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Foreign affairs MEPs on Tuesday underlined the need for inclusive, constructive and sustainable political dialogue on reforms and for greater cooperation between the political forces in Albania and in Bosnia and Herzegovina. (Read more: Albania and Bosnia & Herzegovina: political commitment is key to path towards EU )

 

TTIP: MEPs differ on safeguards for data, services, environment and investment

INTA External/international trade14-04-2015 - 09:56

Eight hundred and ninety-eight amendments to a draft resolution on progress in talks with the US on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) were debated by the International Trade Committee on Monday. (Read more: TTIP: MEPs differ on safeguards for data, services, environment and investment )

 

Around 2,500 redundant workers of the former French road haulage company Mory-Ducros, which closed in 2014, should get EU aid worth €6 million to help them back into work, said Budgets Committee MEPs in a vote on Wednesday. The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund aid still needs to be approved by Parliament as a whole and the Council of Ministers. (Read more: EU job-search aid for redundant workers at French trucking firm Mory-Ducros )

 

Economic affairs MEPs target conflicts of interest in benchmark setting

ECON Economic and monetary affairs31-03-2015 - 12:10

A draft EU law to make the benchmarks used to price EU citizens’ mortgages, loans and bonds more trustworthy was backed by the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee on Tuesday. The text (lead MEP Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, ALDE, NL) aims to clean up the benchmark-setting process, by curbing conflicts of interest like those that led to the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) rigging scandals of recent years. (Read more: Economic affairs MEPs target conflicts of interest in benchmark setting )

 

Fair trials: MEPs beef up draft EU law on presumption of innocence

LIBE Judicial cooperation31-03-2015 - 10:46
. ©BELGA_DPA  

Draft EU rules to ensure that the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty is fully respected in member states were approved by the Civil Liberties Committee on Tuesday. MEPs inserted amendments to prevent statements by public authorities that might suggest a suspect is guilty before a final conviction, ensure that the burden of proof stays with the prosecution and guarantee the rights to remain silent, not to incriminate oneself and to be present at trial. (Read more: Fair trials: MEPs beef up draft EU law on presumption of innocence )

 

Democracy and values are problematic in DRC, says Denis Mukwege

DROI Human rights / External relations26-03-2015 - 12:31
Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI) of the European Parliament exchange of views with Denis Mukwege, Sakharov Prize Laureate 2014  

Dr Denis Mukwege, the 2014 Sakharov Prize laureate, described political problems in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and his difficulties in tackling the problem of sexual abuse of women and even small children, in a Human Rights Subcommittee debate on Thursday. MEPs discussed how the EU could best support Dr Mukwege’s work, and some called for legally-binding rules on trade in conflict minerals. (Read more: Democracy and values are problematic in DRC, says Denis Mukwege )

 
EU budget management © BELGA/EASYFOTOSTOCK  

The European Commission managed its 2013 EU budget funds according to the rules, so Parliament should grant it a “discharge” (approval) for that year, said the Budgetary Control Committee on Tuesday. MEPs nonetheless criticised high administrative error rates in agriculture, regional and employment policy spending, which is managed mainly by EU member states. Parliament’s own management of EU funds in 2013 was also approved, in a separate vote. (Read more: EU budget management: Commission and Parliament spending for 2013 approved )

 
Vote on the EU budget discharge ©BELGA/BELPRESS/P.Clement  

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and four EU/private new-technology partnerships must do more to show that their EU funds for 2013 were well spent before the European Parliament approves their accounts, said Budgetary Control Committee MEPs on Monday. (Read more: EU budget management:innovation agency and ITER project fail 2013 discharge test )

 

Greece should resume policy dialogue and agree on reforms, Draghi tells MEPs

ECON Economic and monetary affairs23-03-2015 - 18:49
ECB President Mario Draghi at the ECON to discuss monetary dialogue and the bank's new quantitative easing policy  

The European Central Bank’s expanded asset purchase programme, better known as “quantitative easing” (QE), is starting to make headway across the EU, ECB President Mario Draghi told Economic and Monetary Committee MEPs on Monday. Mr Draghi also reported on the tough negotiations with Greece and outlined what it would take for the ECB to reinstate the waiver for buying Greek state bonds on the secondary market, so as to enable QE to benefit Greece, too. (Read more: Greece should resume policy dialogue and agree on reforms, Draghi tells MEPs )

 
© EuroNest  

The EU's new eastern partnership policy should boost cooperation with its eastern neighbourhood countries to reduce both parties’ energy dependence on Russia, said MEPs and MPs from eastern partnership countries at the fourth Euronest Parliamentary Assembly, which closed in Yerevan, Armenia, on Wednesday. The Assembly’s resolutions also call for more trade coordination, solidarity with Ukraine to counter Russian aggression there and an official recognition of the Armenian genocide 100 years ago. (Read more: Step up east-west energy cooperation, urge MEPs and eastern neighbourhood MPs )