Alfred SANT
  • Alfred
  • Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament
  • Member
  • Malta Partit Laburista
  • Date of birth: 28 February 1948, B'Kara

Speeches in plenary


Presentation of the programme of activities of the Bulgarian Presidency (debate)

17-01-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)01-17(7)

Implementation of the European Disability Strategy (continuation of debate)

30-11-2017 P8_CRE-PROV(2017)11-30(6)

Rule of law in Malta (debate)

14-11-2017 P8_CRE-PROV(2017)11-14(11)

Economic policies of the euro area (debate)

25-10-2017 P8_CRE-PROV(2017)10-25(13)

Fiscal compact and its incorporation into the EU legal framework (topical debate)

04-10-2017 P8_CRE-REV(2017)10-04(15)

State of the Union (debate)

13-09-2017 P8_CRE-REV(2017)09-13(7)

Extension of the European statistical programme to 2020 (debate)

13-09-2017 P8_CRE-REV(2017)09-13(17)

European venture capital funds and European social entrepreneurship funds (debate)

13-09-2017 P8_CRE-REV(2017)09-13(18)

Review of the Maltese Presidency (debate)

04-07-2017 P8_CRE-REV(2017)07-04(2)

Reports - as rapporteur


Reports - as shadow rapporteur


REPORT Towards a pan-European covered bonds framework

26-06-2017 A8-0235/2017

REPORT on the Annual report on EU Competition Policy

17-12-2015 A8-0368/2015

REPORT on European Semester for economic policy coordination: implementation of 2015 priorities

20-10-2015 A8-0307/2015

REPORT on the European Semester for economic policy coordination: Annual Growth Survey 2015

02-03-2015 A8-0037/2015

Motions for resolutions


Motion for a resolution on the rule of law in Malta

10-11-2017 B8-0596/2017

Motion for a resolution on fighting discrimination based on race, religion and nationality

06-02-2017 B8-0138/2017

Written declarations


Written declaration on supporting ‘Odysseus’ for the relaunching of the European Voluntary Service

03-10-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0105 Lapsed


Jonás FERNÁNDEZ , Pablo ZALBA BIDEGAIN , Silvia COSTA , Antonio TAJANI , Ramón JÁUREGUI ATONDO , Jean-Marie CAVADA , Dimitrios PAPADIMOULIS , Karima DELLI , Alain LAMASSOURE , Jo LEINEN , Molly SCOTT CATO , Svetoslav Hristov MALINOV , Mercedes BRESSO , Enrique CALVET CHAMBON , Barbara MATERA , Juan Fernando LÓPEZ AGUILAR , José Manuel FERNANDES , Neena GILL , Santiago FISAS AYXELÀ , Hugues BAYET , Alfred SANT , Renato SORU , Eider GARDIAZABAL RUBIAL

Date opened : 03-10-2016
Lapse date : 03-01-2017
Number of signatories : 91 - 04-01-2017

Written declaration on the ‘fish war’ and the safety of fishermen

12-09-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0092 Lapsed


Michela GIUFFRIDA , Andrea COZZOLINO , Neoklis SYLIKIOTIS , Nicola CAPUTO , Alfred SANT , Raffaele FITTO , Marlene MIZZI , Takis HADJIGEORGIOU , Theodoros ZAGORAKIS , Roberta METSOLA , Patricija ŠULIN

Date opened : 12-09-2016
Lapse date : 12-12-2016
Number of signatories : 38 - 13-12-2016

Written declaration on broadband regulation

12-09-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0091 Lapsed


Michela GIUFFRIDA , Andrea COZZOLINO , Stefano MAULLU , Salvatore CICU , Alfred SANT , Raffaele FITTO , Marlene MIZZI , Takis HADJIGEORGIOU , Theodoros ZAGORAKIS , Eric ANDRIEU , Patricija ŠULIN

Date opened : 12-09-2016
Lapse date : 12-12-2016
Number of signatories : 63 - 13-12-2016

Written declaration on the potential of digital technologies for an improved and widespread access to knowledge

12-09-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0085 Lapsed


Andrea COZZOLINO , Catherine STIHLER , Nicola DANTI , Antanas GUOGA , Lambert van NISTELROOIJ , Sergio Gaetano COFFERATI , Massimiliano SALINI , Marisa MATIAS , Michela GIUFFRIDA , Alfred SANT

Date opened : 12-09-2016
Lapse date : 12-12-2016
Number of signatories : 81 - 13-12-2016

