). This analysis weights the odds that some of the hottest items in the proposal have to make it through the EP’s decision body, such as the extra rewards for long-term shareholders, shareholders’ say on directors’ pay, comply or explain principle versus binding regulationgreater involvement of employees in management decisions and the country-by-country reporting of profits by multi-national companies. The analysis takes into account the votes in the leading EP committee (JURI), the voting records of the political forces in previous occasions and the new balance of power resulted from the 2014 European elections.

Method

Many businesses and stakeholders are taken by surprise when they see what kind of EU law has actually come out of the EP. However, the analysis of the position of each key player and the overall balance of power can provide highly valuable insights, forecasting the way in which the EP will shape key pieces of legislation (expected to be) put forward by the Commission. This analysis will discuss what is likely to happen to some of the key proposals aimed at reshaping EU corporate governance legislation, which have been initiated by EU Executive (Commission) in April 2014[1]. Continue Reading

EP centre-right majority backs less legislation to strengthen competitiveness

60% of the MEPs voted in favour of a statement that backed the European Executive’s approach to withdraw from the legislative process those bills that are considered obsolete or that are suspected to add too much administrative burden on the institutions and businesses operating across the EU. This approach received the backing of the centre—right political families, Christian-democrats (EPP), conservatives (ECR), liberals and democrats (ALDE). The majority was formed also with the votes of British UKIP and most of the non-attached MEPs. Continue Reading

MEPs urge the Member States to renegotiate maternity leave

The MEPs adopted a resolution urging the Member States to resume negotiations to extend minimum period of paid maternity leave. The resolution was adopted with 419 votes in favor, 97 against and 161 abstentions. Click here to see how each MEP voted.

Current EU legislation sets the minimum period of maternity leave at 14 weeks of which 2 are mandatory. In 2008, the Commission proposed a review to current legislation to extend the minimum period at 18 weeks of which 6 are mandatory after birth. Continue Reading

EU economic policy: mixed recommendations resulted from the grand coalition

EU parliamentarians adopted three resolutions on three different angles of the European Semester for economic policy coordination for 2015. The big political groups, People’s Party group and the Socialists group, needed to reach a compromise position to be able to muster a majority, as neither of them had the numbers to pass its core agenda. As a result, the texts include a mixture of measures oriented both towards flexibility and competitiveness and towards more labour-friendly standards.

The first resolution, dealing with the Annual Growth Survey (AGS) for 2015, was the most disputed. It was adopted by 437 votes in favour, 249 against and 11 abstentions. (Click here to see how the MEPs voted). The text was supported by the grand coalition EPP, S&D and ALDE. All the other political groups opposed it. Continue Reading

ECB’s strategy endorsed by EU’s grand coalition, under fire from the other groups

The resolution on the European Central Bank Annual Report for 2013 was adopted with a majority of 461 Parliamentarians voting in favour, 172 against and 65 abstaining (click here to see how each MEP voted).

The annual report describes the activities of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) and reports on the Eurosystem’s monetary policy of the previous year. The report is presented to the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union, the European Commission and the European Council.[1] Continue Reading

EU parliamentarians favour a stronger competition policy

Today, the European Parliament adopted by large majority a non-binding resolution on the annual report on EU competition policy. The text was supported by 526 votes in favour, 108 against and 59 abstentions. (Click here to see how the MEPs voted). All the main EU political groups voted in favour of the resolution with the exception of the eurosceptics EFDD and the radical left GUE/NGL.

The resolution highlights the key role played by competition in the EU internal market and stresses that the EU’s competition policy has brought numerous benefits in terms of consumers welfare and has been an important tool to eliminate obstacle to free movement of goods, services, persons and capitals. The textclaims that competition policy should be focused particularly on protecting consumers, improving consumer welfare, fostering innovation and stimulating economic growth; Continue Reading

What do the EU political families think about Greece, austerity and budget commitments?

This week, Greece has reached a deal with its Eurozone partners to extend its current bailout programme by 4 months. The extension buys time for the new government in Greece to assess its options. Greece is required to submit a reform proposal to the Eurogroup, listing all the policy measures it plans to take during the remainder of the bailout period.

What do Members of the European Parliament say and why is this important?

Regardless of the Eurogroup’s ability to reach a compromise, political groups in the European Parliament have taken their own positions on the situation in Greece and in general about how the economic crises should be dealt with. Continue Reading

What do EU political families think about the Commission’s plans to cut bureaucracy and red tape?

Every year, the European Commission adopts a plan of action for the next twelve months. The Work Programme is prepared in dialogue with the European Parliament and with the European Council.

In the year 2015 the Work Programme has set its focus on a series of proposals and existing legislation, which will be reviewed for the benefit of Europe’s citizens and entrepreneurs. The EU’s regulations play a key role in creating growth and jobs, which is the Juncker Commission’s top priority. While all political forces support this objective in principle, the key challenge is how exactly to achieve it, through more or less regulation? The new EU Executive believes that the answer is to keep EU legislation simple – not to go beyond what is necessary to achieve policy goals and to avoid overlapping layers of regulation.[1] Continue Reading

LuxLeaks: EU parliamentarians set up a special committee to look into tax rulings

LuxLeaks: EU parliamentarians set up a special committee to look into tax rulings 

 

The EP’s political group leaders have decided to set up a special committee to look into tax rulings by member states.

The creation of the special committee was adopted with an overwhelming majority of 612 Parliamentarians voting in favour, 19 against and 23 abstaining from the vote. The MEPs who did not vote in favour of this text came mainly from the UKIP (who voted against) and French Front National (who abstained). Click here to see how each MEP voted. Continue Reading