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Procédure : 2012/2253(INI)
Cycle de vie en séance
Cycle relatif au document : A7-0147/2013

Textes déposés :

A7-0147/2013

Débats :

PV 12/06/2013 - 16
CRE 12/06/2013 - 16

Votes :

PV 13/06/2013 - 7.7
CRE 13/06/2013 - 7.7
Explications de votes

Textes adoptés :

P7_TA(2013)0278

Débats
Mercredi 12 juin 2013 - Strasbourg Edition révisée

16. Révision 2013 concernant l'organisation et le fonctionnement du SEAE (débat)
Vidéo des interventions
PV
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  El Presidente. − El punto siguiente en el orden del día es el debate sobre el informe de Elmar Brok y Roberto Gualtieri, en nombre de la Comisión de Asuntos Exteriores, sobre la Recomendación a la Alta Representante de la UE para Asuntos Exteriores y Política de Seguridad y Vicepresidenta de la Comisión, al Consejo y a la Comisión sobre la revisión de 2013 relativa a la organización y el funcionamiento del SEAE (2012/2253(INI)) (A7-0147/2013).

 
  
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  Elmar Brok, Berichterstatter. − Herr Präsident, Hohe Beauftragte, verehrte Vizepräsidentin, Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Wir haben damals in Madrid eine Vereinbarung getroffen, worin das Europäische Parlament, die Kommission, der Rat und die Hohe Beauftragte sich geeinigt haben, einen Auswärtigen Dienst aufzubauen. Einen Auswärtigen Dienst, der diese neu geschaffene Position „Hohe Beauftragte/Vizepräsidentin der Kommission“ entsprechend unterstützt. Es sollten die Fähigkeiten der Kommission und die Fähigkeiten des Rates verbunden werden ohne Veränderung der Zuständigkeiten von Kommission oder Rat, um zu einer gemeinsamen europäischen Politik zu kommen, zu einer one voice policy. Dabei sollten die notwendigen Synergieeffekte erreicht werden, die mit der Verteilung auf drei Positionen vorher nicht gegeben waren.

Heute können wir sagen: Das Glas ist halb leer oder es ist halb voll. Ich finde, es ist halb voll. Wir müssen sehen, dass in diesen zweieinhalb Jahren des Aufbaus unglaublich viel erreicht worden ist. Baroness Ashton, ich finde, dass Sie in einer Reihe von Bereichen – Beispiele dafür sind Serbien und Kosovo – wichtige Leistungen erbracht haben. Aber ich sehe immer noch, dass der Motor in der engen Kooperation der Dienststellen des Auswärtigen Dienstes und der Kommission stottert. Vielleicht auch, weil die Rolle der Vizepräsidentin der Kommission nicht im Bewusstsein der Kommission selbst ist. Auch, weil da Ängste sind, etwas zu verlieren. Deswegen muss auch klar sein, dass die Nachbarschaftspolitik, die eine Gemeinschaftspolitik ist, nicht ausschließlich in den Auswärtigen Dienst verlagert und einer Intergouvernementalisierung zugeführt wird.

Wir sehen aber auch, dass im Bereich des Rates die Dinge nicht vorangehen. Bei Mali war im Oktober beschlossen worden, eine Trainingsmission zu schicken, und Ende Januar war noch nichts passiert, weil auf beiden Seiten die Beschlüsse nicht so ernst genommen wurden. Die Frage der strukturellen Zusammenarbeit ist noch nicht vorangebracht, wie auch die Frage der battle groups. Deswegen meine ich, dass wir darüber nachdenken müssen, wie diese Dinge verbessert werden können, die dann auch politisch die Situation bringen, dass die Vizepräsidentin der Kommission den Cluster der Außenkommissare leitet. Oder wie wir einen deputy auf der politischen Seite, auch auf der Ratsseite, zustande bringen. Das heißt, wie der innere Mechanismus gestärkt werden kann, sowohl in der Außenvertretung, in der Verhandlungskapazität, als auch im inneren Lenkungsmechanismus. Dies muss so geschehen, dass wir deutlich machen, dass dieser Dienst ein Dienst aller Institutionen der Europäischen Union ist und nicht von den Mitgliedstaaten vereinnahmt werden kann.

Wenn ich sehe, dass einige Länder, zu denen auch das Land gehört, das ich am besten kenne, am liebsten auch auf die Bestellung der stellvertretenden Botschafter Einfluss haben möchten, dann muss ich sagen: Hier ist ein Ende der Fahnenstange erreicht. Am 1. Juli 2013 kann nach normalen Verfahren eingestellt werden, die Zwischenlösungen sind vorbei! Es kann nicht sein, dass die Mitgliedstaaten, die 30 % des Personals stellen sollen, die Generäle stellen, und die Gemeinschaftsdienste stellen dann die Soldaten. Das muss auf allen Ebenen gleichermaßen gemacht werden, um die entsprechenden Kontrollen zu haben.

Da müssen auch Möglichkeiten geschaffen werden, Brücken zu überwinden, die die Arbeitsfähigkeit innerhalb der Delegationen, der Botschaften verbessern – Fragen, die dann natürlich auch mit Kontrolle zu tun haben. Aber es muss auch die Handlungsfähigkeit dabei gesehen werden.

