Procedure : 2008/2063(INI)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A6-0145/2009

Texts tabled :

A6-0145/2009

Debates :

PV 06/05/2009 - 15
CRE 06/05/2009 - 15

Votes :

PV 07/05/2009 - 9.2
CRE 07/05/2009 - 9.2
Explanations of votes
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P6_TA(2009)0373

REPORT     
PDF 538kDOC 375k
19 March 2009
PE 407.780v03-00 A6-0145/2009

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Committee on Constitutional Affairs

Rapporteur(*): Jo Leinen

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION
 OPINION of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Development (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on International Trade (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Fisheries (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Culture and Education (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Legal Affairs (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality (*)
 OPINION of the Committee on Petitions (*)
 ANNEX: LETTER FROM THE COMMITTEE ON BUDGETARY CONTROL
 ANNEX: LETTER FROM THE COMMITTEE ON INDUSTRY, RESEARCH AND ENERGY
 RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, signed on 13 December 2007,

–   having regard to the Treaty on the European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community as amended by the Single European Act and the Treaties of Maastricht, Amsterdam and Nice,

–   having regard to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of 12 December 2007(1),

–   having regard to the Laeken Declaration of 15 December 2001 on the Future of the European Union(2),

–   having regard to the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe signed in Rome on 29 October 2004,

–   having regard to its resolution of 7 June 2007 on the roadmap for the Union's Constitutional Process(3),

–   having regard to its resolution of 11 July 2007 on the convening of the Intergovernmental Conference(4),

–   having regard to its resolution of 20 February 2008 on the Treaty of Lisbon(5),

–   having regard to Rule 45 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs and the opinions of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Committee on Development, the Committee on International Trade, the Committee on Budgetary Control, the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs, the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, the Committee on Transport and Tourism, the Committee on Regional Development, the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, the Committee on Fisheries, the Committee on Culture and Education, the Committee on Legal Affairs, the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality and the Committee on Petitions (A6-0145/2009),

1. New policies

1.1. New objectives and horizontal clauses

1.  Welcomes the binding character that the Treaty gives to the Charter of Fundamental Rights and welcomes the recognition of the rights, freedoms and principles set out for all EU citizens and residents; underlines that Parliament will be committed to ensuring the full respect of the Charter;

2.  Welcomes the strengthening of representative and participatory democracy arising from the introduction of, inter alia, the so-called 'citizens' initiative' (Article 11 of the EU Treaty as amended by the Treaty of Lisbon (TEU)), which allows not less than one million citizens from a significant number of Member States to ask the Commission to submit a proposal for a legal act;

3.  Welcomes the fact that environmental protection has been given a prominent position in all EU policies and that an explicit reference is made in Article 191 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), as amended by the Treaty of Lisbon, to combating climate change at the international level; stresses that Parliament should continue to push the European Union to take a leading role in all policies relating to fighting climate change and global warming;

4.  Welcomes the fact that the new TFEU links the building of an area of freedom, security and justice to the protection of fundamental rights and the legal order of the European Union and of its Member States (Article 67 of the TFEU);

5.  Takes particular note of the objective of establishing a 'highly competitive social market economy, aiming at full employment and social progress and a high level of protection and improvement of the quality of the environment' (Article 3(3) of the TEU), thereby linking the aim of completing the internal market with other objectives;

6.  Notes with satisfaction that equality between women and men has been included among the Union’s values (Article 2 of the TEU) and aims (Article 3(3) of the TEU);

7.  Welcomes the fact that, according to Article 208(1) of the TFEU, the ‘Union’s development cooperation policy and that of the Member States complement and reinforce each other’, whereas, according to the current Article 177(1) of the Treaty establishing the European Community, ‘Community policy in the sphere of development cooperation [...] shall be complementary to the policies pursued by the Member States’; stresses the increased responsibility of Parliament, given that the Union will have a greater role in terms of initiative in policy-setting, which should lead to improved donor coordination and division of labour and to greater aid effectiveness for the ‘reduction and, in the long term, the eradication of poverty’ in the context of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs);

8.  Believes that the inclusion of territorial cohesion as an objective of the Union (Article 3 of the TEU) complements the objectives of economic and social cohesion and that the introduction of legal bases in those respective areas will increase the competence of Parliament to assess the territorial impact of key Union policies; is pleased to note that the special status of the outermost regions is confirmed by Articles 349 and 355 of the TFEU;

9.  Welcomes the introduction of horizontal provisions on a high level of employment, social protection, the fight against social exclusion, a high level of education, training and protection of human health, combating discrimination, and environmental protection, which will act as general principles underlying the European Union's policy-making (Articles 9, 10 and 11 of the TFEU);

10. Also welcomes the fact that consumer protection has been strengthened to the extent that it is to be mainstreamed into the other Union policies to be laid down and implemented, and, as a cross-cutting task, now occupies a much more prominent place by virtue of Article 12 of the TFEU;

11. Welcomes the solidarity provision expressly contained in Article 122 of the TFEU, whereby the Council may decide on appropriate measures if severe difficulties arise in the supply of certain products, notably in the area of energy;

12. Welcomes the fact that Article 214 of the TFEU recognises humanitarian aid as a fully-fledged Union policy; takes the view that Part Five, Title III, Chapter 1 (Development Cooperation) and Chapter 3 (Humanitarian Aid) of the TFEU provide a clear legal basis for development and humanitarian assistance to which the ordinary legislative procedure applies;

13. Welcomes, moreover, the reinforcement of the European Union's power, in the area of civil protection, to provide ad hoc assistance and disaster relief in third countries (Article 214 of the TFEU);

1.2. New legal bases

14. Underlines that the broadening of the Union's external action under the Lisbon Treaty, including the provision of new legal bases and instruments affecting areas related to foreign policy (external action and the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP)/Common Security and Defence Policy), necessitates a new interinstitutional balance guaranteeing adequate democratic scrutiny by Parliament;

15. Welcomes the fact that energy matters will now be covered by a separate Title XXI in Part Three of the TFEU and that action in that field will thus have a legal basis (Article 194 of the TFEU); notes, however, that, while the ordinary legislative procedure will be followed as a general rule, decisions on the energy mix will remain within the competence of the Member States, while fiscal measures in that field will continue to require only consultation of Parliament;

16. Notes positively the shared values of the Union as regards services of general economic interest and welcomes the legal basis allowing for the definition of principles and conditions governing the provision of services of general economic interest under the ordinary legislative procedure (Article 14 of the TFEU and Protocol No 26 on services of general interest);

17. Considers that the changes introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon in the area of the common commercial policy (CCP) (Articles 206 and 207 of the TFEU) contribute overall to the enhancement of its democratic legitimacy and its efficiency, in particular by introducing the ordinary legislative procedure and the requirement that consent be obtained for all agreements; notes that all matters falling under the CCP will come within the exclusive competence of the Union, with the effect that there will no longer be any mixed trade agreements concluded by both the Union and the Member States;

18. Expresses its satisfaction at the insertion of a provision on a European space policy (Article 189 of the TFEU) and welcomes the opportunity given to Parliament and to the Council to adopt, under the ordinary legislative procedure, the necessary measures establishing a European space programme; considers, however, that the words ‘excluding any harmonisation of the laws and regulations of the Member States in this field’ which appear in that article may pose some obstacles to the implementation of a common European space policy;

19. Points out that the Treaty of Lisbon includes a new legal basis providing for codecision in respect of intellectual property rights (Article 118 of the TFEU);

20. Welcomes the extension of the scope of EU action in the field of youth policy, encouraging the participation of young people in democratic life in Europe (Article 165 of the TFEU);

21. Welcomes the new legal basis laid down in Article 298 of the TFEU, which provides that 'in carrying out their missions, the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Union shall have the support of an open, efficient and independent European administration', since this provides the basis for a regulation governing the Union's administrative procedure;

22. Welcomes the strengthening of the legal basis for the adoption of European Union measures in the fields of the prevention of and fight against fraud affecting the financial interests of the Union (Article 325 of the TFEU); highlights the fact that the Treaty of Lisbon removes the qualification, contained in the current Article 280 of the EC Treaty, that such measures ‘shall not concern the application of national criminal law or the national administration of justice’;

23. Points out that the new Treaty provisions concerning judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters include a legal basis for the adoption of measures to support the training of the judiciary and judicial staff (Articles 81 and 82 of the TFEU);

24. Emphasises that the Treaty of Lisbon also provides for the possible establishment of a European Public Prosecutor's Office in order to combat crimes affecting the financial interests of the Union (Article 86 of the TFEU);

25. Welcomes the fact that the Treaty of Lisbon introduces binding provisions for the protection of the rights of the child in the internal and external objectives of the European Union (Article 3(3), second subparagraph, and Article 3(5) of the TEU);

26. Welcomes the inclusion of tourism as a new title in the Lisbon Treaty (Article 195 of the TFEU), which provides that the Union shall complement the action of the Member States; further welcomes the provision that the ordinary legislative procedure will govern the adoption of legislative proposals falling under that title;

27. Welcomes the fact that the Treaty of Lisbon has included sport amongst the areas in respect of which a legal basis is laid down (Article 165 of the TFEU); stresses in particular that the Union can finally take action for the development of sport and its European dimension and can take due account of the specific nature of sport when applying other European policies;

2. New powers for Parliament

2.1. New codecision powers

28. Welcomes the fact that the Treaty of Lisbon will strengthen the democratic legitimacy of the European Union considerably by extending Parliament's codecision powers;

29. Welcomes the fact that the area of freedom, security and justice is fully integrated into the TFEU (Articles 67 to 89), formally putting an end to the third pillar; welcomes the fact that most decisions in the area of civil justice, asylum, immigration and visa policies, as well as justice and police cooperation in criminal matters, will be covered by the ordinary legislative procedure;

30. Believes that the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure in the field of the common agricultural policy (CAP) improves the democratic accountability of the European Union, inasmuch as Parliament will be co-legislating on an equal footing with the Council; emphasises that codecision will apply to all legislation in the field of agriculture under Article 43(2) of the TFEU, and that this will notably be the case in respect of the four main horizontal texts in the field of agriculture (the single common market organisation, the direct payments regulation, the rural development regulation and financing of the CAP); points out, moreover, that legislation on quality, organic farming and promotion will also fall within the scope of Article 43(2) of the TFEU;

31. Stresses that any power of the Council to adopt measures pursuant to Article 43(3) of the TFEU is subject to the prior adoption, in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, of a legislative act pursuant to Article 43(2) of the TFEU, which prescribes the conditions and limitations attaching to the powers conferred on the Council; takes the view that Article 43(3) of the TFEU does not provide for a legal basis or for any autonomous power which would allow the adoption or amendment of any of the Council acts presently in force in the field of the CAP; calls on the Council to refrain from adopting any of the measures referred to in Article 43(3) of the TFEU without prior consultation of Parliament;

32. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon introduces far-reaching changes in the decision-making system for the common fisheries policy (CFP) and will also increase its democratic accountability; welcomes the fact that Parliament and the Council will establish, under the ordinary legislative procedure, the necessary rules for achieving the objectives of the CFP (Article 43(2) of the TFEU); considers, in this respect, that any subject formally included in the annual regulation other than the setting of catch possibilities and the distribution of quotas, such as technical measures or fishing effort, or the incorporation of agreements adopted within the regional fisheries organisations, which have their own legal basis, should be subject to the ordinary legislative procedure;

33. Welcomes the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure for the adoption of detailed rules on the multilateral surveillance procedure (Article 121(6) of the TFEU), which should strengthen economic coordination;

34. Believes that the responsibility of the European Central Bank (ECB) to report on monetary policy is now greater, since the ECB is recognised as an institution of the European Union; welcomes the fact that several provisions of the Statute of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) and of the ECB can be modified after consulting Parliament in accordance with Article 40.2 of the Statute of the ESCB and of the ECB; affirms that this does not constitute an encroachment on the independence of the ECB in the field of monetary policy or the priorities set out in the Treaty;

35. Considers Article 182 of the TFEU to be an improvement because the multiannual framework programme and the implementation of a European research area, referred to therein, will be covered by the ordinary legislative procedure; notes, however, that the specific programmes mentioned in that article will be adopted via a special legislative procedure, implying mere consultation of Parliament (Article 182(4) of the TFEU);

36. Welcomes the fact that, as regards the implementation of the Structural Funds, the Lisbon Treaty places Parliament on an equal footing with the Council by replacing the current assent procedure by the ordinary legislative procedure; considers that this is especially significant as regards the Structural Funds in the period after 2013, in that it enhances transparency and increases the accountability of these funds to citizens;

37. Notes that legislation prohibiting discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation will become subject to a special legislative procedure and will require Parliament’s consent (Article 19 of the TFEU);

38. Welcomes the fact that the ordinary legislative procedure will cover measures to combat trafficking in human beings, in particular women and children, and sexual exploitation (Articles 79(2) and 83(1) of the TFEU);

39. Welcomes the extension of qualified majority decision-making to the field of education, including sport (Article 165(4) of the TFEU);

40. Welcomes the fact that codecision will henceforth apply to the Staff Regulations of Officials of the European Union (Article 336 of the TFEU), inasmuch as this will allow Parliament to take part on an equal footing with the Council in the adjustment of those regulations;

2.2. New budgetary powers

41. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon makes sweeping changes in the area of the Union’s finances, particularly as regards interinstitutional relations and decision-making procedures;

42. Points out that the Council and Parliament must agree, within the limits of own resources, on the programming of expenditure which becomes legally binding (Article 312 of the TFEU); welcomes the fact that the budget as a whole must be adopted jointly by Parliament and the Council, in compliance with the multiannual financial framework; welcomes the abolition of the distinction between compulsory and non-compulsory expenditure (Article 314 of the TFEU); welcomes the fact that the adoption of the Financial Regulation will be subject to the ordinary legislative procedure (Article 322 of the TFEU);

43. Refers to the report on the budgetary impact of the innovations contained in the Treaty of Lisbon: institutional aspects and new Union competences, drafted by the Committee on Budgets;

2.3. New consent procedure

44. Welcomes the fact that the simplified revision procedure with regard to the introduction of qualified majority voting and the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure in a given area under Title V of the TEU or under the TFEU requires the consent of Parliament;

45. Notes the introduction of an 'exit clause' for the Member States (Article 50 of the TEU); underlines that the agreement laying down the arrangements for the withdrawal of a Member State from the Union may not be concluded until after Parliament has given its consent;

