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 Full text 
Wednesday, 17 May 2017 - Strasbourg Revised edition

Agreement between the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway on an EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021 - Increase in Norwegian duties on agricultural products/recent negotiations on the fish trade protocol

  Artis Pabriks, on behalf of the PPE Group. – Mr President, I think that this discourse and discussion today, at 10 o’clock in the evening, could very well have been spared if cooperation between Parliament and the Commission were better. I really very much and sincerely hope that what is happening now, regarding the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA) and the discussion between the Commission and this Parliament, is not a pattern of passivity on the part of the Commission, firstly in defending the interests of European nations and the European Union and, secondly, in having a respectful attitude towards this Parliament.

These are two major complaints from the European People’s Party (PPE). We were not satisfied, Commissioner, with your proposal, or the fact that you have already been going on with this agreement without prior consultation with us. You are putting us in the position, in the current political circumstances, where we are speaking about the irrelevance of Parliament and, at the same time, you are trying to drive us into a discussion where you are presenting – this evening too – everything that has already been mentioned in the explanatory statement. We already knew all that!

Secondly, I think the pattern that we see here can also be seen in the passivity of the Commission regarding activities in the Arctic area and in the Commission office responsible for international affairs. We also see that in cases where we need to defend, for instance, our fishermen, who have already been arrested for half a year in Norwegian ports. So in this regard, we really would like to see in future a much more proactive and cooperative role from the Commission side, otherwise it will be very difficult for us to cooperate.

It has nothing to do with Norway, in this case. It is to do with you not responding in a timely fashion, and not defending in a timely fashion the interests which we are asking you to defend.

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