Written declaration on the overuse or misuse of antibiotics

12-09-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0081 Lapsed


Patricija ŠULIN , Monica MACOVEI , Tomáš ZDECHOVSKÝ , Dubravka ŠUICA , Stelios KOULOGLOU , Alfred SANT , Michela GIUFFRIDA , Salvatore CICU , José Inácio FARIA , Ivana MALETIĆ , Nicola CAPUTO , Marijana PETIR , Stefan ECK , Theodoros ZAGORAKIS , Lola SÁNCHEZ CALDENTEY , Marlene MIZZI , Ivan JAKOVČIĆ , Beatriz BECERRA BASTERRECHEA , Jozo RADOŠ , Doru-Claudian FRUNZULICĂ , Eleftherios SYNADINOS , Renata BRIANO

Date opened : 12-09-2016
Lapse date : 12-12-2016
Number of signatories : 95 - 13-12-2016

Written declaration on an EU Homelessness Strategy

27-04-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0052 Lapsed


Neena GILL , Brian HAYES , Alfred SANT , Karima DELLI , Lynn BOYLAN , Sylvie GUILLAUME , Ivan JAKOVČIĆ , Agnes JONGERIUS , Dimitrios PAPADIMOULIS , Gabriele ZIMMER , Viorica DĂNCILĂ , Mary HONEYBALL , Stefan ECK , Bronis ROPĖ , Hugues BAYET , Klaus BUCHNER , Sylvie GOULARD

Date opened : 27-04-2016
Lapse date : 27-07-2016
Number of signatories : 310 - 28-07-2016

Written declaration on skills and competences in the tourism industry

27-04-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0039 Lapsed


Claudia ȚAPARDEL , Cláudia MONTEIRO DE AGUIAR , Igor ŠOLTES , Alfred SANT , Antonio TAJANI , Patricija ŠULIN , Merja KYLLÖNEN , Emilian PAVEL , István UJHELYI , Tomáš ZDECHOVSKÝ , Renaud MUSELIER , Silvia COSTA , David BORRELLI

Date opened : 27-04-2016
Lapse date : 27-07-2016
Number of signatories : 72 - 27-07-2016

Written declaration on the recognition of obesity as a chronic disease

11-04-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0037 Lapsed


Alfred SANT , Enrico GASBARRA , Marc TARABELLA , Fabio Massimo CASTALDO , Patricija ŠULIN , Giovanni LA VIA , Tomáš ZDECHOVSKÝ , Ivan JAKOVČIĆ , Edward CZESAK , Ángela VALLINA

Date opened : 11-04-2016
Lapse date : 11-07-2016
Number of signatories : 144 - 12-07-2016

Written declaration on the protection of the UNESCO sites in Europe

16-09-2015 P8_DCL(2015)0050 Lapsed


Alberto CIRIO , Claudia ȚAPARDEL , Ivan JAKOVČIĆ , Enrico GASBARRA , Marco ZULLO , Igor ŠOLTES , István UJHELYI , Cláudia MONTEIRO DE AGUIAR , Marlene MIZZI , Alfred SANT

Date opened : 16-09-2015
Lapse date : 16-12-2015
Number of signatories : 76 - 17-12-2015

Parliamentary questions


Update on the EU-Canada competition agreement

10-01-2018 P-000083/2018 Commission

EU initiatives specifically dedicated to islands

24-11-2017 E-007237/2017 Commission

The Commission's assessment of the effectiveness of EU rules on state aid for banking

24-11-2017 E-007229/2017 Commission

Commission action on Uber's EU data breach

22-11-2017 P-007169/2017 Commission

VAT on online advertising activities

20-11-2017 E-007108/2017 Commission

Encouraging cycling through the EU mobility package

11-10-2017 E-006396/2017 Commission

Follow-up to Written Question E-004600/17 on Geo-blocking of EU citizens living on islands

29-09-2017 E-006085/2017 Commission

VP/HR - The case of Palestinian human rights defender Issa Amro and the Palestinian Cyber Crime Law

26-09-2017 E-005971/2017 Commission

Written explanations of vote


Implementation of the Professional Qualifications Directive and the need for reform in professional services (A8-0401/2017 - Nicola Danti)


My vote on this resolution has been conditioned by the following considerations:
In my view, two are the key priorities: firstly, Member States should not set unfair criteria that in the end constitute a barrier to the market for foreign workers; these criteria should not set discriminatory, unjustified and disproportionate requirements. The second priority is that the Commission should make sure that the European database is easily accessible and complete for all citizens, in particular young professionals.
For the danger is that while we all claim to believe in the benefits of a single market for labour, what we really mean by this would cover only blue collar work, so that effectively protectionism would continue to prevail for “middle class” professions.
We have to be aware of the following constraints in this area which need to be faced: internally, within member states, there exist standards to entry for diverse professions that serve to protect already established professionals from competition from their younger peers; and between states, national standards are devised to keep away from the national market, professionals from outside.
We need more focus on how to correct these tendencies that contradict the model of a single market for “labour”.

