General Market

Motion for a resolution on the European Parliament’s priorities for the Commission Work Programme 2018 – B8-2017-0435

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Framework Agreement on relations between the European Parliament and the European Commission, in particular Annex IV thereto,

–  having regard to the Interinstitutional Agreement on Better Law-Making of 13 April 2016,

–  having regard to the Joint Declaration on the EU’s legislative priorities for 2017 of 13 December 2016,

–  having regard to the Conference of Committee Chairs’ Summary Report, which provides complementary input to this resolution from the point of view of parliamentary committees and which the Commission should take duly into account when drafting and adopting its Work Programme for 2018,

–  having regard to Rule 37(3) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the role of the Commission is to promote the general interest of the Union, to take appropriate initiatives to that end, to be committed to applying the rule of law, which is based on the core European values and is fundamental to Europeans living together in peace, to exercise coordinating, executive and management functions, and to initiate legislation;

B.  whereas the Commission has a duty to uphold the Treaties and enforce EU laws; noting with strong regret that both the implementation of EU policies and the enforcement of EU laws and rules are weak, as has become visible in areas such as environmental standards, fundamental rights and the rule of law, free movement of persons, and the Schengen area; whereas the Commission should make implementation and enforcement a top priority in 2017-2018;



1.  Calls once again on the Commission to put forward a legislative proposal on EU administrative law which will guarantee an open, efficient and independent European administration, and to take due account of Parliament’s proposal for an EU regulation in this regard;

2.  Calls on the Commission to take into account concerns over access to and ownership of data in its work on Building the European Data Economy and related liability issues for intermediary service providers and other online platforms in order to ensure legal certainty, increase consumer trust and ensure full compliance with citizens’ rights to privacy and full protection of personal data in the digital environment;


3.  Calls on the Commission to ensure the efficient and coordinated implementation of the European Agenda on Security for the 2015-2020 period and its priorities in the fields of counter-terrorism and cross-border organised crime and cybercrime, focusing on effective security outcomes; reiterates its call for an in-depth evaluation focused on the operational effectiveness of relevant existing EU instruments and on the remaining gaps in this field, prior to the presentation of new legislative proposals as part of the European Agenda on Security; deplores, in this regard, the continued and systematic absence of impact assessments on several proposals presented as part of that agenda;

4.  Calls on the Commission to seek to adopt legal acts amending or replacing the Union acts in the field of police cooperation and judicial cooperation in criminal matters that were adopted before the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, in particular Council Decision 2005/671/JHA and Council Framework Decision 2006/960/JHA on the exchange of information and intelligence between law enforcement authorities, including the exchange of information on terrorist offences, by proposing a horizontal legislative instrument to improve the exchange of law enforcement information and increase operational cooperation between Member States and with EU agencies, with a view to ensuring mandatory exchanges of information for the purpose of combating serious transnational crime;

5.  Calls on the Commission to submit without undue delay an amendment to the new Europol founding regulation, in order to develop a genuine European investigation capacity, equip the agency with a legal capacity to request the initiation of a criminal investigation, and foster the sharing and pooling of information at EU level;

6.  Calls on the Commission to mobilise expertise and technical and financial resources in order to ensure EU-level coordination and exchanges of best practices in the fight against violent extremism and terrorist propaganda, radical networks and recruitment by terrorist organisations through offline and online means, with a particular focus on prevention, integration and reintegration strategies with a clear gender perspective;

7.  Calls on the Commission to fulfil its duty as guardian of the Treaties and assess the compliance with EU primary and secondary law of measures recently adopted by Member States in the field of counter-terrorism and surveillance, bearing in mind that any limitations to fundamental rights should be duly reasoned, provided for by law, respect the essence of the rights and freedoms recognised by the Charter of Fundamental Rights and be subject to the principle of proportionality, in accordance with Article 52(1) of the Charter;

Fundamental rights

8.  Reiterates its call on the Commission to make every effort to unblock the proposal for a horizontal anti-discrimination directive; invites it to upgrade its List of Actions to advance LGBTI Equality to a full European response to the fundamental rights problems faced by LGBTI people, in the shape of an EU roadmap against homophobia and discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity;

9.  Calls on the Commission to speed up negotiations on the EU’s ratification of the Istanbul Convention, the first legally binding instrument on preventing and combating violence against women at international level; reiterates it call on the Commission to include a definition of gender-based violence in line with the provisions of the Victims’ Rights Directive and to present as soon as possible a legislative act for the prevention and combating of gender-based violence;

10.  Calls on the Commission to implement the actions outlined in its strategic engagement without delay and incorporate a systematic and visible gender equality perspective into all EU activities and policies;

11.  Encourages the Commission to continue to progress towards EU accession to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), taking into account the Court of Justice opinion on the matter and addressing the remaining legal challenges; urges the Commission to urgently seek solutions to the two most problematic issues relating to the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), namely mutual trust and judicial review;

12.  Calls on the Commission to ensure a timely and compliant entry into force of the data protection package, and to support a successful completion of the legislative process for the adoption of the ePrivacy Regulation; urges furthermore that the confidentiality of electronic communication be protected by promoting the use of end-to-end encryption and prohibiting by EU law any obligation imposed by Member States on undertakings providing public communications networks or publicly available electronic communications services that would result in the weakening of the security of their networks and services;


13.  Calls for EU legal migration instruments to be replaced by a single horizontal regulation to create a true EU legal migration policy;

14.  Calls for a standalone European humanitarian visa regulation;

15.  Calls for a revision of the Facilitation Directive to clarify the distinction between illegal smuggling activities and the actions of ordinary citizens helping people in need;

16.  Calls for implementation and monitoring reports on the functioning of the European Border and Coast Guard;


17.  Invites the Commission to put forward a proposal for a democracy, rule of law and fundamental rights pact in the form of an interinstitutional agreement, along the lines of the recommendation made by Parliament in its legislative own-initiative report;

18.  Reiterates its call for the setting-up of an endowment for democracy grant-giving organisations that would support local actors promoting democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights within the Union;

19.  Points to growing efforts by third states and non-state actors to undermine through hybrid means, including disinformation, the legitimacy of democratic institutions inside the EU, and urges the Commission to strengthen its resilience against hybrid threats and its capacity to advance strategic communication inside and outside the EU, and to improve its ability to adequately counter false news and disinformation in a systematic manner;


MFF revision, budget and employment

20.  Recalls that, under Article 25 of the MFF Regulation, the Commission must normally present a proposal for a new multiannual financial framework before 1 January 2018; expects that this proposal will address such priorities as a comprehensive reform of the own resources system on both the revenue and the expenditure side, a greater emphasis on the unity of the budget to ensure full parliamentary control over all expenditure, more budgetary flexibility, including a new special instrument to be counted over and above the MFF ceilings, adjustments to the duration of the MFF to align it with the political cycles of both Parliament and the Commission and the modalities of the decision-making process that would ensure the availability of the necessary financial resources;

21.  Underlines the need for an in-depth reform of the own resources system, based on principles of simplicity, fairness, transparency and accountability; strongly welcomes in this regard the final report of the High Level Group on Own Resources; calls on the Commission to present, by the end of 2017, an ambitious legislative package on own resources post-2020, which would aim at ensuring that the EU budget focuses on areas bringing the highest European added value, phasing out all forms of rebates and ending the ‘juste retour’ approach; expects that any new own resources should lead to a reduction in Member States’ GNI contributions;

22.  Calls on the Commission to maintain the allocation of cohesion policy funds and European Structural and Investment Funds at the level decided in the MFF in 2013; considers, on this basis, that technical adjustment should avoid any decrease in the budget for cohesion policy, given its importance in creating growth and jobs, ensuring cohesion within the EU, and, in particular, supporting SMEs and innovation and research, as well as a low-carbon economy and urban policies;

23.  Calls on the Commission to coordinate the EU Urban Agenda and thus ensure the coherent and integrated policy solutions that cities need at European level, and to guarantee the link with the Better Regulation agenda; calls on the Commission to strengthen its internal coordination of issues relevant to urban areas and, for example, expand the instrument of impact assessments so as to include the urban dimension more systematically;

24.  Considers that the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) is essential in tackling youth unemployment, which remains unacceptably high in the EU; calls on the Commission to secure adequate funding to fight youth unemployment and continuing the YEI up to the end of the current MFF, while at the same time improving its functioning and implementation and taking into account the latest findings of the European Court of Auditors special report on youth employment and the use of the YEI (No 5/2017); calls, furthermore, on the Commission to come forward with proposals to facilitate the employment of people aged over 50;

25.  Urges the Commission to put in place all suitable mechanisms for greater mobility among young people, apprenticeships included, as a way to address skills mismatches in the labour market and improve access to employment opportunities;

26.  Calls on the Commission to take further steps in the framework of the New Skills Agenda, such as developing a pan-European skills needs forecasting tool which would make it possible to estimate future skills needs and adapt them better to the jobs available on the labour market, including the blue growth agenda; recalls that, as part of the national strategies for digital skills, developed by Member States in the framework of the New Skills Agenda, it is important to provide adequate funding for educational institutions to ensure the development of the full range of digital skills that individual and companies need in an increasingly digital economy; calls on the Commission to assess and evaluate the financing and investment needs as regards overcoming the digital skills gap;

27.  Calls on the Commission to come forward with a Green Paper on inequality and how it is hampering economic recovery; encourages it to analyse and assess this issue as a first step towards proposing political solutions, and to take immediate action to reverse this trend so as to reduce inequalities and poverty, and increase social cohesion;

28.  Calls on the Commission to revise the Equal Treatment Directive and launch the legislative procedure for a directive following the 2014 Commission Recommendation on pay transparency with a view to eliminating the persistent gender pay gap;

Horizon 2020

29.  Recognises the enormous added value of the Horizon 2020 research and innovation framework programme for Europe; calls on the Commission to act upon its mid-term evaluation and take Parliament’s resolution into consideration; urges the Commission to continue working towards simplification while minimising barriers to participation and ensuring the highest socio-economic returns – both short-term and long-term – for all parts of the programme, and to work towards an ambitious proposal for the next framework programme; stresses that building synergies with the ESI Funds is needed to bridge the innovation gap within the EU;

A more efficient and multimodal transport policy

30.  Calls on the Commission to implement Article 3 of Regulation 551/2004 establishing a single European upper flight information region (EUIR) and to develop a connectivity index on the basis of other existing indices and the exploratory work already carried out by Eurocontrol and the Airport Observatory;

31.  Calls on the Commission to come forward with guidelines on the timing and instruments to ensure the development of a European approach to rail freight noise; urges the Commission to continue supporting the development of innovative technologies focused on moving more freight from road to rail (Shift2Rail);

32.  Urges the Commission to come forward with a proposal aimed at harmonising the different national legislations in order to enhance the establishment of the European internal market for road transport; calls on the Commission, wherever legitimate, to take the necessary measures against national laws distorting the European single market;

33.  Calls on the Commission to come forward with an integrated and harmonised legislative proposal for the roll-out of connected and automated driving, by enabling cross-border test facilities, drafting proportionate European legislation regarding liability, privacy and data protection and supporting public-private initiatives;

34.  Calls for concrete maritime measures to reduce discharges of ship-generated waste and cargo residues into the sea and to improve the availability and use of facilities in ports to receive ship waste; urges the Commission to support the development of innovative technologies with a special focus on autonomous shipping;

35.  Calls on the Commission to swiftly deliver a multimodal package to ensure an integrated approach to transport policies, which should also include provisions for passenger rights and integrated door-to-door mobility for passengers and freight; asks the Commission to step up its attention to and support for the digital transformation of the multimodal transport sector (e-Documents) and to initiate the deployment of multimodal infrastructure and services along the TEN-T networks;


36.  Welcomes the Commission’s initiative to enhance cooperation with Parliament in the field of competition; calls on the Commission to continue and strengthen that practice and to consider the application of the ordinary legislative procedure in competition policy, in particular where fundamental principles and binding guidelines are concerned;