Wir haben immer noch Schwierigkeiten, was das Reporting und das Weitergeben von Weisungen angeht. Unabhängig davon, ob jetzt der intergouvernementale Teil zuständig ist oder ob es der Gemeinschaftsteil ist, muss klar sein, dass dies immer nur über den Botschafter gehen kann, damit es einheitlich ist und hier nicht unterschiedliche Maßnahmen ergriffen werden und die Dinge nebeneinanderlaufen. All dies ist erfunden worden, um gemeinschaftliches Handeln und Kohärenz zu haben, und nicht die alten Spielstückchen der unterschiedlichen Interessen der Institutionen zu betreiben.

Unser Bericht dient dazu, Baroness Ashton Hilfestellung zu geben, wo wir Möglichkeiten sehen, dies in Kooperation zu machen. Sie selbst wollen ja nach diesen zweieinhalb Jahren einen Bericht vorlegen. Wir hoffen, dass unser Papier, das ich dankenswerterweise mit Herrn Gualtieri bearbeiten durfte, Ihnen Hilfestellung und Anregungen gibt, zu diesen Vorschlägen zu kommen, so wie das ja auch von den Mitgliedstaaten kommt. Wir hoffen, dass wir dann im Herbst sehen können, welche Konsequenzen Sie daraus gezogen haben, um gemeinsam im letzten Jahr, in dem wir noch gemeinsam im Amt sind, da noch Verbesserungen vorzunehmen, damit die Nachfolge dann einen wirklichen Auswärtigen Dienst hat, und damit dann die große Leistung erbracht worden ist, das in fünf Jahren hingekriegt zu haben.

 
  
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  Roberto Gualtieri, relatore. − Signor Presidente, signor Alto rappresentante, onorevoli colleghi, il rapporto che il Parlamento si accinge a votare vuole offrire un contributo costruttivo alla revisione del SEAE. Lo fa sulla base di un giudizio su questi primi anni di attività che individua limiti e problemi, ma che allo stesso tempo riconosce i notevoli progressi realizzati in pochi anni.

Quando abbiamo contribuito a varare il servizio nel 2010, sapevamo che l’obiettivo di integrare strutture della Commissione e del Consiglio, funzionari dell'Unione e degli Stati membri era una sfida difficile e ambiziosa. Allora il Parlamento rinunciò alla propria richiesta di collocare il servizio nella Commissione per perseguire l'obiettivo di un servizio ampio, in grado di andare dalla politica di sicurezza e difesa comune alla politica per lo sviluppo e al tempo stesso vicino alla Commissione e sottoposto ad un adeguato controllo da parte del Parlamento.

Questo obiettivo allora fu raggiunto e abbiamo realizzato un servizio – credo di poter dire – con competenze più ampie di quanto avrebbe voluto la Commissione, ma più vicino alla Commissione di quanto avrebbe voluto il Consiglio e sottoposto a un controllo del Parlamento maggiore di quanto avrebbero voluto entrambi. Ciò offre all'Unione uno strumento straordinario per realizzare un vero approccio globale alla politica estera, cioè per favorire una sinergia tra i diversi strumenti di cui l'Europa dispone nella sua azione esterna e che sono coerenti con una filosofia di politica estera che assegni un ruolo predominante al cosiddetto "soft power", cioè al consenso, alla democrazia, ai diritti umani, allo sviluppo dei popoli, senza al tempo stesso a rinunciare agli strumenti militari di gestione della crisi e l'obiettivo di costruire una difesa comune.

Le proposte che oggi presentiamo non puntano a stravolgere l'impianto fondamentale definito nel 2010 e anzi ne confermano implicitamente la giustezza. Se mai la nostra relazione si propone di individuare i problemi che non consentono al SEAE di esprimere fino in fondo le proprie potenzialità e individua alcune possibili soluzioni che ci sembrano coerenti con l'indirizzo di fondo scelto nel 2010 e perseguito in questi anni.

Non ripeto le proposte già illustrate dal collega Brok, il o i deputy per i quali voglio rassicurare nessuno pensa a parlamentari europei, la razionalizzazione della struttura, il rafforzamento del ruolo di vicepresidente della Commissione svolto dall'Alto rappresentante, l'integrazione delle strutture di gestione crisi, il rafforzamento del ruolo dei capi delegazione, il pieno controllo politico da parte del Parlamento, l'autonomia delle procedure di reclutamento rispetto agli Stati membri.

Ci sembrano proposte ragionevoli , alcune potranno essere realizzate sulla base della decisione esistente, mentre altre richiederanno la sua revisione, per la quale chiediamo fin d'ora che il Parlamento sia pienamente coinvolto in forme analoghe a quanto avvenuto nel 2010.

Sono fiducioso che intorno a queste proposte si svilupperà un dialogo proficuo con Lei Alto rappresentante e che la revisione del servizio esterno doterà l'Unione europea di uno strumento migliore per svolgere una politica estera adeguata alle sue responsabilità e alle sue ambizioni.