46. Welcomes the fact that Parliament's consent will be required for a wide range of international agreements signed by the Union; underlines its intention to request the Council, where appropriate, not to open negotiations on international agreements until Parliament has stated its position, and to allow Parliament, on the basis of a report from the committee responsible, to adopt recommendations at any stage in the negotiations, which are to be taken into account before the conclusion of negotiations;

47. Urges that any future ‘mixed’ agreement combining non-CFSP and CFSP elements must normally be dealt with under a single legal basis, which should be the one directly related to the main subject matter of the agreement; notes that Parliament will have the right to be consulted, except where the agreement relates exclusively to the CFSP;

2.4. New powers of scrutiny

48. Welcomes the fact that the President of the Commission will be elected by Parliament, on a proposal of the European Council, taking into account the elections to the European Parliament; refers to the report on the interinstitutional balance, drafted by the Committee on Constitutional Affairs;

49. Welcomes the fact that the Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, together with the other members of the Commission, as a body, will be subject to a vote of consent by Parliament, as well as to a vote of censure, and will therefore be accountable to Parliament;

50. Welcomes the new procedure for the appointment of Judges and Advocates-General of the Court of Justice and the General Court as provided for in Article 255 of the TFEU, under which the national governments' decision is to be preceded by an opinion on candidates' suitability to perform their duties given by a panel of seven experts, one of whom is to be proposed by Parliament;

51. Underlines the need for transparency and democratic scrutiny concerning the setting-up of the European External Action Service (EEAS) in accordance with Article 27(3) of the TEU, and recalls its right to be consulted on its establishment; is of the opinion that administratively the EEAS should be attached to the Commission;

52. Expects clarifications with regard to the criteria for, and the appointment and evaluation of, EU Special Representatives, including the definition and purpose of their tasks, the length of their mandate, and coordination and complementarity with the Union's future delegations;

53. Underlines the need for transparency and democratic scrutiny concerning the European Defence Agency (EDA) and the activities undertaken it, namely by ensuring a regular exchange of information between the Chief Executive of the EDA and Parliament's committee responsible;

54. Welcomes the new consultation role it will have under Article 40.2 of the Statute of the ESCB and of the ECB with regard to changing the composition of the ECB Governing Council;

55. Welcomes the fact that agencies, notably Europol and Eurojust, will be subject to greater parliamentary scrutiny (Articles 85 and 88 of the TFEU); believes, therefore, that the retention of the consultation procedure for the setting-up of joint undertakings in the area of research and technological development (Articles 187 and 188 of the TFEU) may not conform to the spirit of the legal acts of the Union establishing agencies;

2.5. New rights to be informed

56. Calls on the President of the European Council to keep Parliament fully informed about the preparations for European Council meetings and to give a report on the results of meetings, where possible within two working days (if necessary to a special sitting of Parliament);

57. Calls on the President of the rotating Council Presidency to inform Parliament about the Presidency programmes and about the results achieved;

58. Urges the future Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy to agree, with Parliament, upon adequate methods of keeping Parliament fully informed of, and consulted on, the Union’s external action, duly involving all committees of Parliament which are responsible for areas falling under the remit of the High Representative;

59. Stresses that, as regards the negotiation and conclusion of international agreements, the Commission will be under a legal obligation to inform Parliament of the progress of negotiations in the same way as the special committee designated by the Council as referred to in Article 218 of the TFEU; calls for this information to be provided to the same extent, and at the same time, as it is supplied to the relevant Council committee under that article;

2.6. New rights of initiative

60. Welcomes Parliament's new role in initiating amendments to the Treaties; will make use of this right and put forward new ideas for the future of Europe, when new challenges make this necessary;

61. Welcomes the fact that Parliament will have the right of initiative as regards proposals concerning its own composition, respecting the principles laid down in the Treaties (Article 14 of the TEU);

62. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon introduces a special legislative procedure for the adoption of provisions laying down the modalities and powers of temporary committees of inquiry (Article 226 of the TFEU);

3. New procedures

3.1. Scrutiny by national parliaments

63. Welcomes the new rights conferred on national parliaments with regard to prior scrutiny of application of the principle of subsidiarity in all legislation of the Union; takes the view that strengthening the scrutiny of European policies by national parliaments will also raise public awareness of the Union's activities;

64. Stresses that the national parliaments' new prerogatives have to be fully respected as from the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon;

65. Welcomes the requirement for local and regional authorities to respect the principle of subsidiarity; notes the right of the Committee of the Regions to bring actions before the Court of Justice when it considers that the principle of subsidiarity has been infringed (second paragraph of Article 8 of Protocol No 2);

3.2. Delegated acts

66. Appreciates the improvements flowing from the new provisions on legal acts and the hierarchy of norms, in particular the creation of the delegated act (Article 290 of the TFEU), which makes it possible to delegate to the Commission the power to adopt non-legislative acts of general application or to amend non-essential elements of a legislative act; points out that the objectives, content, scope and duration of any such delegation must be clearly defined by Parliament and by the Council in the legislative act;

67. Welcomes in particular the provisions of Article 290(2) of the TFEU, which envisages Parliament (and the Council) having the right both to revoke the delegation of powers and to object to individual delegated acts;

68. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon and, through it, the TFEU, do not provide a legal basis for a framework measure for delegated acts, but proposes that the institutions could agree on a standard formula for such delegations that would be regularly inserted by the Commission in the draft legislative act itself; stresses that this would preserve the freedom of the legislator;

69. Asks the Commission to clarify how it intends to interpret Declaration 39 annexed to the Final Act of the Intergovernmental Conference which adopted the Treaty of Lisbon, concerning the consultation of experts in the area of financial services, and how it intends to apply that interpretation, beyond the provisions on delegated acts contained in the TFEU;

3.3. Implementing acts

70. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon repeals the current Article 202 of the EC Treaty concerning implementing powers and introduces in Article 291 of the TFEU a new procedure – 'implementing acts' – that provides for the possibility of conferring implementing powers on the Commission in cases where 'uniform conditions for implementing legally binding Union acts' are needed;

71. Notes that Article 291(3) of the TFEU requires Parliament and the Council to adopt, in advance, general rules and principles concerning mechanisms for 'control by Member States' of the exercise of implementing powers by the Commission;

72. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon no longer provides a basis for the present comitology procedures and that pending legislative proposals which are not adopted before its entry into force must be modified in order to satisfy the requirements of Articles 290 and 291 of the TFEU;

73. Is of the opinion that an interim solution could be negotiated with the Council for the initial period, so that no obstacle would occur as a result of a possible legal void and the new regulation could be adopted by the legislator after due consideration of the Commission proposals;

4. Priorities for the transition period

74. Asks the Commission to transmit to the co-legislators all pending proposals in respect of which new legal bases and changes in the legislative procedures apply;

75. Points out that Parliament will decide what position it takes regarding opinions that have already been adopted in consultation procedures on matters which henceforth are to be dealt with under the ordinary legislative procedure, whether this involves confirmation of its previous position or the adoption of a new one; stresses that any confirmation of opinions as Parliament's position at first reading can be voted on by Parliament only after the Lisbon Treaty has entered into force;

76. Insists on the conclusion of an interinstitutional agreement precluding the adoption of pending 'third pillar' legislative proposals having a fundamental rights dimension until the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, so that full judicial scrutiny will be possible in respect of such matters, while measures having no impact, or only a limited impact, on fundamental rights can still be adopted prior to its entry into force;

5. Proposals

77. Calls on the other institutions to enter into negotiations for an interinstitutional agreement covering:

(a) the main objectives to be achieved by the European Union after 2009, e.g. in the form of a framework agreement between the three political institutions on a work programme for the parliamentary and Commission term starting in 2009;

(b) the implementing measures to be adopted in order to make the new Treaty a success for the institutions and for citizens of the Union;

78. Requests an update of the interinstitutional agreement between Parliament and the Council defining their working relations concerning foreign policy, including the sharing of confidential information on the basis of Articles 14 and 36 of the TEU and Article 295 of the TFEU;

79. Calls on the Council and the Commission to consider the negotiation with Parliament of a new interinstitutional agreement providing Parliament with a substantive definition of its involvement in every stage leading to the conclusion of an international agreement;

80. Calls, as a consequence of the new provisions on the multiannual financial framework (Article 312 of the TFEU) and on the financial regulation (Article 322 of the TFEU), for the Interinstitutional Agreement on budgetary discipline and sound financial management to be reviewed;

81. Considers that all necessary steps should be taken to create a European information and communication policy, and regards the joint political declaration given by the three institutions on communication as a useful first step towards the attainment of that objective;

82. Calls on the Commission to rapidly present an initiative for implementation of the 'citizens' initiative', laying down clear, simple and user-friendly conditions for the exercise of this citizens' right; refers to the report on the 'citizens' initiative', drafted by the Committee on Constitutional Affairs;

83. Calls on the Commission to adopt regulations implementing Article 298 of the TFEU on good administration, which will answer a long-standing call by Parliament and by the European Ombudsman for a common system of administrative law governing the European administration;

84. Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon allows for the inclusion of the European Development Fund in the budget of the Union, which will enhance the democratic legitimacy of an important part of the EU’s development policy; calls on the Council and the Commission to take the necessary steps for the budget of the European Union at the 2008/2009 mid-term review;

85. Recommends urgent re-examination and reinforcement of the Union's status in international organisations once the Treaty of Lisbon is in force and the Union has succeeded the European Communities;

86. Calls on the Commission and the Council to agree with Parliament on a strategy aimed at ensuring coherence between legislation adopted and the Charter of Fundamental Rights as well as the rules contained in the Treaties on policies such as preventing discrimination, protecting asylum seekers, improving transparency, data protection, the rights of minorities and the rights of victims and suspects;

87. Asks the Commission and the Council to contribute to the improvement of relations between European and national authorities, especially in the legislative and judicial fields;

88. Calls on the Commission and the Council to provide for the establishment of an effective common energy policy with the objective of efficiently coordinating the energy markets of the EU Member States and the development of those markets, whilst integrating external aspects focusing on the sources and routes of energy supply;

89. Calls on the Council to consider, together with Parliament, what use should be made of the provisions of Article 127(6) of the TFEU, which allow it to confer specific tasks upon the European Central Bank 'relating to the prudential supervision of credit institutions and other financial institutions with the exception of insurance undertakings';

90. Pledges to adapt its internal organisation with a view to optimising and rationalising the exercise of the new powers conferred on it by the Treaty;

°

°         °

91. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the national parliaments of the Member States.

(1)

Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union of 7 December 2000, as proclaimed in Strasbourg on 12 December 2007.

(2)

Laeken European Council, Laeken declaration on the Future of the European Union, SN 273/01, 15.12.2001.

(3)

OJ C 125 E, 22.5.2008, p. 215.

(4)

Texts adopted, P6_TA(2007)0328.

(5)

Texts adopted, P6_TA(2008)0055.


OPINION of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (*) (4.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Jacek Saryusz-Wolski

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Foreign Affairs calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Underlines that the broadening of the Union's external action under the Lisbon Treaty, including the provision of new legal bases and instruments affecting areas related to foreign policy (external action and CFSP/CSDP), necessitates a new interinstitutional balance and cooperation which would ensure coherence within the Union's external action and guarantee adequate democratic scrutiny by Parliament;

2.  Takes the view that the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission is responsible for the development, organisation, coordination and implementation of foreign relations, especially the CFSP and CSDP, and is accountable to Parliament;

3.  Stresses that, in both the formulation and the implementation of the CFSP, the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission is not only required to respect the principles enshrined in Articles 2, 3 and 21 of the EU Treaty but is also bound fully to respect the Charter of Fundamental Rights;

4.  Expects that the relevant EU Council bodies will directly cooperate with the committees and competent bodies responsible for the CFSP and CSDP within the European Parliament;

5.  Will seek, inter alia, through its Committee on Foreign Affairs, to facilitate consensus among the Member States' national parliaments as regards their support for the European Union's external policy initiatives;

Parliament's relations with the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission

6.  Insists that the rights of the European Parliament must be fully respected on the nomination of the first High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission, as well as any other interim appointment: stresses that the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission is fully and directly accountable to the European Parliament;

7.  Reiterates that the future office of High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission will derive its legitimacy directly from the European Parliament and that its two mandates within the Commission and the Council will be inseparable and exercised in full harmony; therefore invites him/her to build upon the current practice and appear regularly before Parliament in plenary and before its Committee on Foreign Affairs, as well as to participate in meetings, in order to hold regular, systematic and substantive consultations with Parliament and its competent bodies, and to involve Parliament in the decision-making process, thus enhancing the transparency and accountability of the Union's foreign policy;

8.  Is of the opinion that the debate with the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission on the main aspects and basic choices of the CFSP/CSDP for the coming year constitutes an ideal opportunity to consult Parliament at the beginning of every year, and that a follow-up debate should be scheduled six months thereafter;

9.  Expects the High Representative or his/her representative to reinforce the present practice of the Union's Presidency of appearing before the Committee on Foreign Affairs to report on the results of the monthly Foreign Affairs Council meetings – in compliance with the High Representative's task of conducting the Union's CFSP and presiding over the Foreign Affairs Council (Article 18(2) and (3) of the consolidated EU Treaty);

10. Requests the High Representative's representative chairing the Political and Security Committee (PSC) to appear regularly before Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs to report on current issues under discussion in PSC meetings;

11. Requests that the High Representative's special representatives (as provided for by Article 33 of the consolidated EU Treaty) appear before the Committee on Foreign Affairs and before other relevant committees as and when requested so to do;

12. Expects that the establishment of the European External Action Service (EEAS) will provide greater clarity with regard to the criteria for, and the appointment and evaluation of, EU Special Representatives, including the definition and purpose of their tasks, the length of their mandate, and coordination and complementarity with the Union's future delegations;

Council–Parliament–Commission interaction concerning foreign policy

13. Is of the opinion that the European Parliament should adopt positions more systematically on each successive stage of CFSP and ESDP decision-making, including on deployment decisions needing to be taken within a very short timeframe (such as those envisaged in respect of EU Battlegroups), so as to enable the Council to reflect the position of the European Parliament in the common positions and joint actions, thus enhancing their democratic legitimacy;

14. Underlines the need to respect the Charter of Fundamental Rights in all aspects of the Union's external action;

15. Resolves to place respect for the principles enshrined in Articles 2, 3 and 21 of the EU Treaty and full application of the Charter of Fundamental Rights in CFSP matters at the forefront of its imperatives; charges its responsible committee to monitor effective adherence thereto;

16. Requests an update of the interinstitutional agreement between Parliament and the Council defining their working relations concerning foreign policy, including the sharing of confidential information on the basis of Articles 15 and 295 of the consolidated Treaty on the Functioning of the EU and Article 36 of the consolidated EU Treaty;

