Procedure : 2009/2697(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B7-0095/2009

Texts tabled :

B7-0095/2009

Debates :

PV 21/10/2009 - 9
CRE 21/10/2009 - 9

Votes :

PV 22/10/2009 - 8.9

Texts adopted :

P7_TA(2009)0058

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION
PDF 162kWORD 91k
See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0095/2009
19.10.2009
PE428.703v01-00
 
B7-0095/2009

to wind up the debate on statements by the Council and Commission

pursuant to Rule 110(2) of the Rules of Procedure


on the upcoming EU-US Summit and the Transatlantic Economic Council Meeting


Joseph Daul, Elmar Brok, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Ioannis Kasoulides, Corien Wortmann-Kool, Francisco José Millán Mon, Daniel Caspary, Pilar del Castillo Vera, Albert Deß, Jean-Paul Gauzès, Peter Liese, Andreas Schwab, Richard Seeber, Tadeusz Zwiefka, Ingeborg Gräßle, Werner Langen on behalf of the PPE Group

European Parliament resolution on the upcoming EU-US Summit and the Transatlantic Economic Council Meeting  
B7‑0095/2009

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its resolutions of 8 May 2008 on the Transatlantic Economic Council, 5 June 2008 on the EU-US Summit, and 26 March 2009 on the state of transatlantic relations in the aftermath of the US elections,

–   having regard to the outcome of the EU-US Summit held on 5 April 2009 in Prague,

–   having regard to the Joint Statement and progress report adopted at the third Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) meeting on 16 October 2008, and to the Joint Statement adopted at the Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue Meeting in April 2009 in Prague,

–   having regard to its Resolution on the envisaged international agreement to make available to the United States Treasury Department financial payment messaging data to prevent and combat terrorism and terrorist financing of 17 September 2009,

–   having regard to its resolution of 8 October 2009 on the Pittsburgh G-20 Summit of 24 and 25 September 2009,

–   having regard to Rule 110(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas, once the foreign policy tools of the Lisbon Treaty come into effect, the EU will be able to play a stronger and more coherent role on the international scene,

B.  whereas the European Union welcomes the new direction given by the US administration based on a cooperative attitude in the international field and a strengthening of the EU-US relationship,

C. whereas the EU and the US have a strategic role as regards global economic challenges, as their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) represents more than half of the global GDP and the two partners have the world's strongest bilateral trade and investment partnership, accounting for almost 40% of world trade,

D. whereas the EU and the US also have common political interests and a shared responsibility in the global political arena for promoting peace, respect for human rights and stability and for tackling various global dangers and challenges, such as nuclear proliferation, terrorism, climate change, energy security, the eradication of poverty and the attainment of other Millennium Development Goals,

E.  whereas the work of the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) needs to continue towards the goal of a genuine, integrated transatlantic market by 2015, the achievement of which will be a central means of relaunching economic growth and recovery,

F.  whereas it is important that the role of legislators is duly reflected in the TEC process and that the priorities of the European Parliament are adequately taken into account,

G. whereas the good cooperation between the EU and US in the field of civil aviation may be jeopardised, in the light of recent initiatives on inspections of foreign repair stations, antitrust exemptions and air carrier citizenship,

H. whereas the EU and the US will be confronted with rising global energy consumption and the requirement to implement global commitments to combat climate change to be agreed in Copenhagen, and whereas the new standards and measures to increase energy efficiency should neither create new obstacles to transatlantic trade nor reduce the security and safety of fissile material,

I.   whereas the financial and economic crisis has rapidly turned into a jobs crisis with severe social consequences, and whereas the transatlantic partners share responsibility for tackling the social dimension of the economic crisis,

J.   whereas recent surveys, such as the Transatlantic Trends 2009 of the German Marshall Funds, show unprecedented popular support among EU citizens for the US administration, which provides a basis for a revitalisation of EU-US relations,

EU-US Summit

1.  Reaffirms that EU-US relations are the most important strategic partnership for the EU and insists on the importance of the EU and the US Administration's intensifying their strategic dialogue, cooperation and coordination when dealing with global challenges and regional conflicts; calls on the Commission to submit, after the Summit, a communication on a strategic EU-US partnership;

2.  Insists that once the Lisbon Treaty enters into effect, the institutional mechanisms of EU-US relations should be strengthened in line with its Resolution of 26 March 2009;

3.  Calls on the EU and the US to agree at the forthcoming Summit on a reinforced transatlantic partnership to deal with common global challenges, in particular with regard to non-proliferation and disarmament, counterterrorism, climate change, respect for human rights, facing pandemics and achieving the Millennium Development Goals;

4.  Underlines the importance of NATO as the cornerstone of transatlantic security; considers that relevant developments in this wider security structure should be addressed in dialogue with Russia, the United States and the non-EU OSCE Member States in order to renew the transatlantic consensus on security;

5.  Welcomes in this connection the decision of the Russian Federation and the US to conduct negotiations to conclude a new comprehensive legally binding agreement to replace the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), which expires in December 2009, and the signature of the 'Joint understanding for a follow-on agreement to START-1' by Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitri Medvedev in Moscow on 6 July 2009;

6.  Welcomes the announcement by the US President that he will take forward the ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT); calls on the Council to contribute positively and proactively to the preparations for the next NPT review conference in 2010, in close cooperation with the US and Russia;

7.  Underlines that the Iranian nuclear programme endangers the non-proliferation system and stability in the region and the world; supports the objective of finding a negotiated solution with Iran, following the dual strategy of dialogue and sanctions, in coordination with other members of the Security Council and the International Atomic Energy Agency;

8.  Is concerned about the latest nuclear testing conducted by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and its rejection of UN Resolution 1887; supports nonetheless the US bilateral dialogue approach, within the framework of the Six-Party Talks, seeking to achieve denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula;

9.  Takes note that the US has abandoned its original plans for a missile defence shield in Europe, notes its new plans and calls for a new global security arrangement involving the EU, the US, Russia and China;

10. Reiterates the importance of both partners' promoting, in a spirit of trust and transparency, coordinated approaches in their policies towards Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan; urges the EU, the US, NATO and the UN to devise a new joint strategic concept which comprehensively integrates international commitments, calling on all neighbours to participate in this effort in order to achieve regional stabilisation;

11. Reaffirms the importance of common EU-US approaches regarding Russia, China, India and Latin America;

12. Considers that the first meeting hosted on 23 September 2009 by President Obama between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas failed to fulfil its ambitions; reaffirms that the success of the Middle East Peace Process is one of the most important priorities for the EU and the US and calls on the EU and the US to jointly promote active Quartet intervention in the search for common ground as a basis for a peaceful solution with the objective of a two-state solution with an independent, viable Palestinian state; calls on the Summit to examine possible ways of reaching out to the Arab world and to Muslim populations in Europe and the US;

13. Considers it necessary that at the EU-US Summit both partners take the leading role on the implementation of the G-20 commitments; calls therefore for coordination of the US reform package for the financial sector and the current EU legislative reforms, including the financial supervisory structure, and calls on both partners to reinforce their cooperation in the modernisation of the IMF;

14. Hopes that at the Summit the two parties will agree that a successful conclusion of the Doha Round should include measures to avoid volatility of agricultural prices and food shortages; calls upon leaders not to forget the ultimate development goal of this round and to honour their commitment to spend 0.7% of their GDP on development cooperation; stresses the need to take into consideration recent CAP reforms and hopes to see similar adjustments made to the US Farm Bill; recalls developments with regard to issues where conflict previously existed, such as hormones in beef, chloride in chicken and the authorisation of some GM products; is confident that, through continuous dialogue, issues affecting mutual trade in agricultural products can be tackled before they come before WTO dispute bodies;

15. Underlines the importance of EU-US cooperation in reaching an international agreement at COP 15 in Copenhagen in December 2009; urges the EU Presidency, at the EU-US Summit, to seek an ambitious US commitment and solicit cooperation from the US in promoting links between the EU ETS and regional or federal trading schemes in the US;

16. Takes note of the idea of creating a Transatlantic Energy Council; underlines strongly that it should deal only with the clearly foreign and security policy aspects of this issue and should in the future be integrated into the Transatlantic Political Council, and that the TEC should deal with overall energy policy;

17. Recalls that, within the transatlantic framework of the EU-US agreement on legal assistance, which will enter into force on 1 January 2010, Article 4 provides for access to be granted to targeted financial data upon request, through national state authorities, and that this might constitute a sounder legal basis for the transfer of SWIFT data than the proposed interim agreement; notes that a new agreement, negotiated without prejudice to the procedure to be followed under the Lisbon Treaty, will have to fully involve the EP and national parliaments and ensure the conditions set out in Paragraph 3 of its resolution of 17 September 2009;

18. Welcomes the recent extension of the visa waiver programme to another seven EU Member States; however, urges the US to lift the visa regime for the remaining Member States and to treat all EU citizens equally and on the basis of full reciprocity; is concerned about the planned introduction of administrative fees for the granting of ESTA authorisations to EU citizens and calls on the Commission to treat this as a priority matter with the US administration;

19. Calls upon the US to allow the full and effective implementation of the first-stage EU-US aviation agreement and of the EU-US aviation safety agreement; reminds both the Commission and the US authorities that failure to conclude a second-stage agreement could lead to the cancellation of the first-stage agreement by some Member States; calls upon the US to avoid any measures which work against reinforced cooperation such as those on foreign repair stations, anti-trust exemptions and air carrier citizenship mentioned in House Resolution 915;

Transatlantic Economic Council Meeting and the reinforcement of the TEC

20. Underlines that a closer transatlantic partnership with a view to the completion of a transatlantic market by 2015, based on the principle of a social market economy, is a vital instrument for shaping globalisation and for dealing with global economic and social crises;

21. Requests the Commission to set out a detailed road map of existing obstacles to the attainment of that target; recalls the study which the European Parliament authorised and financed in its 2007 budget; wonders why neither of these documents has so far been released by the Commission despite repeated requests by the European Parliament to do so; sets 15 November 2009 as the final date for their publication;

22. Considers that transatlantic cooperation on energy efficiency and technology (including 'green energy') and on energy regulatory areas can be dealt with within the TEC; insists that transatlantic cooperation on energy security should constitute one of the central issues to be addressed regularly within the Transatlantic Political Council (TPC), whose creation was proposed by the European Parliament in its Resolution of 26 March 2009;

23. Believes that transatlantic economic cooperation must be made more accountable, transparent and predictable and that schedules of meetings, agendas, road-maps and progress reports should be regularly published and immediately posted on a website; proposes to hold a annual debate on the progress made on issues discussed within the TEC, as well as its structure;

The role of the TLD in the TEC

24. Reiterates its call upon the leadership of the EU and the US, as well as the co-chairs of the TEC, to take account of the crucial role of legislators for the success of the TEC; urges them to involve the representatives of the TLD fully and directly in the TEC, as legislators share with their respective executive branches responsibility for the enactment and oversight of many of the TEC decisions;

25. Believes that it is essential to ensure that the most appropriate members of Congress and the European Parliament are brought into the Legislators' Dialogue and the TEC process, in order to prevent legislation with an unintended impact on transatlantic trade and investment; hopes that the new agreement could upgrade the current TLD into a transatlantic inter-parliamentary assembly, following recommendations made by the European Parliament in its resolution of 26 March 2009;

TEC and the economic and financial crises

26. Underlines the role of the TEC in promoting and ensuring a coordinated US-EU regulatory response to the crises, in particular regarding alternative investment funds, financial market infrastructure (especially regarding Over-The-Counter (OTC) derivatives markets), capital requirements, tax havens and cross-border insolvency resolution; calls on the TEC to examine the coordination of the remuneration policies of financial institutions;

27. Calls on the TEC to insist that the US authorities take into account changes to the EU capital requirements directives, when implementing the Basel II framework; welcomes the proposal by the US Government to regulate all OTC derivatives and its work on a central clearing house for complex structured products, and calls upon the TEC to examine how to promote a coordinated approach;

28. Calls on the TEC to ensure that the US authorities take into account EU regulation of alternative investment fund managers (AIFM Directive) when regulating such vehicles, in order to avoid regulatory arbitrage;

29. Supports the G-20 call to speed up convergence of accounting standards; urges the TEC to call upon the FASB and IASB to achieve a single set of high-quality global accounting standards and complete their convergence project by June 2011; underlines that the IASB should continue its governance reforms;

30. Urges the TEC to insist that the US authorities abide by their road map for requiring US domestic users to apply IFRS; recalls its request that the SEC recognise, as established by the European Union and until the decision requiring US users to apply IFRS has been made, that IFRS is equivalent to US GAAP; urges the TEC to promote the development of a country-by-country breakdown within the SEC reports;

31. Hopes that the TEC will support the possibility for the EU to recognise the US insurance supervisory regime as equivalent under the conditions set out in the Solvency II Directive; is of the opinion that the initiative to set up an Office of National Insurance would improve EU-US cooperation; calls on the TEC to ensure that the US authorities make progress on federal level insurance supervision by separating, if necessary, tax and other issues from the pure supervision aspect;

32. Welcomes the expansion of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information (GFTEI) and sees it as a promising step that all 87 countries in the GFTEI have agreed to adopt the OECD standard on tax information sharing; urges the TEC to ensure that the EU and the US show their common global leadership by ensuring that the necessary incentives, including sanctions, are in place in March 2010, and to quickly implement, with all parties, a programme of peer review to assess progress, but deems that this framework must be reinforced to combat tax evasion and avoidance; stresses that automatic information should be the standard in all transnational tax matters;

33. Considers that Corporate Social Responsibility may be regarded as a business model entailing self-regulation; believes that the exchange of CSR best practice between the US and the EU will have a significant impact on the attitude of enterprises to CSR and on their positive engagement with social and environmental issues; considers that regulatory cooperation should take into account the strengthening of the EU regulatory framework regarding the Capital Requirements Directive (CRD), in particular remuneration policies in the financial services sector;