37.  Calls on the Commission to come up very rapidly with concrete proposals in the field of retail financial services, noting that retail finance in the EU should work in the interests of citizens and provide better products and more choice on the market;

38.  Calls on the Commission to take effective measures within the framework of the European Semester to ensure that Member States implement the country-specific recommendations and structural reforms in order to modernise their economies, increase competitiveness and tackle inequalities and imbalances;

39.  Urges the Commission to speed up the work on the completion of a Capital Markets Union (CMU), in order to help unleash investment in the EU to create growth and jobs; calls on the Commission to come forward with proposals that improve the business environment in the EU in order to attract more foreign direct investment;

40.  Calls on the Commission, in accordance with Parliament’s resolution of 12 April 2016 on the EU role in the framework of international financial, monetary and regulatory institutions and bodies(1), to streamline and codify the EU’s representation in multilateral organisations and bodies with a view to increasing the transparency, integrity and accountability of the Union’s involvement in those bodies, its influence, and the promotion of the legislation it has adopted through a democratic process;

41.  Calls on the Commission to foster growth by building on a three-dimensional approach aimed at reinforcing investment and financing innovation, including through the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) and the CMU, conducting structural reforms to modernise economies and setting a common policy mix;


42.  Is concerned by the delays taken by some of the legislative proposals contained in the Digital Single Market Strategy; considers that the EU institutions should not lose the momentum of the strategy and devote every possible effort to delivering and adopting the relevant proposals; asks the three institutions, at the time of its mid-term review, to commit at the highest level to giving them priority treatment in the legislative process so that citizens and businesses can benefit from their results;

43.  Welcomes efforts to develop and modernise the EU’s intellectual property laws, in particular in the area of copyright, in order to render them fit for the digital age and facilitate cross-border access to creative content, thereby creating legal certainty while protecting authors’ and performers’ rights; calls on the Commission to base any legislative initiative to modernise copyright on independent evidence as to the impact on growth and jobs, particularly as regards SMEs in this sector, access to knowledge and culture, intermediary liability, the open internet, fundamental rights and potential costs and benefits for the creative and cultural sectors; considers that copyright should maintain its primary function, which is to allow creators to gain rewards for their efforts through others making use of their work, while harmonising the exceptions and limitations in the field of research, education, preservation of cultural heritage and user generated content ; stresses that the important contribution of traditional methods of promoting regional and European culture should not be hampered by modernisation of reform proposals;

44.  Reiterates its calls for proposals to develop the potential of the cultural and creative sector as a source of jobs and growth; stresses, in this connection, the importance of enforcing as well as modernising intellectual property rights (IPR), and urges the Commission to follow up on its action plan to combat IPR infringements, including a review of the IPR Enforcement Directive, which is out of step with the digital age and inadequate to combat online infringements, and also to follow up on the Green Paper on chargeback and related schemes in the context of a potential EU-wide right to retrieve money unwittingly used to purchase counterfeit goods; calls on the Commission to further strengthen the remit of the EU Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights, and welcomes its establishment of a group of experts on IPR enforcement;

45.  Calls on the Commission to ensure the preservation of the internet as an open, neutral, secured and inclusive platform for communication, production, participation and creation, and as a provider of cultural diversity and innovation; recalls that this is in the interests of all EU citizens and consumers and will contribute to the success of European companies globally; emphasises the need to ensure the rigorous application of the net neutrality principle as adopted in the ‘Connected Continent package’;

46.  Urges the Commission to come up with a notice and takedown directive in order to prevent the fragmentation of a digital single market, which would increase legal clarity by harmonising the procedures and safeguards for internet platforms and their users to take down content; stresses that the EU needs an effective due-process architecture to protect citizens from arbitrary content removals;

47.  Calls on the Commission to continue its efforts to secure the swift implementation of the EU e-Government Action plan and calls on the Commission to report back, after the launch in 2017 of the Once-Only Principle large-scale pilot project for businesses and citizens (TOOP);


The single market

48.  Regrets that the Commission has not listened so far to the repeated calls for the creation of a strong single market pillar within the European Semester, with a system of regular monitoring and identification of country-specific barriers to the single market, which have tended to be introduced lately with a greater impact, frequency and scope in Member States;

49.  Reiterates, therefore, its request to the Commission to issue recommendations focused on removing single market barriers in the country-specific recommendations; calls for an in-depth evaluation of single market integration and internal competitiveness; insists that the evaluation of the state of single market integration should become an integral part of the economic governance framework;

50.  Asks the Commission to focus its work on the implementation of the Single Market Strategy and in particular the legislative proposals for a Single Digital Gateway, which should be proposed without delay, and for a Single Market Information Tool; recalls in this context that, in its resolution on the Strategy, Parliament underlined that regulatory differences between Member States regarding differing labelling or quality requirements create unnecessary obstacles to the activities of suppliers of goods and to consumer protection, and to assessing which labels are essential and which are not essential for ensuring consumer information, and regrets that the Commission has not taken any steps in the matter;

51.  Calls on the Commission, with the support of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the national regulatory authorities, to closely monitor the effects of the abolition of retail roaming surcharges from 15 June 2017, in particular the correct implementation and enforcement of the directive with regard to exception schemes, the evolution of data consumption patterns and the retail tariff plans available; urges that the impact of correct implementation of the voluntary fair use policies will have to be assessed;

52.  Urges the Commission to adopt as a matter of urgency the proposal for a revised Commission implementing regulation on deactivation standards and techniques for ensuring that deactivated firearms are rendered irreversibly inoperable; reminds the Commission that its adoption of this new proposal was one the conditions for Parliament adopting the Firearms Directive and asks the Commission, therefore, to deliver without delay in order to close security loopholes and strengthen deactivation regimes in the EU;

53.  Reminds the Commission that the adoption of the Directive on network and information security was a first step that was needed but that cannot be considered sufficient in the medium and long term; asks the Commission to make sure that Member States abide by its provisions and to prepare the ground for a revision of the directive as soon as possible in order to reach a higher level of operational and strategic cooperation between the Member States;

Consumer rights

54.  Considers that the ongoing evaluation of the Consumer Rights Directive is an important step towards ensuring that the directive has achieved its objectives and that the anticipated impacts, as described in the original impact assessment accompanying the proposal for the directive, have materialised;

55.  Underlines the need to complete the REFIT Fitness check of consumer law in time so that its results can still be used within this legislative term and that it includes the results of the evaluation of the Consumer Rights Directive;

56.  Is concerned by allegations that qualitative characteristics of food as well as non-food products that are sold in the single market under the same brand and same packaging and with the use of other marketing texts could differ between Member States; asks the Commission to look into this question more closely;


57.  Calls on the Commission, following the adoption of various Energy Union, energy efficiency, market design, renewable energy and other energy-related legislative proposals and communications, to focus its attention on ensuring that Member States fully implement these; considers that, in cases where legal obligations are clearly not being met, the Commission should launch infringement procedures, the aim being to build a genuine Energy Union;

58.  Urges the Commission to complete as soon as possible its already delayed review of the legislation on CO2 emissions from cars and vans and from heavy duty vehicles, and to table legislative proposals for a fleet average emissions target for 2025 in line with the commitments made in the context of the agreement between the co-legislators in 2013;

59.  Calls on the Commission to ensure that the EU maintains its leadership role in the implementation and enforcement of the Paris Agreement; asks the Commission to propose Union-wide measures complementary to the EU’s commitment to a 40 % cut in domestic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions with a view to the 2018 facilitative dialogue under the agreement; urges the Commission to prepare a mid-century decarbonisation strategy consistent with the goals set out in the Paris Agreement, including intermediate milestones to ensure cost-efficient delivery of the EU’s climate ambitions; calls on the Commission also to evaluate the consistency of current EU policies in relation to the objectives of the Paris Agreement, including with regard to the EU budget, the phasing-out of fossil fuel subsidies and ocean governance, especially with regard to the importance of the ocean for our climate; calls on the Commission to develop measures to support an orderly transition to a low-carbon economy in order to mitigate the systematic economic risks associated with high-carbon financial assets; expects the Commission to ensure that the work programme reflects the Sustainable Development Goals by putting sustainability at the core of economic policy and reiterates the importance of fully implementing the 7th Environmental Action Programme 2014-2020;

60.  Urges the Commission to bring forward without any delay the initiatives listed in the Circular Economy Action Plan, including in the areas of product policy and food waste, and to monitor the progress towards a circular economy in the framework of the EU semester;

61.  Calls on the Commission to come forward with a legislative proposal on environmental inspections – fully respecting the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality – in order to step up the implementation and enforcement of environmental laws and standards;

Agriculture and fisheries policies

62.  Stresses the important role that sustainable agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors play in ensuring food security in the EU, providing jobs and improving environmental standards, and equally underlines the potential of European agriculture in contributing to climate change policies through innovation and adoption of policies which enhance the carbon sequestration potential of European agriculture;

63.  Calls on the Commission to simplify the implementation of the CAP and to cut red tape in order to increase its efficiency, alleviate the administrative burden on agricultural entrepreneurs, and make room for innovations that are indispensable for a forward-looking, competitive European agriculture sector; asks the Commission to ensure that the principle of better regulation is included in the upcoming CAP reform proposal which should provide more room and financial incentives for innovation in agriculture aimed at ensuring long-term food security in the EU, reducing agriculture’s impact on biodiversity and increasing its climate resilience;

64.  Calls on the Commission to make proposals to urgently address the continued loss of natural capital in Europe and to review existing policies, in particular the CAP, with a view to meeting the objectives of the EU’s Biodiversity Strategy;

65.  Stresses the urgency and importance of taking action against the persistently growing threat of increased antimicrobial resistance, since this can have an enormous impact on citizens’ health and productivity as well as on the Member States’ health budgets; calls on the Commission, therefore, to come forward with a proposal for an EU action plan on how to implement in the Union the World Health Organisation (WHO) Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance; calls on the Commission also to enhance measures already applied in the current Action Plan against antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and to ensure the consistent implementation thereof by all relevant parties;

66.  Reiterates that, in order to ensure the timely and proper implementation of the common fisheries policy adopted in 2013, the Commission must continue to come forward with legislative proposals for the adoption of renewed multiannual management plans for fish stocks;

67.  Highlights the importance of the strong control system laid down in the Control Regulation (Council Regulation (EC) No 1224/2009 of 20 November 2009), which modernised the EU’s approach to fisheries control in line with the measures adopted to combat illegal fishing; calls on the Commission to undertake a comprehensive follow-up and to propose, if necessary, their revision with a view to addressing shortcomings and ensuring proper implementation and enforcement;

68.  Considers that illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing is a form of organised crime on the seas, with disastrous worldwide environmental and socio-economic impacts and therefore calls on the Commission to take all necessary action against non-cooperating countries and all organisations contributing to IUU fishing;


69.  Emphasises its support for an ambitious and values-based trade agenda which will strengthen the global rules-based system and contribute towards jobs and growth in Europe; welcomes, in this connection, the Commission’s efforts to conclude negotiations with Japan and to push ahead with other ongoing negotiations, such as with Mexico and Mercosur, as well as aiming to commence new ones with, for example, Australia and New Zealand and trying to unblock other negotiations, such as those with India;

70.  Calls on the Commission to reinvigorate the post-Nairobi WTO discussion, since multilateral trade negotiations must remain a priority matter for the EU even when they prove difficult; considers that it would also be worthwhile to look into new areas and issues within the WTO framework, such as digital trade, and welcomes the international initiatives taken by the Commission on investment protection;

71.  Stresses that the modernising and strengthening of the Union’s trade defence instruments is as a matter of urgency and of the utmost importance;