17. Stresses the need to ensure the democratic accountability and transparency of the activities undertaken by the European Defence Agency (EDA), namely by assuring a regular exchange of information between the Chief Executive of the EDA and Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs and its Subcommittee on Security and Defence, and by giving the Chairman of that Subcommittee the possibility of consulting with the EDA Steering Board;

Parliament and the EEAS

18. Underlines the need for transparency and democratic scrutiny of the whole process and recalls its right to be consulted on the establishment of the EEAS in accordance with Article 26 of the consolidated EU Treaty and to be fully associated with the preparatory work; is of the opinion that the EEAS should administratively be attached to the Commission, and refers to its ongoing report on this matter;

19. Notifies its intention to invite the Heads of the European Union's Delegations in third countries to appear before the Committee on Foreign Affairs;

Parliament's relations with national parliaments concerning foreign policy

20. Welcomes provisions for closer cooperation between the European Parliament and national parliaments under the Lisbon Treaty; stresses the need to establish closer collaboration between relevant committees of the European and national parliaments, building on the current practice of meetings between the chairs of the foreign affairs, defence and European affairs committees of national parliaments and of Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs; refers to its ongoing report on this matter;

Parliament's views on international agreements concerning foreign policy

21. Welcomes the fact that Parliament will have much wider powers of consent over international agreements, and in particular over all those where the ordinary legislative procedure is used for internal purposes; urges that any future 'mixed' agreement combining non-CFSP and CFSP elements must be treated according to a single legal basis, which should be the one directly related to the main subject of the agreement; notes that Parliament will have the right to be consulted in all other cases except where the agreement relates exclusively to CFSP;

Parliament's views on the role of the Union in international organisations

22. Calls on the Member States to consult their EU partners and the High Representative/Vice-President of the Commission before adopting strategic decisions in the area of foreign policy, particularly in multilateral organisations, in order that their positions with respect to strategic decisions are coherent and do not affect the convergence of the EU's foreign policy or undermine the EU's credibility as a global player vis-à-vis third countries; recalls in this regard that the Treaty of Lisbon obliges Member States to consult one another and to demonstrate mutual solidarity;

23. Calls on all EU Member States which are also members of the UN Security Council to improve their coordination within that framework in order to enhance the effectiveness of the Union's action on the world stage, and in the longer perspective to strive to secure an EU seat on the Security Council;

24. Recommends urgent re-examination and reinforcement of the Union's status in international organisations once the Lisbon Treaty is in force and the Union succeeds the European Communities;

Financing of CFSP under the Lisbon Treaty and the role of the Parliament

25. Is of the view that all external actions of the Union (including those within the future CSDP but excluding all military expenditure) should in future be financed from the common EU budget;

26. Recommends that the chairpersons and/or rapporteurs of Parliament's committees responsible for external action be fully involved on an ex officio basis in the activities of the new Conciliation Committee envisaged for the new budget procedure;

27. Recalls that the European Parliament is responsible for its own internal organisation and the coherence of its work; will thus maintain the proven practice for the establishment and running of subcommittees under the aegis of the Committee on Foreign Affairs;

28. Refers to its ongoing report on this matter.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

3.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

46

7

0

Members present for the final vote

Monika Beňová, André Brie, Colm Burke, Philip Claeys, Véronique De Keyser, Hanna Foltyn-Kubicka, Georgios Georgiou, Bronisław Geremek, Maciej Marian Giertych, Ana Maria Gomes, Alfred Gomolka, Klaus Hänsch, Anna Ibrisagic, Jelko Kacin, Ioannis Kasoulides, Maria Eleni Koppa, Helmut Kuhne, Willy Meyer Pleite, Francisco José Millán Mon, Philippe Morillon, Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, Alojz Peterle, Tobias Pflüger, João de Deus Pinheiro, Samuli Pohjamo, Raül Romeva i Rueda, Libor Rouček, Christian Rovsing, Katrin Saks, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, György Schöpflin, István Szent-Iványi, Inese Vaidere, Ari Vatanen, Jan Marinus Wiersma, Luis Yañez-Barnuevo García, Zbigniew Zaleski, Josef Zieleniec

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Giulietto Chiesa, Alexandra Dobolyi, Árpád Duka-Zólyomi, Martí Grau i Segú, Evgeni Kirilov, Jaromír Kohlíček, Miloš Koterec, Jo Leinen, Doris Pack, Rihards Pīks, Adrian Severin, Jean Spautz, Karl von Wogau


OPINION of the Committee on Development (*) (28.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Danutė Budreikaitė

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Development calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Welcomes the fact that Article 208(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) stipulates that the 'Union's development cooperation policy and that of the Member States complement and reinforce each other' as opposed to the current Article 177(1) of the Treaty establishing the European Community, which refers to 'Community policy in the sphere of development cooperation, which shall be complementary to the policies pursued by the Member States'; stresses that this gives the Union a greater degree of initiative in policy setting which should lead to better donor coordination and division of labour and to greater aid effectiveness, but which also entails greater responsibilities for the Union's institutions, including Parliament;

2.   Welcomes the fact that Article 208(1) of the TFEU unequivocally states that 'Union development cooperation policy shall have as its primary objective the reduction and, in the long term, the eradication of poverty' and insists that this primary objective must be placed in the context of the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs); reiterates that all policies that have an impact on developing countries should take into account this development objective and that Parliament will have a very important role in monitoring the implementation of this Treaty objective;

3.   Welcomes the fact that Article 214 of the TFEU recognises humanitarian aid as a fully-fledged Union policy which must be in compliance with the principles of international law and with the principles of impartiality, neutrality and non-discrimination; takes the view that Title III, Chapters 1 (Development Cooperation) and 3 (Humanitarian Aid) provide a clear legal basis for development and humanitarian assistance and reflect their integrity as Union competences to which the ordinary legislative procedure (co-decision) applies;

4.   Insists that the limitation of the number of commissioners as from 1 November 2014 (Article 17(5) of the Treaty on the European Union (as amended by the Treaty of Lisbon)) should not lead to the abolition of the Commissioner for development and humanitarian aid, who must remain responsible for the Union's development policy and for the directorate general and services responsible for policy setting, policy advice and policy management of EU development cooperation, while cooperating closely with the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy in order to ensure consistency in the field of external action in accordance with Article 208(1) of the TFEU, which stipulates that 'The Union shall take account of the objectives of development cooperation in the policies that it implements which are likely to affect developing countries';

5.   Insists that there needs to be a stronger voice for development within the EU, reinforced by an administrative structure responsible for policy and its implementation; stresses that the Commissioner for development and humanitarian aid should head development policy in a stronger way than is currently the case;

6.   Emphasises that the establishment of the European External Action service (EEAS) will help the Commission to continue to accelerate the reform and simplification of the directorates general responsible for external action; insists that Parliament must be fully engaged in deciding upon the format for the EEAS; insists that this new service must be fully accountable to Parliament; insists however that the responsibility for both development cooperation policy and the implementation of that policy needs to be carried out under the Commissioner for development and humanitarian aid;

7.   Insists that, in order to ensure policy coherence for development, there is a continued need for a specific directorate general for development at administrative level, responsible for policy setting, policy advice and policy management of EU development cooperation;

8.   Emphasises that the current practice of splitting up policy formulation, programming and implementation in the field of development cooperation policy should be brought to an end, so as to increase the efficiency of the EU's development cooperation;

9.   Stresses the need to ensure consistency and integrate development and humanitarian programming for African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, Asia and Latin America;

10. Calls on the Commission to correct the existing inconsistencies in the structure and the competences of its directorates general, both in terms of policies and budget; calls for the Directorate General for Development and to be made responsible for all EU development cooperation, including cooperation with non-ACP developing countries, and for the integration of EuropeAid into the Directorate General for Development;

11. Welcomes the requirement for consent (assent) of Parliament for the conclusion of international agreements covering fields to which either the ordinary legislative procedure or the special legislative procedure (where consent by the Parliament is required) applies (Article 218(6)(a)(v) of the TFEU); stresses that this will increase transparency and the democratic scrutiny exercised by Parliament over all aspects of EU development cooperation policy;

12. Notes the Lisbon Treaty maintains the co-decision (ordinary legislative) procedure in the area of development cooperation policy; stresses that this must mean that the Parliament enjoys and makes full use of its right to democratic scrutiny over all aspects of EU development cooperation policy;

13. Welcomes the introduction by Article 5(3) of the Treaty on European Union (as amended by the Treaty of Lisbon) of the scrutiny by national parliaments on respect for the principle of subsidiarity; takes the view that greater involvement of the national parliaments in the area of EU development cooperation will enhance the mutual complementarity between the Union and the Member States and raise public awareness of the Union's activities in the area; stresses the need for the European Parliament and national parliaments to prepare for this in a highly efficient way;

14. Welcomes the fact that the Lisbon Treaty introduces binding provisions for the protection of children's rights in the internal and external objectives of the EU;

15. Welcomes the deletion by the Lisbon Treaty of Article 179(3) of the Treaty establishing the European Community, which excludes the European Development Fund (EDF) from the scope of that Treaty; notes that this opens the way for the inclusion of the EDF in the budget of the Union without the need to revise that Treaty; calls on the Council and the Commission to include the EDF in the budget of the EU at the 2008/2009 Mid-term Review, which will enhance the democratic legitimacy of an important part of EU development policy and its budget;

16. Stresses that only if a high priority is given to policy coherence for development will the Union be able to meet both the development objectives and the values of the EU as stated in the Lisbon Treaty;

17. Welcomes the prospect of a more streamlined institutional architecture at EU level to coordinate Europe’s external relations policies, but warns that to be truly effective, development policy must be based on partnership and ownership with recipient countries.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

28.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

27

0

2

Members present for the final vote

Margrete Auken, Alessandro Battilocchio, Thijs Berman, Danutė Budreikaitė, Marie-Arlette Carlotti, Corina Creţu, Beniamino Donnici, Fernando Fernández Martín, Juan Fraile Cantón, Alain Hutchinson, Filip Kaczmarek, Glenys Kinnock, Maria Martens, Gay Mitchell, Luisa Morgantini, Horst Posdorf, José Ribeiro e Castro, Frithjof Schmidt, Jürgen Schröder, Feleknas Uca, Anna Záborská, Jan Zahradil

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

John Bowis, Ana Maria Gomes, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez, Manolis Mavrommatis, Mihaela Popa, Renate Weber, Gabriele Zimmer


OPINION of the Committee on International Trade (*) (27.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Georgios Papastamkos

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on International Trade calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Considers that the changes introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon in the area of the Common Commercial Policy (CCP) contribute overall to the enhancement of its democratic legitimacy and its efficiency; in that respect highlights the extension of the scope of the CCP, the express recognition of all areas covered by the CCP as an exclusive competence and especially the substantially strengthened role and powers of the Parliament;

2.   Stresses the explicit requirement that the CCP shall serve the principles and objectives of the Union's external action, inter alia, safeguarding its values and fundamental interests, supporting democracy and the rule of law, and promoting sustainable development and good global governance; underlines the need to guarantee consistency and mutual supportiveness among the various aspects of the external action of the EU; but sees a continued need for an autonomous trade policy that does justice to the importance of the European Union’s trading interests for jobs and prosperity; warns against regarding the CCP as a negotiating chip for implementing other policy objectives;

3.   Strongly supports the effective promotion of non-trade concerns, such as the observance of environmental, social and food safety standards, through the pursuit of the CCP at the bilateral, interregional and multilateral level;

Future relations with the European Commission

4.   Stresses that, with regard to the negotiation and conclusion of international agreements under the CCP, the Commission will be under a legal obligation to inform Parliament about the progress of negotiations on a par with the special ‘Committee referred to in Article 207 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU)’ of the Council; calls for this information to be provided to the same extent and at the same time as it is provided to the relevant Council committee under that Article;

5.   Regrets the imbalance regarding Parliament's role and powers between its internal and external competence in the areas of the CCP; finds it particularly unacceptable that the Treaty of Lisbon does not provide Parliament with the right to approve the mandate of the Commission to negotiate a trade agreement;

6.   Considers, though, that the Parliament is entitled to establish preconditions in order to give its consent, which will be required for the conclusion of all trade agreements; stresses therefore the need to reinforce the Framework Agreement, and in particular paragraph 19 thereof, on relations between Parliament and the Commission;

7.   Asks for the inclusion of specific paragraphs in such a renewed Framework Agreement that call on the Commission:

a.    to react to the preconditions Parliament may set for giving its consent to the conclusion of a trade agreement before effectively starting the negotiations;

b.   to provide Parliament with all the necessary information relating to the CCP and the negotiation of commercial agreements or the negotiation of the commercial components of any agreement, including all proposals and draft proposals for negotiating mandates and/or directives, in sufficient time for Parliament to be able to express its views and for the Commission to be able to take due account of those views;

c.    with regard to the transparency of operations of the Article 207 TFEU Committee, to make available all documents to the Parliament’s responsible Committee;

d.   to include an observer delegation from the Parliament in any negotiation on commercial agreements or commercial components of any other international agreement;

Future relations with the Council

8.   Points out that, under Article 207 (2) TFEU, Parliament and Council will be co-legislators on an equal footing when determining the framework for implementing the CCP, which may include both policy and technical aspects of the CCP;

9.   Considers that the wording ‘measures defining the framework for implementing the common commercial policy’ in Article 207 (2) TFEU implies that the essential elements of the CCP will be included in legislative acts adopted under the ordinary legislative procedure, and that non-essential elements of these acts may be amended or supplemented by the Commission in the form of ‘delegated acts’, if so stated in the basic legislative act, in accordance with Article 290 TFEU;

10. Notes that, with respect to ‘delegated acts’, the Parliament will have considerable powers, which could go so far as objecting to the entry into force of the delegated act in question, if the main co-decided act so provides;

11. Considers that uniform conditions for implementing legislative acts in the CCP require the legislative acts to confer implementing powers on the Commission for adopting ‘implementing acts’, in accordance with Article 291 TFEU; therefore urges the Commission to propose, as soon as possible, a regulation laying down the rules and general principles on implementing acts, including mechanisms for control of these powers by the Member States, and urges the Parliament and the Council to adopt this regulation as soon as possible after the entry into force of the Treaty;

12. Stresses that this regulation should call on the Commission to refrain from making substantive changes to basic legislative acts, or from adding details affecting the political will expressed in basic legislative acts, when adopting implementing legislation concerning the CCP;

13. Calls on the European Council, the Council and the Commission to consider the negotiation of a new Inter-Institutional Agreement with Parliament that provides Parliament with a substantive definition of its involvement in every stage leading to the conclusion of an international agreement;

