Europeans have for the first time ever the opportunity to help draft an EP report via social media. Join our LinkedIn group and advise Alejandro Cercas, who is writing a report on how the Troika - made up of the European Commission, ECB and the IMF - has affected people living in the bailout countries. You can also follow a hearing by the social affairs committee on this live on 9 January. We asked Mr Cercas, a Spanish member of the S&D group, for more details about this unique project.
You have invited Europeans to participate in a report on the Troika. This initiative started in December and will last for three months. Has it been a positive experience so far? What are you hoping for?
We have just started, but for the moment it has been a very positive experience, which is helping us to listen to all those who couldn’t express their views when the Economic Adjustment Programmes were created, that is to say, to listen to those who have so far been muted. I hope that this debate will help us all to learn a lesson from these painful years.
However, Europe should be a democratic symbol, otherwise it will fail. The most serious problem in the EU is not the economic crisis, but the lack of credibility of the EU in the eyes of the European citizens. The European project should not be run by the Commission technocrat mentality, or by the Ministers in the Council with their national focus. It should be run by all citizens, through the European Parliament for “A real united and progressive Europe”.
What are your expectations on the hearing taking place on 9 January on these issues?
The hearing will also be a great opportunity to show that while some Institutions only take into account the macroeconomic effects of the programmes, Parliament wants to highlight the impact of the Troika on the daily lives of the common people. Parliament has already expressed its concerns about the social effects on, for example, employment, health, social inclusion, poverty or homelessness. Europe is built on the idea of a social market economy. Europe is not a creditors club and the economic dimension of the European Union does not have an exclusionary and dogmatic character. On the contrary, EU policies should and can be at the service of European citizens.