 
  
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  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative Mr President, I am sure this is going to be a very lively and interesting debate, and I want to begin by congratulating the rapporteurs, Mr Brok and Mr Gualtieri, for a very thoughtful and balanced report.

Along with the Verhofstadt report, you were two of the co-architects of the Madrid political agreement on the EEAS decision back in 2010. Your commitment to and for support the establishment of the service was vital, and I am pleased to say I agree with very much of what you have written in the report.

When you think back, our aim was to create a 21st-century European service to tackle the new challenges that we are increasingly faced with, to add value to the work of Member States and to do more than a foreign ministry, because we have elements of development and elements of defence. Our strength lies in our ability to respond to a crisis in a much more widely-ranging way, short and long-term, humanitarian development, security and political, as well as deploying military and civilian missions to achieve lasting security and prosperity.

Two-and-a-half years after the establishment of the service, we can say that we have a modern and operational service. It attracts the best officials and diplomats from all over Europe. It is there to deliver EU foreign policy. Let us be clear: nobody defined any of this ahead of Lisbon coming into force. So now that we have seen the changes and they have bedded down, it has become easier to try and define exactly what we mean by this. For me there are three key elements I want to focus on.

First, our neighbourhood. I said when I was asked to take office that we should be defined in the European Union by what we are able to do in our own neighbourhood. I still believe we have unparalleled influence and leverage to promote and to deliver change in our neighbourhood, and we should use it.

Secondly, the comprehensive approach. The merger of three different jobs makes the EU a unique foreign policy partner, because we can combine the different instruments that we have: our support for the rule of law, our civilian and military operations, our development aid, our diplomacy; operations that tackle not only the symptoms but also the underlying causes of a crisis or a situation, and our capacity to remain there for the long term. And the critical mass. We are the world’s largest economy. In today’s world it matters. Collectively we can achieve things that individual Member States – and they all say this – cannot do. That is why, for example, it is right that the European Union is leading on work in Somalia, our work in Serbia Kosovo and on the Iran nuclear file. So in approaching the review, we need to look at ways to strengthen our ability to deliver in these core areas.

I am pleased to see in the report that we agree on so many issues. You have high levels of ambition, and I welcome your support for the comprehensive approach concept, the need to get better and faster in our CFSP and CSDP procedures, and the importance of the role as the Vice-President of the Commission to ensure the overall coherence of the external aspects of our policies.

Similarly, I am encouraged by the positive input to the review from Member States which goes mainly in the same direction, and our EEAS success rests on our capacity to bring together the institutions and contributions to maximise influence and at the same time to reduce costs to our citizens and Member States.

You will see much in the review that I will present in the next few weeks that is in common with this report. It is my intention not only to highlight what works, but to think about what we could improve in the short term or for the future. I want to look for quick wins, but I also want to point to medium-term changes that will require some adjustment ready for the next change of mandate.

These recommendations will be designed to improve further the effectiveness of our service. It is widely judged to have delivered a step change in our foreign policy. But we should not delude ourselves – Lisbon left CFSP as intergovernmental and subject to unanimity decision-making. In situations, I have to say, where there is an absence of political will or an agreement amongst Member States, there are limits to what the Service can deliver.

One of the key tasks is not only to act as our institutional memory on foreign policy and the home of our global network but to provide, when we can, a clear, authoritative lead in building consensus between Member States on strategies and priorities, working closely with you and with the Commission.

In that, I respect the service which supports me in my role, both as High Representative and as Vice-President, so that we can do this coordination work which the report highlights as extremely important. Partnership with Parliament is a very important part of the success, and the agreement we have on political accountability has brought considerable improvements. We have a very successful practice of exchange of views with newly-appointed heads of delegations and EUSRs – valued, I believe, by Parliament and by me and by those individuals who appear before you. Excellent cooperation on election observation missions: I pay tribute to Parliament for the work you do on this and the intensified dialogue at all levels, including in sensitive areas requiring the sharing of classified information.

I have encouraged the senior management team to be open to you in every way possible. I am glad they regularly participate in your meetings and events – more than 100 events in 2012 alone. And I pay tribute to the Heads of Delegations who do such great work in supporting the official visits for Members of this House. But I am very open to looking at ways to continue to improve that cooperation.

In the report itself, I want to just focus on three particular areas. The first is cooperation with the Commission, then deputies, and the structure and operation of the service.

A number of questions have been raised about cooperation between the EEAS and the Commission and have been referred to in the opening statements. My own view is that sometimes we underestimate what good progress we have made in finding good solutions to the changes that were needed following the decision to set up the EEAS as a self-standing body.