14. Calls on the Council to invite Parliament’s representatives to participate in all Coreper II meetings that deal with matters falling within the scope of the ordinary legislative procedure;

Future relations with the Vice-President of the European Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy - External action

15. Urges the future High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy ('HR/VP') to consider with Parliament appropriate methods of keeping Parliament fully informed of and consulted on the Union’s external action; to further this aim, regular joint meetings between the group of External Relations Commissioners (chaired by the HR/VP) with delegations from Parliament's responsible committees as well as regular joint meetings between the Council’s working groups, Coreper, the PSC, the Article 207-Committee, and the European Commission with Parliament’s rapporteurs and delegations should become normal practice;

16. Calls for an 'ad hoc' hearing procedure to be established for the nomination of the HR/VP with the involvement of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Committee on International Trade and the Committee on Development;

Future relations with the national parliaments of the EU Member states

17. Regards the maintenance of a single Commissioner, with sole responsibility for trade policy within the College of Commissioners, as essential to do justice to the CCP’s importance;

18. Notes that all matters falling under the CCP (Part V, Title II TFEU) will come within the exclusive competence of the Union, including trade in goods, services, commercial aspects of intellectual property and foreign direct investment, which means that trade agreements will be ‘Union agreements’ and that there will be no more mixed trade agreements concluded by both the Union and the Member States;

19. Intends, as a consequence, to enter into a structured dialogue with the national parliaments of the Member States to jointly ensure the democratic legitimacy of the Union’s CCP.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

27.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

26

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Kader Arif, Françoise Castex, Christofer Fjellner, Glyn Ford, Béla Glattfelder, Ignasi Guardans Cambó, Jacky Hénin, Marusya Ivanova Lyubcheva, Erika Mann, Helmuth Markov, David Martin, Georgios Papastamkos, Godelieve Quisthoudt-Rowohl, Tokia Saïfi, Peter Šťastný, Robert Sturdy, Daniel Varela Suanzes-Carpegna, Corien Wortmann-Kool

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Jean-Pierre Audy, Albert Deß, Eugenijus Maldeikis, Javier Moreno Sánchez, Salvador Domingo Sanz Palacio, Frithjof Schmidt, Zbigniew Zaleski

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Emanuel Jardim Fernandes


OPINION of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (*) (4.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament’s new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Pervenche Berès

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Believes that recognition of the European Central Bank (ECB) as a European institution, which does not affect its independence when conducting monetary policy, increases the responsibility of Parliament, and, in particular, that of its committee competent for economic and monetary affairs, as an institution to which the ECB accounts for its decisions on monetary policy; considers that there should be parallel reinforcement of Parliament’s contribution to the appointment of the members of the ECB Executive Board; takes the view that the ECB’s role in combating activities affecting the financial interests of the European Union should lead to close cooperation between Parliament’s committees;

2.  Welcomes the new consultative role it will have under Article 40(2) of the ECB Statute with regard to changing to the composition of the ECB Governing Council;

3.  Notes that the Eurogroup and its predominant role in deciding economic policy for the Euro area have been officially recognised; considers it necessary, therefore, to foster the practice of exchanges initiated by its committee competent for economic and monetary affairs; requests that the Eurogroup and the Commission clarify what effect that development will have in terms of resources and evaluation; considers that the budgetary impact of recognising the Eurogroup should be examined by the budgetary authority;

4.  Considers that the creation of a legal basis for the adoption of broad economic policy guidelines for the euro area, in Article 136 of the future Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), and of measures strengthening the coordination and monitoring of Member States’ budgetary discipline, must lead to the Commission rapidly using that new basis to undertake an initiative which fully involves Parliament in defining the procedure and its implementation;

5.  Considers that the possibility of common positions and of unified representation of the euro area in international financial institutions should be implemented without delay and should also result in the participation in such representation of those members of its Committee competent for economic and monetary affairs who are nationals of a Member State represented in the Eurogroup;

6.  Calls on the Commission to put forward a regulation to allow Parliament and the Council to decide the arrangements for the multilateral surveillance procedure in accordance with Article 121(6) of the TFEU;

7.  Notes, on the one hand, the strengthening of the role of the Commission under the TFEU, which will be able to deliver opinions directly to Member States that do not conform to the broad economic policy guidelines or that endanger the proper functioning of economic and monetary union and, on the other hand, the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure for the adoption of detailed rules on the multilateral surveillance procedure, which should strengthen economic coordination;

8.  Welcomes the amendments to Article 16 of the EC Treaty, which will become Article 14 TFEU, concerning services of general economic interest, and in particular the legal basis enabling the definition of principles and conditions governing the provision of such services, as well as the adoption of a protocol on services of general interest; welcomes also the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure enabling Parliament and the Council to establish principles and conditions for the provision of those services;

9.  Welcomes the enhanced role of national parliaments in respect of monitoring the subsidiarity principle in the context of the ordinary legislative procedure; nevertheless undertakes, in the absence of any specific consultation of the national parliaments, to involve them on an annual basis in its own discussions on the broad economic policy guidelines;

10. Points out that the delegated acts provided for in Article 290 of the TFEU are appropriate to financial legislation; welcomes the fact that the delegation of power to the Commission is more clearly defined in terms of scope and duration; nevertheless calls attention to the specific features of the Lamfalussy process, not least as regards the circulation of information among the various institutions and Commission transparency in the framing of legislative measures, and to the need to preserve at least those specific features, if not further develop them towards more transparency, better cooperation among the institutions, and better supervision at the EU level;

11. Asks the Commission to clarify its intended interpretation of the Declaration on Article 290 of the TFEU, which relates to the consultation of experts, in the area of financial services, and how it intends to apply that interpretation, beyond the letter of the provisions relating to delegated acts in the TFEU;

12. Calls on the Commission, where possible, to use Article 290 of the TFEU to encourage the use of regulation in the area of financial services;

13. Calls on the Commission to use the new Article 197 of the TFEU without delay to introduce measures on administrative cooperation in the areas of taxation and supervision of the financial services market;

14. Calls on the Council to consider, together with Parliament, what use should be made of the provisions of Article 127(6) of the TFEU, which allow it to confer specific tasks upon the ECB relating to the prudential supervision of credit institutions and other financial institutions with the exception of insurance undertakings;

15. Expresses concern at the addition to Article 57 of the EC Treaty, which will become Article 64 of the TFEU, of a procedure for the adoption, on the basis of a unanimous decision by the Member States, of restrictions on the free movement of capital to or from third countries, when those restrictions run contrary to the state of liberalisation of the market; takes the view that that new condition will, in practice, prevent EU initiatives in the area of the financial markets that could prove vital to safeguarding European financial stability.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

3.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

34

0

3

Members present for the final vote

Mariela Velichkova Baeva, Zsolt László Becsey, Pervenche Berès, Sharon Bowles, Manuel António dos Santos, Jonathan Evans, Elisa Ferreira, José Manuel García-Margallo y Marfil, Jean-Paul Gauzès, Donata Gottardi, Benoît Hamon, Karsten Friedrich Hoppenstedt, Othmar Karas, Piia-Noora Kauppi, Wolf Klinz, Christoph Konrad, Guntars Krasts, Andrea Losco, Astrid Lulling, Florencio Luque Aguilar, John Purvis, Alexander Radwan, Bernhard Rapkay, Dariusz Rosati, Eoin Ryan, Antolín Sánchez Presedo, Olle Schmidt, Peter Skinner, Margarita Starkevičiūtė, Ivo Strejček, Ieke van den Burg

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Daniel Dăianu, Mia De Vits, Harald Ettl, Vladimír Maňka, Margaritis Schinas

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Tobias Pflüger


OPINION of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (*) (29.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Jan Andersson

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Employment and Social Affairs calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

A. whereas, with a view to preparing a report on Parliament's potential new role and responsibilities for implementing the Treaty of Lisbon, the Committee on Constitutional Affairs asked all parliamentary committees to answer two questions included in a working document prepared by that Committee,

B.  whereas the chair of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs asked the political groups for comments on those two questions and availed himself of the contributions provided by the secretariat of that Committee,

1.  Points out, as regards the question concerning the political priorities of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs with regard to the use of Parliament's increased democratic responsibilities as provided for in the Treaty of Lisbon, that, as shown in its working document of 9 April 2008 on Modifications introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon of interest to the EMPL committee, relatively few changes which affect the powers of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs conferred under Annex VI of the Rules of Procedure will be introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon;

2.  Considers, therefore, that the use of Parliament's increased democratic responsibilities as provided for in the Treaty of Lisbon will have only a marginal effect compared to the current state of play as regards both the competences concerning and the management of dossiers by the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs;

3.  Stresses that the Treaty of Lisbon provides for further progress on social Europe and for strengthened social legislation on the basis of the binding character of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, whilst noting that some Member States have ‘opt-outs’ from the binding nature of the Charter, and of a more systematic definition, in Articles 2 and 3 of the Treaty on European Union, as amended, of the values underpinning the European Union's actions and main aims;

4.  Underlines, in addition, the importance of the horizontal social clause in Article 9 of the Treaty on European Union, as amended, which will act as a general principle of the European Union's policy making;

5.  Welcomes, in particular, Article 16 of the EC Treaty, as amended, and the Protocol to the Treaty of Lisbon on Services of General Interest, which provide a clear legal basis for the definition of Member States’ responsibilities as regards the provision of universally accessible and high-quality public services to users;

6.  Welcomes the fact that legislation prohibiting discrimination will become subject to the codecision procedure;

7.  Points out, as regards the question how the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs envisages coping with the transition from consultation to codecision in legislative procedures and with other procedural changes, that there are only three legislative proposals currently being examined, which will be affected by the changes introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon; points out that those three proposals all concern the coordination of social security and are based on Articles 42 and 308 of the EC Treaty:

- a proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down the procedure for implementing Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems (COM(2006)0016 – C6 0037/2006 – 2006/0006(COD));

- a proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems, and determining the content of Annex XI (COM(2006)0007 – C6 0029/2006 – 2006/0008(COD)); and

- a proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending the annexes to Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems (COM(2007)0376 – C6 0204/2007 – 2007/0129(COD));

points out that the second and third proposals referred to will be merged and adopted as a single legislative act;

8.  Points out that the only change introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon to the three legislative proposals referred to above will be that, as regards their adoption, voting in the Council will take place on the basis of qualified majority rather than unanimity, subject to the procedure provided for in Article 42 of the EC Treaty, as amended.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

29.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

33

2

2

Members present for the final vote

Jan Andersson, Edit Bauer, Philip Bushill-Matthews, Alejandro Cercas, Derek Roland Clark, Luigi Cocilovo, Jean Louis Cottigny, Jan Cremers, Harald Ettl, Richard Falbr, Roger Helmer, Stephen Hughes, Jan Jerzy Kułakowski, Jean Lambert, Bernard Lehideux, Elizabeth Lynne, Thomas Mann, Maria Matsouka, Elisabeth Morin, Juan Andrés Naranjo Escobar, Csaba Őry, Marie Panayotopoulos-Cassiotou, Pier Antonio Panzeri, Rovana Plumb, Jacek Protasiewicz, Bilyana Ilieva Raeva, José Albino Silva Peneda, Jean Spautz, Gabriele Stauner, Ewa Tomaszewska, Anne Van Lancker, Gabriele Zimmer

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Françoise Castex, Gabriela Creţu, Sepp Kusstatscher, Roberto Musacchio, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, Csaba Sógor, Tatjana Ždanoka


OPINION of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (*) (3.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): David Martin

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the Committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for resolution:

1.  Welcomes the fact that the Environment has been given such a prominent position in all EU policies in the Treaty of Lisbon, including the explicit reference to promoting measures at international level to deal with environmental problems, and in particular combating climate change and global warming;

2.  Stresses the importance of the European Parliament and the European Union continuing to take a leading role in all policies relating to tackling climate change;

3.  Underlines therefore that it is a matter of priority for the European Parliament to adopt its position on the proposed climate change package, put forward by the Commission earlier this year, as soon as conceivably possible;

4.  Notes with satisfaction that the European Union's power is strengthened considerably in the field of public health by way of references to health services in cross-border areas, measures related to the protection of public health regarding tobacco and the abuse of alcohol, and on monitoring, early warning of and combating serious cross-border threats to health, excluding harmonisation of laws and regulations, as well as measures related to medicinal products and devices for medical use. Welcomes specific references to initiatives aimed at establishing guidelines and indicators, organising the exchange of best practices and preparing the necessary elements for periodic monitoring and evaluation, concerning which the European Parliament is to be kept fully informed. Welcomes the fact that public health policies can clearly be pursued more effectively under the new Treaty;

5.  Points out that in view of the increased focus in the area of health services, trans-frontier diseases and climate change, such issues should, where possible, be taken into consideration in all aspects of EU policy, especially international trade agreements;

6.  Welcomes the fact that the Treaty adds a new title on energy (Title XXI), whose objectives include the promotion of energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources, in the context of the need to protect and improve the environment;

7.  Welcomes further the reinforcement of the European Union's power in the area of civil protection in providing ad hoc assistance and disaster relief in third countries as part of the EU humanitarian aid policy and supporting and complementing Member States' actions and applying the solidarity clause in the event of a natural or man-made disaster;

8.  Stresses that the clarification of the Union's powers in the policy field relating to the environment, public health and consumer protection entails visible benefits for the citizens of Europe, since it reinforces the promotion of sustainable development in the Union, health policies and environmental protection;

9.  In light of the increasingly international nature of its policy remit, the Committee for Environment, Public Health and Food Safety calls for Parliament and the Commission to facilitate a direct relationship consisting of regular consultation between the High Representative for the Common Foreign Security Policy and the Committee;

10. Considers that the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety has an efficient system in place to guarantee that Parliament fulfils and makes full use of its role under the new scrutiny provisions in the area of commitology, and stresses the challenge the Committee faces in balancing the workload of its regular legislative work programme with these new scrutiny tasks;

11. Welcomes the strengthening of the role of the national parliaments in the legislative process by way of the new obligation of scrutiny on all legislative proposals, except where the principle of subsidiarity does not apply. Notes that it is too early to say how this new scrutiny provision will affect the Committee's and Parliament's work in practice.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

