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Debates
Tuesday, 22 February 2005 - Strasbourg OJ edition

7. Voting time
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  President. The next item is the vote.

Recommendation (A6-0030/2005) by the Committee on International Trade, on the proposal for a Council decision on the position of the European Community in relation to the draft Regulation of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe on the uniform provisions concerning the approval of vehicles with regard to the location and identification of hand controls, tell-tales and indicators (rapporteur: Enrique Barón Crespo)

(Parliament adopted the text)

Recommendation (A6-0028/2005) by the Committee on International Trade, on the proposal for a Council decision on the position of the European Community in relation to the draft Regulation of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe with regard to the type-approval of a heating system and of a vehicle with regard to its heating system (rapporteur: Enrique Barón Crespo)

(Parliament adopted the text)

Recommendation (A6-0009/2005) by the Committee on Foreign Affairs, on the proposal for a Council and Commission Decision on the conclusion of the Additional Protocol to the Europe Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Romania, of the other part, to take account of the accession of the Czech Republic, the Republic of Estonia, the Republic of Cyprus, the Republic of Latvia, the Republic of Lithuania, the Republic of Hungary, the Republic of Malta, the Republic of Poland, the Republic of Slovenia and the Slovak Republic to the European Union (rapporteur: Elmar Brok)

(Parliament adopted the text)

Recommendation (A6-0010/2005) by the Committee on Foreign Affairs, on the proposal for a Council and Commission Decision on the conclusion of the Additional Protocol to the Europe Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Republic of Bulgaria, of the other part, to take account of the accession of the Czech Republic, the Republic of Estonia, the Republic of Cyprus, the Republic of Latvia, the Republic of Lithuania, the Republic of Hungary, the Republic of Malta, the Republic of Poland, the Republic of Slovenia, and the Slovak Republic to the European Union (rapporteur: Elmar Brok)

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0018/2005) by Nikolaos Sifunakis, on behalf of the Committee on Culture and Education, on the proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion of an Agreement between the Community and the Swiss Confederation in the Audiovisual field, establishing the terms and conditions for the participation of the Swiss Confederation in the MEDIA Plus and MEDIA Training Community programmes, and a final Act

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0006/2005) by Klaus-Heiner Lehne, on behalf of the Committee on Legal Affairs, on the request for defence of the immunity and privileges of Koldo Gorostiaga

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0023/2005) by Margarita Starkevičiūtė, on behalf of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Council Regulation (EC) No 1165/98 concerning short-term statistics

Before the vote:

 
  
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  Starkevičiūtė (ALDE), rapporteur. – (LT) Thank you Mr President, I would just like to briefly give all the Members of Parliament some information. Statistics are a boring matter, but business people in your countries will now have to write many new reports, if you vote for this. I say this in advance, so that you can tell them what Parliament has done to make many of those statistical reports unnecessary. Business people will have to compile new statistical reports and most likely you and many of your voters will have questions. Therefore I simply wanted to let you know what Parliament has done in cooperation with the Council and the Commission in order to reduce that statistical load. We vote with you for the introduction of so-called European sample schemes, where only some companies present reports; small countries, whose GDP is less than 1% of the European Union's GDP, will not be required to supply some of the indices at all; moreover, we shall give governments the opportunity to use administrative resources, that is, social insurance registers, and then companies will not be required to write additional reports. It is also anticipated that the European Commission and Member States will have to prepare a method of evaluating whether it is worthwhile introducing new statistical reports and whether these would be of value to European business and the people of Europe. Thank you.

 
  
  

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0019/2005) by Margie Sudre, on behalf of the Committee on Fisheries, on the proposal for a Council regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 1035/2001 establishing a catch documentation scheme for Dissostichus spp.

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0013/2005) by Herbert Bösch, on behalf of the Committee on Budgetary Control, on the proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and its Member States, of the one part, and the Swiss Confederation, of the other part, to counter fraud and all other illegal activities affecting their financial interests

Before the vote:

 
  
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  Bösch (PSE), rapporteur. – (DE) Mr President, I do not have a great deal to say about the content of this report; this fraud prevention agreement fulfils a request this House has been making for many years, and I hope we will approve this agreement by a large majority. We are actually dealing here, for the first time, with part of the series of Bilateral Agreements with Switzerland, and I feel that the rapid way we have dealt with this in this House demonstrates that we want to see the positive results achieved finally transposed into legislation.

