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EP News No. 17/2012

Table Of Contents


European Parliament session, Strasbourg, 21-24 May 2012

MEPs meet in Strasbourg for a plenary session in the week that also sees a European Summit (23 May) on the ongoing Eurozone crisis.


Among the highlights of the agenda:

EU Summit
MEPs will set out what they feel would be the desirable outcomes of Wednesday's informal summit in a debate with Commission President Barroso (debate Tuesday).

Financial Transaction Tax
The current proposal should be improved to capture more trades and make evasion unprofitable, the Economic Affairs Committee said in its opinion for the plenary. It also thinks that the tax should go ahead even if only a few Member States opt in (debate and vote Wednesday).

Cutting resource waste
MEPs will vote a resolution on recovering resources from waste, which would make the EU economy more competitive and protect the environment. The draft resolution calls for stricter waste management and an end to environmentally-harmful subsidies (debate Wednesday, vote Thursday).

Small and medium-sized enterprises
As key drivers of growth and job creation, will be the subject of a debate with the Council and the Commission that will examine their definition and access to EU structural funds (debate Tuesday).

Youth opportunities
MEPs will debate plans to use €82 billion in unspent EU structural funds to help create jobs for young people (debate Wednesday).

UkraineMEPs will debate the situation in Ukraine, in particular the harsh treatment of jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, with Council and Commission. The Ukrainian authorities and the EP have agreed that medical experts will be sent to Ukraine to treat Ms Tymoshenko. A high level monitor will also go to Ukraine to follow the court cases against her (debate Tuesday, vote Thursday).

Gender pay gap
Parliament is set to urge the European Commission to table new measures to close the gender pay gap, including stricter sanctions on employers. The draft resolution notes that the gap still averages 16.4% in the EU, and has even widened in some Member States (debate and vote Thursday).

Presidents' Diary
President Martin Schulz will participate in a debate with EU government leaders at the start of the informal European summit on Wednesday evening, followed by a press conference.


Among topics led by UK MEPs:

European Parliament's right of enquiryAfter a string endorsement in committee a few weeks ago, this report by David Martin (Scotland, Lab) is now being voted on by the EP as a whole on Wednesday. The report calls for Parliament to be given the power to summon officials to give evidence whenever a special committee of inquiry is set up. In what is a fairly unusual procedure, the EP is making a legislative proposal which must be agreed by the Commission and Council in order to become law.

Final draft agenda
European Parliament Press Service

Committee meetings

Foreign Affairs
Human Rights
Security and Defence
International Trade
Budgetary Control
Economic and Monetary Affairs
Employment and Social Affairs
Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
Industry, Research and Energy
Internal Market and Consumer Protection
Transport and Tourism
Regional Development
Agriculture and Rural Development
Culture and Education
Legal Affairs
Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs
Consititutional Affairs
Women's Rights and Gender Equality
Special Committee on Organised Crime, Corruption and Money Laundering


Further Information

Paola Buonadonna
European Parliament UK Office
tel 020 7227 4300


Diary Dates

1 January-31 July 2012: Danish Presidency

European Parliament plenary sessions 2012
11-14 June - Strasbourg
2-5 July - Strasbourg
10-13 September - Strasbourg
22-23 October - Strasbourg
25-26 October - Strasbourg
7-8 November - Brussels
19-22 November - Strasbourg
10-13 December - Strasbourg