Motion for a resolution - B6-0543/2008Motion for a resolution



to wind up the debate on the European Council report and the Commission statement
pursuant to Rule 103(2) of the Rules of Procedure
by Hartmut Nassauer
on behalf of the PPE-DE Group
on the outcome of the European Council meeting of 15-16 October 2008 in Brussels

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B6-0543/2008

Procedure : 2008/2523(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  


European Parliament resolution on the outcome of the European Council meeting of 15-16 October 2008 in country-regioncountry-regionBrussels

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Presidency Conclusions issued following the European Council meeting of 15-16 October 2008,

–  having regard to the European Council report and the Commission statement on the European Council meeting of 15-16 October 2008,

–  having regard to Rule 103(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the parliamentary procedures for the approval of the Treaty of Lisbon have been accomplished in 24 Member States,

B.  whereas the institutional reforms contained in the Treaty of Lisbon are urgently needed in order to ensure that the European Union functions smoothly and in a balanced manner, with full democratic scrutiny,

C.  whereas for important political events of the year 2009, notably the European elections and the appointment of a new Commission, clarity is required about the institutional provisions which will apply,

I.  Economic and financial situation

1.   Is gravely concerned about the situation on the financial markets and calls for a further reinforcement of coordinated action in order to restore confidence to the markets;

2.   Urges that measured consideration should be given to the causes of, and any possible long-term remedies for, the crisis on the financial markets in order to devise appropriate regulatory and supervisory regimes for the future; sees it as incumbent on the Commission to prepare in due course such an initial assessment for debate in the EU, Member-State institutions and the public domain;

3.   Welcomes the conclusions of the summit of the Eurogroup of 12 October 2008, as a first important and coordinated step to reassure the financial markets, and is convinced that the measures - especially the temporary public interbank money lending guarantees, but also increased deposit guarantees and bank recapitalisation - are necessary expedients for restoring confidence to the financial system; welcomes the conclusions of the European Council ratifying the measures proposed by the Eurogroup;

4.   Notes that this crisis has implications beyond the financial markets, in particular in respect of business viability, jobs, personal finance and SMEs, and that the impact would have been unpredictable if national authorities, the ECB and other central banks had not introduced measures in order to restore confidence to the financial system again;

5.   Is determined to support any measure that can return liquidity to the markets so that credit facilities can be restored to businesses and individuals; is conscious of the need to reassure taxpayers that any measures taken will reflect their concerns, and notes that a restoration of financial normality is critical to future economic growth;

6.   Calls on the Council and the Commission to act together with Parliament and underlines that any regulatory and supervisory initiatives must be coordinated at least by the Commission at EU level, if not globally;

7.   Urges all participants to concentrate efforts to ensure that any measures (other than those that are strictly limited in time) do not distort competition, and that such measures bear in mind the need to maintain level playing fields;

8.   Supports the efforts of the ECB to find a global solution to the crisis; urges it to cooperate globally with other central banks, including those in emerging markets, and urges the EU institutions to cooperate with international financial bodies such as the IMF, World Bank, BIS and IASB to ensure that measures are taken to restore confidence in the global financial system;

9.   Points out that in the interests of taxpayers and Member States' budgets, each time that public money is spent on rescuing a financial institution, it should as a counterpart be accompanied by improvements in terms of governance and accountability;

10.   Calls for minimum prudential rules applicable to hedge funds, in particular rules governing leverage and short selling;

11.   Awaits the Commission's proposals in respect of credit rating agencies and urges it to submit them no later than 12 November 2008;

12.   Points out that a crisis transcending national jurisdictions cannot be tackled only individually by national authorities and that in cross-border crises cooperation and mutual trust between supervisory authorities are crucial; urges the Commission and responsible national authorities to develop jointly appropriate proposals for effective crisis management for the further consideration of Parliament; draws attention to the importance of having strong coordination at EU level when meeting at G8 level and strongly believes in global answers to the crisis;

II.  country-regioncountry-regionLisbon Treaty

13.   Reiterates and confirms its endorsement of the Treaty of Lisbon and the need for its ratification in the Member States of the country-regionUnion to be completed before the European elections of 2009;

14.  Calls on the European Council to define at its forthcoming meeting a method and a timetable which would allow it to achieve this result;

III.  Energy and climate change

15.   Holds the view that the EU's post-2012 climate targets should not be questioned as a consequence of the present international financial crisis; undertakes to cooperate closely with the Council and Commission to find an effective and workable agreement on the Climate Change and Energy Package in the shortest practicable time; emphasises, however, that it is crucial for the EU's industry, its employees and consumers that the measures envisaged to meet these targets are thoroughly evaluated to ascertain their implications for the sectoral and general competitiveness of EU companies; considers that, in this context, account must be taken of the right of Parliament to have enough time to discuss the issue;

