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EP News No. 39/2012

Table Of Contents


European Parliament session, Strasbourg, 10-13 December 2012

MEPs meet in Strasbourg for the last plenary session of the year.


Among the highlights of the agenda:

Sakharov prize to be awarded on Wednesday
The 2012 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought will be awarded by President Martin Schulz to two Iranian human rights activists, lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh and film director Jafar Panahi, on Wednesday 12 December. The laureates have designated five representatives to receive the prize on their behalf because they are unable to leave Iran.

MEPs to vote on budget 2012/2013
On Monday evening the Committee on Budgets will vote on a €6bn amending budget for 2012, the budget for 2013 (€132.8 billion in payments and €150.9 billion in commitments) and three declarations about payments. The plenary vote is scheduled for Wednesday.

Preparations for the European Council
The blueprint for the future Economic and Monetary Union will be the focus of the next European Council to be held on 13 and 14 December. On Wednesday Parliament will discuss and present its priorities ahead of the summit, which should also discuss the Single Supervisory Mechanism and other key legislative proposals for the banking system.

Nobel Prize: "Your peace, your prize"
On Wednesday 12 December the European Parliament will associate all EU citizens as laureates of the Nobel Peace Prize with the award at a ceremony in the Strasbourg plenary chamber starting at 09:00 in the presence of President Schulz and President Barroso.

EU patent: final act?
The EU could at last get a single patent system, after thirty years of trying, if Parliament endorses a Council Presidency compromise in a vote on Tuesday. An EU patent granted under this system could cost €980, compared to €1,850 for a US one.

Unclog airports, but not at the expense of ground staff
Rules to ensure that aircraft takeoff and landing slots are used more efficiently protect local residents against aircraft noise and boost competition among ground-handling service suppliers will be put to a vote on Wednesday. MEPs are split on whether to liberalise ground-handling services further, and could reject this part of the package.

Protecting animals during transport
Ideas to improve transport conditions for animals for slaughter, including an eight-hour cap on journey times for animals for slaughter, will be debated on Tuesday and voted in a non-legislative resolution on Wednesday.

Migrant and minority rights: MEPs to highlight breaches
Violations of the rights of migrants, national minorities, LGBT people, and others will be highlighted in a debate and resolution to be voted on Wednesday. MEPs will urge member states and the Commission to step up efforts to ensure that basic rights are fully respected in Europe.


Among topics led by UK MEPs:

Statistics on safety from crime
A resolution, steered by Timothy Kirkhope MEP (Yorkshire & Humber, Cons) proposing a European Parliament and Council regulation on European statistics on safety from crime, will be voted by MEPs on Wednesday


Other topics include:

  • Gear up the digital economy to boost EU competitiveness, say MEPs
  • Fighting resistance to antimicrobial drugs
  • Action to help the EU steel industry
  • The situation in Egypt and in the West Bank
  • EU response to the Syrian refugee crisis
  • Trade and association deals with Latin American countries
  • MEPs to ask that Albania be given EU candidate status
  • Debate on progress towards an EU association agreement with Ukraine
  • EU-Russia agreement must include democratic and civil liberties, say MEPs
  • Bans on exports of information technology to repressive regimes
  • MEPs give go-ahead to much anticipated financial transaction tax
  • How to establish a Middle East free of nuclear weapons?
  • MEPs to back emergency cash for Kyrgyzstan and Georgia
  • EP to strengthen powers of EU Maritime Safety Agency
  • Human rights and democracy resolutions - Democratic Republic of Congo and India
  • Prevention of age-related diseases of women
  • Financing SME trade and investment: facilitated access to credit in support of internationalisation
  • EU administrative procedure law
Final draft agenda
European Parliament Press Service

Committee meetings


Further Information

Paola Buonadonna
European Parliament UK Office
tel 020 7227 4300


Diary Dates

1 July-31 December 2012: Cypriot Presidency
1 January-31 July 2013: Ireland
1 July-31 December 2013: Lithuania

European Parliament plenary sessions 2013
14-17 January - Strasbourg
4-7 February - Strasbourg
27-28 February - Brussels
11-14 March - Strasbourg
27-28 March - Brussels
15-18 April - Strasbourg
8-9 May - Brussels
20-23 May - Strasbourg
10-13 June - Strasbourg
1-4 July - Strasbourg
9-12 September - Strasbourg
21-22 and 24-25 October - Strasbourg
6-7 November - Brussels
18-21 November - Strasbourg
9-12 December - Strasbourg