72.  Calls on the Commission to advance with setting up the European Defence Fund, which would encompass adequate funding for both collaborative research on defence technologies and the acquisition of joint assets by the Member States; encourages the Commission to step up the enforcement of the two directives framing the single market for defence and to come up with an initiative on development of shared industry standards for equipment and assets;

73.  Urges to Commission to pay particular attention to the rising tension in the Western Balkans and to seek ways to enhance the EU’s engagement in favour of reconciliation and reforms in all of the countries concerned;

74.  Commends the Commission for its emphasis on the Neighbourhood Policy, both eastern and southern, but underlines that the policy must acquire a more political content, notably through a combination of increased financial assistance, reinforced democracy support, market access and improved mobility; stresses that the policy needs to clearly identify areas of action in order to better address the challenges which the neighbouring countries are facing;

75.  Calls on the Commission to prioritise digitalisation as an integral part of the EU´s foreign policy instruments and to embrace it as an opportunity such as by leading in the fields of internet governance, people´s human rights online, state norms in cyberspace, cybersecurity and freedom online, access and development, digital literacy and net neutrality;

76.  Stresses that the promotion of, and respect for, human rights, international law and fundamental freedoms must be a central common denominator across EU policies; calls on the Commission not to neglect the importance of protecting human rights in the context of counter-terrorism measures; urges the Commission to actively continue pushing for human rights to be implemented effectively through all agreements, in particular the trade, political dialogue and cooperation and association agreements subscribed by the EU, in particular the so-called ‘democracy clause’ and Article 8 of the Cotonou Agreement; calls on the Commission to make a clear monitoring of the human rights situation in the countries with which the EU has agreements;

77.  Calls on the Commission to continue to work to help ensure accountability for war crimes, human rights violations and abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, including the confirmed use of chemical weapons; expresses its continued grave concern at the deliberate restrictions that are put in the way of the provision of humanitarian aid and reiterates its call on the Commission to make every possible effort to help ensure that full, unhindered, safe and sustainable country-wide humanitarian access for the UN and other humanitarian organisations is secured in countries where it is needed;

78.  Calls on the Commission to put forward an implementation plan for the revised European Consensus;

79.  Urges the Commission to show ambition in its updated EU Global Strategy and to better position the EU in a rapidly changing world to deliver the institutional and policy changes for the effective implementation of the Agenda 2030; calls on the Commission also to come forward with a proposal for an overarching Sustainable Development Strategy, encompassing all relevant internal and external policy areas, including the UN process, a detailed timeline up to 2030, a concrete implementation plan and a specific procedure ensuring Parliament’s full involvement and to provide information regarding the plan for implementation, monitoring, follow-up and incorporation of the 2030 Agenda into the EU’s internal and external policy;

80.  Emphasises its support for an ambitious External Investment Plan (EIP); believes that the implementation of the upcoming European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD) and the EU Trust Fund for Africa will be key in assessing the effectiveness of current efforts; calls on the Commission to give an active and effective impulse to the EU’s external policy; stresses that the EU should be a major actor that provides efficient responses to the challenges that Europe is facing, in order achieve the SDGs by 2030 and address the root causes of irregular and forced migration;

81.  Recalls the need to review the Humanitarian Aid Regulation (Council Regulation (EC) No 1257/96 of 20 June 1996), in order to make the EU’s humanitarian assistance more efficient and compliant with international humanitarian law, especially in view of the urgent need for comprehensive action against famine and to ensure a sustainable future for the millions of people affected by conflicts or natural or man-made disasters, as well as for education in the context of protracted crises;

82.  Calls on the Commission to increase its efforts to safeguard the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls throughout the world, and to guarantee that the Global Gag Rule will not restrict EU humanitarian aid funds and the work of foreign family-planning organisations that the EU is funding;

83.  Calls on the Commission to present a legislative proposal on accompanying measures for the ‘Conflict Minerals Regulation’ (2014/0059(COD)) in line with the relevant Joint Communication (JOINT (2014) 8);

84.  Calls on the Commission, given the global nature of the garment industry and of its shortcomings in terms of improving worker’s conditions, to go beyond the presentation of a staff working document on the flagship initiative on the garment sector and to present a legislative proposal for due diligence obligations in the supply chain in the garment sector;

85.  Calls on the Commission to assist developing countries in combating fraud and tax evasion through the establishment of a comprehensive and binding framework;

86.  Calls on the Commission to take an ambitious approach in the context of the future negotiations for the Post-Cotonou Agreement with a view to a binding agreement, tailored to the new realities, with a strong political dimension and an economic development dimension, and oriented towards a framed market economy and inclusive growth;


*  *

89.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, and the governments and parliaments of the Member States.

General Information

Daily News 07 / 04 / 2017

Schengen Borders Code: Systematic checks of EU citizens crossing external Schengen borders mandatory as of today 

As of today, Member States are obliged to carry out systematic checks against relevant databases on EU citizens who are crossing the EU’s external borders, in addition to the systematic checks already being carried out on all third-country nationals entering the Schengen zone. Proposed by the Commission in a direct response to the attacks in Paris in November 2015 and the growing threat from foreign terrorist fighters, the new rules – adopted by the Council on 7 March – strengthen the management of our external borders. The revision ensures a good balance between the current security challenges and the need to avoid disproportionate impacts on traffic flows at border crossings. Alongside the ongoing roll-out of the European Border and Coast Guard, the reinforcement of the Schengen Borders Code reflects the EU’s joint commitment to preserving the freedom of movement within the Schengen area and ensuring the security of EU citizens. (For more information: Natasha Bertaud – Tel.: +32 229 67456; Tove Ernst – Tel.: +32 229 86764; Markus Lammert – Tel.: +32 229 80423)

Booking your holidays online: Commission and consumer protection authorities act on misleading travel booking websites

The European Commission and EU consumer protection authorities launched a coordinated screening of 352 price comparison and travel booking websites across the EU in October 2016, as these services were among the most frequent consumer complaints according to the European Consumer Centres. They found that prices were not reliable on 235 websites, two thirds of the sites checked. For example, additional price elements were added at a late stage of the booking process without clearly informing the consumer or promotional prices did not correspond to any available service. Věra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, said: “The Internet provides consumers with plenty of information to prepare, compare and book their holidays. However, if the reviews on comparison websites are biased or prices are not transparent, these websites are misleading consumers. The companies concerned need to respect the European consumer rules, just like a travel agent would. Consumer authorities will now require the websites to solve these issues. Consumers deserve the same protection online as offline.” Authorities have asked the websites concerned to bring their practices in line with EU consumer legislation, which requires them to be fully transparent about prices, and present their offers in a clear way, at an early stage of the booking process. A press release, a Q&A and a factsheet are available online. (For more information: Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253;Mélanie Voin – Tel.: +32 229 58659)

EU and Norway conclude negotiations to enhance trade of agricultural products 

The European Union and Norway came to an agreement which will facilitate bilateral trade in agricultural products, allowing EU exporters to reinforce their position on their 8th largest export market for agricultural products. Commissioner for agriculture, Phil Hogan, today said: “I welcome this agreement, which will facilitate trade between the EU and Norway. It will provide more market opportunities for our EU producers and contribute to the continuation of our EU agri-food export success. The EU is the number 1 agri-food exporter in the world with €130 billion of exports in 2016.” The agreement reached following two years of negotiations will grant mutual duty-free access for 36 tariff lines, including for example various types of live plants, corn for feed, various berries and fermented beverages such as perry and cider. As regards products such as meat, dairy, grains, vegetables and ornamental plants, the EU and Norway will grant each other tariff quotas. The draft agreements will now be forwarded to the relevant authorities in the EU and Norway, for scrutiny and formal adoption before their final entry into force. The exports of EU agricultural products to Norway have been steadily growing over the last decade and almost doubled during this period to €2.5 billion. Norway is a net importer of agricultural products and the agricultural trade balance is in favour of the EU. More information is available online.(For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tel.: +32 229 56185; Clémence Robin – Tel: +32 229 52509)

Plus de 48 000 producteurs laitiers européens ont réduit leur production grâce au programme lancé par la Commission européenne

Les résultats définitifs du programme européen de réduction de la production laitière révèlent que 48 288 agriculteurs à travers toute l’Union européenne ont réduit de manière volontaire leur production de lait de presque 861 000 tonnes d’octobre 2016 à janvier 2017, contribuant ainsi à une remontée des prix du lait. Lancé l’été dernier et financé par un budget de €150 million, ce programme est l’une des mesures phares mises en place par la Commission européenne pour faire face à la crise du secteur laitier. Les premiers résultats avaient déjà révélé une forte participation des producteurs laitiers à ce programme sans précédent. Le prix moyen du lait en Union européenne a augmenté de 31% depuis l’été dernier, jusqu’à atteindre 33,7 c/kg en février 2017. Les modalités du programme prévoient que les producteurs participants reçoivent €0,14 pour chaque kilogramme de lait non produit. Chaque Etat membre avait la possibilité de compléter cette somme avec des fonds européens distribués en juillet 2016 par la Commission européenne sous forme d’enveloppe nationale. Les chiffres de la participation à ce programme sont disponibles en ligne. (Pour plus d’informations: Daniel Rosario – Tel.: +32 229 56185; Clémence Robin – Tel: +32 229 52509)

Commission proposes €2.6 million from Globalisation Fund to support former Nokia workers in Finland

The European Commission has proposed to provide Finland with €2.6 million from the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) to help 821 former workers of Nokia Network Systems to find new jobs. The measures co-financed by the Globalisation Fund would help the former workers by providing them with career coaching and individual guidance; employment and business services; a variety of vocational trainings; services for new entrepreneurs and start-up grants; hiring incentives; training-related allowances; pay subsidy and contributions to removal costs. Marianne Thyssen, EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, commented: “The global ICT sector constantly requires a new, educated workforce, as the life cycle of products and related software solutions is very short. Therefore, the competition between companies in this globalised sector is fierce. Today’s decision will help 821 former Nokia Network Systems workers to develop new skills for new job opportunities. By helping these workers to manage their difficult transitions, the Globalisation Fund proves its worth once again in mitigating the negative effects of changing trade patterns.” Finland applied for support from the European Globalisation Fund following the dismissal of 945 workers in Nokia and three of its suppliers and downstream producers. These job losses were the result of fierce competition between the Finnish ICT sector and its competitors. The total estimated cost of the package is €4.4 million, of which the Globalisation Fund would provide €2.6 million. The proposal now goes to the European Parliament and the EU’s Council of Ministers for approval. (For more information: Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253; Sara Soumillion – Tel.: +32 229 67094)

State aid: Commission opens in-depth investigation into German plans for electricity capacity reserve

The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether German plans to set up an electricity capacity reserve comply with EU state aid rules. The Commission has concerns that the measure may distort competition and favour power plant operators over demand response operators. Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: “Reliable electricity supplies are crucial to a functioning economy and Germany has a legitimate interest to ensure security of supply for its citizens and businesses. It is our role to ensure that companies are granted state support only when it is truly necessary and in a manner that limits distortions of competition. We currently have a number of concerns regarding the need and design of the German strategic reserve. This is why we will investigate further and invite third parties to submit their views on the measure.” The Commission will now investigate further whether its initial concerns are justified. The opening of an in-depth investigation gives Germany and interested third parties an opportunity to submit comments. It does not prejudge the outcome of the investigation. A full press release is available online in EN, FR and DE. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso  – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Yizhou Ren  Tel.: +32 229 94889)

Concentrations: La Commission autorise la création par Bolloré Energy et Total Marketing France du dépôt Rouen Petit-Couronne

