Index 
Texts adopted
Wednesday, 5 October 2016 - StrasbourgFinal edition
Accession of Peru to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
 Accession of Kazakhstan to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
 Accession of Korea to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
 Global goals and EU commitments on nutrition and food security in the world
 European Public Prosecutor’s office and Eurojust
 Need for a European reindustrialisation policy in light of the recent Caterpillar and Alstom cases

Accession of Peru to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
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European Parliament legislative resolution of 5 October 2016 on the proposal for a Council decision authorising the Republic of Austria and Romania to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of Peru to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (COM(2016)0367 – C8-0234/2016 – 2016/0168(NLE))
P8_TA(2016)0372A8-0267/2016

(Consultation)

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the proposal for a Council decision (COM(2016)0367),

–  having regard to Article 38, fourth paragraph, of the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Article 81(3) and Article 218(6), second subparagraph, point (b), of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C8‑0234/2016),

–  having regard to the opinion of the Court of Justice(1) on the exclusive external competence of the European Union for a declaration of acceptance of an accession to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Rules 59 and 108(7) of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Legal Affairs (A8-0267/2016),

1.  Approves the authorisation for the Republic of Austria and Romania to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of Peru to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction;

2.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States and of Peru, as well as to the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law.

(1) Opinion of the Court of Justice of 14 October 2014, 1/13, ECLI:EU:C:2014:2303.


Accession of Kazakhstan to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
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European Parliament legislative resolution of 5 October 2016 on the proposal for a Council decision authorising certain Member States to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of Kazakhstan to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (COM(2016)0368 – C8-0232/2016 – 2016/0169(NLE))
P8_TA(2016)0373A8-0268/2016

(Consultation)

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the proposal for a Council decision (COM(2016)0368),

–  having regard to Article 38, fourth paragraph, of the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Article 81(3) and Article 218(6), second subparagraph, point (b), of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C8‑0232/2016),

–  having regard to the opinion of the Court of Justice(1) on the exclusive external competence of the European Union for a declaration of acceptance of an accession to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Rules 59 and 108(7) of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Legal Affairs (A8-0268/2016),

1.  Approves the authorisation for certain Member States to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of Kazakhstan to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction;

2.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States and of Kazakhstan, as well as to the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law.

(1) Opinion of the Court of Justice of 14 October 2014, 1/13, ECLI:EU:C:2014:2303.


Accession of Korea to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction *
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European Parliament legislative resolution of 5 October 2016 on the proposal for a Council decision authorising certain Member States to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of the Republic of Korea to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (COM(2016)0372 – C8-0233/2016 – 2016/0173(NLE))
P8_TA(2016)0374A8-0266/2016

(Consultation)

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the proposal for a Council decision (COM(2016)0372),

–  having regard to Article 38, fourth paragraph, of the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Article 81(3) and Article 218(6), second subparagraph, point (b), of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C8‑0233/2016),

–  having regard to the opinion of the Court of Justice(1) on the exclusive external competence of the European Union for a declaration of acceptance of an accession to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction,

–  having regard to Rules 59 and 108(7) of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Legal Affairs (A8-0266/2016),

1.  Approves the authorisation for certain Member States to accept, in the interest of the European Union, the accession of the Republic of Korea to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction;

2.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, and of the Republic of Korea, as well as to the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law.

(1) Opinion of the Court of Justice of 14 October 2014, 1/13, ECLI:EU:C:2014:2303.


Global goals and EU commitments on nutrition and food security in the world
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European Parliament resolution of 5 October 2016 on the next steps towards attaining global goals and EU commitments on nutrition and food security in the world (2016/2705(RSP))
P8_TA(2016)0375B8-1042/2016

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, in particular Article 25 thereof, which recognises the right to food as part of the right to an adequate standard of living,

–  having regard to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, in particular Article 11 thereof, which recognises the right to ‘an adequate standard of living, including adequate food’ and the ‘fundamental right to be free from hunger’,

–  having regard to the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, adopted in 2008, which makes the right to food enforceable at international level,

–  having regard to the Rome Declaration on World Food Security, adopted at the 1996 World Food Summit in Rome convened by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO),

–  having regard to the Right to Food Guidelines, adopted in 2004 by the FAO, which offer guidance to states on how to implement their obligations as regards the right to food,

–  having regard to the FAO study entitled ‘Global food losses and food waste’, published in 2011, which provides accurate information on the amount of food wasted and lost every year,

–  having regard to the Second International Conference on Nutrition, held in Rome from 19 to 21 November 2014, and its Outcome Documents, namely the Rome Declaration on Nutrition and the Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises,

–  having regard to the G8 L’Aquila Food Security Initiative of 2009,

–  having regard to the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement, which seeks to harness the capability and willingness of international stakeholders to support national government-led initiatives and priorities to tackle undernutrition,

–  having regard to World Health Assembly (WHA) resolution No 65.6 of 2012 on a ‘Comprehensive implementation plan on maternal, infant and young child nutrition’,

–  having regard to the UN Secretary-General’s Zero Hunger Challenge, launched at Rio+20, calling on governments, civil society, faith communities, the private sector and research institutions to unite to end hunger and eliminate the worst forms of malnutrition,

–  having regard to UN General Assembly Resolution A/RES/70/259 of 1 April 2016, entitled ‘United Nations Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2025)’, which aims to trigger intensified action to end hunger and eradicate malnutrition worldwide, and ensure universal access to healthier and more sustainable diets – for all people, whoever they are and wherever they live,

–  having regard to UN General Assembly Resolution A/RES/70/1 of 25 September 2015, entitled ‘Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’,

–  having regard to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their interconnected and integrated nature, in particular SDG 1 (to end poverty in all its forms everywhere), SDG 2 (to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture), and SDG 12 (to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns),

–  having regard to the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation of 1 December 2011(1), in particular paragraph 32 thereof, which refers to the need to ‘recognise the central role of the private sector in advancing innovation, creating wealth, income and jobs, mobilising domestic resources and in turn contributing to poverty reduction’ (SDG 1),

–  having regard to Article 21 of the Treaty on European Union, which states that EU external action must contribute to sustainable development goals, human rights and gender equality,

–  having regard to Article 208 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, which reaffirms that the Union must take account of the objectives of development cooperation in the policies that it implements which are likely to affect developing countries,