3.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

49

2

3

Members present for the final vote

Georgs Andrejevs, Margrete Auken, Liam Aylward, Pilar Ayuso, Irena Belohorská, Johannes Blokland, John Bowis, Frieda Brepoels, Martin Callanan, Dorette Corbey, Magor Imre Csibi, Chris Davies, Avril Doyle, Edite Estrela, Karl-Heinz Florenz, Matthias Groote, Françoise Grossetête, Cristina Gutiérrez-Cortines, Satu Hassi, Gyula Hegyi, Marie Anne Isler Béguin, Christa Klaß, Eija-Riitta Korhola, Peter Liese, Jules Maaten, Roberto Musacchio, Riitta Myller, Péter Olajos, Miroslav Ouzký, Vladko Todorov Panayotov, Vittorio Prodi, Frédérique Ries, Dagmar Roth-Behrendt, Guido Sacconi, Carl Schlyter, Horst Schnellhardt, Richard Seeber, Kathy Sinnott, Bogusław Sonik, María Sornosa Martínez, Antonios Trakatellis, Anja Weisgerber, Åsa Westlund, Anders Wijkman, Glenis Willmott

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Inés Ayala Sender, Iles Braghetto, Bairbre de Brún, Genowefa Grabowska, Rebecca Harms, Jutta Haug, Henrik Lax, Johannes Lebech, Alojz Peterle


OPINION of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (*) (3.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Evelyne Gebhardt

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Notes that, under the Treaty of Lisbon, the codecision procedure, now rebaptised the 'ordinary legislative procedure', continues to apply to internal market, consumer protection and customs union policies; notes that the European Parliament has been given a greater voice through the introduction of that procedure in a number of provisions;

2.  Wholeheartedly endorses the Treaty of Lisbon and takes particular note of:

- the objective of establishing an internal market linked to horizontal elements, such as sustainable development, a 'highly competitive social market economy aiming at full employment and social progress', and the protection and improvement of the quality of the environment;

- the Protocol on the internal market and competition, and points out in this regard that, while competition policy is a necessary instrument designed to ensure the functioning of the internal market, it is not an end in itself;

- the fact that the internal market, economic, social and territorial cohesion, consumer protection and common safety concerns in public health matters are on the list of the principal areas of activity of equal importance in which the Union shares competence with the Member States;

- the call for the Member States to endeavour to undertake more extensive liberalisation of services if their general economic situation and the situation of the economic sector concerned so permit;

- the legislative competence of the European Parliament and the Council in respect of services of general economic interest, particularly in view of their significance in promoting social and territorial cohesion; notes the discretion given to national, regional and local authorities under the Protocol on services of general interest;

- the consolidation and more specific definition of the principle of subsidiarity and the inclusion of national parliaments in the legislative process, as stipulated in the Protocol on the application of the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality and the Protocol on the role of national parliaments in the European Union;

3.  Stresses, in addition, the importance of taking into account consumer protection requirements across the board in defining and implementing other Union policies;

4.  Stresses that the European Union has exclusive competence in the area of customs union; notes the legislative powers of the European Parliament and the Council in respect of measures to extend customs cooperation;

5.  Notes that scrutiny by the national parliaments under the subsidiarity principle could, from 1 January 2009, affect reports being drawn up in the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection in respect of which first reading cannot be completed by the end of 2008(1).

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

3.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

30

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Charlotte Cederschiöld, Gabriela Creţu, Janelly Fourtou, Evelyne Gebhardt, Martí Grau i Segú, Małgorzata Handzlik, Malcolm Harbour, Edit Herczog, Iliana Malinova Iotova, Graf Alexander Lambsdorff, Toine Manders, Arlene McCarthy, Nickolay Mladenov, Zita Pleštinská, Zuzana Roithová, Heide Rühle, Leopold Józef Rutowicz, Salvador Domingo Sanz Palacio, Christel Schaldemose, Andreas Schwab, Marianne Thyssen, Barbara Weiler

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Emmanouil Angelakas, Giovanna Corda, Jan Cremers, Joel Hasse Ferreira, Filip Kaczmarek, Manuel Medina Ortega

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Dragoş Florin David, Jean-Paul Gauzès, Sirpa Pietikäinen

(1)

As things now stand, this would appear to affect the proposals for directives on calls for tenders and transfers in the field of defence (COM(2007)0766 and COM(2007)0765) and on the safety of toys (COM(2008)0009).


OPINION of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (*) (29.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Paolo Costa

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Transport and Tourism calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Recalls that over a number of years and successive parliaments, the Committee on Transport and Tourism has dealt with a high percentage share of all European Parliamentary codecision legislation, indeed while broader policy work and opinions have not been neglected, codecision dossiers have constituted the larger part of the Transport Committee's work; notes that this will not change if the Lisbon Treaty is ratified and the ordinary legislative procedure is used;

2.   Welcomes the inclusion of Tourism as a new title in the Lisbon Treaty; notes that Article 195(1) of the Lisbon Treaty provides that the Union shall complement the action of the Member States in the tourism sector, in particular by promoting the competitiveness of Union undertakings in that sector, encouraging a favourable environment for undertakings and the exchange of good practice ; welcomes the Parliament's new powers in the field of tourism and hopes that these will contribute to the development of a new tourism policy for the European Union;

3.   Further welcomes the provision that the ordinary legislative procedure will govern the adoption of legislative proposals falling under this Title;

4.   In this context urges the Commission to consider whether legislation or other action is required to meet the priorities identified by Parliament in its resolutions on Tourism of 8 September 2005(1) and 29 November 2007(2), specifically on the collection of statistical information in the field of tourism, a European classification scheme or schemes for tourist accommodation, and the extension of consumer protection provisions to all websites offering holidays; and to bring forward legislative proposals or other measures in this field;

5.   Welcomes the introduction under Article 189 of the Lisbon Treaty of a legal basis for a European space policy and the formulation of a European space programme under the ordinary legislative procedure;

6.   Notes that space launch services and the necessary infrastructure constitute transport activities which should as such be covered by Title VI of the Lisbon Treaty and should be the responsibility of Parliament’s Committee on Transport and Tourism; calls for Commission initiatives relating to this specific segment of the space sector to be taken explicitly under this legal basis;

7.   Welcomes the fact that Article 207(5) of the Lisbon Treaty extends the assent procedure to international aviation agreements; urges in this context that full use is made of Rules 83 and 84 of Parliament's Rules of Procedure which allow Parliament to request Council not to open negotiations until Parliament has stated its position and allow Parliament on the basis of a report from the Committee responsible to adopt recommendations at any stage in the negotiations for these to be taken into account before the conclusion of negotiations;

8.   Calls for any revision of the Rules of Procedure to align them with the Lisbon Treaty to retain the substance of the provisions of Rules 83 and 84.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

29.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

23

0

1

Members present for the final vote

Inés Ayala Sender, Paolo Costa, Arūnas Degutis, Petr Duchoň, Saïd El Khadraoui, Robert Evans, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Francesco Ferrari, Brigitte Fouré, Mathieu Grosch, Georg Jarzembowski, Timothy Kirkhope, Sepp Kusstatscher, Jörg Leichtfried, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Willi Piecyk, Paweł Bartłomiej Piskorski, Luís Queiró, Reinhard Rack, Brian Simpson

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Nathalie Griesbeck, Zita Gurmai, Leopold Józef Rutowicz

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Bart Staes

(1)

OJ C 193 E, 17.8.2006, p. 325.

(2)

Texts Adopted, P6_TA(2007)0575.


OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development (*) (30.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman(*): Gerardo Galeote

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Regional Development calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Welcomes the fact that, as regards economic, social and territorial cohesion, the Lisbon Treaty puts the European Parliament on an equal footing with the Council by replacing the assent procedure, which applied, notably, to the adoption of the general regulation on the Structural Funds, by the so-called ordinary legislative procedure, the co-decision procedure, significantly increasing Parliament's legislative powers and the competence of the Committee on Regional Development, a change which will be especially significant as regards the Structural Funds in the period after 2013, and thus enhancing transparency and increasing Parliament's accountability to citizens;

2.   Believes that the inclusion of territorial cohesion as an objective of the Union complements the objectives of economic and social cohesion and will increase the competence of Parliament and of the Committee on Regional Development to assess the territorial impact of key EU policies; emphasises the importance of the introduction of shared competence for the EU and Members States in the field of territorial cohesion and, in order to make rapid progress towards achieving this objective, recommends that the Committee on Regional Development be fully involved in all relevant activities in this field;

3.  Calls on the Council and Commission to define more precisely, together with Parliament, the concept and objective of territorial cohesion (including the relevant indicators, methodology, and instruments) and, bearing in mind that definition, take better account without further delay of the territorial impact of all EU policies having a strong territorial dimension; stresses, in this context, the importance of territorial cohesion notably when considering European spatial planning, the establishment of a polycentric and balanced urban system and the creation of a new urban-rural relationship;

4.  notes the important role that the Committee on Regional Development will play in defining territorial cohesion and in creating synergies between the financing instruments of cohesion policy for achieving it; urges, furthermore, the Member States to demonstrate the necessary political will to incorporate the objective of territorial cohesion in national legislation;

5.  Notes positively that the Lisbon Treaty provides a more precise and exhaustive definition of regions, such as regions in rural areas, regions confronted with demographic challenges and ultra-peripheral and cross-border regions, to which the Community, in pursuit of its cohesion policy, should pay particular attention;

6.  Notes positively that the special status of the outermost regions is confirmed by Articles 349 and 355 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and is now also referred to in specific provisions concerning state aid;

7.  Notes that cohesion policy attracts one of the largest shares of the EU budget; firmly believes that the changes in the budgetary procedure, notably the convening of the conciliation committee in the event of Parliament adopting amendments at first reading, will necessitate strengthened co-operation between the Committee on Regional Development and the Committee on Budgets, notably through representation of the Committee on Regional Development in conciliation committee meetings;

8.  Welcomes the extension of the principle of subsidiarity, especially with regard to local and regional authorities, and the inclusion of the 'early warning mechanism' that should enable national parliaments to better assess the consistency of Community legislative proposals with the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality; draws attention, in this connection, to the need to strengthen relations between the Committee on Regional Development and national parliaments, for instance, via the development or consolidation of specific channels of communication; believes in this regard that the involvement of local and regional authorities and parliaments in relation to subsidiarity could be an important element and recalls that such involvement depends on national provisions;

9.  Notes positively the shared values of the Union as regards services of general economic interest laid down in the Protocol on services of general interest, and emphasises in particular the essential role and wide discretion of national, regional and local authorities in this context;

10. Stresses the importance of the Committee on Regional Development in relations between Parliament and the Committee of the Regions;

11. Calls on the Committee of the Regions to send the Committee on Regional Development an opinion on the impact of the Lisbon Treaty upon regional policy and in its area of competence.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

29.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

44

3

1

Members present for the final vote

Emmanouil Angelakas, Stavros Arnaoutakis, Jean Marie Beaupuy, Rolf Berend, Jana Bobošíková, Victor Boştinaru, Wolfgang Bulfon, Bairbre de Brún, Gerardo Galeote, Iratxe García Pérez, Eugenijus Gentvilas, Zita Gurmai, Gábor Harangozó, Mieczysław Edmund Janowski, Tunne Kelam, Evgeni Kirilov, Constanze Angela Krehl, Florencio Luque Aguilar, Sérgio Marques, Lambert van Nistelrooij, Markus Pieper, Pierre Pribetich, Wojciech Roszkowski, Elisabeth Schroedter, Grażyna Staniszewska, Catherine Stihler, Kyriacos Triantaphyllides, Oldřich Vlasák, Vladimír Železný

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Bernadette Bourzai, Jan Březina, Den Dover, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Fernando Fernández Martín, Francesco Ferrari, Louis Grech, Ramona Nicole Mănescu, Francisca Pleguezuelos Aguilar, Zita Pleštinská, Samuli Pohjamo, Christa Prets, Jürgen Schröder, Richard Seeber, Bart Staes, László Surján, Manfred Weber

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Manuel Medina Ortega, Nicolae Vlad Popa


OPINION of the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (*) (27.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Niels Busk

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Welcomes the extension of the co-decision procedure to include the common agricultural policy (CAP);

2.   Believes that the introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure, i.e. co-decision in the field of the CAP, improves the democratic accountability of the European Union as Parliament, which represents the citizens of the Union, will co-legislate on an equal footing with the Council, which represents the Member States;

3.   Stresses that Parliament is the only democratically elected representation of citizens of the Union;

4.   Is of the view that the provisions on agriculture need to be expanded to take account of the current situation; stresses, further, that food production must continue to be given priority with a view to security of food supply globally, without losing sight of the problems linked to energy security and environmental protection;

5.   Stresses that Parliament needs to ensure that the provisions necessary for pursuit of the objectives of the CAP are laid down in legislative acts, and not left to acts to be adopted by the Council acting alone, or by the Commission within the framework of its powers concerning delegated acts and implementing measures;

6.   Emphasises that all current Council legislation adopted on the basis of Articles 36 and 37 of the EC Treaty will fall under the new Article 37(2), i.e. the co-decision procedure; this is notably the case in respect of the four main horizontal texts in the field of agriculture (the single CMO, the Direct Payments Regulation, the Rural Development Regulation and financing of the CAP); points out, moreover, that legislation on quality, organic farming and promotion will also fall within the scope of Article 37(2);

7.   Believes that Article 37(3) does not, in itself, constitute an independent power; emphasises that a co-decision act adopted on the basis of Article 37(2) is necessary in order to stipulate whether and how the Council may use its powers under Article 37(3);

8.   Calls for it not to be possible for the measures referred to in Article 37(3) to be taken by the Council alone without consulting Parliament;

9.   Is of the opinion that no existing Council act could have been adopted on the basis of Article 37(3), and therefore considers the scope and possible application of that paragraph to be invalid as a general basis for legislative acts;

10. Notes that the commitology procedures adopted on the basis of Article 202 of the EC Treaty will be repealed; emphasises the key role that Parliament has to play with regard to Article 249C in formulating a new commitology framework (i.e. by adopting acts in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure), especially with regard to the role of committees in the field of agriculture; stresses, therefore, the need to ensure that the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development is represented in the interinstitutional negotiations in which the new commitology framework will be formulated;

11. Underlines that Parliament's specialised committees should be adequately involved in the ongoing discussions on the future commitology regime under the Treaty of Lisbon in order to facilitate a smooth transition from the current system to the future provisions; considers that parliamentary control of delegated acts and implementing measures must be guaranteed;

12. Emphasises the need to strengthen relations, and set up a more intense and regular dialogue with national parliaments, given that the Treaty of Lisbon has, in Article 3b(3), introduced a check by national parliaments based on the principle of subsidiarity;

13. Stresses that the Treaty of Lisbon will apply to all legislative proposals that have been initiated at the time of its coming into force.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