La Commission européenne a approuvé, en vertu du règlement européen sur les concentrations, la création d’une entreprise commune de plein exercice, gérant le Dépôt Rouen Petit-Couronne, par Bolloré Energy et Total Marketing France. Toutes les entreprises sont françaises. L’entreprise commune sera chargée du développement et de la gestion du dépôt de produits pétroliers à Petit-Couronne (Rouen). Bolloré Energy est active dans le secteur du stockage d’hydrocarbures et de la distribution de produits pétroliers. Total Marketing France est actif au niveau mondial dans l’exploration, la production, le transport, le stockage et la vente de pétrole et gaz naturel, ainsi que dans le secteur du raffinage des produits pétroliers et de la vente au détail et en gros de produits raffinés. La Commission a conclu que l’acquisition envisagée ne soulèverait pas de problèmes de concurrence car elle aura un impact limité dans l’Espace Economique Européen. La transaction a été examinée dans le cadre de la procédure simplifiée du contrôle des concentrations. De plus amples informations sont disponibles sur le site internet concurrence de la Commission, dans le registre public des affaires sous le numéro d’affaire M.8438. (Pour plus d’informations: Ricardo Cardoso  – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Tsoni  Tel.: +32 229 90526)

Commission addresses regulatory barriers for innovators by signing first Innovation Deal on water reuse

Today, the European Commission, together with 14 partners from national and regional authorities, universities, knowledge centres, innovators and end-users, delivers on its commitment to help innovators overcome perceived regulatory barriers by signing the first Innovation Deal on “Sustainable Waste Water Treatment Combining Anaerobic Membrane Technology (AnMbR) and Water Reuse”. Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “The Innovation Deals is an instrument towards a more modern and responsive administration that helps innovators facing regulatory obstacles to innovation in the existing EU legislative framework. Implementing Innovation Deals shows that we are changing as an institution, from only setting rules to being pragmatic and pro-active in helping achieve policy objectives through innovation”. Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries said: “This first ‘Innovation Deal’ on water helps in our push for a circular economy. It comes as we are about to check how European water policy is working. We want our policy to be simpler to put in place and easier to use. The Innovation Deal helps us do this”. The Innovation Deal will explore solutions to overcome the perceived barriers, what the impacts and consequences of the solutions may be and which stakeholders should be involved. The Commission may decide to start follow-up actions. More information in the News Alert will be available here from 13.00 and you can find more information on Innovation Deals here. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 2 298 01 00; Mirna Talko – Tel.: +32 229 87278; Maud Noyon – Tel.: +32 229 80379)




International Roma Day: Statement by First Vice-President Timmermans, Commissioner Thyssen, Commissioner Jourová and Commissioner Creţu

“Equal treatment and fundamental rights are the corner stones of the European Union. Roma have faced a long history of social exclusion and prejudice. Europe’s largest minority – with 6 million Roma living in the EU – continues to be discriminated against and marginalised. We are determined to continue the fight anti-gypsyism and to push for the full integration of Roma in all EU societies and countries. (…) As decided by Social Affairs Ministers in December 2016, the Commission will launch an evaluation of the EU Framework for National Roma Integration Strategies. This evaluation will assess the impact of the European and national instruments put in place so far and provide ideas on how to improve the strategy and make it more effective in promoting Roma inclusion. Integration and acceptance starts on an individual level, and we call on all EU citizens to acknowledge and embrace the equality of Roma and to recognise that Roma history and culture play a unique role.” The full statement is available online. (For more information: Christian Wigand – Tel.: +32 229 62253;Mélanie Voin – Tel.: +32 229 58659)




La Haute Représentante/Vice-Présidente Federica Mogherini se rend à Alger les 8 et 9 Avril

La Haute Représentante pour les affaires étrangères et la politique de sécurité/Vice-Présidente de la Commission européenne, Federica Mogherini, se rendra à Alger les 8 et 9 avril pour assurer le suivi du Conseil d’Association UE-Algérie qui a eu lieu le 13 mars 2017 à Bruxelles. Cette visite, à l’invitation du Ministre algérien des Affaires étrangères Mr Ramtane Lamamra, sera l’occasion de passer en revue les principaux dossiers qui constituent les Priorités de Partenariat dans les relations bilatérales UE-Algérie, telles qu’adoptées le 13 mars dernier. Cela sera aussi une opportunité pour explorer les moyens de renforcer davantage le dialogue et la coopération sur les défis régionaux actuels auxquels sont confrontés à la fois l’Europe et l’Algérie, en particulier en Libye, au Sahel, en Syrie, comme en matière de prévention et lutte contre le terrorisme et la radicalisation, ou sur les questions liées à la migration et à la mobilité. Lors de sa visite, la HR/VP rencontrera une série d’interlocuteurs, notamment le Premier Ministre algérien Mr Abdelmalek Sellal, le Ministre d’Etat, Ministre des Affaires étrangères et de la Coopération internationale, Mr Ramtane Lamamra et le Ministre des Affaires maghrébines, de l’Union africaine et de la Ligue des États arabes Mr Abdelkader Messahel. La HR/VP rencontrera également des représentants de la société civile et prononcera un discours à l’occasion du 30ème anniversaire du programme Erasmus à l’Université Algiers III. Toutes les opportunités de presse seront disponibles sur EbS. (Pour plus d’informations: Nabila Massrali  Tél.: + 32 229-69218; Lauranne Devillé  Tél.: +32 229-80833)


High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini travels to Lucca for G7

On Monday 10 and Tuesday 11 April, Federica Mogherini, the EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission will be in Italy to participate in the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Lucca. The focus of discussions will be on the main international issues of the day, including the situation in Syria, in light of recent developments and a week after the Brussels Conference on Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region. G7 participants will also discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the Middle East Peace Process, security in Asia, Iran, Africa, Iraq and Libya. Thematic topics for discussion include migration, maritime security, non-proliferation and disarmament, counter terrorism, climate change, peace and security in the framework of the United Nations, and cyber security. Whilst in Lucca, the High Representative will have several bilateral meetings, including with the Foreign Minister of Japan, Fumio Kishida, with whom she will discuss EU-Japan relations as well as the international response to repeated violations of UN Security Council Resolutions by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The European Union adopted additional restrictive measures to complement and reinforce the sanctions regime imposed by UNSC Resolutions on Thursday 6 April. (For more information: Maja Kocijancic – Tel: +32 229 86570; Adam Kaznowski – Tel: +32 229 89359)


Vice-President Ansip in Düsseldorf, Germany for the meeting of G20 Digital Ministers

Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip is in Düsseldorf, Germany, today for the meeting of G20 Digital Ministers. For the first time, G20 Digital Economy Ministers adopted a declaration this morning on the key issues for digital transformation. The text “Shaping Digitalisation for an Interconnected World” recognises the relevance of digital for guaranteeing inclusive economic development and endorses many elements already outlined in the EU’s Digital Single Market strategy. For example, strengthening trust in the digital world to enable free data flows, helping people to develop digital skills to harness the potential of global digitisation for inclusive growth and employment, and digitising production for growth. The Vice-President’s speech ahead of the signing ceremony can be found here. This afternoon, Vice-President Ansip will take part in the G20 Ministers working lunch, concentrating on digital entrepreneurship, startups and Micro and Small Medium Enterprises. Yesterday evening, the Vice-President participated in the G20 Ministers’ Working Dinner, focusing on digital skills, training and education. On the sidelines of the G20 event, Vice-President Ansip will meet the Japanese delegation to recognise the good cooperation in the dialogue for data protection and data flows between the EU and Japan. The Vice-President will also discuss cooperation options with the Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services of the Republic of South Africa, Siyabonga Cwele. (For more information: Johannes Bahrke – Tel.: +32 229 58615; Inga Höglund – Tel.: +32 229 50698)


Commissioner Malmström in Poland to participate in a Citizens’ Dialogue and discuss EU trade policy

Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström is in Warsaw today, where she is participating in a Citizens’ Dialogue at the Vistula University of Warsaw to discuss with students and others the benefits of the EU-Canada trade deal (CETA) for Poland. This dialogue is the 164th Citizens’ Dialogue with a Commissioner from the Juncker Commission, and is part of a CETA debate forum organised by a student team from the university. The event comes at a timely moment, as this agreement will soon enter into effect through provisional application following its approval by the European Parliament in February. This trade deal will bring new economic opportunities for Polish citizens and businesses by, for example, cutting nearly all tariffs for the roughly two thousand Polish companies currently exporting to Canada. It will create new economic benefits for farmers, food producers as well as car producers, and in sectors of the Polish economy such as cosmetics, fruit and vegetables, and luxury yachts. With 1.5 million Polish jobs depending on exports outside the EU, the Commissioner also set out in a speech the EU’s ambitious agenda of 20 ongoing trade negotiations, with partners such as Japan, Mexico and Southern American countries. In Warsaw, Commissioner Malmström is also meeting Mr Jerzy Kwieciński and Mr Tadeusz Kościński, Secretary and Undersecretary of State in the Ministry for Economic Development of Poland. Later, the Commissioner is visiting the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. The Citizens’ Dialogue, for which the Commissioner is joined by Mr Tadeusz Kościński, is web-streamed as of 11:00 here. A program of the CETA Forum is available online. (For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tel.: +32 229 56 185; Axel Fougner  Tel.: +32 229 57276)

Commissioner Arias Cañete in Rome for G7 Energy Ministerial Meeting

As part of the preparations for the gathering of the G7 leaders in Taormina, Sicily, on 26-27 May, Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action Miguel Arias Cañete will be in Rome from 9-10 April to represent the European Union at the G7 Energy Ministerial. The meeting will focus on energy security, including cybersecurity, natural gas and Ukraine; and on the new energy drivers such as renewables energy, sustainable alternatives fuels, energy efficiency and innovation in clean technologies. In the margins of the G7 Ministerial, Commissioner Arias Cañete will hold bilateral meetings with the US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry and the Canadian Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr. Ahead of the meeting, Commissioner Arias Cañete said: “The clean energy transition is now an irreversible process at global level. Putting energy high on the G7 agenda is key to cooperating beyond borders, and sends a strong joint message for more energy efficiency, clean energy technology, and innovation research and development. The EU will cooperate fully for more clean energy as a means to enhance sustainable growth, social inclusion and climate action”. A member of G7 since 1977, the EU is fully committed to developing a European Energy Union in line with the Paris Agreement to combat climate change. To this extent, last November the European Commission presented a ‘Clean Energy for All Europeans’ package (see IP/16/4009) in order to foster investments, unlock Europe’s growth potential and create jobs as the clean energy transition is changing global energy markets. The official press conference is expected to take place at 14:15 CET, see preliminary press programme. More information on the Italian G7 website. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen  Tel.: +32 229 56186; Nicole Bockstaller – Tel.: +32 229 52589)


The Commissioners’ weekly activities

Upcoming events of the European Commission (ex-Top News)

General Market

Motion for a resolution following the inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector – B8-2017-0177

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to Article 226 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU),

–  having regard to Decision 95/167/EC, Euratom, ECSC of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of 19 April 1995 on the detailed provisions governing the exercise of the European Parliament’s right of inquiry(1),

–  having regard to its Decision (EU) 2016/34 of 17 December 2015 on setting up a Committee of Inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector, its powers, numerical strength and term of office(2),

–  having regard to Regulation (EC) No 715/2007 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2007 on type approval of motor vehicles with respect to emissions from light passenger and commercial vehicles (Euro 5 and Euro 6) and on access to vehicle repair and maintenance information(3),

–  having regard to Directive 2007/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 September 2007 establishing a framework for the approval of motor vehicles and their trailers, and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles(4),

–  having regard to Directive 2008/50/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 May 2008 on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe(5),

–  having regard to its resolution of 27 October 2015 on emission measurements in the automotive sector(6),

–  having regard to its resolution of 13 September 2016 on the inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector (interim report)(7),

–  having regard to the final report of the Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector (A8-XXXX/2016),

–  having regard to the draft recommendation of the Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector,

–  having regard to Rule 198(12) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas Article 226 TFEU provides a legal basis for the establishment by the European Parliament of a temporary Committee of Inquiry to investigate alleged contraventions or maladministration in the implementation of Union law, without prejudice to the jurisdiction of national or Union courts, and whereas this constitutes an important element of the Parliament’s supervisory powers;