We have repeatedly supported the Commission in its efforts to achieve an outcome on the fraud prevention agreement. We are therefore all the more surprised that when it comes to an amount that Switzerland wishes to transfer to the new Member States as a contribution to cohesion, the amount of CHF 1 billion, the Commission has suddenly come up with the pettifogging idea that this ought to be the subject of an international treaty, and that a memorandum of understanding is not sufficient.

I would like to point out to the Commission that we have not been negotiating with a banana republic, but with one of the oldest and most stable democracies in Europe. So, to make no bones about this, what you have been doing here plays into the hands of those in Switzerland and in the EU who are opposed to closer relations between Switzerland and the European Communities.

(Applause)

I call for this House to adopt a position on this and for you, on behalf of the Commission, to take this message from Strasbourg back home with you.

 
  
  

(Parliament adopted the text)

Recommendation (A6-0014/2005) by the Committee on Foreign Affairs, on the proposal for a Council decision on the signature and conclusion, on behalf of the European Community, of a Cooperation Agreement with the Principality of Andorra (rapporteur: Gerardo Galeote Quecedo)

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0020/2005) by Antonio Di Pietro, on behalf of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, on the proposal for a Council decision on the exchange of information extracted from the criminal record

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0036/2005) by António Costa, on behalf of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, on the proposal for a European Parliament recommendation to the Council on the quality of criminal justice and the harmonisation of criminal law in the Member States

(Parliament adopted the text)

Recommendation for second reading (A6-0017/2005) by the Committee on Culture and Education, on the Council common position for adopting a decision of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Decision No 1419/1999/EC establishing a Community action for the 'European Capital of Culture' event for the years 2005 to 2019 (rapporteur: Christa Prets)

(The President declared the common position approved)

Report (A6-0024/2005) by Jonathan Evans, on behalf of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, on the Commission's XXXIIIrd Report on Competition Policy - 2003

(Parliament adopted the resolution)

Report (A6-0034/2005) by Sophia in 't Veld, on behalf of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, on State aid in the form of public service compensation

Before the vote:

 
  
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  In 't Veld (ALDE), rapporteur. Mr President, just for technical information with a view to giving consistency and coherence in the final document: if Amendments 19 and 21 are adopted, the other paragraphs which deal with the same issue should be brought into line. This has been discussed with representatives from other groups and is a technical rather than a political matter.

 
  
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  Purvis (PPE-DE). Mr President, to add to what Ms in 't Veld said, that Amendment 20 should have added at the end: 'or by way of an official act that, depending upon the legislation in the Member States, may take the form of one or more legislative or regulatory act or a contract'. That is part of the arrangement that Ms in 't Veld is referring to. Following on from that are oral amendments to Modifications 10 and 17 and recital Q.

(Parliament accepted the oral amendment)

 
  
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  Van den Burg (PSE). Mr President, to be completely clear, it means that we have oral amendments on recitals Q and paragraph 19 of this document. They were not written amendments and they completely follow the text proposed in the Purvis amendments. These have to be introduced on recital Q and paragraph 19.

 
  
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  Lipietz (Verts/ALE). Mr President, concerning this problem, I tabled an amendment referring to 'public authority provide'. I notice that other amendments - in particular Amendment 3 by the PSE Group - make a distinction between 'run' and 'monitor'. In my intention, 'provide' is a verb 'monitor' or 'run'. So I put an oral amendment to all the amendments referring to the tendering process. Where Amendment 29 by the Green Group, Amendments 32, 33 and 27 state 'to provide' a public service. It should read 'to provide (run or monitor)'. Provide is to run or monitor.

 
  
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  President. We will take that oral amendment before we start voting on that section.

Colleagues, I am aware that this is a very sensitive report and that it is a pre-consultation offered by the Commission. It is only fitting that we take time to get it right.