Looking back, I wonder if we did not underestimate just how much work that would take. But, in line with the recommendations of the report, this is an area that we are continuing to discuss with the Commission, including the question of making more frequent and effective use of the group of External Relations Commissioners under my chairmanship. I should add though that there is already extensive work that I do together with Commissioners. Commissioner Cioloş on agriculture, where we are working together on Mongolia and China. He will play a vital role in our Myanmar/Burma task force in November. Cecilia Malmström, Neelie Kroes and I jointly put together the cyber-security strategy. Antonio Tajani is a good close collaborator on our taskforces, bringing hundreds of business leaders in support of the economies of countries in transition. Michel Barnier and I, who are engaged in support of the European Council discussion on the defence industry. Kristalina Georgieva, heavily engaged in our response to the crisis in Syria and elsewhere. And the day-to-day collaboration with Andris Piebalgs and Stefan Füle. I pay tribute to all of them. But I am glad your report emphasises the role of the EEAS in defining the strategic orientation of external financial instruments so we get coherence between foreign policy and development policy objectives.

On the second issue, I also agree also there is a need for greater clarity on the question of who deputises for the High Representative/Vice-President, including in Parliament. In line with your report, I think we should include in a more structured way empowering Commissioners to do that representation fully in parliamentary matters and internationally. And we need to go further in what already happens, mandating specific missions to foreign ministers of the Member States, so that we boost the collective impact of the Union’s positions. Honourable Members will have seen groups of foreign ministers travelling together to deliver messages as a team on behalf of the European Union and on behalf of their own countries too.

Finally, to turn to the structure and operation of the service. We have come a long way – I am glad it has been recognised. But it is still very much work in progress. I welcome the emphasis on getting the most from our civilian and military missions. We deploy more than 7 000 people in these missions in Pristina, Mogadishu, Tripoli, Bamako, Kabul, and Baghdad.

I strongly support your proposals to improve the speed and effectiveness of operational decision-making in CSFP and CSDP, and the integration of the responsible services in the structure. We have already been discussing simplifying procedures with Member States. This is going to be a very important area as we prepare for the European Council in December.

I also agree we need to look at the internal structure and to clarify reporting lines, particularly given the budgetary situation. Already in the 2014 budget I will propose a reduction in the number of senior posts at AD 16 and AD15, and I believe there should be scope to go further in this direction in the context of the institutional transition at the end of next year. Staffing issues of course draw attention, both in your report and in the contributions from Member States. The quality of our people is what will determine our success, and I have been very lucky in the quality of the people, not least in the man sitting next to me here and in the people behind me. I would like to thank Pierre Vimont and the management team for all of the hard work that they have undertaken over the course of the last three years.

The annual staffing report that we will soon present to Parliament will confirm the good progress that we have made on ensuring a meaningful presence of all Member States and a clear improvement in the presence of women in key management positions in delegations. 18% of EEAS staff are now from Member States who joined since 2004, which is very close to the 20% share in the overall population of the EU. This figure also reflects this very small presence of officials from these countries who transferred from the Commission and the Council. Gender balance was and is and will remain a top priority for me. When I took office there were only ten women leading delegations; today there are 24 – an increase of well over 100% – and I have announced a further four appointments of women already in the 2013 package of Heads of Delegation. Helga Schmid, our Political Director and Deputy Secretary General, works very actively in promoting networks of support for women in the service.

We are now also very close to the one-third target for the recruitment of national diplomats. Against that background, your report rightly highlights the importance of ensuring a strong presence of permanent officials. I agree. We need a human resources strategy that offers attractive and rewarding career prospects for all EEAS staff, including the officials who joined the service from the Commission and the Council. I am very pleased that next month we will be opening publications of EEAS posts also to officials from Parliament and other institutions, in line with the provisions of the EEAS decision, as well of course to diplomats from Croatia. Of course, our level of ambition is inevitably constrained by resources, and the review will need to take account of the budgetary situation.

I am grateful for the support Parliament has given us. You know that the bulk of staff and other resources were inherited from the Commission, from the Council, and we still largely rely on the Commission for its corporate support. We have eliminated duplication. We have streamlined in Brussels to provide resources for new tasks and, as I have said, the EEAS is increasingly expected to be present and to remain in places that are high-risk as well as to respond to changes that are going on – new delegations in Libya and Myanmar.

But in many cases this comes with heavy and unavoidable security costs. EUR 30 million per year for Kabul, Libya, Baghdad, and other high-risk places. I am convinced we need to look and transform the terms of the budget debate with Member States to look at the potential for savings for national diplomatic services as we make progress in areas like shared reporting, co-location in ‘Europe Houses’ and similar arrangements, working together more generally in the field and on the ground.

Resources are also the key to any discussion on new areas of activity, including consular protection activities or more security experts in delegations – areas where at the moment we have limited expertise or competence. These changes will not happen overnight.

In conclusion, can I welcome the report? You will see much in common, as I have said, with my review proposals. We have gone from not having a service to a service that is functioning. I am truly grateful for the supportive role of the European Parliament and Members of this European Parliament in the creation of this service. I hope you will continue to make what is a very necessary and positive contribution to this collective challenge through to the end of my mandate and well beyond.

 
  
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  Надежда Нейнски, докладчик по становището на комисията по бюджети. − През последните две години ние се занимавахме със структуриране на Службата за външно действие. Днес вече е време да погледнем към бъдещото й развитие като стълб на общоевропейската дипломация. Ето защо смятам, че разпределението и финансирането на европейските делегации трябва да зависи от стратегическите интереси на Съюза. Само чрез ясни приоритети ще може да се постигне оптимално и ефективно разпределение на ресурси и експерти, и по този начин да се защитят европейските интереси и Европа да бъде ключов фактор в световната политика.