B.  whereas, on the basis of a proposal by the Conference of Presidents, Parliament decided on 17 December 2015 to set up a Committee of Inquiry to investigate the alleged failures in the application of Union law in relation to emission measurements in the automotive sector, and that the Committee would make any recommendations it deemed necessary on that matter;

C.  whereas the Committee of Inquiry started its work on 2 March 2016 and adopted its final report on 28 February 2017, setting out the methodology and the conclusions of its investigation;

D.  whereas the market share of diesel-powered passenger cars has grown in the European Union over recent decades to a level where these vehicles now represent more than half of new cars sold in almost every Member State; whereas this sustained growth in market share of diesel vehicles has also come about as a result of the EU climate policy, as diesel technology has an advantage over petrol engines when it comes to CO2 emissions; whereas, at the combustion stage, diesel engines, in comparison with petrol engines, produce far more pollutants, other than CO2, which are significantly and directly harmful to public health, such as NOx, SOx and particulate matter; whereas mitigation technologies for these pollutants exist and are deployed in the market;

E.  whereas current technology exists to meet the Euro 6 NOx standards for diesel vehicles, including with regard to real driving conditions and without having a negative impact on CO2 emissions;

F.  whereas best practices from the USA, with stricter emissions standards which apply for gasoline and diesel vehicles alike, and stricter enforcement policies, offer a standard to which the EU should aspire;

G.  whereas the protection of public health and the environment should be a shared societal concern and responsibility, in which all stakeholders, including the automobile sector, have an important role to play;

1.  Instructs its President to take the necessary measures to make public the final report of the Committee of Inquiry, in accordance with Rule 198(11) of its Rules of Procedure and Article 4(2) of Decision 95/167/EC;

2.  Calls on the Council and the Commission to ensure that the conclusions of, and the recommendations arising from, the inquiry are acted upon in practice, in accordance with Decision 95/167/EC;

3.  Calls on the Commission to submit to Parliament within 18 months of the adoption of this recommendation, and regularly thereafter, a comprehensive report on the action taken by the Commission and the Member States on the conclusions and recommendations of the Committee of Inquiry;

4.  Invites its President to instruct the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, and the Committee on Transport and Tourism to monitor the action taken on the conclusions and recommendations of the Committee of Inquiry, in accordance with Rule 198(13) of its Rules of Procedure;

5.  Invites its President to instruct the Committee on Constitutional Affairs to act upon the recommendations of the Committee of Inquiry as regards the limitations of Parliament’s right of inquiry;

Laboratory tests and real-world emissions

6.  Calls on the Commission to change its internal structure in such a way that, under the principle of collective responsibility, the portfolio of one single Commissioner (and Directorate-General) includes at the same time the responsibility for air quality legislation and for policies addressing the sources of pollutant emissions; calls for an increase in the human and technical resources dedicated to vehicles, vehicle systems and emission control technologies in the Commission, and for the Joint Research Centre (JRC) to further improve in-house technical expertise;

7.  Calls on the Commission, to this end, to change its internal structure and amend its division of responsibilities so that all the legislative responsibilities currently held by the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW) in the area of vehicle emissions are transferred to the responsibility of the Directorate-General for Environment (DG ENV);

8.  Calls on the Commission to ensure that there are adequate human resources and technical expertise and the appropriate level of autonomy in the JRC, including measures to keep relevant experience with vehicle and emissions technology and vehicle testing in the organisation; notes that the JRC may have additional verification responsibilities for requirements in the context of the proposal for a new market surveillance and type approval regulation;

9.  Calls for all JRC test results to be made available in full and in a non-anonymised format to the public through a database; calls, furthermore, for the JRC Vehicle Emissions Laboratory (VELA) to report to a supervisory board which includes representatives of the Member States and organisations for environmental and health protection;

10.  Calls on the co-legislators, in the context of the ongoing revision of Regulation (EC) No 715/2007, to ensure that the measures under Articles 5(3) and 14, which are designed to supplement or amend certain non-essential elements of the legislative act, are adopted by delegated acts, in order to ensure appropriate scrutiny by Parliament and the Council, while at the same time reducing the possibility of undue delays in the adoption of those measures; strongly opposes the choice whereby those measures are adopted by implementing acts;

11.  Calls for the swift adoption of the 3rd and 4th real driving emissions (RDE) packages to complete the regulatory framework for the new type-approval procedure, and for the swift application of this framework; recalls that, in order for RDE tests to be effective in reducing the discrepancies between the emissions measured in the laboratory and on the road, the specifications of the test and evaluation procedures should be set out very carefully and should cover a wide range of driving conditions, including temperature, engine load, vehicle speed, altitude, type of road and other parameters that can be found when driving in the Union;

12.  Takes note of the action for annulment against the 2nd RDE package initiated by several EU cities on the grounds that by introducing new increased thresholds for NOx emissions, the Commission Regulation alters an essential element of a basic act, thereby infringing an essential procedural requirement, as well as the provisions of the Air Quality Directive 2008/50/EC as regards the limitation of the maximum nitrogen emission levels for diesel vehicles;

13.  Urges the Commission to review in 2017 the conformity factor for RDE tests of NOx emissions, as provided for by the 2nd RDE package; calls on the Commission to further revise the conformity factor annually, in line with technological developments, so as to bring it as close to 1 as possible at the earliest opportunity, accounting only for the measurement uncertainty of Portable Emissions Measurement System (PEMS) equipment;

14.  Calls on the Commission to review the applicable Union law in order to ascertain whether the placing on the market of other vehicle systems, or of other products, could be dependent on inadequate test procedures, as in the case of vehicle emissions, or in other areas where market surveillance efforts are similarly lacking, and to come forward with appropriate legislative proposals to ensure the enforcement of internal market standards;

15.  Calls on the Commission to come forward with proposals to introduce environmental inspections at EU level to monitor compliance with environmental product standards, emission limits relating to operating permits and EU environmental law in general;

16.  Calls on the Commission to continue its work on improving PEMS performance in order to improve their accuracy and reduce their error margin; considers that for particulate matter PEMS technology should be able to account for particles whose size is smaller than 23 nanometres and that are the most dangerous to public health;

17.  Considers that the horizontal rules on the creation and operation of Commission expert groups adopted by the Commission on 30 May 2016 are an improvement over the older rules, for example as regards the requirement for meaningful and complete minutes of meetings; calls on the Commission to review those rules in order to strengthen the provisions on the balanced composition of expert groups; calls on the Commission to enforce the (updated) horizontal rules strictly and immediately, and to prepare a report to Parliament and the Council evaluating their implementation;

18.  Calls for lists of participants and minutes of the meetings of comitology committees such as the Technical Committee on Motor Vehicles (TCMV) and Commission expert groups such as the Motor Vehicles Working Group or the Real Driving Emissions – Light-Duty Vehicles (RDE-LDV) group to be made available to the public;

19.  Urges the Member States to ensure more transparency in access to documents of the TCMV meetings for their national parliaments;

20.  Calls on the Commission to substantially alter the existing policies of archiving and storing information, and to ensure that notes, inter-services communications, drafts and unofficial exchanges within the Commission, the Member States, the Council and their representatives will be archived by default; deplores the gaps in public records that have resulted from a far too narrow scope of documents primed for archiving, which requires active intervention in order for documents to be archived;

Defeat devices

21.  Considers that although the RDE procedure will minimise the risk of defeat device use, it will not completely prevent potential recourse to illegal practices; recommends therefore that, in line with the approach of the US authorities, a degree of unpredictability is built into the type-approval and in-service conformity testing in order to prevent any outstanding loopholes from being exploited and to ensure compliance throughout the lifecycle of a vehicle; welcomes, in this respect, the Testing Protocol for Defeat Devices included in the ‘Guidance on the evaluation of auxiliary emission strategies and the presence of defeat devices’ adopted by the Commission on 26 January 2017 and applicable to vehicles already on the market; expects the Member States’ national authorities to swiftly apply this protocol in their market surveillance activities and to conduct the recommended testing of vehicles under non-predictable variations of the standard testing conditions, such as ambient temperature, speed pattern, vehicle load and test duration, which may include ‘surprise testing’;

22.  Notes with concern that the official testing of CO2 emissions and fuel consumption of vehicles will still be limited to a laboratory test procedure (WLTP), which means that the illegal use of defeat devices continues to be possible and may remain undetected; urges the Commission and the Member States to establish remote fleet monitoring schemes – making use of roadside remote sensing equipment and/or on-board sensors – to screen the environmental performance of the in-service fleet and to detect possible illegal practices that might lead to continued discrepancies between the performance on paper and in the real world;

23.  Calls on the Commission to further analyse the reasons why the stricter defeat device provisions present in the legislation on heavy-duty vehicles were not included in the legislation on light-duty vehicles;

24.  Calls on the Commission to conduct an internal review to verify the claim that the JRC’s research findings and concerns discussed among the Commission’s services with regard to possible illegal practices by manufacturers never reached the higher levels of the hierarchy; calls on the Commission to report its conclusions to Parliament;

25.  Believes that a clear reporting mechanism within the Commission should be put in place to ensure that when non-compliances are identified by the JRC, they are reported to all relevant levels within the hierarchy of the Commission;

26.  Calls on the Commission to mandate the JRC to further investigate, together with the national authorities and independent research institutes, the suspicious emissions behaviour of several cars observed in August 2016;

27.  Calls on the Member States to require car manufacturers, in the context of the recently introduced obligation for car manufacturers to disclose their base and auxiliary emission strategies, to explain any irrational emissions behaviour of vehicles observed in testing and to demonstrate the need to apply the exemptions set out in Article 5(2) of Regulation (EC) No 715/2007; calls on the Member States to share the results of their investigations and the technical test data with the Commission and Parliament;

28.  Calls on the Commission to strictly monitor the enforcement by Member States of the exemptions to the use of defeat devices; welcomes, in this respect, the methodology for the technical evaluation of auxiliary emission strategies included in the Commission Guidance of 26 January 2017; calls on the Commission to launch infringements procedures as appropriate;

Type-approval and in-service conformity

29.  Calls, in the interests of consumer and environmental protection, for the swift adoption of the proposal for a Regulation on the approval and market surveillance of motor vehicles and their trailers (2016/0014(COD)), replacing the current framework directive on type approval, and for its entry into force no later than 2020; considers the preservation of the level of ambition of the original Commission proposal, in particular as regards the introduction of EU oversight of the system, to be the bare minimum required to improve the EU system; considers, furthermore, that a more comprehensive and coordinated system of type approval and market surveillance, involving EU oversight, joint audits and cooperation with and between national authorities, should be the objective to be achieved during the interinstitutional negotiations on the dossier;

30.   Considers that only stronger oversight at EU level can ensure that the EU legislation on vehicles is properly enforced and market surveillance activities in the EU are carried out in an efficient and effective manner; calls on the Commission to ensure the full and homogeneous implementation of the new type-approval and market surveillance framework, and to coordinate the work of national type-approval and market surveillance authorities and arbitrate in the event of disagreements;

31.  Calls for a drastic strengthening of market surveillance, on the basis of clearly defined rules and a clearer distribution of responsibilities in the new EU type-approval framework, in order to set up an improved, effective and functional system;

32.  Believes that EU oversight within the new framework for EU type approval should entail retesting, on an adequate scale, vehicles, systems, components and separate technical units already made available on the market in order to verify that they conform to the type approvals and to applicable legislation, using a wide range of tests on the basis of statistically relevant samples, and initiating corrective measures, including vehicle recalls, type-approval withdrawals and administrative fines; considers the JRC’s expertise instrumental in this task;

33.  In this regard, calls for the establishment of a European Vehicle Surveillance Agency;

34.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to assess the US practice of random off-production-line and in-service testing and to draw the necessary conclusions with regard to improving their market surveillance activities;