–  having regard to the Food Assistance Convention, which was ratified by the European Union on 13 November 2013,

–  having regard to the Global Nutrition for Growth Compact, endorsed at the Nutrition for Growth Summit in London on 8 June 2013,

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 3 October 2012 entitled ‘The EU approach to resilience: learning from food security crises’ (COM(2012)0586),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 12 March 2013 entitled ‘Enhancing Maternal and Child Nutrition in External Assistance: an EU Policy Framework’ (COM(2013)0141), and to the Council Conclusions on Food and Nutrition Security in external assistance of 28 May 2013,

–  having regard to the Action Plan on Nutrition – Reducing the number of stunted children under five by 7 million by 2025 (SWD(2014)0234), adopted by the Commission in 2014,

–  having regard to the first progress report on the Commission’s Action Plan on Nutrition,

–  having regard to the report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 2 December 2014, entitled ‘Implementing EU food and nutrition security policy commitments: first biennial report’ (COM(2014)0712),

–  having regard to the joint EU, FAO and World Food Programme (WFP) global assessment of March 2016, entitled ‘Global analysis of food and nutrition security situation in food crisis hotspots’,

–  having regard to the Committee on World Food Security’s Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security of 11 May 2012,

–  having regard to the Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises (FFA)(2),

–  having regard to its resolution of 7 June 2016 on the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition(3),

–  having regard to its resolution of 27 September 2011 on an EU policy framework to assist developing countries in addressing food security challenges(4),

–  having regard to its resolution of 27 November 2014 on child undernutrition and malnutrition in developing countries(5),

–  having regard to its resolution of 30 April 2015 on Milano Expo 2015: Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life(6),

–  having regard to the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact of 15 October 2015(7), as put forward by Milan City Council and signed by 113 cities around the world, which was submitted to the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, and illustrates the key role played by cities in food policy-making,

–  having regard to the question to the Commission on the next steps towards attaining global goals and EU commitments on nutrition and food security in the world (O-000099/2016 – B8‑0717/2016),

–  having regard to the motion for a resolution of the Committee on Development,

–  having regard to Rules 128(5) and 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas SDG 2 and its associated targets aim at ending hunger and malnutrition by 2030, notably by securing opportunities for and increasing the productivity of smallholders, and achieving sustainable and climate-resilient agriculture and food systems, which are capable of feeding an expected global population of 8,5 billion by 2030 while protecting biodiversity, the environment, and smallholders’ interests and wellbeing;

B.  whereas smallholder farmers, through their investments and production, constitute the biggest private sector actor in the field of agriculture, food security and nutrition;

C.  whereas the human right to food can only be fully achieved when poverty and inequality are drastically reduced, equality is ensured and resilience to shocks is enhanced, in particular by setting up rights-based social safety nets and ensuring the full participation of vulnerable groups and secure access to and control of land, and management of resources and other productive assets, for smallholders and pastoralist communities;

D.  whereas industrial agricultural production has led to increased greenhouse gas emissions, an extension of monocultures and thus to a significant loss of agrobiodiversity and to accelerated soil erosion, while family farmers and smallholders have demonstrated their ability to provide diversified products and to increase food production sustainably by means of agro-ecological practices;

E.  whereas progress in reducing malnutrition has been made but remains too slow and uneven, and whereas 795 million people in the world currently do not get enough food to lead a decent, active life; whereas one in three people are malnourished in one form or another;

F.  whereas in 2012 the WHA endorsed a set of six global nutrition targets for 2025, namely to achieve a 40 % reduction in the number of children under five who are stunted, a 50 % reduction of anaemia in women of reproductive age, a 30 % reduction in low birth weight, prevention of an increase in childhood overweight, an increase in the rate of exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months of at least 50 % and a reduction in childhood wasting to less than 5 %;

G.  whereas breastfeeding is the most natural and the best food supply for newborn babies and young children, especially in developing countries, but ignorance of the practice and cultural reservations still result in insufficient numbers of babies being breastfed;

H.  whereas at the Nutrition for Growth Summit in 2013, the EU committed to reducing stunting by at least 7 million by 2025 and pledged EUR 3,5 billion for the 2014-2020 period to achieve this target;

I.  whereas inadequate nutritious intakes during the first 1 000 days of a child’s life has crucial health, social and economic consequences, and whereas one in six children in the world is underweight, 41 million children under five are overweight or obese, and malnutrition is the cause of around 45 % of under-five deaths, which translates to the unnecessary loss of about 3 million young lives a year; whereas chronic undernutrition affects around 161 million children in the world;

J.  whereas women are often more vulnerable to nutrient deficiency, with several severe consequences, which include undermining their productivity and ability to provide for their families, thus perpetuating the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition;

K.  whereas the world population is expected to reach 8,5 billion by 2030;

L.  whereas effective measures to combat land grabbing in developing countries, including through concrete options to ensure land tenure security, are essential for attaining global goals and EU commitments on nutrition and food security in the world;

M.  whereas undernutrition and poor diet are by far the largest risk factors responsible for the global burden of disease;

N.  whereas combating malnutrition entails developing a sustainable agricultural policy that privileges diversification of crops, with a view to supplying nutritious food and diversifying diets; whereas, to this end, control, ownership and affordability of seeds are essential to the food security resilience of smallholders and family farmers;

O.  whereas the fulfilment of the right to food depends, among other things, on access to land and other productive resources;

P.  whereas investment trade agreements could have a detrimental effect on food security and malnutrition if the leasing or selling off of arable land to private investors results in local populations being deprived of access to productive resources indispensable to their livelihoods, or if it results in large portions of food being exported and sold on international markets, thereby making the exporting host state more dependent on – and more vulnerable to – the fluctuation of commodity prices on international markets;

Q.  whereas biofuel production has introduced a new pressure into the global food system, providing competition for land and water;

R.  whereas the unsustainable production of meat impacts negatively on food security; whereas one third of the world’s cereals are being used as animal feed, while the expansion of pastures and food crops is a major source of deforestation, especially in South America(8);

S.  whereas 240 million people across 45 low income countries and/or conflict-affected countries are suffering from food and water stress and 80 million are affected by a food crisis, including 41,7 million due to the 2016 El Niño, the strongest observed in decades;

T.  whereas according to UNICEF, 2 000 children aged under five are already dying every day of illnesses caused by water pollution, and whereas half of the world’s hospital beds are occupied by people suffering from illnesses caused by the poor quality of drinking water;

U.  whereas by 2050, 70 % of the world’s population will live in cities and a combined global and local approach to nutrition will be more vital than ever before;

V.  whereas nutrition security is a crucial precondition of sustainable and inclusive growth, as the economic consequences of malnutrition may represent losses of around 10 % of GDP annually, and whereas, according to the 2015 Global Nutrition Report by the FAO, every dollar spent on scaling up nutrition interventions yields a return of 16 dollars;

W.  whereas privatisation of seeds through IPR clauses and GMOs threaten countries’ food sovereignty;

1.  Reaffirms the importance of genuinely coordinated and accelerated actions among global, national, local, governmental, non-governmental and private actors, including scientific and industrial research bodies, and among donors, to address malnutrition in order to fulfil the 2030 Agenda and to attain SDG 2 to end hunger; urges the international community, the EU and developing countries to refrain from designing nutrition strategies based on calorie intake alone and prescription of medical remedies (such as nutrition pills), but to address root causes of hunger and malnutrition; emphasises in this respect the links between agriculture, diets and health;

2.  Notes that children in developing countries who are breastfed by their mothers are 15 times less likely to die of pneumonia and 11 times less likely to die of diarrhoea than children who have not been breastfed;

3.  Calls on the Commission, the Council, the Member States and the international community, as well as on developing countries’ governments to mobilise, forthwith, long-term financial investments for food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture, and to enhance food security and nutrition through improved governance and accountability and systemic policies on food and nutrition, which are rights-based and take into account, on the one hand, the gender dimension, sustainable agriculture, natural resource use and access, public water, public sanitation and hygiene, and, on the other, the creation and expansion of inclusive, entitlement-based social safety nets, in particular targeting the most vulnerable and marginal groups;

4.  Stresses the need to tackle the systemic problems that generate poor nutrition in all its forms; notes with concern that, in the past, promotion of export-led agriculture operated at the expense of family farms producing food crops for local consumption; deems that reinvestment in local food production, focused in particular on small-scale food producers and agroecological practices, is a key condition for the success of nutrition strategies; deems it equally essential to establish social protection schemes to ensure that all individuals have access to nutritious food at all times;

5.  Notes with concern that one third of the food produced worldwide – some 1,3 billion tonnes – is wasted; observes that the largest quantity is wasted in North America and Oceania, where nearly 300 kg of food per person goes to waste; notes that in total the EU produces 88 million tonnes of food waste per annum, while worldwide 842 million people – 12 % of the world’s population – go hungry; stresses the need to adapt all food systems to eliminate loss or wastage of food;

6.  Urges the Commission and the Member States to pay attention to Policy Coherence for Development in their activities and, accordingly, to consider the ramifications of their policies on trade, agriculture, energy, etc. for global food security;

7.  Deeply deplores the land grabbing carried out by foreign investors, which hits local small-scale farmers and contributes to local, regional and national food insecurity and poverty;

8.  Calls on the international community and the EU to work with countries to support the definition and implementation of context-specific, feasible and robust national nutrition targets in line with the SDGs, in order to reduce stunting and malnutrition; urges the Commission and the EU Delegations to promote coordinated country-led nutrition and food-security strategies and approaches and to encourage improvement of the monitoring and accountability of these by partner countries;

9.  Calls on the EU and the international community to promote a worldwide ‘right to breastfeed’ and to highlight the importance of breastfeeding in information campaigns on maternal and child health;

10.  Calls on the Member States and the EU institutions to make every effort to raise European public awareness of the persistent worldwide problem of undernutrition, which affects children and women in particular;

11.  Underlines that local food production should be given priority in actions against undernutrition, and stresses the importance of supporting smallholder and female farmers as food producers; calls on the EU to assist developing countries and smallholder farmers in the development of and access to local markets, local value chains and local food processing facilities, combined with trade policies that support such efforts, as part of its global nutrition strategy;

12.  Points out that, in a context where conventional farming is characterised by monocropping, the shift from diversified cropping systems to simplified cereal-based systems has contributed to micronutrient malnutrition in many developing countries; calls for the EU to commit, in line with the recommendations of the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, to a fundamental shift towards agroecology as a way for countries to feed themselves and improve nutrition, while addressing climate and poverty challenges; in particular, calls on the EU and the governments of developing countries to support crop genetic diversity, i.e. through the setting-up of local seed exchange systems, and seed regulations consistent with the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, and to invest in a wide variety of nutritious, local and seasonal food crops consistent with cultural values;

13.  Underlines that land grabbing which results from large-scale land acquisitions in developing countries represents a new threat to food security and nutrition; requests that the Commission take concrete measures to combat land grabbing and to develop an action plan to combat land grabbing and ensure the effective implementation of the FAO Tenure Guidelines;

14.  Urges the EU to remove, in line with the principle of Policy Coherence for Development, public incentives for the production of crop-based biofuels;

15.  Stresses that the level of investment in nutrition remains essentially inadequate, with nutrition-specific interventions receiving only 0,57 % of global official development assistance in 2014, thus meeting only 1,4 % of the total needs;

16.  Looks to the Commission to honour its commitment to invest EUR 3,5 billion in order to reduce stunting by at least 7 million by 2025; points out that of the EUR 3,5 billion pledged, only EUR 400 million are dedicated to supporting nutrition-specific interventions, while the remaining EUR 3,1 billion are foreseen for nutrition-sensitive interventions, which address related issues such as agriculture, food security, gender, water, sanitation, hygiene and education, but do not necessarily directly address the immediate causes of child undernutrition;

17.  Underlines that stunting, measured as a child being too short for its age and occurring when chronic inadequate nutrition and repeated infections during the first 1 000 days of life prevents normal growth and development, is one of the most significant impediments to human development;

18.  Calls on the Commission and the Council, to ensure EU political leadership and promote at global and regional level the attainment of internationally agreed nutrition targets that are clear and ambitious; urges the EU Delegations and the Commission to promote coordinated country-led nutrition and food-security strategies, while integrating, in cooperation with partner countries, the global nutrition targets into all relevant development programmes and country strategies;

19.  Calls on the EU to ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, to ensure prevention of trade distortions in world agricultural markets in accordance with the mandate of the Doha Development Round, and to integrate the most affected countries into the global trade market in order to tackle food insecurity;

20.  Considers that the review of the EU’s financial framework should take into account the fact that food safety and security will be challenges in the coming years, given the increased pressure on resources; points out that this could be used to tackle malnutrition trends in countries outside the EU as well as in Member States;

21.  Recognises that besides stunting, other manifestations of malnutrition such as wasting (low weight for height) and micronutrient deficiencies also need to be addressed through sustainable agricultural policies and health systems; points out that the prevalence of wasting in South Asia is so severe, at just under 15 %, that it is approaching the level of a critical public health problem;

22.  Stresses that humanitarian aid addressing the problem of wasting needs to be complemented by Commission strategies linking humanitarian and development interventions; urges the Commission to define a contribution from development programmes to a newly specified commitment and target in order to tackle wasting in children under five immediately and effectively;

23.  Stresses the importance of promoting nutrition education programmes in schools and local communities;

24.  Calls on the Commission to set out a clear policy framework for increasing support to national social safety nets, in line with national, regional and international commitments, which have proven, in a number of countries, to be a crucial means of increasing resilience and reducing undernutrition;

25.  Stresses that breastfeeding, as the most natural and best source of food for new-born babies and young children, should be guaranteed through genuine support for women by ensuring good nutrition levels and good work conditions and providing for social and family support networks, as well as the right to paid maternity leave;

26.  Stresses that an estimated additional investment of USD 7 billion per year is needed to reach the global targets on stunting, anaemia in women and breastfeeding, and that such investment would result in 3,7 million child lives saved, at least 65 million fewer stunted children and 265 million fewer women suffering from anaemia than in 2015;

27.  Calls on the Commission to take on a stronger leadership in the field of food security and nutrition, by scaling up its commitments through an additional commitment of EUR 1 billion addressing nutrition-specific interventions in order to meet the nutrition targets of the WHA and the SDGs, and by developing a clear strategy for how it plans to implement and integrate these targets into its plans and policies, as well as providing a clear roadmap for the allocation of the pledged funds for the period 2016-2020;

28.  Calls on the Commission and the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) donors to continue to report regularly on progress made under the nutrition for growth commitments, using a common resource-tracking methodological approach as agreed at the 2013 SUN Network meeting in Lusaka;

29.  Stresses the need for all EU policies to be aligned with the principle of Policy Coherence for Development; calls, therefore, for EU trade and development policy to respect the political and economic policy space of developing countries in order for them to establish the necessary policies to promote sustainable development and dignity for their people, including food sovereignty, respecting the right of local food producers to have control over their land, seeds and water and rejecting the privatisation of natural resources;

30.  Calls for the development of specific indicators for the implementation of the EU action plan, including indicators for tracking nutrition-sensitive and nutrition-specific spending, by refining the OECD Development Assistance Committee’s (DAC) basic nutrition code and developing a DAC marker for nutrition-sensitive interventions; insists, in this regard, on the need to set rigorous monitoring and accountability measures, thereby ensuring transparency and effective progress-tracking;

31.  Calls on the Commission to support smallholder farmers in experimenting with and adopting more resilient and productive agricultural practices (those that meet the criteria of being ‘climate smart’ and agroecologically sound) that help to reverse environmental degradation and improve the reliability and adequacy of agricultural livelihoods, a necessary condition for improved food security and nutrition;

32.  Stresses that the right to water goes hand-in-hand with the right to food and that the UN resolution of 2010 has not yet resulted in decisive action to establish the right to water as a human right;

33.  Stresses the importance of cooperating with farmers on affordable, locally adapted and improved varieties of crops, and establishing resilient and responsive domestic-owned seed production capacity that can be self-sustaining and not reliant on donor financing for its survival;

34.  Calls for the EU and its Member States not to support GMO crops when fulfilling their commitments on nutrition and food security in the world;

35.  Invites the Commission and other donors and bodies to improve nutrition-sensitive disaggregated and comprehensive data collection so as to better target future action;

36.  Insists on the need to take a holistic approach to the challenge of undernutrition, which requires action in a wide range of economic and social sectors; stresses, therefore, the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships and the essential role of the private sector in improving food security and scaling up nutrition-specific interventions, notably by innovating and investing in sustainable agriculture, and improving social, economic and environmental practices in farming and food systems;

37.  Calls on the Commission to continue to act as a champion among donors in the eradication of malnutrition by accelerating its efforts to meet its commitments and by lending its voice and support to ensure that there is a moment to check in on progress made against 2013 Nutrition for Growth commitments and for additional pledges to be made to fill the nutrition funding gap;

38.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the African Union, the FAO and the World Health Organisation.

(1) http://www.oecd.org/development/effectiveness/49650173.pdf
(2) FAO (2015), Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises (FFA).
(3) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2016)0247.
(4) OJ C 56 E, 26.2.2013, p. 75.
(5) OJ C 289, 9.8.2016, p. 71.
(6) OJ C 346, 21.9.2016, p. 88.
(7) http://www.foodpolicymilano.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Milan-Urban-Food-Policy-Pact-EN.pdf
(8) Sources: Report of the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Olivier De Schutter, 24 January 2014, http://www.srfood.org/images/stories/pdf/officialreports/20140310_finalreport_en.pdf


European Public Prosecutor’s office and Eurojust
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European Parliament resolution of 5 October 2016 on the European Public Prosecutor’s Office and Eurojust (2016/2750(RSP))
P8_TA(2016)0376B8-1054/2016

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the proposal for a Council regulation on the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (COM(2013)0534),

–  having regard to its resolution of 12 March 2014 on the proposal for a Council regulation on the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office(1),

–  having regard to the working document of its Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs of 14 March 2014 on the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation (Eurojust) (PE530.084),

–  having regard to its resolution of 29 April 2015 on the proposal for a Council regulation on the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office(2),

–  having regard to the proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the fight against fraud to the Union’s financial interests by means of criminal law (COM(2012)0363),

–  having regard to the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation (Eurojust) (COM(2013)0535),

–  having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, in particular Articles 85, 86, 218, 263, 265, 267, 268 and 340 thereof,

–  having regard to the questions to the Council and to the Commission on the European Public Prosecutor’s Office and Eurojust (O-000092/2016 – B8‑0715/2016 and O‑000093/2016 – B8‑0716/2016),

–  having regard to Rules 128(5) and 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas Article 86 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union states that in order to combat crimes affecting the financial interests of the Union, the Council, by means of regulations adopted in accordance with a special legislative procedure, may establish a European Public Prosecutor’s Office after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament;

B.  whereas according to the recent ‘Study and Reports on the VAT Gap in the EU-28 Member States: 2016 Final Report’ (TAXUD/2015/CC/131), an overwhelming EUR 159,5 billion in value added tax (VAT) revenues was lost across the EU in 2014;

C.  whereas it is important that the EU and all its Member States detect and prosecute in an effective and dissuasive manner fraud affecting the EU’s financial interests, thus protecting the taxpayers of all the Member States who contribute to the Union’s budget;

D.  whereas Eurojust has facilitated coordination and cooperation between national investigative and prosecution authorities in dealing with cases affecting a number of Member States, and Eurojust has helped to build mutual trust and to bridge the EU’s wide variety of legal systems and traditions; whereas Eurojust has facilitated the execution of requests for cooperation and the application of mutual recognition instruments, thereby improving cross-border prosecution;

E.  whereas organised cross-border crime has increased in the past decade and is committed by extremely mobile, flexible groups, which are active in many Member States and areas of crime;

F.  whereas in Case C-105/14 (Taricco and others) the European Court of Justice stated that the concept of ‘fraud’ as defined in Article 1 of the Convention on the Protection of the European Communities’ Financial Interests covers revenue derived from VAT;

1.  Reaffirms Parliament’s longstanding support for the establishment of an efficient and independent European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) in order to reduce the current fragmentation of national law enforcement efforts to protect the EU budget, thus strengthening the fight against fraud in the European Union;

2.  Calls on the Council to provide an unambiguous and clear set of competences and proceedings concerning the EPPO based on the proposed directive on the fight against fraud to the Union’s financial interests by means of criminal law (PIF Directive); calls on the Council to strengthen its efforts to find agreement on the PIF Directive which includes VAT in its scope, and to reopen negotiations with Parliament, in order to enable the EPPO to be established; stresses that the EPPO should have priority competence for offences defined in the PIF Directive; deeply regrets that the Council does not allow the EPPO to be competent in PIF cases where EU funding exceeds EUR 10 000 but does not represent 50 % or more of the co-financing; calls on the Council, therefore, to abandon the rule depriving the EPPO of the possibility of exercising competence for all PIF offences where the damage to the Union budget is equal to or less than damage to another victim; calls on the Council to ensure that the EPPO is immediately informed by the national authorities of all cases related in any way to the PIF Directive both before and during an investigation;

3.  Calls on the Council to reopen the debate on Articles 17 to 20 of the consolidated text (11350/1/16) of the EPPO proposal in order to ensure more clarity and efficiency for the EPPO; calls on the Council to clarify the prosecution competences of the EPPO and the national prosecutors in cases of (a) multiple offences (one organised group committing several crimes, e.g. money laundering and trafficking in human beings) and (b) mixed offences (more than one criminal offence committed in one criminal act, e.g. VAT fraud and money laundering); deeply regrets that in the event of disagreement between the EPPO and the national prosecution courts over the question of competences, the final decision will not be taken by an independent court such as the European Court of Justice; emphasises that the efficiency of the EPPO will depend on clarification of competences and that if they fail to achieve this, the EU legislators will not be able to ensure the effectiveness of the EPPO, thus crossing one of the European Parliament’s red lines;

4.  Takes the view that the EPPO should have sufficient investigative measures available to conduct its investigations; recalls in this regard that the co-legislators have agreed on criteria for Member States to make requests for investigative measures based on the principle of mutual recognition set out in Directive 2014/41/EU regarding the European Investigation Order in criminal matters;

5.  Believes that, in order to ensure the effectiveness of judicial review in line with Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and with the Treaties, any operational decision affecting third parties taken by the EPPO should be subject to judicial review before a competent national court; considers that direct judicial review by the European Court of Justice should be possible;

6.  Notes that it is of paramount importance to avoid any adverse effects from the so-called ‘national link’; calls in this context on the Council to ensure that there are adequate safeguards ensuring the independence of the EPPO, such as a provision allowing derogation from the national link on grounds related to the proper functioning of the office;

7.  Deems that the protection of the procedural rights of suspected and accused persons must be guaranteed; in particular, the regulation should provide for additional rights of defence for EPPO suspects, in particular the right to legal aid, the right to information and access to case materials, and the right to present evidence and to ask the EPPO to collect evidence on behalf of the suspect;

8.  Calls on the Commission to come up with adjusted estimations of the budgetary implications of the collegiate structure within its cost and benefit analysis, and to provide Parliament with results of the ‘reality check exercise’, and recalls that Parliament will take this information into account before taking its final decision;

9.  Recalls the importance of Eurojust’s role in improving the judicial cooperation and coordination of the relevant judicial authorities of the Member States and in supporting investigations involving non-EU countries, and calls on the Council to clarify the relations between Eurojust and the EPPO, and in particular the implications of the collegiate structure, as well as the EPPO’s relation with OLAF, in order to differentiate between their respective roles in the protection of the EU’s financial interests;

10.  Believes that it would be best for the EPPO and Eurojust to operate in the same location if the cooperation and information exchange between them is to operate efficiently;

11.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the national parliaments.

(1) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2014)0234.
(2) OJ C 346, 21.9.2016, p. 27.


Need for a European reindustrialisation policy in light of the recent Caterpillar and Alstom cases
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European Parliament resolution of 5 October 2016 on the need for a European reindustrialisation policy in light of the recent Caterpillar and Alstom cases (2016/2891(RSP))
P8_TA(2016)0377RC-B8-1051/2016

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, in particular Articles 9, 151, 152, 153(1) and (2), and 173 thereof,

–  having regard to Articles 14, 27 and 30 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union,

–  having regard to Council Directive 98/59/EC of 20 July 1998 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to collective redundancies(1),

–  having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and to the Treaty on European Union (TEU), and in particular to Article 5(3) TEU and to Protocol No 2 on the application of the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality,

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 31 March 2005 entitled ‘Restructuring and employment: Anticipating and accompanying restructuring in order to develop employment: the role of the European Union’ (COM(2005)0120), and the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee of 14 December 2005,

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 23 November 2010 entitled ‘An Agenda for New Skills and Jobs: A European contribution towards full employment’ (COM(2010)0682),

–  having regard to Regulation (EU) No 1309/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (2014-2020) and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1927/2006(2),

–  having regard to its resolution of 15 January 2013 with recommendations to the Commission on information and consultation of workers, anticipation and management of restructuring(3),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 13 December 2013 on an EU Quality Framework for anticipation of change and restructuring (COM(2013)0882),

–  having regard to its resolution of 15 January 2014 on reindustrialising Europe to promote competitiveness and sustainability(4),

–  having regard to the Commission staff working document of 18 April 2012 entitled ‘Exploiting the employment potential of green growth’ (SWD(2012)0092),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 22 January 2014 entitled ‘For a European industrial renaissance’ (COM(2014)0014),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 14 October 2015 entitled ‘Trade for All – Towards a more responsible trade and investment policy’ (COM(2015)0497),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 10 October 2012 entitled ‘A stronger European industry for growth and economic recovery’ (COM(2012)0582), and to the 20 % reindustrialisation target,

–  having regard to its resolution of 16 December 2015 on developing a sustainable European industry of base metals(5),

–  having regard to its resolution of 9 June 2016 on the competitiveness of the European rail supply industry(6),

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) and (4) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas today there is an absolute need for consistency between the various EU policies in order to define an actual industrial policy, in particular in the light of the Caterpillar and Alstom cases;

B.  whereas on 2 September 2016 Caterpillar announced a large worldwide restructuring plan; whereas as part of this plan the Gosselies site was forced to close its doors, leading to the laying off of 2 500 direct workers and jeopardising the jobs of some 4 000 subcontractors;

C.  whereas the reduction in production costs between 2013 and 2015 had allowed the plant’s products to become more attractive than the products coming from outside the EU; whereas, however, Caterpillar decided to close the plant in order to move production to other plants with lower standards of social and environmental protection than those applicable to European industry;

D.  whereas given the importance and the European dimension of this case, the Commission has decided to set up a task force gathering together the competent services, to act as interlocutor in the Caterpillar closure process;

E.  whereas these two production plants are not the only ones to be concerned by restructuring; other layoffs are expected in Alstom’s plants in Spain and Italy and also Caterpillar’s plant in Northern Ireland;

F.  whereas the rail industry is the backbone of European industrialisation, with its history dating back more than 175 years; whereas the annual growth rate of the accessible rail supply industry markets is expected to be 2,8 % until 2019; whereas the European rail supply industry directly employs 400 000 people throughout the EU, many of whom work in SMEs; whereas a strong and innovative European rail supply industry is essential for a shift to rail, which is necessary to achieve the EU’s climate and energy targets;

G.  whereas 65 % of business spending on R&D is by the manufacturing industry, and whereas the strengthening of our industrial base is therefore essential to keeping expertise and know-how in the EU; whereas digital development, a priority of the Juncker plan, needs a strong industrial base to materialise;

H.  whereas European industry such as that provided by Alstom and Caterpillar has a high added value with recognised expertise; whereas, at present, this central and strategic industry for the EU faces a world of strong global competition from countries which export lower-cost products to the European market by carrying out an aggressive and rapidly expanding policy on all continents, often with political and financial support from their governments;

I.  whereas, in the light of the recent Alstom case, the Commission will carry out a 15-year prospective study (2030) on the development of the rail industry in Europe, integrating different scenarios on the environmental objectives of the EU Member States, together with a study on the impact on jobs, professions and skills of the different scenarios; whereas the Commission needs to follow up rapidly on the recommendations set out in Parliament’s resolution on the EU rail supply industry in order to provide secure and sustainable jobs and inclusive growth; whereas any follow-up should be facilitated by a permanent dialogue with stakeholders and incorporate all chapters of the resolution;

J.  whereas the Commission committed to produce in 2013 a full report on the application of the Quality Framework; recalling in this context its request to the Commission to submit, after consulting the relevant social partners, a proposal for a legal act on information and consultation of workers, anticipation and management of restructuring;

K.  whereas European industry needs to maintain its competitiveness and capacity to invest in Europe, and whereas it also faces social and environmental challenges which it must address, whilst remaining a world reference in terms of social and environmental responsibility;

L.  whereas some undertakings have been pursuing strategies focused solely on short-term financial returns, which tend to be to the detriment of innovation, investment in R&D, employment and skill renewal;

M.  whereas an ambitious innovation policy which favours the production of high-quality, innovative, energy-efficient products and promotes sustainable processes will allow the EU to stand on its own in an ever more competitive world context;

N.  whereas trade in construction machinery in the EU has suffered serious disruptions in recent years, linked to the reduction of public and private investment but also due to the increase in production costs stemming from the increase in the prices of raw materials;

O.  whereas fair trade in industrial products must respect workers’ rights and environmental rules; whereas investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency are a major driver for investment in industrial products capable of creating virtuous circles; whereas innovation and investment in R&D, jobs and skill renewal are essential for sustainable growth;

P.  whereas innovation in production has been shown to have a positive effect on job growth at all stages of the industrial economic cycle; whereas workers’ participation in innovation measures and in the definition of strategies can significantly enhance economic success;

Q.  whereas the more advanced and sustainable part of the steel sector, which produces high-value technological products, respects the health of workers and surrounding populations and guarantees strict environmental standards, plays an important role for the European industrial strategy;

R.  whereas the loss of know-how and skills of the workers, underlines that Europe must retain the industrial capacity to meet its needs, without depending on third countries’ producers;

1.  Expresses its strong solidarity and support to all workers of Caterpillar and Alstom and their families, as well as to the subcontractors involved, and regrets the detrimental effects that such closures have on local economies and communities; calls for measures to be taken to support these workers and their local economies and to assist the regions in overcoming this difficult economic and social situation;

2.  Is convinced that European industry should be seen as a strategic asset for the competitiveness and sustainability of the EU; underlines that only a strong and resilient industry and a future-oriented industrial policy will allow the EU to face the different challenges ahead, including its reindustrialisation, its transition to sustainability and the creation of quality employment; stresses that the Commission and the Member States need to better anticipate these socio-economic situations and ensure the competitiveness of our industrial network;

3.  Recalls that Europe is a social market economy that aims at achieving sustainable economic and inclusive growth; regrets the lack of a real EU industrial policy which also protects EU workers; calls on the Commission therefore to set up a real European industrial long-term strategy in order to reach the objective of 20 % of gross domestic product coming from industry, as laid down in the Europe 2020 strategy;

4.  Urges the Member States to ensure adequate social protection, working conditions and wages that allow people to live with dignity, either by means of law or collective agreements, and in the case of the laying off of workers, to ensure effective protection against unlawful dismissal;

5.  Reminds that the economic crisis in Europe has demonstrated that industries that invest the most notably in innovation, R&D, energy efficiency, circular economy etc. are those who resist the most; underlines in this context the negative impact of the decrease of public and private investments and shrinking internal consumption, both of which should be encouraged in order to be growth stimulators;

6.  Believes that the reduction of administrative burdens and compliance costs for businesses, and the repeal of unnecessary legislation while continuing to ensure high standards of consumer, employee, health and environmental protection, must be key components of any EU reindustrialisation policy;

7.  Calls for this EU industrial policy to be based on clear targets and indicators – including ambitious energy-efficiency, resource and climate objectives – and a life-cycle and circular economy approach; stresses that it should include a smart mix of supply- and demand-side measures aimed at re-localising the economy in the EU and making it more resilient and less resource-dependent; points out that it should steer investment into creativity, skills, innovation and sustainable technologies and promote the modernisation of Europe’s industrial base through a value-chain-conscious policy that includes the basic industries and their regional and local actors; believes that such an approach could deliver cost-efficient benefits for European industry and the European economy as a whole;

8.  Points out that many years of intervention in support of banks and asset markets in the EU did not have an impact on jobs or improve economic prospects; believes that public intervention should be shifted from over-stimulating the supply side to concerted policies aimed at stimulating demand, including through fiscal measures and by ensuring wage increases;

Trade policy – a key element for a level playing field

9.  Stresses that while in several sectors of the economy the EU is largely open to competitors from third countries, third countries have several barriers in place that discriminate against European companies; stresses that third-country competitors, especially from China, are expanding rapidly and aggressively into Europe and other world regions, often with strong political and financial support from their country of origin; stresses that such practices may constitute unfair competition and threaten jobs in Europe; underlines that China does not fulfil the five criteria established by the EU to define market economy status;

10.  Urges the Commission to establish an EU trade policy which is in line with its industrial objectives and takes account of the need to secure European industrial jobs and avoid fresh relocations and further deindustrialisation; calls on the Commission to ensure a level playing field for market operators from inside and outside Europe, thus guaranteeing fair competition for all;

11.  Recalls the need to reach a swift agreement on the revision of the regulations on trade defence instruments, in order to strengthen them significantly by improving their reactivity and effectiveness; asks the Commission to take into consideration the social and economic impacts which the recognition of market economy status for state-run or other non-market economies could have on the competitiveness of EU industries;

12.  Stresses the need to prevent EU trade policy from fostering anti-competitive practices, including environmental dumping and in particular the dumping of cheap and low-quality products that put European standards at risk and affect EU-based industries; calls on the Commission to look into border adjustment mechanisms in order to guarantee a level playing field when devising policies to achieve the Europe 2020 strategy and as a means to avoid environmental dumping, exploitation of workers and unfair competition;

13.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to conduct studies on commercial negotiations, using a regional- and sector-based approach, which should also improve understanding of the impact on employment and European industries;

14.  Highlights the recent trend of companies returning production and services to Europe and the opportunities this brings for growth and job creation; calls on the Commission to consider how the EU can create a hospitable environment to help businesses take advantage of the opportunities offered by this ‘re-shoring’;

Competition policy – a crucial element for EU industries

15.  Asks the Commission to develop an outward-looking competitive European framework to attract and maintain private investment, maintain strong EU value chains and create quality employment, in order to deliver tangible benefits for EU citizens;

16.  Notes also that state aid rules must be better tailored in order to deliver innovation and sustainability and fulfil the objectives of promoting a high level of employment and fostering social policies in accordance with Article 9 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

17.  Stresses that European industry faces global competition, and therefore strongly encourages the Commission to urgently take the world market as the reference when defining geographical markets in its analysis, and not to limit its analysis to national markets or the internal market, thus allowing European industries to create R&D partnerships or strategic alliances; calls, in this context, for the restructuring of the major European manufacturers to be enabled in order to allow the emergence of players with sufficient critical mass to cope with international competition;

Public procurement – a tool in need of improvement

18.  Calls on the Commission to better implement the EU regulations on public procurement; recalls that EU provisions allow for tenders which are abnormally low or where more than 50 % of the value is realised outside the EU to be rejected;

19.  Believes that public procurement and eco-labelling have a role to play in the uptake of sustainable products, services and innovations and for a sound industrial base in Europe; asks for a concerted effort by Member States and the Commission to ensure that contracting authorities base their tendering decisions on the ‘most economically advantageous tender’ principle;

Improved use of EU funds, R&D and innovation – the way to foster a new industrial policy

20.  Calls on the Commission to develop, together with the Member States, a Union strategy for consistent and comprehensive industrial policy aimed at Europe’s reindustrialisation, and based inter alia on digitalisation (in particular the integration of smart technologies and robotics into industrial value chains), sustainability, energy efficiency and adequate resources; to this end, calls for increased cooperation and convergence among Member States in fiscal, social and budget matters so as to facilitate the emergence of joint industrial projects; believes that the European regulatory framework should allow industries to adapt to the changes concerned and to take anticipatory action in order to contribute to job creation, growth and regional convergence;

21.  Exhorts the Commission to work with the different industrial sectors in order to ensure the best possible use of European structural and investment funds, and more precisely of the Regional Development Fund (RDF), to support R&D projects at regional level;

22.  Believes that EU funds offer a great opportunity to finance sustainable investment in energy and public transport infrastructure and smart deployment of information and communications technologies; calls for improvement in the implementation of the various criteria, in particular as regards employment, environmental and social criteria, for the use of EU funds and all financial instruments managed through the EIB;