Имайки предвид необходимостта от бюджетни съкращения, намирам, че е изключително важно Службата за външно действие и външните министерства на държавите членки да си сътрудничат по-тясно както в оперативните действия, така и чрез обмяна на опит. Единствено по този начин ще се гарантира единност на европейските действия и приемственост спрямо европейските приоритети. В заключение бих искала да призова ръководството на Службата да не спира усилията си за постигане на географски баланс в институцията чрез наемане на повече кадри от Централна и Източна Европа, както и да поздравя г-жа Аштън за убедената й подкрепа за джендър-икуолити.

Уважаеми дами и господа, този дебат не е просто междуинституционално упражнение по риторика. Той е възможност да се замислим за бъдещето на Европейския съюз на международната сцена.

 
  
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  José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, en nombre del Grupo PPE. – Señor Presidente, señora Alta Representante, Señorías, esta Recomendación —aprovecho para felicitar a los ponentes, Elmar Brok y Roberto Gualtieri— se sitúa en el propósito y en la finalidad de la Decisión del Consejo del año 2010 de contribuir a mejorar, mediante su revisión, esta Decisión adoptada por el Consejo de Ministros.

Creo que una primera constatación muy clara es que el Servicio es plenamente operativo y está funcionando y creo que hay que reconocer el mérito de la Alta Representante y de sus colaboradores, muy particularmente del señor Vimont.

Dicho esto, insisto en que tenemos que enmarcar la lógica de la actividad del Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior en un marco jurídico, que es la Decisión del Consejo, que estableció unos medios personales y materiales y una ambición. Por lo tanto, se quiso que el Servicio fuese lo que es y no podemos pretender milagros. Quiero hacer una comparación y es que los medios personales y financieros de los que dispone el Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior para toda la Unión Europea son muy parecidos a los de un Estado miembro como Dinamarca.

Evidentemente se puede mejorar el Servicio, mejorando la coordinación entre el Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior, los Estados miembros y las instituciones comunitarias; reforzando los poderes de la Alta Representante mediante adjuntos políticos y un consejo asesor; utilizando a los ministros de los Estados miembros en tareas que les encomiende la Alta Representante —un buen ejemplo fue la task force de Egipto— y buscando sinergias entre las distintas administraciones —otro buen ejemplo fue la firma con el Reino de España del acuerdo sobre el desempeño de funciones consulares en Yemen.

Hay un elemento fundamental, que es aprovechar toda la experiencia de los diplomáticos de los Estados miembros, reciclándolos de manera que razonen en interés de la UE y, también, motivar a los funcionarios de las instituciones. Y en este contexto el elemento fundamental, señor Presidente, es la movilización de la voluntad política para que la Unión Europea actúe y hable con una sola voz y podamos dotarnos de una política exterior que sea más eficaz, más coherente y más visible y, para ello, los Estados miembros —para evitar situaciones no deseadas como la que se ha producido en el debate sobre Siria— deben entender que tienen que buscar su ventaja, señor Presidente, en la ventaja común.

 
  
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  Ana Gomes, em nome do Grupo S&D. – Construir uma instituição do começo nunca é tarefa simples e por isso a Alta Representante, a Sra. Ashton, e o Embaixador Vimont merecem todo o crédito e os nossos vivos agradecimentos. Dois anos passados sobre a fundação do serviço Europeu de Ação Externa, estamos a dar os primeiros passos na direção de uma política externa europeia, coerente e eficaz. Precisamos de visão e ambição para que o serviço sirva efetivamente uma política comum que reflita valores europeus e defenda e promova os interesses estratégicos da União Europeia no mundo e não temos que ter rebuço em os identificar e afirmar. É para isso necessário que a Alta Representante assuma a coordenação política entre todas as políticas e instrumentos da União com impacto na ação externa, incluindo a segurança, o desenvolvimento, a ajuda humanitária, o comércio, a energia, etc.

A garantia institucional resulta do seu duplo chapéu como Alta Representante e Vice-Presidente da Comissão, com os meios financeiros e os serviços da Comissão e do Serviço Europeu de Ação Externa. Os diferentes comissários têm de aceitar a sua liderança, Senhora Ashton, e a Senhora tem de liderar e ousar e pressionar os Comissários mas também os governos europeus. É preciso o seu investimento na Política Comum de Segurança e Defesa, não apenas para assegurar missões operacionais, mas sobretudo para não deixar que, em tempos de grave crise económica e financeira, os Estados-Membros percam capacidades e as forças indispensáveis. Eles precisam antes de otimizar e racionalizar os recursos para melhor os pôr ao serviço da prestação europeia no desempenho das nossas obrigações como fornecedores de segurança global.