35.  Suggests that in the case of passenger vehicles, random market surveillance tests, including with unspecified test protocols, should be performed on at least 20 % of the new models put on the Union market each year as well as on a representative quantity of older models to verify whether the vehicles comply with the Union safety and environmental legislation on the road; believes that in choosing the vehicles to be tested at Union level, substantiated complaints should be followed up and third-party testing, remote sensing data, reports from periodic technical inspections and other information should be taken into account;

36.  Points out the need for systematic enforcement of conformity of production and in-use conformity of vehicles by the national authorities responsible, further coordinated and supervised at EU level; believes that the conformity of production and in-use conformity testing should be carried out by a technical service different from the one responsible for the type approval of the car in question and that in-house technical services should be excluded from performing the emissions test for type-approval purposes; urges the Member States to clarify once and for all which authority is in charge of market surveillance in their territory, to ensure this authority is aware of its responsibilities and to notify the Commission accordingly; believes that much closer cooperation and information-sharing between Member States’ market surveillance authorities and the Commission, including on national market surveillance plans, will enhance the overall quality of market surveillance in the EU and enable the Commission to identify weaknesses in national market surveillance systems;

37.  Believes that greater coordination and discussion between type-approval authorities and the Commission, in the form of a forum chaired by the Commission, will contribute to the promotion of good practices aimed at ensuring effective and harmonised implementation of the type-approval and market surveillance regulation;

38.  Believes that the possibility of an independent full review of type-approval results, including data from coast down tests, will improve the effectiveness of the framework, and that the relevant data should be accessible to relevant parties;

39.  Calls for the establishment of a fee structure to ensure proper and independent financing of type approval, market surveillance and activities of technical services; believes that type-approval authorities should be made responsible for checking the commercial and economic relations existing between car manufacturers and suppliers on the one hand and technical services on the other hand in order to prevent conflicts of interest;

40.  Draws attention to the US type-approval system – whereby fees collected from manufacturers to cover the cost of certification and compliance programmes are sent to the US Treasury, and the US Congress in turn allocates funds to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to implement its programmes – as a paradigm that may be useful for improving the independence of the EU system;

41.  Calls on the Commission and the co-legislators to consider also introducing testing with PEMS or in-service conformity checks, at least as a screening device, and to introduce a mandate for the JRC to conduct in-service conformity checks with PEMS in the context of the new type-approval framework;

42.  Calls on the co-legislators to establish, in the upcoming regulation on the approval and market surveillance of motor vehicles, an EU-wide remote sensing network to monitor the real world emissions of the car fleet and to identify excessively polluting vehicles in order to target in-service conformity checks and to trace cars that might be illegally modified with hardware (e.g. exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) switch-off plates, diesel particulate filter (DPF) or selective catalytic reduction (SCR) removal) or software (illegal chip tuning) modifications;

43.  Calls on the Commission to make use of its delegated powers set out in Article 17 of Directive 2014/45/EU on periodic roadworthiness tests for motor vehicles and their trailers so as to update the test methods for the periodic technical inspection of cars in order to measure the NOx emissions of cars;

44.  Believes that type-approval authorities, market surveillance authorities and technical services should carry out their duties; considers that they should therefore improve their level of competence significantly and continuously, and to that end calls for the establishment of regular, independent audits of their capabilities;

45.  Calls on the Commission to look into the possibility of making it mandatory for manufacturers to notify the Commission of their choice of technical service, so as to ensure that the Commission is fully aware of the situation;

46.  Calls on the Member States to require car manufacturers to disclose and justify their emissions strategies to type-approval authorities, such as is the case for heavy-duty vehicles;

47.  Calls on the Member States to analyse whether ‘standard’ solutions proposed by the manufacturer for repairing the vehicles equipped with fraudulent systems actually comply with the emissions regulations, and calls for random checks to be carried out on new vehicles which have been repaired;

Enforcement and penalties

48.  Calls for stricter and more effective enforcement of vehicle emission rules in the EU; proposes that the governance structure on car emissions be reformed without delay and brought into line with the other transport sectors;

49.  Recalls that emission measurement rules are set to achieve better air quality, which has not previously been achieved owing in part to weak law enforcement and in part to manipulation by certain car manufacturers; considers that the relevant authorities should take into consideration car emissions and data on air quality development to assess whether the intended goal has been reached;

50.  Suggests establishing a standing international cooperation framework with the United States (EPA) on emissions with a view to exchanging information and conducting joint surveillance actions; such actions are already in place for other products within the EU;

51.  Urges the Commission to launch infringement procedures against Member States that have not put in place effective market surveillance and a national system of penalties for infringements of EU law as required by the existing legislation;

52.  Suggests that the Commission should be empowered to impose on vehicle manufacturers effective, proportionate and dissuasive administrative fines and to order remedial and corrective actions where non-compliance of their vehicles is established; considers that the possible sanctions should include type-approval withdrawal and the establishment of EU-wide recall programmes;

53.  Believes that the resources levied by these fines should be held by the Member States for purposes of redress to persons negatively affected by the infringement, and other such activities to the benefit of consumers or, where appropriate, environmental protection within the Member States;

54.  Calls on the Member States to ensure that the provisions on penalties applicable for infringement by manufacturers of the provisions of Regulation (EC) No 715/2007 are effective, proportionate and dissuasive, and are communicated swiftly to the Commission;

55.  Calls on the Member States to apply more vigorous measures in the wake of the emissions cheating scandal; calls on the Member States and their type-approval authorities to examine the information on base and auxiliary emission control strategies – to be disclosed by the car manufacturers – for type-approved Euro 5 and Euro 6 cars displaying irrational emissions behaviour during testing programmes, and to check their conformity with the Commission’s interpretation guidelines on the defeat device provisions; calls on the Member States to apply the available sanctions in the event of non-conformity, including mandatory recall programmes and the withdrawal of type approvals; calls on the Commission to ensure a coordinated approach on recall programmes across the EU;

56.  Calls on the Member States and the Commission to clarify to the vehicle owners affected whether or not the vehicles involved have to be repaired, and the legal consequences ensuing from the repairs as regards compliance with emissions legislation, obligations concerning the technical inspection of vehicles, taxation, and the consequences of a potential reclassification of the vehicle, etc.;

57.  Notes that it is difficult to gather information on penalties in the Member States owing to the lack of statistics at national level; calls on the Commission and the Member States to gather regular statistics on this;

58.  Calls on the Member States and the Commission to reinforce European implementation mechanisms such as the European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law (IMPEL);

Consumer rights

59.   Calls on the Member States to ensure that consumers are provided with detailed and comprehensible information on the modifications made during recall programmes and maintenance checks in order to improve transparency for consumers and trust in the car market;

60.  Stresses that after recalls vehicles must conform to the legal requirements set out in EU legislation; also points out that other forms of reparation besides recall programmes should be considered; to this end, calls on the Commission to assess the EU rules in force on consumer protection and make proposals as appropriate;

61.  Emphasises the importance of providing consumers with realistic, accurate and robust information on their cars’ fuel consumption and pollutant emissions in order to raise awareness and support informed car purchase decisions; calls for EU action to provide consumers with information on pollutant emissions such as NOx and particulate matter;

Clean vehicles

62.  Calls on the Commission and the competent authorities in the Member States to fully engage in and implement a low-emission mobility strategy;

63.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to assess the effectiveness of current Low Emission Zones in cities, taking into account the failure of Euro standards for light-duty vehicles to reflect real world emissions, and to examine the benefit of introducing a label or standard for Ultra-Low-Emission Vehicles (ULEVs) that meet the emission limit values in real driving conditions;

64.  Calls on the Commission and the co-legislators to follow a more integrated approach in their policies to improve the environmental performance of cars, in order to ensure progress on both the decarbonisation and air quality objectives, such as by fostering the electrification or transition to alternative motorisations of the car fleet;

65.  Calls on the Commission, to that end, to review the Clean Power for Transport Directive and to come forward with a draft regulation on CO2 standards for the car fleets coming onto the market from 2025 onwards, with the inclusion of Zero-Emission Vehicles (ZEV) and ULEV mandates that impose a stepwise increasing share of zero- and ultra-low-emission vehicles in the total fleet with the aim of phasing out new CO2-emitting cars by 2035;

66.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to foster green public procurement policies through the purchasing of ZEVs and ULEVs by public authorities for their own fleets or for (semi-)public car-sharing programmes;

67.  Calls on the Commission to review the emissions limits set out in Annex I to Regulation (EC) No 715/2007 with a view to improving air quality in the Union and to achieving the Union ambient air quality limits as well as the WHO recommended levels, and to come forward by 2025 at the latest with proposals, as appropriate, for new technology-neutral Euro 7 emission limits applicable for all M1 and N1 vehicles placed on the Union market;

68.  Asks the Commission to consider the review of the Environmental Liability Directive (2004/35/EC) to include environmental damage caused by air pollution owing to car manufacturers violating the EU’s car emissions legislation; believes that if car manufacturers could be held financially liable for remedying the environmental damage they cause, an increased level of prevention and precaution might be expected;

Powers and limitations of the committee of inquiry

69.  Urges the Council and the Commission to engage in the timely conclusion of the negotiations on Parliament’s proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament on the detailed provisions governing the exercise of Parliament’s right of inquiry and repealing Decision 95/167/EC;

70.  Considers it vital for exercise of democratic control over the executive that Parliament be empowered with powers of inquiry that match those of national parliaments of the EU; believes that in order to exercise this role of democratic oversight Parliament must have the power to summon and compel witnesses to appear and to compel the production of documents; believes that in order for these rights to be exercised the Member States must agree to implement sanctions against individuals for failure to appear or produce documents in line with national law governing national parliamentary inquiries; reiterates Parliament’s support for the position outlined in the 2012 report on this issue;

71.  Considers that the powers of Parliament’s committees of inquiry should be better aligned with those of the national parliaments, in particular to ensure the effective summoning and participation of individuals and the application of sanctions in the event of refusal to cooperate; calls on the Commission and the Member States to support the related provisions in Parliament’s current proposal;

72.  Calls on the Commission to revise as a matter of urgency the Code of Conduct for Commissioners so as to include provisions on the accountability of former Commissioners within the scope of an investigation by a committee of inquiry into policy-making and legislation that took place during their term in office;

73.  Asks the Commission to use the time frame between the plenary decision to set up a committee of inquiry and the actual start of its work to prepare an initial set of documents which relate to the mandate of the committee of inquiry so that the delivery of information can be quicker, thus facilitating the work of the committee of inquiry from the start; considers with this in mind that the rules on archiving and transmitting documents in the Commission should be reviewed and improved in order to facilitate future queries;

74.  Suggests that a single contact point for relations with Parliament’s committees of inquiry be set up in the Commission, in particular when several Directorates-General are concerned, with a view to facilitating the flow of information on the one hand and building on the good practices achieved so far on the other;

75.  Notes that in several recent committees of inquiry and special committees, the Commission and the Council have in some cases failed to provide the documents requested and in other cases provided the requested documents only after long delays; considers that there must be an accountability mechanism introduced in order to ensure the immediate and guaranteed transfer of documents to Parliament that the committee of inquiry or special committee requests and is entitled to access;

76.  Calls on the Commission to improve its capacities to handle document requests from committees of inquiry as well as from journalists and citizens under respective applicable document access rules, in a timely manner and with an acceptable level of quality; urges the Commission to release these documents in their native format and refrain from time-consuming and potentially content-altering format changes and format conversions; further instructs the Commission to make sure that information that is stored in a machine-readable format, e.g. a database, is also released in a machine-readable format;

77.  Notes that it is the responsibility of the committee of inquiry to make any determinations as to whether information within the scope of a request is relevant for the work of the committee; notes that this task should not be pre-empted by the recipient of such a document request; instructs the Commission to properly reflect this responsibility in its guidelines on access to documents requests;