27.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

37

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Vincenzo Aita, Peter Baco, Bernadette Bourzai, Niels Busk, Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos, Giuseppe Castiglione, Giovanna Corda, Joseph Daul, Albert Deß, Gintaras Didžiokas, Constantin Dumitriu, Michl Ebner, Ioannis Gklavakis, Lutz Goepel, Friedrich-Wilhelm Graefe zu Baringdorf, Esther Herranz García, Lily Jacobs, Elisabeth Jeggle, Heinz Kindermann, Vincenzo Lavarra, Stéphane Le Foll, Mairead McGuinness, Rosa Miguélez Ramos, James Nicholson, María Isabel Salinas García, Agnes Schierhuber, Czesław Adam Siekierski, Alyn Smith, Petya Stavreva, Witold Tomczak, Donato Tommaso Veraldi, Janusz Wojciechowski, Andrzej Tomasz Zapałowski

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Liam Aylward, Esther De Lange, Hans-Peter Mayer, Brian Simpson, Struan Stevenson, Kyösti Virrankoski


OPINION of the Committee on Fisheries (*) (28.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Rosa Miguélez Ramos

(*) Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Fisheries calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Notes that the Treaty of Lisbon heralds, for the common fisheries policy (CFP), a far-reaching change in the decision-making system, with Parliament, from its entry into force on 1 January 2009, ceasing to be a mere consultative institution and becoming, in general terms, a legislative body with shared powers of decision on an equal footing with the Council;

2.  Considers that the current geopolitical, economic and social situation, and the drawing-up of a strategy and action plan for the preservation and sustainable development of the oceans and seas in Europe and the world (European maritime policy), justify increased decision-making power for Parliament with regard to the CFP;

3.  Considers that, in this new scenario, it is no longer possible to evade the need to revise and update the powers of the Committee on Fisheries defined in Annex VI to its Rules of Procedure, powers which date from the setting-up of the Committee on Fisheries in 1994 and which survived the major reform of the common fisheries policy in 2002, as well as two changes of title and consequent internal restructuring of the Commission's former Directorate-General for Fisheries to match the new circumstances as regards fisheries management at world level;

4.  Bases this request to update the powers of the Committee on Fisheries on the fact that, among the major changes that have affected the evolution of the CFP in addition to the above-mentioned 2002 reform, we have seen successive alterations in the funds allocated to fisheries since they were taken out of the Community structural funds chapter, fisheries agreements have evolved into fisheries partnership agreements, regional fisheries management organisations have become more prominent and the European Union is playing a growing role within them, trade in fish products has changed profoundly, new technologies are being applied in fisheries and there has been a change in the objective of Community fisheries management, which must henceforth be carried out using an ecosystem approach as part of the new integrated maritime policy approved for the EU;

5.  Stresses that it is inconsistent that a parliamentary committee with codecision powers should continue to be a neutralised committee and recommends, consequently, that the necessary changes be made to avoid this situation;

6.  Welcomes this new scenario in which Parliament and the Council will establish, under the ordinary legislative procedure, the necessary rules for achieving the objectives of the CFP (Article 37(2) of the Treaty);

7.  Considers that any exceptions to this general principle, based on parity between the two institutions and limited strictly to the headings provided for in the Treaty, will have to be adjusted to the ECJ case-law on exceptions to general rules;

8.  Notes that Article 37(3) of the Treaty determines, for its part, that the setting and distribution of catch possibilities (total allowable catches and quotas) between Member States are to be the exclusive competence of the Council, with Parliament's participation in this aspect not being required as it has habitually been hitherto;

9.  Considers that the scope of this exclusivity of competences will need to be examined in the context of the content of proposals, with those falling under fisheries policy whose main objective is the preservation of fish stocks;

10. Considers, in this respect, that any other subject formally included in the annual regulation other than the setting of catch possibilities and distribution of quotas, such as those relating to technical measures or fishing effort, or the incorporation of agreements adopted within the regional fisheries organisations (RFOs), which have their own legal basis, should be subject to the ordinary legislative procedure, i.e. codecision;

11. Stresses that the EU shares competences with the Member States in the area of fisheries, other than for conservation measures for marine biological resources, which fall under its exclusive competence; notes that the new Treaty introduces control of the subsidiarity principle by the national parliaments, and, in the case of shared fisheries competences, allows the latter a period of eight weeks to submit their reasoned opinion on the proposal concerned; adds that the Council and Parliament will have to wait for the expiry of that period, since failure to observe the principle of subsidiarity will constitute grounds for appeal to the ECJ;

12.  Notes that environmental protection is generally a matter of shared competence; calls, therefore, for clarification of the term 'marine biological resources' used in Article 3 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and of the circumstances in which their conservation is 'under the common fisheries policy', in order that the scope of the exclusive competence may be better identified;

13. Notes the new framework for approval of international fisheries agreements, whose main innovation is the procedure for their conclusion, since the Treaty clearly states that such agreements will have to be approved by Parliament before being concluded by the Council; stresses that this right of veto will in practice extend and improve, from Parliament's point of view, the provisions now limited to agreements having significant financial implications or involving the creation of a specific institutional framework, such as those concluded under an RFO;

14. Believes that, if it is to play its part in the approval of fisheries partnership agreements, Parliament's Committee on Fisheries will have to be informed promptly by the Commission during the negotiating processes for those agreements;

15. Considers it vital, likewise, for the Committee on Fisheries to participate as an observer in the joint committees provided for in fisheries agreements, as Parliament has requested on many occasions, and calls for this condition to be reflected in the interinstitutional agreement;

16. Recalls that it follows from the examination of the new Treaty's innovations for the CFP that:

     -    as things stand it is very difficult to gain a clear picture of the scope of Article 37(3) of the Treaty;

- the new Treaty will apply to all legislative proposals under way at the moment of its coming into force;

- a wide margin of interpretation exists for the legislator (Council and Parliament), and it will therefore, in principle, be necessary to await the course of events, while not losing sight of the possible desirability of establishing an interinstitutional agreement with a view to a clearer definition of the scope of Article 37(2) and (3) of the Treaty.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

28.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

21

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Jim Allister, Elspeth Attwooll, Iles Braghetto, Niels Busk, Paulo Casaca, Zdzisław Kazimierz Chmielewski, Avril Doyle, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Carmen Fraga Estévez, Duarte Freitas, Ioannis Gklavakis, Ian Hudghton, Heinz Kindermann, Rosa Miguélez Ramos, Philippe Morillon, Seán Ó Neachtain, Willi Piecyk, Struan Stevenson, Catherine Stihler, Margie Sudre, Cornelis Visser


OPINION of the Committee on Culture and Education (*) (4.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman: Maria Badia i Cutchet

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Culture and Education calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  With a view to bringing Europe closer to its citizens, welcomes the fact that the Treaty of Lisbon (Article 2(124)) has included sport among the legal bases of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), modifying Article 149 of the EC Treaty accordingly;

2.  Stresses in particular that the Union can finally take action for the development of sport, including its European dimension, establishing a close link between its social and educational functions, promoting fairness and openness in sporting competitions and cooperation between bodies responsible for sports and protecting the physical and moral integrity of sportsmen and sportswomen, especially younger sportsmen and sportswomen;

3.  Welcomes the extension of qualified majority decision making to the field of culture, including sport, in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, with regard to ‘measures supporting, coordinating or complementing’ national decisions, excluding all measures harmonising internal laws;

4.  Welcomes the amendment to Article 149 of the EC Treaty to extend the scope of EU action in the youth field to include encouraging the participation of young people in democratic life in Europe and, with a view to better involving young citizens in public life, stresses the importance of EU initiatives and development of policies that promote and facilitate the active participation of young people in democratic life at all levels;

5.  Reaffirms the principles and points endorsed by Parliament in its resolution of 10 April 2008 on a European agenda for culture in a globalising world(1) regarding the inclusion of culture on the Lisbon agenda in connection with the Commission communication on that subject to the European Parliament, the Council, the Committee of the Regions, and the European Economic and Social Committee;

6.  Expresses its satisfaction that the TFEU has conserved the horizontal approach taken by Article 151(4) of the EC Treaty, stipulating that ‘the Community shall take cultural aspects into account in its action under other provisions of this Treaty, in particular in order to respect and to promote the diversity of its cultures’;

7.  Considers that this horizontal approach to culture in the spirit of the new horizontal clauses introduced by the TFEU, regarding the social dimension of the single market, sustainable development and measures to combat all forms of discrimination, is conducive to general programmes of action defining objectives to be achieved in the cultural sector;

8.  Considers that such programmes of action should highlight the specific nature of culture in Europe, on the one hand establishing it both as a way to foster identity, mutual understanding, and citizenship and as a driving force behind European integration and, on the other, defining its rightful place at international level;

9.  Considers that every necessary step should be taken to bring about a European information and communication policy and renews its call for an interinstitutional agreement laying down common principles to govern cooperation among the European institutions in this area;

10. In view of the major innovation introduced by the TFEU enabling national parliaments to guarantee the correct allocation of responsibilities between the European Union and its Member States under the principle of subsidiarity, urges national parliaments to adjust, if necessary, their timetables and working methods to ensure conformity with the principle of subsidiarity in considering all EU legislative proposals relating to culture, the audiovisual sector, education, youth and sport, taking into account, where applicable, the regional and local dimension of the measures proposed.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

3.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

27

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Maria Badia i Cutchet, Katerina Batzeli, Ivo Belet, Guy Bono, Nicodim Bulzesc, Marielle De Sarnez, Věra Flasarová, Milan Gaľa, Claire Gibault, Lissy Gröner, Luis Herrero-Tejedor, Ruth Hieronymi, Mikel Irujo Amezaga, Ramona Nicole Mănescu, Manolis Mavrommatis, Marianne Mikko, Ljudmila Novak, Doris Pack, Christa Prets, Pál Schmitt, Hannu Takkula, Helga Trüpel

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Victor Boştinaru, Jean-Marie Cavada, Den Dover, Ignasi Guardans Cambó, Elisabeth Morin

(1)

Texts Adopted, P6_TA(2008)0124.


OPINION of the Committee on Legal Affairs (*) (1.7.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Diana Wallis

(*)  Procedure with associated committees – Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Legal Affairs considers that the Lisbon Treaty makes a positive contribution towards strengthening Parliament's powers both in the legislative area and in that of monitoring the legislative, delegated and implementing powers of the Commission, and calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Emphasises that the Lisbon Treaty gives national parliaments a substantially stronger role in vetting compliance with the principle of subsidiarity, by introducing two specific mechanisms; in each case, national parliaments will have a period of eight weeks (which the Commission is obliged to grant them) in which to react to legislative proposals; first, if one-third of the chambers of the parliaments in the EU give a reasoned opinion that a given legislative proposal does not comply with the principle of subsidiarity, the Commission will be obliged to reconsider it; second, if a majority of the chambers of the parliaments of the Union give a reasoned opinion opposing a draft legislative act on the ground that it fails to comply with the principle of subsidiarity, both the European Parliament and the Council will have to vote on that question before Parliament makes any pronouncement in first reading on the substance;

2.  Considers – bearing in mind that the provisions of the Protocol on subsidiarity will be applicable to new legislative proposals immediately after the Lisbon Treaty enters into force – that an appropriate internal procedure must be introduced in Parliament's Rules of Procedure in order to allow it to make a pronouncement on the question of subsidiarity rapidly and effectively and to ensure that the reasoned opinions of the national parliaments are properly considered without undue delay to the legislative procedure;

3.  Emphasises that compliance with the principle of subsidiarity by Community legislation in accordance with Rule 35 currently falls within its terms of reference and considers that the special procedure to deal with subsidiarity could consist, where a majority of the national parliaments have made a pronouncement against a Commission proposal, in the Committee on Legal Affairs presenting to the plenary a specific motion on respect for the principle of subsidiarity before the proposal goes to committee for a first reading in Parliament;

4.  Points out that the Treaty of Lisbon includes a new legal basis providing for codecision in respect of intellectual property rights, in that Article 118 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) provides: 'In the context of the establishment and functioning of the internal market, the European Parliament and the Council, acting in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, shall establish measures for the creation of European intellectual property rights to provide uniform protection of intellectual property rights throughout the Union and for the setting up of centralised Union-wide authorisation, coordination and supervision arrangements'; deplores the fact that unanimity and mere consultation of Parliament have been retained as the decision-making procedure as regards the language arrangements with regard to intellectual property rights;

5.  Considers that the Commission should take advantage of this new legal basis in order to relaunch the idea of a European Union patent and to complete and strengthen European legislation on intellectual property rights;

6.  Welcomes the new legal basis set out in Article 298 of the TFEU, according to which 'In carrying out their missions, the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Union shall have the support of an open, efficient and independent European administration', since this affords the basis for a regulation on a law of administrative procedure for the Union;

7.  Considers that such a regulation should be prepared as a matter of urgency and expresses its intention of studying the form that it should take even before the Lisbon Treaty enters into force, having regard to the different legal traditions of the Member States;

8.  Points out that the new provisions of the Treaty concerning judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters include a legal basis for the adoption of measures of support for the training of the judiciary and judicial staff; is of the opinion that such measures, which are to be adopted by codecision and may include the approximation of the laws and regulations of the Member States, should be considered as a matter of urgency in view of the concerns raised in recent reports of the Legal Affairs Committee;

9.  Regrets that further substantive progress in the field of judicial cooperation in civil matters will remain significantly hampered by such cooperation being limited by Article 81 of the TFEU to 'matters having cross-border implications';

10. Welcomes the new procedure for the appointment of Judges and Advocates-General of the Court of Justice and the General Court as provided for in Article 255 of the TFEU, under which the national governments' decision is to be preceded by an opinion on candidates' suitability to perform their duties given by a panel of seven experts, one of whom is to be proposed by the European Parliament; considers that Parliament's Rules of Procedure must provide for a special procedure for the appointment of this member of the panel by decision of the plenary taken on the basis of the opinion of the responsible committee;

11. Considers that the new provisions on legal acts and the hierarchy of norms, in particular the creation of the delegated act, will contribute decisively to the quality of Union legislation; considers it necessary, in order to facilitate the application of the provisions on delegated acts, for the institutions to agree on a standard formula that could be regularly employed in legislative proposals; further considers that it is necessary to move forward as soon as possible to the adoption in codecision of a regulation on implementing acts based on Article 291 of the TFEU;

12. Bearing in mind that a certain amount of time will be needed in order to adjust to the new Treaty, considers that the process of aligning the acquis with the recent Commitology Decision must be completed as a matter of urgency before the Lisbon Treaty enters into force; takes the view that a new alignment to take account of delegated acts which is more complex than the exercise currently being carried out will need to be carried out after the new Treaty has entered into force, and trusts that the Commission will present the necessary proposals to this end; points out that, although the definition of delegated acts is similar to the concept of 'quasi-legislative' acts to which the regulation procedure with scrutiny is applied, the two concepts cannot be seen as the same and considers, therefore, that the alignment procedure now under way cannot be regarded as constituting a precedent for the future;

13. Expresses its concern about the considerable number of codification procedures that are awaiting adoption by the Council, which will have to work hard if the codified acts are to be adopted before the new Treaty enters into force;

14. Welcomes the fact that codecision will henceforth apply to the Staff Regulations, inasmuch as this will allow Parliament to take part on an equal footing with the Council in the adjustment of those regulations; considers that this will be particularly relevant for the future statute of Members' assistants which Parliament has decided to take forward and implement.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

26.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

24

0

0

Members present for the final vote

Carlo Casini, Titus Corlăţean, Bert Doorn, Monica Frassoni, Giuseppe Gargani, Neena Gill, Othmar Karas, Piia-Noora Kauppi, Klaus-Heiner Lehne, Hans-Peter Mayer, Manuel Medina Ortega, Hartmut Nassauer, Aloyzas Sakalas, Francesco Enrico Speroni, Diana Wallis, Rainer Wieland, Jaroslav Zvěřina, Tadeusz Zwiefka

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Sharon Bowles, Vicente Miguel Garcés Ramón, Jean-Paul Gauzès, Eva Lichtenberger, József Szájer, Ieke van den Burg


OPINION of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (*) (30.6.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Johannes Voggenhuber

(*) Procedure with associated committees- Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

The Lisbon Treaty: an interinstitutional challenge in the freedom, security and justice area

1.   It is a common understanding that the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon and of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (the Charter of Fundamental Rights) will make it possible for the European Union to become '...an area of freedom, security and justice (FSJA) with respect for fundamental rights and the different legal systems and traditions of the Member States.' (Article 67 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU)). No longer limited by specific objectives, as it was the case with the Maastricht Treaty, the FSJA will become a pivotal element for future relations between the Member States and the EU. Moreover, in this comparatively new area which touches the core of the national constitutional orders, all the players at national and at European level have a particular interest in maintaining a common dialogue.