Conservation of fishery resources and protection of marine ecosystems through technical measures (A8-0381/2017 - Gabriel Mato)


I voted in favour of the Report on the Conservation of fishery resources and protection of marine ecosystems through technical measures because I see a will in the text of the European Parliament to defend the rights of small-scale fishermen. The report aims at simplifying rules while opting for a decentralised approach, allowing for tailor-made measures to be adapted to the regional needs of each sea basin in the EU.
Decisively, the adopted approach envisages the regionalisation of targets for key fisheries instead of an EU-wide quantifiable target. Regionalised and more simplified targets are better suited to counter EU centralism that has been having a negative impact on the many small fishing realities of the EU.
Finally, on the most controversial topic in this file, electric fishing also known as pulse-fishing has been put in check. Pulse-fishing, it is claimed, is damaging for our marine ecosystems and small-scale fishermen. The new rules add a ban on pulse-fishing, a ban I supported through the vote.
At this point, it is important to keep as a priority the rights and earnings of traditional fishing communities, especially those in isolated or peripheral regions and where fishing activities are small-scale, conducted by families.

State of play of negotiations with the United Kingdom (B8-0676/2017, B8-0677/2017)


I am glad that the Brexit negotiations have been certified to be making close to satisfactory progress. Now, talks may start on the phase that deals with the future relationship between the EU and the UK.
However the reality is that huge uncertainties still exist about how such a framework will shape up.
Families and companies will not be able to make plans on the basis of the terms of the divorce deal reached last week, but on the basis of how the EU and the UK will work together.
The time left for this to be settled is extremely short. Although a transitional arrangement of two years may be put into place, this will not really ease the problems faced by those who need to have a planning horizon that allows scope for informed decision making over the long term.
The negotiating methods that the two sides have adopted account for this less than desirable outcome, which is in the interest of neither side.
I would hope that in the coming weeks, a detailed agenda for the upcoming negotiations is set out and followed, in which the big strategic decisions that need to be taken are prioritised and cleared.

Draft recommendation following the inquiry on money laundering, tax avoidance and tax evasion (B8-0660/2017)


While voting for all parts of it which emphasise transparency regarding tax matters and regimes, and which I fully support, I have voted against this resolution for the following reasons.
Firstly, under the guise of countering shameful tax loopholes and procedures that promote tax evasion and aggressive tax planning, a real and unacceptable aim has been that of introducing tax harmonisation in the EU. Tax flexibility must remain within the Union. The taxation of peripheral countries should not be brought close to that applicable in or around the EU’s golden triangle.
Secondly, I have no faith in the proceedings that led to this resolution. Methodologies followed resemble those of a witch hunt, with leading members of the committee publicly and volubly (MEPs Lange, Gomes, Giegold, Tang) taking the position of prosecution, witness, jury and judge, while fact finding was often restricted to consulting people or texts that fed their own biases.
Indeed, resort was eventually had to quoting a report from a lobby group (Oxfam) published post the report of the Panama Committee, which presented conclusions that went beyond the Committee’s findings. The overall exercise discredits the European Parliament’s claim to serve as a bulwark of fairness and justice in asserting European values.

Changes to the resources for economic, social and territorial cohesion and to the resources for the investment for growth and jobs goal and for the European territorial cooperation goal (A8-0358/2017 - Iskra Mihaylova)


I am voting for this legislative proposal because it introduces needed changes to transfer resources between categories and goals for expenditure in order to keep abreast of set priorities. Especially, the proposal supports the continuation of the Youth Employment Initiative and takes into account the new eligible status of Cyprus under the Cohesion Fund.
However, one must point out that despite the improving economic situation across the EU, divergences between regions of the Union are still growing rather than decreasing. The likelihood is that this state of affairs will continue even if some measures to address the problem have been taken. The problem is that the tools that are available are not good enough.
In reality, especially within the eurozone, we are operating as a one-way transfer Union through the terms of trade that automatically apply within the single market. Unfortunately though this is an obvious fact of life for all Europeans, the political will is lacking to tackle it through political action that would aim to consolidate the developments of the last thirty years not just institutionally, but also across the Union in terms of the living and work conditions of citizens.

Value added tax obligations for supplies of services and distance sales of goods (A8-0307/2017 - Cătălin Sorin Ivan)


I have voted in favour this proposal because it naturally follows the growth rate of cross-border trade. In a context where one out of five enterprises makes electronic sales, the extension of VAT obligations to different services and goods is a natural step forward and will create a level playing field within e-commerce business.
The Commission has promoted its proposal by stressing that introducing a VAT one-stop-shop will reduce the volume and amounts of compliance costs.
Nevertheless, several issues will need to be carefully monitored in the future.
Savings accruing from fewer compliance costs do not have the same impact on businesses in proportion to their size. SMEs have shown concerns regarding several compliance features of the one-stop-shop. Efforts to adapt to it can be significant for them.
Another issue is the threshold, currently set by the Commission at 10 000 euros. SMEs will be able to use their own country VAT rules until they reach this threshold but growing businesses could rapidly exceed it and thus be obliged to comply with new demanding rules.