Finalmente, o guia de toda a nossa ação externa tem de assentar no fio de prata, como a Senhora diz, que são os direitos humanos e a promoção da paz e da democracia. Temos um representante especial para os direitos humanos, agora, que precisamos de apoiar de forma eficaz, dar-lhe visibilidade e os instrumentos e o respaldo político que o cargo exige. Precisamos também que os diálogos de direitos humanos com países terceiros, nomeadamente parceiros estratégicos, como os Estados Unidos da América, a China, a Rússia, a Índia e o Brasil, sejam transparentes, substantivos, quanto aos objetivos e quanto aos resultados.

 
  
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  Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, on behalf of the ALDE Group. – Mr President, with the Treaty of Lisbon the European common foreign and defence policy has come of age, laying out as it did the foundation for a truly common European diplomatic service.

Of course we could not call it a diplomatic service because only Member States have diplomatic services and therefore it is called an External Action Service. For the same reason, there are no EU embassies but instead there are EU delegations and their heads cannot carry the title of ambassadors – lest The Earl of Dartmouth should choke – so they are heads of delegations.

All of this may seem petty and so it is. However, it reveals the misgivings of the foreign ministries of the Member States and their initial reluctance to cooperate with this very new kid on the block. The mere existence of a reasonably well-functioning EEAS less than three years after it started is a very positive element in itself and a kind of little miracle in which we should rejoice.

Of course there is room for lots of improvement. The combination of three hats – High Representative, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Council and Vice-President of the Commission, would require superhuman strength and ubiquity. Now you do have a lot of stamina, Lady Ashton, as we all know, but still, there is room for one or several deputies who should also be able to represent the function of High Representative on a political level. There is a need for flexibility to allow for adaptation to rapidly changing situations, and there is a need to avoid overlap and, alas, turf wars among various EU institutions themselves.

 
  
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  Franziska Katharina Brantner, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group. – Mr President, I welcome Ms Ashton who, as my colleague has said, has achieved much over the past three years and deserves credit for that. But I also agree that we can always do better. We should use this review as a serious exercise, and not as mere box-ticking.

For the substance, let me highlight just a few issues. I think that one of the main objectives of the Service, as you have stressed, is for the EU to become one of the best actors in terms of conflict prevention, crisis management response and conflict resolution. You have excelled at that when it comes to Serbia and Kosovo, but let me also mention Burma/Myanmar and Yemen. These are conflicts which we do not hear about so often, but where the Service has done a great part of what we see on the ground. I believe, though, that to be even better at this, you should take your role as Vice-President of the Commission even more seriously.

The second point: I believe we need to integrate the different structures better. We had a debate with Mr Popowski on it and he said ‘I am the appropriate structure which was negotiated three years ago’. I admire him greatly for his work but as my colleague said, you cannot do everything. I do not believe he is a structure, he is a person and he lacks the structure behind him. It is high time that we created the appropriate structure we discussed three years ago. I am still very much convinced that this would advance the EU in its response to crises and for long term peace.

The second point – I am glad that you have mentioned it – I still believe that there is unnecessary duplication: too much on top, too few people who really work on the ground and sometimes unclear lines of command. I am happy that you have said you will address this for the 2014 budget.

Another point you mentioned is the gender balance, and you had promised an action plan addressing the structural obstacles to women, because there are many structural obstacles to women when it comes to diplomacy. It would be good if you could follow up on this in the framework of the review.

Finally, you are one person, but you have, de facto, three hats. Please nominate deputies for yourself so that we do not have to blame you for not being where you cannot be because you have to be at two or three other meetings at the same time.

 
  
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  Charles Tannock, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Mr President, I was initially quite sceptical about the EEAS, which had the potential to seize an unacceptable level of power from national governments.

However, I have now slightly tempered my views, and under Cathy Ashton we have seen an institution develop from scratch which has the potential to add value in those consensual areas of foreign affairs, human rights, security and defence policy, where all EU Member States speak with one voice and where no conflict occurs with NATO.

Such examples include organising sanctions against Iran’s nuclear programme, the excellent work of EUNAVFOR ATALANTA in dramatically reducing piracy off the Somalia coast, the current work of the EU training mission in Mali and Burma and the recent groundbreaking achievement of the Kosovo-Serb agreement, for which I offer the Vice-President/High Representative my sincere congratulations.

These successes demonstrate precisely what we want from the EEAS, which is an economy-of-scale organisation performing a useful job within clearly defined parameters. Therefore, it is regrettable that this report attempts to enlarge the remit of the EEAS far beyond those terms, and in practice effects an institutional power grab.

The ECR cannot accept a scenario in which EU battle groups are deployed as a rapid-reaction force, not least because it would mainly be British and French troops doing the heavy lifting. The report then adds insult to injury by seeking the end of unanimity on CFSP matters, with the eventual possibility that the same French and British troops could be committed to battle under QMV, without the express consent of their national governments.

Foreign and security policy is the backbone of national sovereignty and Member States have different priorities, budgets and geopolitical strategic concerns. It is unacceptable to force an individual country to make highly costly and often dangerous decisions contrary to its national interests.

The ECR group also rejects reducing the input of Member States in the Council. The rotating Presidency on a six-monthly basis is a fundamental element of our institutional framework. Any attempts to end its role would simply add ammunition to those voices bewailing – falsely perhaps – the lack of democracy and accountability within the EU structures.