2.   In that perspective and in order for Parliament to be ready immediately from the first day of the entry into force of the new Treaty, it will be of the utmost importance that the EU institutions negotiate an inter-institutional agreement covering:

a)   a new vision and the main objectives to be achieved by the EU after 2009;

b)   new methods of cooperation involving national parliaments in these policies;

c)   the measures to be adopted to make the transition a success for the institutions and for European citizens.

Bearing in mind the inter-institutional strategy, each institution should then adapt its own internal organisation and methods.

A new vision and the main objectives to be achieved by the EU after 2009

3.   The future of the FSJA should be defined by the European Council before the end of 2009. The Member States themselves are preparing, by debating in the High-Level 'Future' Group (High-Level Advisory Group on the Future of European Home Affairs Policy), possible ideas for shaping the next multiannual programme. The Commission is also preparing a comprehensive report for the spring of 2009 which could be the basis for the following Parliamentary and Council deliberations.

Bearing in mind this calendar, Parliament could also draw up its own evaluation report before spring 2009.

On the basis of the contributions of the Member States (Future Group report), of the Commission and on the basis of its own recommendations, Parliament as elected in June 2009 will be able to negotiate a legislative programme for the FSJA with the new Commission and with the European Council.

4.   The future legislative programme for the FSJA should promote measures in the field of police and judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters, taking into account the principle of mutual recognition of judicial decisions which is included in the new Treaty, thus facilitating cross-border cooperation between Member States and aiming towards a future European criminal law.

5.   In line with this approach, it would be more than welcome if the Commission were to adopt a strategy aimed at:-

a) strengthening the relationship between the rules of the Treaties which constitute the legal basis for specific policies (such as preventing discrimination, protecting asylum seekers, improving transparency, data protection, the rights of minorities and the rights of victims and suspects) and the corresponding Articles of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. The adoption of a binding Charter of Fundamental Rights will make it possible to revise this acquis, bearing in mind the primary duty of the EU institutions to protect fundamental rights. This evolution is demonstrated by the data protection issue, which will become a free-standing fundamental right;

b) establishing permanent and deeper relations between European and national legislators, on the one hand, and between European and national judges, on the other, on matters of shared competencies with Member States.

6.   As Parliament has already advocated(1), the Commission and the Member States should not only check the compliance of future legislative proposals with the Charter of Fundamental Rights, but also with all European and international instruments regarding fundamental rights to which the Member States are parties. The Charter of Fundamental Rights, its binding nature and its suitability, as well as the accession of the Union to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR), will also improve respect for fundamental rights in this field. The introduction of the ordinary legislative procedure will give impetus to the legislative process as well.

7.   The multiannual programme for the FSJA should continue to be debated in an annual debate which should focus on the protection of fundamental rights in the European Union, on the implementation of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and on Member States' compliance with the values and principles laid down by the new Article 6 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU)(2). It should be based on reports from the Council, the Commission and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA).Parliament shares the view of the 'Trio Council Presidencies'(3) (France,Czech Republic and Sweden) that a 'possible review of the mandate of the Agency for Fundamental Rights will be undertaken by 31 December 2009' and that such a review gives the opportunity to deepen cooperation with the Council of Europe, its Secretary General, its Commissioner for Human Rights and its relevant Parliamentary Assembly committees.

New methods of cooperation involving national parliaments in the FSJA policies

8.   The main problem encountered by Parliament, when exercising shared legislative responsibilities with the Council in respect of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters, will be access to relevant information in the Member States. By reason of the very sensitive issues dealt with as part of FSJA-related policies, it is more than necessary to implement as soon as possible the new Treaty provisions on transparency in the EU institutions and also to allow Parliamentary scrutiny of confidential information such as that dealt with by Europol, the EU Joint Situation Centre (SitCen) and the future Standing Committee on Internal Security (COSI) (Article 71 TFEU). The new Article 15 TFEU, by extending the current right of access to Parliamentary, Commission and Council documents to all EU institutions and agencies (Article 255 EC Treaty) will improve the accountability of the EU institutions, notably in these fields.

9.   In the same perspective of democratic accountability, it is essential in Parliament's interest:

a)   to associate national parliaments in a permanent way when defining the FSJA general strategies, adopting the legislative measures or evaluating their impact at national level(4).

b)   to be provided with the Commission's formal position(5) on Member States' initiatives, notably on the possible impact of the proposed new rules on the protection of fundamental rights and preservation of the European legal order.

c)   to involve civil society by taking into account the provisions of the Treaty of Lisbon concerning the citizens' initiative, by informing citizens about this new right and by ensuring that the regulation to be adopted for the implementation of the 'Citizens Initiative' creates clear, simple and user-friendly conditions for the exercise of that right.

d)   to associate civil society networks which would interact with European and national institutions in respect of the FSJA (see the networks linked with the FRA, the European Forum for Criminal Justice, etc...).

10. A more general issue will be how to implement, as far as FSJA-related policies are concerned, the new Treaty provisions on delegated and implementing powers (Article 290 and Article 291, TFEU). A general principle to follow should be that a measure which could affect the scope of fundamental rights protection should be adopted under the delegated powers regime which gives Parliament the power to revoke the decision.

11. It must also be noted that the Parliament will now be associated with the negotiation and adoption of international agreements by implying a fundamental rights dimension, e.g. the transmission of personal data to third countries. As a consequence, the relevant committees should also establish strong links with the corresponding institutions in the Council of Europe, the UN Agencies and with the parliaments of the third countries involved.

How to deal with pending legislative proposals in the transitional phase

12. In the transitional period Parliament will face several changes in the form and substance of pending legislation. For the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, Parliament should maintain its insistence on reaching an inter-institutional agreement which, in relation to pending third pillar legislative proposals, should provide for the equivalence of the consultation procedure with the first reading of the codecision procedure, so as to allow full judicial scrutiny.

Therefore, all third pillar pending proposals that have a limited impact on fundamental rights and freedoms may be adopted without delay, e.g. the framework decisions on the enforcement of decisions rendered in absentia, the decision on the strengthening of Eurojust, the decision on the European Judicial Network. All these files are important for the improvement of judicial cooperation.

13. Another concern for Parliament will be to agree with the Council to postpone, after 1 January 2009, the measures that will fall under the codecision regime and which Parliament considers to be politically inappropriate in their current formulation. A typical proposal falling within this category is the proposal for a framework decision on the use of Passenger Name Record (PNR) for law enforcement purposes.

14. Another sensitive pending legislative proposal affected by the change of procedure is the framework decision on the protection of personal data in the framework of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. This proposal covers only partially the legal vacuum which will exist after the abolition of the third pillar. A possible two-step strategy could be to adopt the current third pillar proposal on condition that it is complemented with a new text immediately after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon.

15. There are also two pending procedures in the field of legal migration, namely the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly qualified employment (blue card) and the single application procedure for a single permit for third-country nationals to reside and work in the territory of a Member State and on a common set of rights for third-country workers legally residing in a Member State. If those proposals are not adopted before the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, the procedure must be restarted from the beginning.

16. Some legislative proposals have been pending for years because of the impossibility of reaching a unanimous decision, e.g. the framework decision on procedural rights in criminal proceedings, but they are not obsolete. They are more urgent and necessary than ever, and the ordinary legislative procedure will provide a way out of these impasses.

17. There is also a pending proposal approved by Parliament to transform the legal basis of Europol (currently a Convention) into a third pillar decision providing financing for Europol from the Community budget). If not adopted before the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, Parliament should re-open the procedure in order to transform Europol into a genuine Community body.

18. Where Member States make use of the emergency blocking procedure provided for in the TFEU in relation to criminal matters (Articles 82(3) and 83(3)), the Chair of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs will write to the European Council expressing the current position reached in its debates.

19. It would appear that after 1 January 2009, the most urgent initiatives that the Commission should take then now on will be linked with:

a) the EU obligation to ratify the ECHR;

b) the EU obligation to ratify international agreements negotiated but not yet concluded under Article 24 of the current EU Treaty;

c) the Court of Justice requirements (see the case of the Black Lists regulation);

d) the setting up of a European Public Prosecutor's Office to improve Eurojust.

In the same perspective, the Commission should take the initiative to bring current third pillar legislative instruments with a fundamental rights dimension into the Community pillar (e.g. Europol). A change of legal basis for current third pillar instruments would also ensure the competence of the Court of Justice before the 5 year deadline (see Article 10 of the Protocol on transitional provisions).

20. Parliament welcomes the Trio Presidency assessment that 'Coercive measures should be accompanied by corresponding rules to strengthen the rights of the individual, whether a suspect, victim or witness. The possible development of the rights of victims will be examined on the basis of the Commission's assessment of the implementation of the Framework Decision on the Standing of Victims in Criminal Proceedings. After the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, a proposal for a legal instrument on procedural rights in criminal proceedings will be expected from the Commission or from Member States.'

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

24.6.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

43

2

Members present for the final vote

Alexander Alvaro, Emine Bozkurt, Philip Bradbourn, Mihael Brejc, Kathalijne Maria Buitenweg, Michael Cashman, Giusto Catania, Jean-Marie Cavada, Carlos Coelho, Esther De Lange, Panayiotis Demetriou, Gérard Deprez, Agustín Díaz de Mera García Consuegra, Armando França, Urszula Gacek, Kinga Gál, Patrick Gaubert, Roland Gewalt, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Lívia Járóka, Ewa Klamt, Magda Kósáné Kovács, Stavros Lambrinidis, Henrik Lax, Roselyne Lefrançois, Baroness Sarah Ludford, Claude Moraes, Javier Moreno Sánchez, Rareş-Lucian Niculescu, Martine Roure, Inger Segelström, Csaba Sógor, Vladimir Urutchev, Ioannis Varvitsiotis, Manfred Weber, Renate Weber, Tatjana Ždanoka

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Edit Bauer, Evelyne Gebhardt, Ignasi Guardans Cambó, Sophia in ‘t Veld, Ona Juknevičienė, Sylvia-Yvonne Kaufmann, Nicolae Vlad Popa, Johannes Voggenhuber

(1)

See Parliament's resolution of 15 March 2007 on compliance with the Charter of Fundamental Rights in the Commission's legislative proposals: methodology for systematic and rigorous monitoring (OJ C 301 E, 13.12.2007, p. 229).

(2)

[2] It should be noted that according to current Parliamentary rules, the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs is responsible for most FSJA-related policies and for the 'alert system' outlined in Article 7 TEU.

(3)

Draft 18-month programme of the Council, Council doc No. 10093/08.

(4)

[ See in particular Article 70 of the TFEU.

(5)

This is already sometimes the case according to a practice launched by the Commissioner Vitorino during the previous legislature.