78.  Urges the Member States to respect their legal obligations towards committees of inquiry as laid down in Decision 95/167/EC, and specifically Article 3 thereof; also calls on them, given the significant delays in response rates encountered, to assist committees of inquiry in a manner respectful of the principle of sincere cooperation as laid down in Article 4(3) TFEU;

79.  Calls on those Member States that have undertaken national investigations on pollutant emissions from passenger cars to convey to the Commission and Parliament without delay the full data sets and results from their investigations;

80.  Considers that the first part of the committee’s mandate should be devoted to the collection and analysis of written evidence before the start of the public hearings; deems it useful to build in a ‘cooling-off’ period between the end of the hearings and the drafting of the final report so that the collection of evidence can be completed, properly analysed and included fully in the report;

81.  Considers that the 12-month time limit on committees of inquiry is arbitrary and often insufficient; believes that the members of the inquiry committee are best placed to determine whether an inquiry should be extended and, if so, for what period;

82.  Notes that Rule 198 of Parliament’s Rules of Procedure should define more clearly when the duration of a committee of inquiry should start; suggests that there should be sufficient flexibility to ensure that there is enough time for the investigations; calls for the work of the committee of inquiry to start only once the requested documents have been received from the EU institutions;

83.  Considers that an interim report should not necessarily be included in future mandates in order not to pre-empt the final conclusions of the inquiry;

84.  Considers that in the future committees of inquiry should be organised differently in order to ensure greater efficiency and effectiveness in organising and conducting the committees’ work, in particular during the public hearings;

85.  Underlines that Parliament’s internal administrative rules are aligned to the established practice of standing committees and as such are often not suited to the ad-hoc and temporary nature of a committee of inquiry, which operates under more unusual circumstances, with a very specific scope and during a limited time frame; considers, therefore, that the development of a defined set of rules relating to the effective functioning of committees of inquiry in regard to the conducting of hearings and missions, for example, in a way that guarantees fair political representation, would increase efficiency; considers that there is a risk that financial constraints may prevent committees of inquiry from hearing all the experts deemed necessary for the committee to perform its duty; considers that internal authorisation deadlines for hearings and missions should be made more flexible;

86.  Considers that committees of inquiry should have prioritised access and dedicated resources within the relevant Parliament services to enable the latter to deal in particular with requests for studies, briefings, etc. within the time frame allowed by the rules;

87.  Notes that the current rules on accessing classified and other confidential information made available by the Council, the Commission or the Member States to Parliament in the context of an inquiry do not provide full legal clarity but are generally interpreted as excluding accredited parliamentary assistants (APAs) from consulting and analysing non-classified ‘other confidential information’ in a secure reading room; notes that a number of Members have found that this rule stands in the way of effective and thorough consultation of such documents within the limited time available to committees of inquiry, and that the TAX2 Committee, during which access was temporarily and exceptionally granted to APAs, was able to make use of these resources in a more comprehensive and effective manner; calls, therefore, for the introduction of a clearly worded provision guaranteeing the right of access to documents for APAs on the basis of the ‘need to know’ principle, in their support role for Members, in a renegotiated Interinstitutional Agreement; urges the relevant bodies to expedite the renegotiation of this point so as not to hamper the effectiveness and efficiency of future and ongoing parliamentary inquiries;


°  °

88.  Instructs its President to forward this recommendation and the final report of the Committee of Inquiry to the Council and the Commission and to the parliaments of the Member States.


OJ L 113, 19.5.1995, p. 1.


OJ L 10, 15.1.2016, p.13.


OJ L 171, 29.6.2007, p. 1.


OJ L 263, 9.10.2007, p. 1.


OJ L 152, 11.6.2008, p. 1.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2015)0375.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2016)0322.

General Market

CALENDRIER du 30 novembre au 6 décembre 2015

(Susceptible de modifications en cours de semaine)

Déplacements et visites

Dimanche 29 novembre

Meeting of the EU heads of state or government with Turkey, in Brussels.


Lundi 30 novembre

Competitiveness Council, in Brussels (30/11-01/12).

President Jean-Claude Juncker, Ms Federica Mogherini and Mr Miguel Arias Cañete participate in the opening of COP21 United Nations Climate Change Conference, in Paris.

In the margins of COP21, President Jean-Claude Juncker holds bilateral meetings with Canadian Prime Minister, Mr Justin P.J. Trudeau and Ukrainian President, Mr Petro Poroshenko.

Mr Frans Timmermans receives Mr Henk Kamp, Minister for Economic Affairs of the Netherlands.

Mr Frans Timmermans receives representatives of the Green 10 environmental NGOs.

Mr Andrus Ansip in Luxembourg: takes part in the conclusions of workshops and informal exchange of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) Network meeting; addresses the Conference of Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC); meets with Ms Marietta Karamanli, rapporteure sur le projet de loi République numérique de l’Assemblée Nationale française; delivers a speech and participates in a discussion at LIV COSAC meeting (Conference of Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the European Union).

Mr Maroš Šefčovič participates in the viEUws live panel debate on the State of the Energy Union, in Brussels.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives a delegation from Intel.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives the executive leadership of Europeana (European Digital Library).

Johannes Hahn attends the IFIs (International financial institutions) South meeting addressing the opening and closing sessions, in Brussels.

Johannes Hahn receives Mr Ranko Krivokapić, President of the Parliament of Montenegro.

Ms Cecilia Malmström in Paris: delivers a speech at the Centenary Conference of the CCSF (Chambre de Commerce Suédoise en France).

Mr Karmenu Vella receives Mr Branimir Gvozdenović, Minister of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro.

Mr Karmenu Vella receives Mr Jeremy Wates, Secretary General of the European Environmental Bureau (EEB).

Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis is in the U.S. (30/11- 04/12). On 30/11 in Atlanta: meets with Mr Tom Frieden, Director of the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including a site visit.

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos in Sweden: meets with Mr Morgan Johansson, Minister for Justice and Migration, and Mr Anders Ygeman, Minister for Home Affairs.

Mme Marianne Thyssen rencontre Mr Bart Tommelein, Secrétaire d’Etat à la Lutte contre la fraude sociale en Belgique, à Bruxelles.

Mme Marianne Thyssen donne un discours lors de la conférence Benelux sur le rôle de la coopération régionale dans la lutte européenne contre le dumping social, à Bruxelles.

M. Pierre Moscovici reçoit des représentants des associations d’éditeurs belges de presse quotidienne et de magazines.

M. Pierre Moscovici conclue le colloque organisé par France Stratégie à l’Assemblée Nationale française sur le financement climatique, à Paris.

Mr Phil Hogan receives Mr Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

Mr Jonathan Hill receives Mr Troels Lund Poulsen, Danish Minister for Business and Growth.

Ms Corina Creţu meets with representatives of the European Regions, in Brussels.

Ms Margrethe Vestager receives Mr Emmanuel Macron, French Minister of Economy, Industry and Digital Affairs.

Mr Carlos Moedas delivers an opening speech at the stakeholder workshop of the high-level group on the European Open Science Cloud, in Brussels.

Mr Carlos Moedas delivers a speech at the seminar “EU Innovation Union Strategy and the Black Sea Region” at the European Parliament, in Brussels.


Mardi 1 décembre

President Jean-Claude Juncker receives Mr Emomali Rahmon, President of Tajikistan.

Mr Frans Timmermans receives Mr Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Ms Federica Mogherini receives Mr Stéphane Dion, Foreign Minister of Canada.

Ms Federica Mogherini receives Mr Witold Waszczykowski, Polish Foreign Minister.

Ms Federica Mogherini receives Mr Emomali Rahmon, President of Tajikistan.

Ms Federica Mogherini receives Mr Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Ms Federica Mogherini participates at the NATO Foreign Ministers meeting, in Brussels.

Ms Kristalina Georgieva receives Mr Børge Brende, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Norway.

Ms Kristalina Georgieva attends a meeting of the High-Level Group on Own Resources.

Ms Kristalina Georgieva receives Mr Philippe Le Houérou,Executive Vice-President and CEO of International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group.

Mr Andrus Ansip delivers a speech on Digital Single Market at the e-Government Conference on “Simple, secure & transparent public services”; Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg.

Mr Maroš Šefčovič receives Mr Cyril Muller, Vice-President of the World Bank Group for Europe and Central Asia.

Mr Maroš Šefčovič receives Mr Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Mr Valdis Dombrovskis delivers a speech at the conference “Completing the European Economic and Monetary Union Challenges and Opportunities for Belgium”, in Brussels.

Mr Jyrki Katainen presents the Investment Plan for Europe at the Competitiveness Council.

Mr Jyrki Katainen meets with Mr Robert Greifeld, CEO of Nasdaq, in Brussels.

Mr Jyrki Katainen receives Mr Benoît Battistelli, President of the European Patent Office.

Mr Günther Oettinger in Germany and Austria: speaks at the Conference “50 Years Copyright”, in Berlin; meets with Governor Wilfried Haslauer and State Parliamentary President, Ms Brigitta Pallauf, in Salzburg.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives the Management of the German Public Broadcaster, ARD.

Mr Johannes Hahn chairs the first high-level meeting between the European Commission and IFIs on enhanced cooperation for the enlargement and neighbourhood regions of Europe, in Brussels.

Mr Johannes Hahn receives Mr Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Ms Cecilia Malmström receives Mr Alexey Ulyukaev, Russian Minister of Economic Development and Mr Pavlo Klimkin, Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs, for trilateral talks between the European Union, Ukraine and the Russian Federation on the implementation of the Ukraine-European Union Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area.

Mr Karmenu Vella receives Mr Reineke Hameleers, Director of Eurogroup for Animals.

Mr Karmenu Vella receives Mr Luca Visentini, General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).

Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis is in the U.S. (30/11- 04/12). On 01/12 in Boston: attends an event at Harvard Faculty Club on transatlantic relations and food policy; meets with Professor Walter Willett, Chair of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard School; participates in a special session with Professor David Bloom’s class on ‘public health challenges in the EU’, at the Department of Global Health and Population from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health; visits the Sanofi-Genzyme headquarters.

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos in Paris: addresses the Committee on European Affairs of the French Assemblée Nationale.

Mr Christos Stylianides attends the opening of the Syria photo exhibition at the European Parliament, in Brussels.

Mr Phil Hogan delivers a speech at the EU Agricultural Outlook Conference, on “The CAP: meeting the major challenges”, at the Charlemagne building, in Brussels.

Mr Phil Hogan receives Mr Franz Fischler, President of the European Forum Alpbach, and former European Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries.

Mr Jonathan Hill in London: meets with Mr John McFarlane, Chairman of the board of TheCityUK; meets with Mr Jes Staley, CEO of Barclays; delivers a speech with Mr Pierre Gramegna, Luxembourg Finance Minister, at an event organised by TheCityUK; meets with Mr Mark Goldring, Executive Director of Oxfam UK.

Ms Elżbieta Bieńkowska takes part in the ITRE committee discussions on the 2016 work programme at the European Parliament, in Brussels.

Ms Elżbieta Bieńkowska receives Mr Loïc Armand, Cosmetics Europe President, and Mr John Chave, Director-General, to discuss the situation in the cosmetics sector.

Mr Tibor Navracsics receives Prof. Patrick Cunningham, Emeritus Professor of Genetics, Trinity College Dublin, and former Chief Scientific Advisor to the Irish Government, for a hand-over of the 7th Framework Programme ex-Post evaluation report on the Joint Research Centre.

Ms Corina Creţu receives Mr Siim Kallas, Chairman of the High-Level Group on Simplification.

Ms Corina Creţu and Ms Elżbieta Bieńkowska receive Mr Phil Wynn Owen, member of the Court of Auditors.

Mr Carlos Moedas meets with Ms Carmen Vela, Spanish Secretary of State for Innovation, in Brussels.