16.  Rejects any attempt to reopen the debate and question the decision on the CO2 cap by means of a new Codecision proposal in the event of an international agreement, as this would show that the European Union was unable to find lasting solutions and was postponing urgent decisions and contradicting the European Council's commitment of March 2007;

17.  Underlines therefore the importance of maintaining the automatic increase in the EU's emission reductions target to 30% following an international agreement at one of the next COP conferences;

18.  Calls on the Council to maintain the proposed ambitious targets of achieving a mandatory 20% share of sustainable renewable energies in the Community's overall final energy consumption and a mandatory 10% share of energy from sustainable renewable sources in each Member State's transport sector by 2020;

19.  Welcomes the political agreement reached by the Council on the Internal Energy Market; in that context, reaffirms its strong support for further liberalisation of the EU energy market and calls for an agreement during the current parliamentary term;

20.  Recognises that CCS technologies can contribute to attaining the EU targets after 2020 and increase the EU's security of supply; calls in that respect for appropriate financial support for the 12 demonstration facilities, namely through ETS allowances;

IV.  Energy security

21.   Calls for strong political commitment to move to a low-carbon EU economy, to promote renewables, energy efficiency and other low-carbon energy sources, to pursue diversification of energy supply and to reduce dependence on imported fossil fuels, as this shift is the most logical response to higher oil prices; endorses the priority that these strategic measures should be followed up by strong financial commitments to R&D;

22.   Calls on the Council to pursue with determination the EP recommendations concerned with adopting a common European external policy on energy in particular by promoting EU unity in negotiations with energy suppliers and transit countries and defending EU interests as a whole, developing efficient energy diplomacy, adopting more effective mechanisms for responding to crises, and ensuring the diversification of energy suppliers; recalls the need to adopt a strategy to this end accompanied by the necessary instruments to carry it out; calls for special attention to be paid to building the necessary interconnections which are missing, particularly in the eastern part of Europe;

V.  European Pact on immigration and asylum

23.   Welcomes the initiative of the French Presidency on the European Pact on immigration and asylum; considers however that it needs to be accompanied by concrete legislative proposals, which should aim to strike a balance between, on the one hand, the necessary European approach, including further European integration in this policy field, and on the other hand, respecting the principle of subsidiarity and sovereignty of Member States, and welcomes particularly in this regard the commitment to do without large-scale regularisations in future;

24.  Agrees with the Council that the Pact on Immigration should provide the framework for action under future Presidencies;

VI.  Follow-up to the European Council of 1 September 2008

25.  Takes the view that there cannot be a military solution to the conflicts in the Caucasus and expresses its firm condemnation of all those who resorted to force and violence in order to change the situation in the Georgian breakaway territories of country-regionSouth Ossetia and Abkhazia;

26.  Recalls the disproportionate military action by country-regionRussia in country-regionGeorgia in early August and its deep incursion into the country as well as its unilateral decision to recognise the independence of Abkhazia and country-regionSouth Ossetia;

27.  Calls on country-regionRussia to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country-regioncountry-regionRepublic of country-regionGeorgia and the inviolability of its borders recognised by all EU Member States;

28.  Supports the idea of an independent inquiry into the conflict in country-regioncountry-regionGeorgia and calls on the Council and Commission to speed up their work on this issue;

29.   Underlines that the EU must now review its policy towards country-regionRussia should country-regioncountry-regionRussia not fully comply with its commitments under the agreements of 12 August and 8 September;

30.  Notes with satisfaction that, following the deployment of the European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM), Russian armed forces have completed their withdrawal from the areas adjacent to South Ossetia and Abkhazia as an essential additional step in the implementation of the agreements of 12 August and 8 September;

31.  Expresses its hope that this withdrawal will allow internally displaced people to return to their homes and contribute to the normalisation of living conditions in these areas; hopes furthermore that the presence of the EUMM in these areas will decrease tension, contribute to a sense of security and enhance respect for the rule of law;

32.  Regrets furthermore that the EUMM is not allowed to enter the two breakaway regions where Russia plans to station 7600 regular army troops replacing the small contingents of Russian peacekeepers deployed in both territories after the war in 1991-1992;

33.  Notes that all remaining issues have to be resolved at the international peace conference in Geneva, especially as far as the status of and situation in South Ossetia and Abkhazia and notably the continuing Russian military presence in Akhalgori and Perevi in South Ossetia and the Kodori Gorge in Abkhazia are concerned, and that until then relations between the EU and Russia cannot be fully normalised;

34.   Reminds the Russian authorities that in the current situation it is even more important to ensure that persons and NGOs that are engaged in defending human and civil rights can operate according to Russia's commitments to the Council of Europe and free of intimidation; expresses its concern about continuing cases of harassment, killings and possible attempts on the lives of human rights activists;

35.   Notes that a constructive relationship between the EU and Russia is important because many international challenges are common to both and that Russia must fulfil its internationally binding obligations, which should be extended in future;

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