Lastly, the RELEX legacy needs revisiting. Why is there no delegation, Ms Ashton, in Panama, but a big one in Barbados?

 
  
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  William (The Earl of) Dartmouth, on behalf of the EFD Group. – Mr President, the EEAS is the EU’s Foreign Service. An EU Foreign Service is based on the assumption that there is a communality of interest among the 27 Member States. This is a fallacy. In Libya, only eight European countries took part, not 27, and one of them was not a member of the EU. The 27 Member States are – to coin a phrase – ‘a coalition of the unwilling’, and sometimes less than that.

There is also the sheer wasteful cost of the EU’s Foreign Service. EEAS staff are very highly paid. Indeed, up to one hundred officials enjoy take-home pay that is more than that of Britain’s Foreign Secretary. The financial climate has the consequence that the UK is closing down embassies and consulates. Nonetheless, we are made to contribute – and to contribute very substantially – to the EU’s Foreign Service in order to advance a foreign policy that is not – I repeat not – ours. All of this – the EEAS – is a demonstration yet again that Britain’s membership of the EU in actuality diminishes our influence in the world.

 
  
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  Willy Meyer, en nombre del Grupo GUE/NGL. – Señor Presidente, nuestro Grupo tuvo muchas reticencias –y las sigue teniendo– en relación con la creación de este Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior, por su estructura, por su mandato y porque no puede ser controlado directamente, como debería, por el Parlamento Europeo.

Generalmente, la política exterior de cualquier país miembro está sometida, lógicamente, al control de los Parlamentos nacionales: no es el caso. Y tenemos un problema muy serio porque se superponen servicios de la política exterior de los países miembros y de la propia Unión Europea.

Es una estructura en la que el Parlamento Europeo debería desempeñar un papel mucho más relevante. Además, estamos muy lejos, Señorías, de tener una política exterior y de seguridad cohesionada y unida –esto es una realidad–, y, por lo tanto, es muy difícil tener un servicio exterior que sea el soporte de una política exterior y de una política de seguridad común, una política de seguridad que, ojalá, «insha'Allah», fuera una política exterior basada en el desarme, en la desmilitarización, en la cooperación y en la solución política de los conflictos.

 
  
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  Jacek Protasiewicz (PPE). - Panie Przewodniczący! Szanowna Pani Wysoka Przedstawiciel! Zacznę od stwierdzenia, że Europejska Służba Działań Zewnętrznych, powołana niemal od zera 2,5 roku temu, potrafiła dowieść w tym krótkim okresie czasu zarówno swojej przydatności, jak i skuteczności. Na uzasadnienie tej opinii mogę przywołać wyniki zaangażowania Służby w sprawę irańskiego programu jądrowego, w relacje serbsko-kosowskie czy koordynację unijnej operacji przeciwko piratom w Somalii. Osobiście, jako wiceprzewodniczący Parlamentu odpowiedzialny za współpracę z krajami Partnerstwa Wschodniego, wyrażam również satysfakcję z tego powodu, iż europejska polityka sąsiedztwa, w tym tak bliskie mi Partnerstwo Wschodnie, uzyskało w działaniach Europejskiej Służby Działań Zewnętrznych należne miejsce.

Decyzje personalne związane z obsadą delegatur Unii Europejskiej w krajach wschodniego sąsiedztwa zasługują także na pozytywną ocenę, aczkolwiek zwracam się przy tej okazji do Pani, Pani Wysoka Przedstawiciel, o wzmocnienie pozycji szefów tych delegatur, chociażby poprzez przesunięcie zadań administracyjnych na niższy szczebel, tak aby szef delegatury mógł w większym stopniu skupić się na działaniach strategicznych, politycznych, zamiast na administracyjnych.

Jednak nigdy nie jest tak dobrze, by nie mogło być lepiej. Jako członek Podkomisji ds. Praw Człowieka chciałbym zwrócić Pani uwagę, na przykład, na opinię Amnesty International, która ocenia, że w sprawach ochrony i promocji praw człowieka Unia Europejska jest mniej skuteczna dzisiaj, niż była przed powstaniem Służby. Trzeba się z tą sprawą również zmierzyć i jej zaradzić.

 
  
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  Liisa Jaakonsaari (S&D). - Arvoisa puhemies, maailmassa jaetaan tällä hetkellä valtaa ja mahdollisuuksia uudelleen. Sen takia on erittäin tärkeää, että Euroopan unioni puhuu yhdellä äänellä ulkopolitiikan kysymyksissä. Siksi on tärkeää, että ulkosuhdehallinto tehostaa vielä toimintaansa.

Te, lady Ashton, olette tehnyt paljon työtä tämän eteen ja historiallinen ulkosuhdehallinto on saavutettu, mutta rohkenen epäillä, että te olette olleet hieman tämän massiivisen byrokratian vankeja ettekä ole pystyneet toteuttamaan sitä politiikkaa, jota olisitte halunneet. Siksi byrokratiaa täytyy vielä vähentää ja ehdottomasti vielä korjata päällekkäisyyksiä ja ennen kaikkea kommunikoida eri jäsenvaltioiden ja eri toimijoiden keskuudessa.