 
  
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  Van den Burg (PSE). Mr President, here we had to vote on one of the compromises of this set of four so this is a bit confusing. I assume that we have now voted on Mr Purvis's oral compromise amendment?

 
  
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  President. In fact, it was the rapporteur's oral amendment that there were no objections to. We will get to that when we come to Amendment 19.

 
  
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  Van den Burg (PSE). Mr President, no, because it deals with this paragraph 19 it should come before the other votes.

 
  
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  In 't Veld (ALDE), rapporteur. Mr President, it is very complicated because during the whole process the structure of the report became rather complicated. I apologise for that.

This concerns three amendments and five paragraphs. Amendment 20, with an addition, has just been read out by Mr Purvis. As far as I understand that is what we have been voting on.

The other two amendments are Amendments 19 and 21, also by Mr Purvis, but the contents of those amendments also relate to recital Q, paragraph 19, modification 10 and modification 17. I can read out the text concerned, because I would suggest that rather than reading it out every single time, I should read it out once, we all adopt or reject the principle and then adapt the four paragraphs concerned.

The text of Amendment 21, which is almost identical to Amendment 19, reads as follows: ' The public service task must be assigned either by way of a fair and transparent tendering procedure or by way of an official act that, depending on the legislation in Member States, may take the form of a legislative or regulatory act or a contract. It may also be laid down in several acts. The act or series of acts should specify among other things:'.

This is the same principle as in Amendment 19. Therefore, if the plenary adopts that principle, it will also apply to the four paragraphs I have mentioned. I propose that we vote on that rather than reading it out every single time.

 
  
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  Savary (PSE).(FR) Mr President, there is no objection over the substance, but I should not like there to be any confusion over the facts. This oral amendment is tabled four times: it relates to Amendment 20, Amendment 19, Amendment 21 and Amendment 15.

In order to avoid any ambiguity, I would suggest, Mr President, that, each time we vote on these amendments, you indicate that they are amendments that form part of Mr Purvis’s oral amendment. I feel that this would clear up any potential confusion.

Mr Purvis’s oral amendment relates to four amendments. If you would be kind enough to remind us of Mr Purvis’s oral amendment at each vote, I believe that it would be clearer for the House.

 
  
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  In 't Veld (ALDE). Mr President, I think that will be complicated. The point here is that there are paragraphs where no amendments have been tabled, but they would be equally concerned because after the amendments had been tabled I think we all discovered when we went through the amendments that there were more paragraphs concerned with the same issue. Now we can simply vote on the amendments, but then there will be a certain inconsistency in the document. What Mr Savary is suggesting will not work because it is not about the amendments - it is about the paragraphs to which no amendments have been tabled.

If, when voting on Amendment 19 and Amendment 21 plenary twice adopts a principle or rejects it, then it will apply equally to those paragraphs. That is what I am saying.

 
  
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  Savary (PSE). (FR) Mr President, I do not wish to complicate matters, but Mrs in 't Veld is asking us to vote once and for all on Mr Purvis’ amendment. You will not know where it will be in the text, but it will be there.

Quite frankly, as there are four crucial amendments, Amendments 20, 19, 21 and 15, I would prefer it if we were asked each time whether we were adopting them subject to the oral amendment by Mr Purvis. I think that would be clearer. I understand what Mrs in 't Veld is saying, but I would like her to tell me exactly where she is going to put Mr Purvis’ amendment, as she has said that it appears throughout the text. I think this is confused and I do not want us to make a mistake with this vote, because, as you said yourself, this is a sensitive text.

 
  
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  Purvis (PPE-DE). Mr President, I hope I can help you. I agree with Mr Savary that it should be applied to those four amendments, but I also agree with Mrs in't Veld that wherever else in the report there are inconsistencies as a result of passing those amendments, then appropriate adjustments should be made by sessional services. If that is acceptable then we can go ahead.

 
  
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  President. Mr Savary, I can assure you that appropriate adjustments will be made. I will indicate when the oral amendment applies. I now propose to put the oral amendment to the vote.