TEC and Intellectual Property

34. Calls on the forthcoming TEC meeting to promote strategic transatlantic cooperation on the protection of intellectual property with full respect for the fundamental and civil rights of citizens; underlines that the spread of technologies must not distort the system of intellectual property protection that guarantees the ability to take financial and business risks inherent in the innovation process;

35. Reminds the TEC that the information society is a crucial pillar of the transatlantic economic area based on access to knowledge and on the protection of digital content by means of a rigorous and effective system of protection of copyright and related rights, and further reaffirms that such protection must promote innovation;

TEC and Consumer Protection

36. Calls on the TEC to promote joint actions to ensure that third countries, particularly China, raise their production standards to meet EU/US safety requirements, in particular for toys, and to ensure strict enforcement, on both sides of the Atlantic, of laws regarding the safety of products, particularly toys, as well as stronger national inspections;

37. Calls on the Commission to develop within the TEC stronger and more effective cross-border enforcement cooperation systems, with the objective of linking the EU 'RAPEX' alert system on consumer products posing a serious risk to consumers to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission alert system, and integrating the activities of the Consumer Protection Cooperation (CPC) Network with those of the US authorities;

38. Proposes that the TEC endorse the adoption of a binding cooperation instrument which would structure and facilitate the sharing of information on product safety and the development of a common programme of cooperative actions;

39. Calls on the Commission to accelerate, with a view to the forthcoming TEC meeting and EU-US Summit, its work on a much-delayed bilateral Enforcement Cooperation Agreement extending to the US its enforcement activities within the framework of the EU Consumer Protection Cooperation Regulation and the US Safe Web Act;

40. Calls on the Commission to work with US counterparts in order to allow the TEC to examine ways of enhancing consumer protection with due regard for the digital rights of consumers, as well as working together on rules for defective goods;

Bilateral Trade - Customs Matters, Market Surveillance and Trade Security

41. Calls on the TEC to promote the strengthening of cooperation between the EU and US customs and market surveillance authorities, in order to prevent dangerous products, in particular dangerous toys, from reaching consumers;

42. Calls on the TEC to voice EU concerns about the US unilateral legislative measure regarding the 100% scanning of US-bound maritime cargo containers, as adopted by the US Congress; believes that the TEC could usefully organise seminars on the 100% scanning issue in Brussels and Washington, in order to foster a deeper understanding between US and EU legislators and to promote an early and mutually acceptable resolution of this problem; calls on the Commission to evaluate, for the forthcoming TEC meeting, the potential costs of this measure to business and to the EU economy, as well as the potential impact on customs operations;

43. Is resolved to continue to call upon the US legislature – and calls on the Commission to do likewise within the TEC – to reconsider the 100% container scanning obligation, and to develop cooperation with the US, based on risk management, including mutual recognition of the EU and US Trade Partnership Programmes, in accordance with the SAFE Framework of Standards of the World Customs Organisation;

Mutual Recognition and Standardisation

44. Calls on the Commission to pursue, in the light of the forthcoming TEC meeting, the formal adoption of procedures for the mutual recognition of declarations of conformity for products subject to mandatory third-party testing, in particular for ICT and electrical equipment, and to insist on the mutual recognition of legal units of measurement, in particular the acceptance of metric-only labelling of EU products in the US, to explore standardisation with the US authorities and to coordinate internationally;

Environmental and Public Health Issues

45. Considers it to be of the utmost importance to engage in a dialogue in the TEC on novel foods and the use of new technologies in food production; emphasises concerns regarding cloning in animal breeding;

46. Welcomes the fact that the US Government has recognised the need to reform its Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA); calls on the EU and US to cooperate so as to establish a regulatory system in the US that brings about a level of protection compatible with REACH;

Energy, Industry and Science

47.  Calls for cooperation within the TEC on all matters affecting the regulatory environment for industries, following the approach of the EU 'Small Business Act' – thinking small first – when considering legislation with a transatlantic impact;

48. Encourages the TEC to develop cooperation towards a Common Energy Strategy, which supports diversification and promotes an eco-efficient economy, in order to increase security of supply, and encourages the TEC to help seek convergent sustainability criteria for biofuels;

49. Urges the TEC to stimulate cooperation in research to better exploit the potential of the extended EU-US Science and Technology Agreement;

International Trade

50. Considers that access to third-country markets is a common concern and interest for both the EU and the US; is convinced that the TEC can play an important role in fostering a common approach by the EU and the US in their trade relations with third countries; calls on the TEC to work towards a more common approach to new free trade agreements on the part of the US and the EU, with a view to harmonising such agreements;

51. Calls on the TEC to deal with the legal framework and technical standards in order to remedy unclear legal conditions and in this context to consider the issues of contracts, duties and legal security in the US;

                                                      ****

52. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the US Congress, the co-chairs of the Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue, the Transatlantic Economic Council co-chairs and its secretariat.

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