Haluaisin vielä nostaa esille erityisesti yhden asian: ulkosuhdehallinto voisi tulla kansalaisiakin lähemmäksi, jos parantaisimme toimintaamme hätätilanteissa ja konsulipalveluissa. Esimerkiksi kun suomalaispariskunta ja itävaltalaismies kaapattiin Jemenissä, minulle jäi ainakin epäselväksi, että oliko ulkosuhdehallinnolla tai EU-edustustolla mitään tekemistä heidän vapautumisensa kanssa vai jäikö se ikään kuin jäsenvaltioiden huoleksi. Mutta kiitos aktiivisesta toiminnasta ja hyvistä raporteista!

 
  
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  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE). - Mr President, I would like to recall that about three years ago Franziska Brantner and I set up what we called ‘Friends of the European External Action Service’, a temporary platform where academics, NGOs and future diplomats of the EEAS could come together and discuss how this should be structured.

Some of the things that we came up with are on the agenda today. One is political deputies. We recommended this, but at the time it did not find favour with those who initiated the service. It became clear very quickly that ubiquity is not something that one can expect of the High Representative in what we always called an impossible job – three hats at the same time is simply impossible to fulfil without serious political deputising. Today this is the first point in the recommendation that we are writing as a Parliament.

The second issue that we discussed – and which was indeed realised – was to have a broader leadership structure rather than one all-powerful General Secretary. If it was Pierre Vimont we would not have a problem with that of course, but we did not want to have an éminence grise behind the scenes who would not appear in Parliament etc. We wanted to have the opportunity to give you as much information from as many sources as possible in your leadership functions. We believe that, even if this is modified, the principle is still valid.

A last point – and my colleague here the Earl of Dartmouth just mentioned this – is that our Member States are indeed closing down embassies and consulates and that this is where the External Action Service can provide added value because our Member States will continue to be represented by a service that is their own.

 
  
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  Ulrike Lunacek (Verts/ALE). - Herr Präsident, Frau Ashton, meine Damen und Herren! Auch von meiner Seite einen herzlichen Glückwunsch an Frau Ashton und ihr Team für das, was in diesen letzten zweieinhalb Jahren gelungen ist. Das war tatsächlich kein Kinderspiel und dafür gibt es Lob und Anerkennung. Wo passiert es sonst, dass eine Struktur, ein Unternehmen, eine Institution aufgebaut wird und man zuerst die Topleute benennt und dann erst sagt, wie das Ding überhaupt aussehen soll? Das ist wirklich etwas, wofür Ihnen Lob und Anerkennung gebührt. Ich weiß, es war nicht leicht. Das haben andere auch schon gesagt. Da braucht man wohl übermenschliche Kräfte dafür, wenn das gelingen soll, ohne dass es Kritik gibt.

Ich bedaure es auch, dass die EU-Botschaften im Ausland nicht EU-Botschaften heißen können, sondern delegations. Hoffentlich können wir das in Zukunft ja noch ändern. Wofür ich Ihnen ganz herzlich danke, ist, wie Sie es geschafft haben, Kosovo und Serbien zu einem Abkommen zu bekommen, das jetzt hoffentlich auch umgesetzt wird. Das war wirklich eine Leistung, die wohl in die Geschichte eingehen wird. Das sage ich als Kosovo-Berichterstatterin dieses Parlaments.

Es gibt aber auch viele Hinderungsgründe, die das Potenzial des Auswärtigen Dienstes noch nicht ausschöpfen lassen. Zwei davon benenne ich. Die liegen nicht beim Auswärtigen Dienst. Die liegen in der Struktur der Europäischen Union, die liegen in der Einstimmigkeitsregel im Rat. Die liegen auch in gewissen Eifersüchteleien vor allem größerer Mitgliedstaaten, die nicht wirklich wollen, dass der Europäische Auswärtige Dienst eine zentrale und wichtige Rolle in der europäischen Außenpolitik spielt. Daran sind aber nicht Sie schuld, sondern das liegt anderswo. Dafür bräuchten wir einen neuen Konvent, der die Dinge dann auf eine neue Ebene stellt. In Zukunft werden flachere Strukturen, auch Vertreter für Sie oder für Ihre Nachfolgerin bzw. ihren Nachfolger notwendig sein. Ich sehe Ihren Kampf um mehr Frauen an der Spitze des Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienstes. Da haben Sie auch einiges durchgesetzt. Aber auch hier wäre es notwendig, wenn die Mitgliedstaaten mehr Frauen benennen, damit Sie sich dann auch leichter tun, mehr Frauen für diese Toppositionen zu finden.

(Der Präsident entzieht der Rednerin das Wort.)

 
  
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  Paweł Robert Kowal (ECR). - Panie Przewodniczący! Pani Przewodnicząca! Obserwuję prace Europejskiej Służby w tych krajach, w których jestem najczęściej, tzn. na Ukrainie, w Mołdawii, obserwuję prace na Białorusi – mógłbym także wymienić inne kraje. To są dobre doświadczenia. Widać, że ta służba staje się pewnym stałym elementem krajobrazu Europy. