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What's happening in the European Parliament, 31 March-6 April 2014

European Parliament Brussels
European Parliament Brussels

This week Committee meetings  as well as a mini plenary session are taking place in Brussels. Read on to see what's on Parliament's agenda during the week of 31 March-6 April 2014

Ukraine. MEPs are to give their green light to lifting EU customs duties on imports from Ukraine, so as to boost its ailing economy. The EU’s action on Russia following the recent events in Crimea and its strategy towards Iran will be addressed in a joint debate with EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton on EU common foreign and security policy.  (Debate Wednesday, votes Thursday)

Credit cards*. The fees that banks charge retailers for processing shoppers’ card payments in the EU should be capped at 0.3% of the transaction value for credit card transactions and at a maximum of 7 euro cents for debit cards.  Measures to make online payments safer will be put to a separate vote on the same day. (Votes Thursday)

Net neutrality and roaming*. MEPs will vote on stricter rules to prevent telecoms firms from degrading or blocking data flow to their competitors’ services and advocate abolishing roaming charges by the end of 2015 in a first reading plenary vote on the telecom package. (Debate and vote Thursday)

Patients' safety. Draft rules on the safety and traceability of medical implants* and on requirements for diagnostic devices* are up for a vote on Wednesday. Rules agreed with the Council on the transparency of clinical trials are to be endorsed by the full house. (Debate and vote Thursday)

Pension rights. The supplementary pension rights of citizens moving to another member state or working across borders will be safeguarded under an informal deal with member states to be approved by plenary. (Debate Wednesday, vote Thursday)

ETS aviation. MEPs will have to decide whether long-haul flights should continue to be  exempt from participating in the EU Emission Trading System. (Debate Wednesday, vote Thursday)

Banking Union/Single Resolution Mechanism. Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee MEPs will hold a final discussion and vote to approve the informal deal struck with EU countries on the single resolution mechanism for banks.  The plenary will give its verdict in the last session of this legislature. (Tuesday)

President's diary. President Schulz will meet Xi Jinping, President of the People's Republic of China on Monday 10.00. On Tuesday he will attend the EU-Africa Parliamentary summit at 11.30 and meet Bulgaria's President Rosen Asenov Plevneliev at 18.00. A meeting with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, is to be held in Brussels on Thursday at 12.30.

Pre-session press briefing. The EP Press Service will hold a press briefing at 11.00 on Monday. (EP Press conference room, Brussels)

European elections. A conference with very well known social media experts on how to use social media networks in politics effectively, particularly for the 2014 European elections, will  be held on Wednesday in the EP. A seminar for journalists on the European elections 2014 will take place the same day,

*Note to editors: Votes closing parliament's first reading on legislation without agreement with Council.