OPINION of the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality (*) (27.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament’s new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftswoman (*): Claire Gibault

(*) Associated committee - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Notes with satisfaction that equality between women and men has been included among the Union’s values (Article 2 of the TEU) and aims (Article 3(3), second subparagraph, of the TEU);

2.  Welcomes the broadening of the scope of the principle of gender mainstreaming, which in future will apply to all Union measures, as a result of the decision to devote a specific article among the general implementing provisions (Article 8 of the TFEU) to this principle, so that it becomes a genuine horizontal provision applicable to all areas of Union action;

3.  Welcomes the fact that Articles 8, 9 and 10 of the TFEU clearly stipulate that all EU policies have to actively promote social inclusion, social protection, equality between women and men and non-discrimination;

4.  Calls, consequently, for a dual approach that complements gender mainstreaming in practice, i.e. positive actions as well as clear and binding targets and measures;

5.  Welcomes the new procedure laid down in Article 19 of the TFEU, which stipulates that Parliament must henceforth give its consent to the adoption by the Council (unfortunately still acting unanimously) of measures to combat all forms of discrimination on the basis of sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation;

6.  Welcomes the fact that the ordinary legislative procedure will cover measures to combat trafficking in human beings, in particular women and children, and sexual exploitation (Articles 79(2)(d) and 83(1), second subparagraph, of the TFEU);

7.  Welcomes the fact that the same legal value as the Treaties is now given to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (Article 6 of the TEU), which does not prevent the maintenance or adoption of measures providing for specific advantages in favour of the under-represented sex and provides for better maternity protection, particularly at work (Articles 23, 33 and 34 of the Charter);

8.  Takes the view that these new provisions will make it possible for the Commission to submit to the Council and Parliament, without delay, legislative proposals designed to make the various Community policies to combat the trafficking of women and children for the purposes of sexual exploitation more readily understandable and more effective;

9.  Calls on the Commission to provide it, within three years following the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, with an initial assessment of the impact of that Treaty in the Member States on the fight against the trafficking of human beings, in particular women and children, for the purposes of sexual exploitation;

10. Welcomes Declaration 19 on Article 8 of the TFEU calling on the Member States to take all necessary measures to prevent and punish all forms of violence and to support and protect the victims of violence.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

27.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

23

4

0

Members present for the final vote

Edit Bauer, Emine Bozkurt, Věra Flasarová, Claire Gibault, Esther Herranz García, Anneli Jäätteenmäki, Lívia Járóka, Rodi Kratsa-Tsagaropoulou, Urszula Krupa, Siiri Oviir, Marie Panayotopoulos-Cassiotou, Zita Pleštinská, Teresa Riera Madurell, Raül Romeva i Rueda, Eva-Britt Svensson, Corien Wortmann-Kool, Anna Záborská

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Gabriela Creţu, Iratxe García Pérez, Lidia Joanna Geringer de Oedenberg, Mary Honeyball, Kartika Tamara Liotard, Marusya Ivanova Lyubcheva, Zuzana Roithová, Petya Stavreva, Bernadette Vergnaud

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Ewa Tomaszewska


OPINION of the Committee on Petitions (*) (29.5.2008)

for the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

on Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon

(2008/2063(INI))

Draftsman (*): Carlos Carnero González

(*) Procedure with associated committees - Rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Petitions calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Emphasises that, in addition to the significant institutional improvements contained within the new treaties, there are distinct advantages for EU citizens resulting from the reinforcement of democratic oversight and control of the Union's policies, on the one hand, and the enhancement of the rights of EU citizens, on the other;

2.  Draws attention to the fact that the petitions process, retained in the new Treaty, provides an important facility enabling the people of Europe to become actively involved – either individually or through voluntary associations – with the development of the Union; points out that such involvement can include drawing Parliament's attention to situations where Member States are not properly implementing EU law, alerting Parliament to weaknesses in existing EU legislation, and protesting about possible failures to respect the fundamental rights of EU citizens or residents of the Union;

3.  Underlines the role and responsibilities of the Petitions Committee in this respect and the importance of obtaining the full and effective cooperation of all EU institutions and bodies, and of all Member States and regional and local authorities, in providing a response and a solution to the concerns of EU citizens, in the spirit of the Lisbon Treaty;

4.  Notes the new opportunities afforded to EU citizens under Article 11 of the Treaty on European Union, as amended by the Lisbon Treaty, regarding the so-called 'citizens' initiative', which allows not less than one million citizens drawn from several Member States to invite the Commission to draw up a new legislative act required for the purpose of implementing the Treaties;

5.  Resolves to ensure that the regulation to be adopted for the implementation of the 'citizens' initiative' lays down clear, simple and user-friendly conditions for the exercise of this citizens' right; considers that the Committee on Petitions should be closely involved in citizens' initiatives and could act as a platform for promoting individual initiatives and the initiative right itself, whilst recognising that the Commission is the sole addressee of citizens' initiatives; considers that mechanisms should be provided for in the implementing regulation enabling Parliament to adopt a position on, and if appropriate champion, such initiatives;

6.  Notes that it is already open to citizens to request in a petition that Parliament exercise its right under Article 192 of the EC Treaty to call for a legislative initiative and that nothing would prevent citizens, if they chose to do so, from addressing the same call for an European act both to the European Commission, as a citizens' initiative, and to the European Parliament, as a petition;

7.  Considers that Parliament needs to examine how it could devise appropriate procedures for following and supporting citizens' initiatives, and believes that the Committee on Petitions, which already has broad experience of working with citizens on issues of concern to them, should play a key role in such procedures;

8.  Welcomes the proclamation of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and the recognition of the rights, freedoms and principles set out in it for all EU citizens, notably the various rights pertaining to life, human dignity, equality, justice, liberty and private property; is resolved to clarify with the other institutions that the direct applicability of the Charter as regards actions by the Member States is not unduly restricted by a wide interpretation of the limitations laid down in this respect in the horizontal articles of the Charter, notably Article 51 thereof, which requires the Member States to apply the Charter only when they are implementing EU law;

9.  Notes that the reinforced status of the Charter of Fundamental Rights, as well as the broadening of the scope of the activities which may be the subject of infringement proceedings, notably in the field of justice and home affairs, will have a direct effect on the work of the Committee on Petitions when that Committee is exercising parliamentary control on behalf of citizens;

10. Notes that the introduction in Article 298 of the TFEU of a legal basis for good administration and the adoption of regulations implementing that article will answer a long-standing call by the European Ombudsman and the European Parliament for a common system of administrative law governing the European administration, and calls for the Committee on Petitions to be fully involved in the procedure for the adoption of the regulations in question.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

27.5.2008

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

23

1

2

Members present for the final vote

Sir Robert Atkins, Margrete Auken, Inés Ayala Sender, Victor Boştinaru, Michael Cashman, Alexandra Dobolyi, Lidia Joanna Geringer de Oedenberg, David Hammerstein, Marian Harkin, Carlos José Iturgaiz Angulo, Lasse Lehtinen, Marcin Libicki, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez, Manolis Mavrommatis, Willy Meyer Pleite, Marie Panayotopoulos-Cassiotou, Frank Vanhecke, Diana Wallis, Rainer Wieland

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Marie-Hélène Descamps, Henrik Lax, Grażyna Staniszewska, Margie Sudre

Substitute(s) under Rule 178(2) present for the final vote

Christopher Beazley, Tunne Kelam, Vytautas Landsbergis


ANNEX: LETTER FROM THE COMMITTEE ON BUDGETARY CONTROL

Mr Jo Leinen, MEP

Chairman of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

European Parliament

Brussels

Dear Mr Leinen,

Re:     CONT opinion in form of a letter concerning AFCO's report on

'Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon'

In your working document of 3 April 2008 you invite the committees to deliver their opinions on the basis of 2 main questions:

1)     Which are the committee's political priorities with regard to the use of Parliament's new powers provided for in the Lisbon Treaty?

2)     How does the committee envisage to cope with the transition from consultation to co-decision in legislative procedures and with other procedural changes?

Your questions primarily concern genuine legislative committees. Therefore the committee will not deliver a formal opinion. Changes in the area of competences of my committee include the following:

· Member States' responsibility for the implementation of the budget is emphasized (Article 317 TFEU) (1). Practical consequences of these provisions are unknown at this stage.

· The Commission shall submit an evaluation report on the Union's finances, which Parliament shall examine in the discharge procedure (Articles 318 and 319 TFEU).

· The adoption of the financial regulation, will no longer be subject to the consultation procedure, but to the ordinary legislative procedure, i.e. co-decision (Article 322 TFEU). As a consequence of the new provisions on the multi-annual financial framework (Art. 312 TFEU) and on the financial regulation (Art. 322 TFEU) the inter-institutional agreement on budgetary discipline and sound financial management will have to be reviewed.

· The legal basis for the adoption of measures in the fields of the prevention of and the fight against fraud affecting the financial interests of the Union is strengthened (Art. 325 TFEU).

· The Treaty of Lisbon also provides for the possibility to establish a European Public Prosecutor's Office in order to combat crimes affecting the financial interests of the Union (Art. 86 TFEU).

Yours sincerely

Herbert Bösch

Chairman of the Committee on Budgetary Control

(1)

The numbering corresponds to the consolidated version of the Treaty of Lisbon as published in OJ C 115, 9.5.2008, p.1.


ANNEX: LETTER FROM THE COMMITTEE ON INDUSTRY, RESEARCH AND ENERGY

The Chairwoman

Mr. Jo Leinen

Chairman

Committee on Constitutional Affairs

Brussels

Brussels,

Ref.: D(2008)27597

GC/mlt

Subject:   INI report by the Committee on Constitutional Affairs on 'Parliament's new role and responsibilities in implementing the Treaty of Lisbon'

ITRE opinion in form of a Letter

Dear Mr. Leinen, dear Colleague,

Referring to your letter dated 13 March 2008, I would like to inform you that the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy decided not to designate a formal Rapporteur but has given me a mandate, as Chairwoman, to communicate ITRE's opinion by way of a letter. This letter has been agreed with ITRE coordinators.

Concerning the 'two main questions' -i.e. ITRE priorities given Parliament's new powers and transition from consultation to co-decision- raised in your working document attached to the said letter, and on the basis of the text of the Treaty of Lisbon (ToL) published in the OJ C306 of 17 December 2007, I have the following comments to make:

Energy

It is a priority policy for my committee because energy will now have a separate Title XX in the Treaty and thus a legal basis (Art. 176A). It should be noted, though, that while the 'ordinary legislative procedure' will be followed as a rule, decisions on the energy mix will still remain within the competence of the Member States. Furthermore, fiscal measures in this field will still require the consultation of Parliament and unanimity in Council.

There is a solidarity clause that should be noted. It will be applied 'if severe difficulties arise in the supply of certain products, notably in the area of energy' (Art. 100(1)).

In this instance, I would like to inform you that my Committee has devoted its entire available means to preparing its vote on the energy package on electricity and gas as well as on the climate change (renewable directive) in time. It would thus allow sufficient time for the European Parliament to adopt its position at first reading and thus the Council to adopt its position even prior to the entry into force of the ToL. This is of importance to our legislative work, particularly in view of the application of the Protocol on Subsidiarity and thus the national Parliaments should be consulted on all legislative proposals pending as at 31 December 2008.

European Atomic Energy Community Treaty

I am led to believe that the Euratom Treaty remains for the time being an indispensable legal framework and notes that no significant changes have been made to it by the ToL.

In fact, Protocol No 12 is added to ToL, seeking to adapt the Euratom Treaty in order to take account of common provisions laid down in the other Treaties, such as institutional and financial provisions. However, adding Protocol No 12 to the ToL makes the text illegible and very complicated due to numerous cross-references and the repeal of certain articles of the Euratom Treaty. It would be desirable therefore to reiterate ITRE's position on the need for a consolidated text of the Euratom Treaty.

Electronic Communications and Information Society

Apart from the application of the Protocol on Subsidiarity to this sector as well, the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty would not bring much change in this field. Hence, Article 95 of the current Treaty will remain the legal base for the adoption of legal acts, while applying the ordinary legislative procedure.

However, in order to make legislation in this field 'future-proof' and adjustable to rapid technological changes, delegated and implementing acts (ToL Articles 249B and 249C) will have an important role to play. Consequently there is some uncertainty around the impact of the new regime and the necessary adjustments to the ongoing legislative procedures.

Research and Technological Development and Space

I would like to draw your attention to the following provisions of the ToL. The amended Articles 163, 165 and 166 of the EC Treaty should be considered as improvements because they strengthen scientific and technological bases via the establishment of a European Research Area. In fact 'the measures necessary for the implementation of the European Research Area will be adopted by the ordinary legislative procedure' (Art. 166 (5)).

However, three potentially contentious issues between the European Parliament and the Council should be noted:

a) Agreements between the EU and third countries or international organisations (Art. 170) will no longer fall under the Article 300 because the decision making procedure is not explicitly stated;

b) The retention of Articles 171 and 172 on setting up of joint undertakings, would mean the continuance of the consultation procedure to establish agencies, and possibly such a retention may not conform to the spirit of the legal acts of the Union;

c) Whereas the 'multiannual framework programme’ will be adopted by the ordinary legislative procedure' (Art. 166 (5)), the 'specific programmes' will be adopted by the 'special legislative procedure', implying simple consultation for the European Parliament (Art. 166 (4)).

Space

Notwithstanding these concerns, my Committee has expressed its satisfaction at the insertion of a provision on a European Space Policy (Art. 172a) into the section on Research and Technological Development, and has welcomed the opportunity given to Parliament and to the Council to adopt, under the ordinary legislative procedure, the necessary measures establishing a European Space Programme.

My Committee also considers that 'excluding any harmonisation of the laws and regulations of the Member States in this field' (Art. 172a (2)) may imply some obstacles to the implementation of a common European Space Policy.

Research Fund for Coal and Steel

I would like to draw your committee's attention to Protocol No 11 on the Research Fund for Coal and Steel, which introduces procedural provisions that will not enhance the participation of the European Parliament in the decision-making process (the consultation procedure is retained).

Industry

I believe that the amendments to the existing provisions of the Treaty (Art. 157) will not interfere with the existing structure because industry falls under the EU's competence of supporting, coordinating or complementing the actions of the Member States.Yet there is a provision 'excluding any harmonisation of the laws and regulations of the Member States' (Art. 157 (3)), which may be interpreted to mean the end of a common approach to industry. In fact the ordinary legislative procedure will apply to 'specific measures in support of action taken in the Member State' (Art. 157 (3)). However, the European Parliament will not participate in decision-making when coordinated action is deemed necessary; it will be kept informed (Art. 157 (2)).

Horizontal Issues

Two points should be mentioned in the context of legal proposals, currently pending or likely to be submitted until the entry into force of the ToL:

a) The Commitology procedure is extensively applied to proposals falling into the remit of ITRE. It is therefore desirable that the EP insists on the immediate repeal of Council Directive 1999/468/EC and that a new and general exercise of 'alignment' of all existing legislation should be initiated immediately after the entry in force of the ToL.

b) National Parliaments have been recipients of legislative proposals under co-decision from the Commission because the latter has, on an informal basis, sent its proposals to them since 2006. The response of National Parliaments has been varied and was sent directly to the Commission, but not to the European Parliament, not even for information. This may be considered as lack of transparency and possibly a failure to cooperate closely.

In this context, given Protocol No 1 on the role of National Parliaments and Protocol No 2 on the application of the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality and the ad-hoc practice mentioned in the previous paragraph, whichever the legal interpretation and practical arrangements for ongoing co-decision procedures at the entry in force of the new Treaty, concerning the new procedural element of consultation of National Parliaments, a fair political solution should be found in order to respect the spirit of the ToL.

Yours sincerely,

Angelika Niebler


RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

9.3.2009

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

19

2

0

Members present for the final vote

Enrique Barón Crespo, Bastiaan Belder, Richard Corbett, Jean-Luc Dehaene, Andrew Duff, Anneli Jäätteenmäki, Aurelio Juri, Martin Kastler, Timothy Kirkhope, Jo Leinen, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo, Adrian Severin, József Szájer, Riccardo Ventre, Johannes Voggenhuber, Andrzej Wielowieyski

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Costas Botopoulos, Catherine Boursier, Elmar Brok, Carlos Carnero González, Panayiotis Demetriou, Sirpa Pietikäinen, György Schöpflin

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