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Press releases


The EU's energy dependence: facts and figures

Others Energy24-07-2014 - 16:26

The EU imports more than half of the energy it consumes and that can make it vulnerable to external energy suppliers such as Russia. To improve the situation, the European Commission presented a plan to reduce this dependence, which was discussed by Parliament’s industry committee this week. Read on to find out the key facts and figures about the EU’s energy imports and how it varies from country to country. (Read more: The EU's energy dependence: facts and figures )


US free-trade deal: "In the end Parliament decides on the agreements"

Others Economic and monetary affairs24-07-2014 - 11:23
INTA chairman Bernd Lange  

A free-trade agreement with the US has the potential to boost the European economy with billions, but this should not come at the expense of consumers or workers. Last week the sixth round of negotiation of the so-called Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) took place. We spoke to Bernd Lange, a German member of the S&D group who is the chair of the international trade committee, about the agreement and other upcoming challenges for the committee. (Read more: US free-trade deal: "In the end Parliament decides on the agreements" )


Italian Presidency priorities discussed by EP committees

AFCO TRAN LIBE FEMM ENVI EMPL ECON DEVE Institutions23-07-2014 - 12:35

The priorities of the Italian Council Presidency are being outlined to the various parliamentary committees by Italian ministers, on 22 and 23 July. This text will be updated daily. (Read more: Italian Presidency priorities discussed by EP committees )


Italian Council presidency: MEPs share their views on the priorities

Others European Council / Institutions23-07-2014 - 09:30
Decorations of the Italian Presidency at the EU Council headquarters  

Italy took over the EU Council presidency from Greece on 1 July. During the Parliament's first plenary session since the European elections, Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi told MEPs it was necessary for Europe to act with conviction and determination. We asked the leading Italian MEPs in Parliament's political groups for their views and expectations for the next six months. (Read more: Italian Council presidency: MEPs share their views on the priorities )


MEPs discuss EU trade policy with Commissioner Karel de Gucht

INTA External/international trade22-07-2014 - 18:56

MEPs quizzed trade Commissioner Karel de Gucht MEPs on the US position in transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP) talks and the findings of the EU Commission’s public consultation on TTIP proposals on investor-state dispute settlement mechanisms. Some wondered about fate of a proposed trade deal with Canada, which has been described as „to be signed soon" for a year already, and asked that Parliament be given more access to trade talks documents. (Read more: MEPs discuss EU trade policy with Commissioner Karel de Gucht )


EU sanctions against Russia must be stepped up, the Ukrainian border closed to halt arms flows from Russia, and the bodies of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash victims returned, MEPs insisted in today’s debate with Ukraine’s foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin. Mr Klimkin called on the EU to show its solidarity now, as Ukraine is “being punished for its EU aspirations”. The debate opened with a minute’s silence for victims of the 17 July crash. (Read more: MH17 crash: MEPs call for solidarity with Ukraine and sanctions against Russia )

LUX film prize 2014 Finalists - from top: Class enemy (Razredni sovražnik) by Rok Biček, Girlhood (Bande de filles) by Céline Sciamma, Ida by Pawel Pawlikowski_  

The three films competing for this year’s Lux Prize have been announced: Class Enemy (Razredni sovražnik) from Slovenia, Girlhood (Bande de filles) from France and Polish/Danish co-production Ida will all be competing for the European Parliament's annual firlm award. The finalists will be subtitled into the EU's official 24 languages and be screened in all 28 member states during the LUX Film Days this autumn. The winner will be chosen by MEPs and announced on 17 December. (Read more: And the finalists are... Three European films battle it out for the Lux Prize )

EP building in Brussels  

MEPs will be having committee meetings from 21 to 24 July, which will include discussing the priorities of the new Italian presidency of the EU Council with Italian ministers. Trade commissioner Karel De Gucht will discuss progress on the negotiations for a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations with the international trade committee. In addition the names of the three finalists of the Parliament's Lux film prize are announced on Tuesday. (Read more: EP this week: Ukraine debate, Council presidency and US free-trade agreement )


Jean-Claude Juncker was elected president of the European Commission on Tuesday 15 July, during the second plenary of the new term. It's the first time that Parliament has elected the candidate proposed by member state leaders based on the results of the European elections. Members also called for more transparency in the EU-US trade talks, gave Lithuania the go ahead to join the euro zone and approved four new commissioners. Read on and discover the highlights of the 14-17 July plenary session. (Read more: Things we learned in plenary: Juncker, maternity leave, US free-trade agreement )


MEPs call on Russia to cooperate with Ukrainian peace plan

Plenary Session External relations17-07-2014 - 12:25

Russia should back the peace plan offered by Ukraine, respect the ceasefire and withdraw its mercenaries via the retreat corridor, say MEPs in a resolution passed on Thursday. They call the EU countries to ban arms sales to Russia and help Ukraine to secure its gas supply via reverse gas flows. MEPs also state their readiness to ratify the association and free trade deal with Ukraine. (Read more: MEPs call on Russia to cooperate with Ukrainian peace plan )