Mr Carlos Moedas meets with Ms Johanna Wanka, German Minister for Education, in Brussels.

Mr Carlos Moedas signs Tunisia’s Accession Agreement to the Horizon 2020 programme with Mr Chiheb Bouden, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research of Tunisia, followed by a bilateral meeting.

Mercredi 2 décembre

College meeting, in Brussels.

European Parliament plenary session, in Brussels.

President Jean-Claude Juncker receives Mr Nguyễn Tấn Dũng, Prime Minister of Vietnam.

President Jean-Claude Juncker receives Mr José Maria Neves, Prime Minister of Cape Verde.

President Jean-Claude Juncker receives Ms Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, Vice-president of Les Républicains.

Ms Federica Mogherini participates in the signature of the agreement between the European Union and the Republic of Colombia on the short-stay visa waiver, followed by a bilateral with Mr Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia.

Ms Kristalina Georgieva hosts a Budget focused on results meeting with special speaker Ms Mari Kiviniemi, Deputy Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Ms Kristalina Georgieva receives Mr Kees Vendrik, Vice-President of the Court of Audit of the Netherlands.

Ms Kristalina Georgieva attends a meeting of the Irish women working in the EU.

Mr Andrus Ansip, Ms Elżbieta Bieńkowska and Mr Carlos Moedas speak at AmCham EU’s 3rd Annual Transatlantic Digital Economy Conference, in Brussels.

Mr Valdis Dombrovskis participates in Economic and Financial Affairs Committee at the European Parliament, in Brussels.

Mr Jyrki Katainen speaks at the Economic Ideas Forum in Brussels at a roundtable entitled “The Collaborative Economy as a Driver of Growth and Jobs”.

Mr Jyrki Katainen receives Mr Matti Lievonen, CEO of Neste.

M. Günther Oettinger reçoit Mme Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, Vice-présidente du groupe Les Républicains.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives Mr Klaus Dieter Rennert, Chief Executive EMEA – CIS.

Ms Cecilia Malmström receives Mr Nguyễn Tấn Dũng, Prime Minister of Vietnam.

Mr Miguel Arias Cañete receives Mr Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia.

Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis is in the U.S. (30/11- 04/12). On 02/12 in Washington: meets with U.S. agriculture and industry organisationson EU experience on food safety and EU efforts to fight antimicrobial resistance; attends George Washington University, School of Public Health, Department seminar on EU activities on antimicrobial resistance; meets with Ms Sylvia Burwell, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, and senior US Health officials.

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos receives Mr Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia.

Mr Pierre Moscovici rencontre M. François Hollande, Président de la République française, à Paris.

Mr Phil Hogan receives Mr Michel Nalet, President of the European Dairy Association.

Mr Jonathan Hill receives Mr Robert Greifeld, CEO of Nasdaq.

Mr Jonathan Hill receives representatives of Luxembourg Bankers’ Association (ABBL).

Mr Tibor Navracsics receives Mr Vinko Puljic, the Cardinal of Sarajevo.

Mr Carlos Moedas attends the meeting of the network on EU Budget focused on results.


Jeudi 3 décembre

Justice and Home Affairs Council, in Brussels (03-04/12).

Mr Frans Timmermans, Mr Jyrki Katainen, Mr Günther Oettinger and Mr Carlos Moedas attend the meeting of CEOs of the Business Europe Advisory and Support Group at the Berlaymont building, in Brussels.

Mr Frans Timmermans receives Ms Meinie Nicolai, President of Médecins sans Frontières Belgium.

Ms Federica Mogherini participates in the OSCE Ministerial political dialogue, in Belgrade.

Mr Andrus Ansip visits London: meets with Mr John Whittingdale, Secretary State for Culture, Media and Sport and Mr Ed Vaizey, Minister of State for Culture, Communications and Creative Industry; takes part in the Public and formal evidence session of the House of Lords and has a Roundtable Discussion on copyright with UK Film Industry (at Double Negative Visual Effects).

Mr Maroš Šefčovič on Energy Union Tour to Rome, Italy (03-04/12): meets with Ms Federica Guidi, Minister for Economic Development; participates in the parliamentary hearing with Industrial, Environment and European Committees of the Chamber of Deputies and the Italian Senate; participates in the Citizens’ dialogue together with Mr Gian Luca Galletti, Minister of Environment; gives a keynote speech at the “Confindustria” (Confederazione generale dell’industria italiana) event; meets with the CEOs of Eni, Terna, Enel and Edison.

Mr Valdis Dombrovskis attends a meeting of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank, in Frankfurt.

Mr Valdis Dombrovskis on a European Semester visit to Poland (03-04/12): meets with Mr Mateusz Morawiecki, Deputy Prime Minister of Poland; meets with social partners and members of the Polish Parliament.

Mr Jyrki Katainen receives Mr Joel Kaplan, Vice-President, Global Public Policy, Facebook.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives Mr Matthias Brückmann, CEO of EWE.

M. Günther Oettinger reçoit M. Jean-Bernard Lévy, Président-Directeur général d’EDF.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives Prof. Reimund Neugebauer, Frauenhofer Institut.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives Mr Joel Kaplan, Vice-President, Global Public Policy, Facebook.

Mr Günther Oettinger delivers a speech at “Media Leaders 2015”, in Berlin.

Mr Johannes Hahn receives Mr Volkan Bozkır, Turkish Minister of European Union Affairs.

Mr Johannes Hahn receives Ms Johanna Mikl-Leitner, Austrian Minister of Interior.

 Ms Cecilia Malmström in Berlin for Citizens’ Dialogue on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

Mr Neven Mimica is in Ivory Coast (03-04/12): holds a series of bilateral meetings.

Mr Miguel Arias Cañete receives Mr Vagit Alekperov, President of Lukoil.

Mr Karmenu Vella in Paris, France (03-04/12): attends Association française des entreprises privées (AFEP) COP21 side-event on Circular Economy and Climate Change.

Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis is in the U.S. (30/11- 04/12). On 03/12 in Washington: meets with Congresswoman Louise Slaughter; meets with senior officials of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); meets with Mr Michael Froman, U.S. Trade Representative, and senior US Trade officials; attends an event on antimicrobial resistance (with U.S. Administration, NGOs, consumer organisations, farmer associations, retailers, industry associations).

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos participates in the 115th plenary session of the Committee of the Regions.

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos receives Ms Johanna Mikl-Leitner, Minister of the Interior of Austria.

Mr Dimitris Avramopoulos, together with Ms Vĕra Jourová, launches the EU Internet Forum in the margins of the Justice and Home Affairs Council, in Brussels.

Ms Marianne Thyssen is in Sofia, Bulgaria (03-04/12): participates in Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) summit with European and Asian Labour Ministers; meets with Mr Boyko Borisov, Prime Minister.

M. Pierre Moscovici reçoit M. Jean-Bernard Lévy, Président-Directeur Général du groupe Électricité de France (EDF).

Mr Pierre Moscovici receives Mr Jürgen Fitschen and Mr Michael Kemmer, President and General Manager of the Federal Association of German Banks (Bundesverband Deutscher Banken).

Mr Phil Hogan in Munich: attends the “Jubiläum 70 Jahre Bayerischer Bauernverband” (70th Anniversary of the Bavarian Farmers Association).

Mr Jonathan Hill participates in the CMU Forum, hosted by Euromoney, in Brussels.

Mr Jonathan Hill receives Mr Hans Peter Wollseifer, President, Zentralverbands des Deutschen Handwerks.

Ms Vĕra Jourová meets with Mr Jari Lindström, Minister of Justice and Employment of Finland, in Brussels.

Ms Vĕra Jourová meets with Mr Ard van der Steur, Minister of Security and Justice of Netherlands, in Brussels.

Mr Tibor Navracsics participates in an inter-parliamentary Conference on Education and Youth Policies at the European Parliament, in Brussels.

Mr Tibor Navracsics meets with trainees at the European Parliament, in Brussels. 

Mr Carlos Moedas receives Prof. Reimund Neugebauer, President of Fraunhofer Gesellschaft.


Vendredi 4 décembre

Mr Maroš Šefčovič on Energy Union Tour to Rome, Italy (03-04/12): gives a keynote speech at the conference organised by IAI (Istituto Affari Internazionali); meets with Mr Paolo Gentiloni, Minister for Foreign Affairs; meets with Mr Guido Bortoni, President of the Italian Electricity and Gas Regulatory Authority.

Mr Jyrki Katainen in Helsinki, Finland: speaks at the event Kiertotalous EU:ssa – kansainvälisen yhteistyön rakennuspalikat – “Circular Economy in EU – the building blocks of international cooperation”; meets with Mr Sauli Niinistö, President of Finland; meets with Mr Juha Sipilä, Prime Minister of Finland.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives members of the European Bureau of Library Information and Documentation Associations, EBLIDA.

Mr Günther Oettinger receives Mr Klaus Hommels, CEO of Lakestar.

Ms Cecilia Malmström receives representatives of BEUC (Bureau Européen des Unions de Consommateurs/European Consumer Organisation).

Mr Karmenu Vella in Paris, France (03-04/12): participates in the Oceans Day event at COP21 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC); meets with Ms Catherine Novelli, U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment.

Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis is in the U.S. (30/11- 04/12). On 04/12 in Washington: meets with Mr Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture; meets with Dr John Holdren, Director for Science at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Dr Jo Handelsman, Associate Director for Science at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Ms Marianne Thyssen is in Sofia, Bulgaria (03-04/12): participates in Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) summit with European and Asian Labour Ministers; meets with Mr Ivaylo Kalfin, Minister of Labour; visits the European Social Fund project.  

M. Pierre Moscovici participe à une table ronde sur le financement climatique au Pavillon de l’Union Européenne de la COP 21, Le Bourget, France.

Mr Phil Hogan in Ireland: addresses the Agricultural European Innovation Partnership (EIP-AGRI) Seminar on “Promoting creativity and learning through agricultural knowledge systems and interactive innovation”, in Meath; meets with Ms Margaret Ritchie, Member of Parliament for South Down, Ireland, and Mr Joe Byrne, SDLP Chairman and agriculture and rural development spokesman, in Dublin.

Mr Jonathan Hill in Venice: meets with Mr Pier Carlo Padoan, Italian Minister of Economy and Finances; meets with Mr Riccardo Donadon, CEO of H-Farm.

Ms Vĕra Jourová receives Mr Joel Kaplan, Vice-President, Global Public Policy, Facebook.

Ms Vĕra Jourová receives Ms Julie Brill, Commissioner of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.  

Ms Corina Creţu receives Mr Emiliano Garcia Page, President of the Spanish Region of Castilla La Mancha.

Mr Carlos Moedas is in Lund, Sweden: participates in the “Lund Revisited: Tackling Societal Challenges” conference, where he will deliver an opening speech entititled: “The Political challenge: How to address the grand societal challenges in an aligned way.”


Samedi 5 décembre


Dimanche 6 décembre

Mr Maroš Šefčovič mets Mr Arseniy Yatseniuk, Prime Minister of Ukraine in Brussels.

Prévisions du mois de décembre:

07/12 Eurogroup, in Brussels

08/12 Economic and Financial Affairs Council, in Brussels

08/12 Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council, in Brussels

09/12 Informal meeting of Ministers for Development Cooperation, in Luxembourg

10-11/12 Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, in Brussels

14-15/12 Agriculture and Fisheries Council, in Brussels

14-17/12 European Parliament plenary session, in Strasbourg

15/12 General Affairs Council, in Brussels

15/12 Foreign Affairs Council “Trade”, in Brussels

16/12 Environment Council, in Brussels

17-18/12 European Council, in Brussels

Permanence DG COMM le WE du 28 au 29 novembre:

Lucia Caudet, +32 (0)460 756 182     

Permanence RAPID – GSM: +32 (0) 498 982 748

Service Audiovisuel, planning studio – tél. : +32 (0)2/295 21 23