23.  Calls for an EU smart specialisation agenda and for prioritising R&D in those sectors where the EU can lead; calls for concrete instruments for enabling the EU and Member States to pool R&D efforts and to enable the uptake of the results in the local economy; considers the link between research and industry to be crucial for boosting EU industrial competitiveness; calls, in this regard, on the Commission and the Member States to actively promote and encourage the intensification of collaboration between research centres, universities and businesses; calls for improvements to the research environment through an increase in the RD&I budget and the better interlinking of different EU and national funding programmes;

24.  Calls on the Commission and the European Investment Bank to particularly target those regions that have been most affected by deindustrialisation and to accelerate support for projects in these regions as a matter of urgency, while ensuring that viable and high-quality projects are supported; believes that the potential for increasing strategic and targeted lending by the European Investment Bank for innovation and industrial transformation projects, notably in manufacturing and related services, should be further explored; calls on the Commission and the Member States to ensure better access to finance for EU businesses, in particular for micro-enterprises and SMEs, thus enhancing their capacities for project building, and to provide them with better advisory services and technical support;

25.  Asks the Commission, in coordination with the Member States, to study ways in which economic redeployment could be allowed while ensuring that companies fully assume their environmental responsibility, respect environmental law and implement high environmental standards; demands that companies depollute the closed sites within a reasonable time frame and facilitate ways for local authorities to recover them;

26.  Calls on the Commission to consider facilitating the exchange of best practices between Member States on how best to deal with the closure of companies, encouraging them to look into examples contained in legal provisions in order to try – as far as feasible – to organise the search for a buyer or the sale of the site in order to keep factories in production despite the cessation of activity decided on by the original owners;

27.  Believes that tax avoidance, including through the transfer of tangible and intangible assets or services between companies at inadequate prices (transfer price), should be prevented and is also a result of the lack of European coordination in fiscal and commercial matters; calls for increased cooperation and convergence among Member States in fiscal, social and budgetary matters;

Socially responsible restructuring and quality employment creation in future-oriented sectors

28.  Welcomes the initiative of some local authorities, together with the social partners, such as in the case of Alstom, to foster experimental projects for workers and companies in the process of restructuring, in order to secure professional careers through training and actions so as to maintain quality employment;

29.  Stresses the crucial need for the development of technical skills, particularly in the manufacturing sector; stresses the need to promote the importance of skilled technical workers; believes that, in order to maximise the net job potential of the green economy, it is crucial that the existing workforce is provided with proper opportunities to acquire the new skills needed for the circular economy; recalls that a skilled workforce is important for the viability of production; underlines the importance of fostering better synergies between education systems, universities and the labour market, including exposure to the workplace and cooperation with businesses in the creation of innovative ‘clusters’;

30.  Calls on all relevant authorities to ensure that all parties involved comply fully with national and European regulations on information and consultation of workers, especially during restructuring, and also to guarantee environmental protection and workplace safety;

31.  Stresses that companies must fulfil their legal obligations under European and national law, prioritising the information and consultation of workers and the opportunity to review alternatives put forward by the social partners;

32.  Considers that any restructuring operation should be explained and justified to stakeholders, where appropriate, including with respect to the choice of measures envisaged in relation to the objectives and any alternatives; calls for a local dialogue comprising all stakeholders to discuss the best possible arrangements in cases of restructuring;

33.  Underlines the importance of a sustained social dialogue, at all levels, based on mutual trust and shared responsibilities, as one of the best instruments for finding consensual solutions and common perspectives in the prediction, prevention and management of the restructuring process;

34.  Highlights, in the case of restructuring, the need to protect the workers affected, in terms of their health and working conditions, social security, requalification and reintegration into the labour market;

35.  Notes that restructuring has a much broader impact than just on the company itself, with unforeseen effects on communities and on the economic and social fabric of the Member States;

36.  Calls on the Commission to consult social partners on the effectiveness of legislation on collective dismissals in the light of the Caterpillar and Alstom cases;

37.  Regrets the gradual financialisation of the real economy, focused on a short-term financial outlook rather than maintaining an innovative industrial tool that can provide sustainable and quality jobs and long-term benefits to society; regrets that this approach has led to numerous job losses in the manufacturing sector; calls on the Commission to consult the social partners on the opportunity for a revision of the existing legislation regarding collective dismissals, taking into account those aspects linked to the Caterpillar and Alstom cases, and particularly the involvement in the procedure of all workers and subcontractors, and effective measures to avoid unlawful collective dismissals that are not based on real economic reasons, including the possibility of sanctions - for example, suspending access to EU-funded programmes or demanding the repayment of public aid granted;

38.  Calls on the Commission’s taskforce to investigate the way in which the consultation procedure with the European Works Council (EWC) has been carried out; calls on the Commission, in the light of the investigation, to consider the need to revise the EWC Directive;

39.  Notes that the EGF is an essential EU tool in the era of globalisation for supporting Member States in their policies of professional requalification of workers and for re-establishing the economic fabric in a region regarding workers who are suffering the negative effects of globalisation or economic crisis; recalls the importance of the recommendations made by Parliament in its resolution of 15 September 2016 on the activities, impact and added value of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund between 2007 and 2014(7);

40.  Stresses, however, that the EGF is a tool that reacts only when the redundancies have taken place, and that greater efforts are required on the part of Member States and the EU to create the right economic and legislative environment in order to boost competitiveness and create long-term sustainable jobs;

41.  Calls on the Commission to inform Parliament on its strategy for the main industrial sectors in Europe, namely the rail supply sector and the machinery sector, in order to create a more favourable market environment, and of what it intends to do to keep quality employment, know-how and investments in Europe;

42.  Notes that in cases of restructuring, younger and older workers are more often targeted for redundancy than other age groups; stresses that in the event of redundancies employers must respect anti-discrimination legislation, particularly in the field of age discrimination;

43.  Notes that the transition to a green economy has significant potential to create local jobs which cannot be relocated, and in areas which cannot be offshored; notes that there is strong evidence that the green transition will, on balance, have a positive impact on employment, reflecting the fact that sustainable economic activities, such as saving energy, are more labour-intensive than the activities they replace and could have the potential to enable regions to become more self-sufficient;

o
o   o

44.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Commission and the Council.

(1) OJ L 225, 12.8.1998, p. 16.
(2) OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p. 855.
(3) OJ C 440, 30.12.2015, p. 23.
(4) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2014)0032.
(5) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2015)0460.
(6) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2016)0280.
(7) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2016)0361.

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