Administrative cooperation and combating fraud in the field of value added tax (A8-0306/2017 - Luděk Niedermayer)


I voted in favour of this proposal because it seeks to protect national tax revenues.
In a way, it does this because it considers that national tax officers should and would protect the tax revenues of other States as if they were due to their own state.
EU measures dealing with administrative cooperation between Member States in the field of VAT have been in place for more than a decade now.
The Commission is at present seeking to involve Member States in a common enterprise of protection of tax receipts across the EU. Such proposal is welcome in a context where the VAT gap is reaching staggering amounts. Everyone is losing from faulty tax collection systems, while illicit activities prosper thanks to the missing VAT dues.
Opening national databases and transparency of information will certainly help tackling cross-border fraud schemes. Nevertheless, one should remain careful in not having a disproportionate legislative response that risks harming States’ sovereignty in matters of taxation.
Also, careful attention should be paid to any arising complications that could burden SMEs, especially micro enterprises; as well as to the implications for commerce in the in the digital market.

State of play of negotiations with the United Kingdom (B8-0538/2017, B8-0539/2017)


I abstained on the final vote on this resolution because I doubt how worthwhile it is for this Parliament to express an opinion now about the ongoing Brexit negotiations. Political groups are being informed by their assigned representatives about what is going on. At least, this is being done very well within the S&D group. Proclamations now by the European Parliament seem premature, indeed superfluous.
What the European Parliament should concentrate upon at this stage is identifying – item by item – sectors where the upcoming divorce with the UK will have concrete and swift impact on our constituents. We should then strive to define, on a forward basis, the best solution to the problems thus identified. For instance, I was alerted to the fact that with Brexit, life and other pension agreements contracted with British insurance companies by EU citizens could become legally inoperative (the same holds for ‘vice versa’ arrangements). This could have a big impact on say, citizens of Malta, where personal agreements on private pensions would most likely be held through British companies. As a priority, we need to know along the line, about all such scenarios, to make sure none of our citizens lose out.

Towards a pan-European covered bonds framework (A8-0235/2017 - Bernd Lucke)


Covered bonds have already proved themselves over centuries in some of the European markets. They have provided robust and flexible methods for raising finance, benefiting both issuers and investors in a reasonably transparent framework.
In the run-up to the Commission’s proposal for a directive, Parliament has approved a comprehensive and well-balanced resolution. As shadow rapporteur on this file, I voted in favour on the following understanding:
First, in the moves towards a capital markets union (CMU), it would be inconceivable not to allow space for covered bonds. The CMU does not have to be entirely seamless, nor does it have to apply on one-size-fits-all basis, but it cannot have significant gaps in its structure, which would be the case if covered bonds were not included in its purview.
Secondly, such directive would establish a clear definition that preserves the covered bond brand identity throughout a principle-based approach. It does not force too many details that would apply across different national markets and takes due recognition of long-standing national systems that have been working well until now, without disrupting them.
Thirdly, a directive would benefit Member States that do not have such a market yet or where it is still underdeveloped.

Disclosure of income tax information by certain undertakings and branches (A8-0227/2017 - Hugues Bayet, Evelyn Regner)


. ‒ I abstained on this motion because it has the effect of promoting EU common policies in favour of tax harmonisation. Declarations made repeatedly during its preparation confirm that this is one of the intentions behind it, going beyond the need – with which I agree – to curb tax abuses and money laundering.
Different Member States of the European Union have different endowments, while being subject to common rules regarding tariffs, excise duties, VAT and competition policies as well as (for eurozone members) strict budgetary management of debt and deficits. States with limited endowments, especially if situated at the periphery, must rely on tax flexibility to promote economic activity.
The fact that they must balance their books under eurozone rules ensures that their tax-and-spend regimes operate competitively under conditions comparable overall to those of their fellow members. Moreover, the low limits proposed for the turnover of companies that would be subject to income and profit reporting, discriminate against smaller economies. Due to the country’s size, relatively low turnover by their companies soon spills over into cross-border trade, making them liable to the proposed reporting rules – something which would take longer to happen in the bigger economies.



  • Parlement européen
    Bât. Altiero Spinelli
    60, rue Wiertz / Wiertzstraat 60
    B-1047 Bruxelles/Brussel


  • Parlement européen
    Bât. Louise Weiss
    1, avenue du Président Robert Schuman
    CS 91024
    F-67070 Strasbourg Cedex

Postal address

  • European Parliament
    Rue Wiertz
    Altiero Spinelli 14G146
    1047 Brussels