(Parliament adopted the oral amendment)

 
  
  

Before the vote on Amendment 33:

Purvis (PPE-DE). Mr President, in case we have the same problem as previously, this one is also affected by the oral amendment and therefore my voting list should say in favour.

 
  
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  In 't Veld (ALDE). Mr President, this is a slight modification of the amendment proposed by the PSE Group and it would read as follows: 'whereas with a view to evidence-based policy making the Commission should present a sound and exhaustive evaluation of the liberalisation process, taking into account the point of view of all stakeholders involved (users, local authorities, undertakings etc.)'.

 
  
  

(Parliament adopted the resolution)

Report (A6-0026/2005) by Robert Goebbels, on behalf of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, on the European economic situation – preparatory report on the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines

Before the vote on Amendment 23:

 
  
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  Klinz (ALDE). (DE) Mr President, ladies and gentlemen, during the debate on the Goebbels report in the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe tabled an amendment that was accepted by a majority of the committee, but due to an error was not incorporated into the final version of this report. I would therefore like to table it once again as an oral amendment. It relates to the need for structural reforms. I shall read the amendment in English.

'Recommends that the Member States carry out the structural reforms which have long been needed. In particular, the deregulation of labour markets, the adjustment of social systems to demographic needs, the simplification of tax systems, combining tax cuts and a change in the bases of tax assessment and the abolition of subsidies, so as to bring about an improvement in the investment climate as a prerequisite for economic growth. Stresses finally that the development of quality jobs will be accompanied by an improvement in labour productivity in Europe.'

(Applause)

 
  
  

(The President established that more than 37 Members objected to the oral amendment)

 
  
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  Goebbels (PSE), rapporteur. (FR) Mr President, I am amazed by the way Mr Klinz is acting. He claims that his amendment was accepted. If that were the case, he should have made a complaint to the secretariat of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, which normally does a good job. Otherwise, he had every right to table an amendment, which he did not do. Having listened to him, it is a new report that he is proposing to us, and I invite my fellow Members to reject this oral amendment, which is not an oral amendment, but a novel.

(Applause)

 
  
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  Radwan (PPE-DE). (DE) Mr President, I merely wish to inform the House that a meeting of the coordinators was held yesterday at which the coordinators of all parties, including the committee chairs, confirmed that the amendment just read out had been accepted, but had not, because of a drafting error, been included in the report.

So in the interests of fairness we should vote on the amendment now.

 
  
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  President. If the amendment was adopted in committee and there were no amendments to it, then it is in the text. I can only ask the services to check this.

 
  
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  Berès (PSE). (FR) Mr President, I am sorry that your services did not indicate to you that I had requested the floor at the beginning of Mr Wolf Klinz’s speech, as I wanted to report to you the discussion that we had last night at the meeting of the coordinators of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs.

I will be very clear: the amendment to which Mr Wolf Klinz is referring was mentioned and we reported the procedure that was followed, which is the procedure that we are still following. The Secretary of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs did his job: he consolidated the votes after the vote in the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, and sent the result to every political group to be verified. The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe has not, so far, deemed it necessary to table this amendment again or to point out a material error in it.

Therefore, and out of respect for the meeting of the coordinators last night, I would ask you, in accordance with what this House has already decided, given that several Members have stood up, not to take on board this amendment.

 
  
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  President. We have to stand by the decision of the House, which was to not accept the oral amendment. I apologise to Mr Klinz if there was a fault on the part of the secretariat, but Mrs Berès is absolutely right that the position was clear in committee.

 
  
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  Goebbels (PSE), rapporteur. (FR) Mr President, as rapporteur, I have to say that a large proportion of my report has been ‘mutilated’ by a rightwing majority in this House, which has voted contrary to Article 4 of the Treaty, which requires coordination of economic policies. You have voted against the efforts of the President-in-Office, Mr Juncker, to make the Stability Pact into something decent, in other words a Stability and Growth Pact. I therefore invite my friends to vote against my report.

(Applause)

 
  
  

(Parliament adopted the text)

Report (A6-0025/2005) by Othmar Karas, on behalf of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, on Public finances in EMU – 2004

(Parliament adopted the text)

President. – That concludes the vote.

 
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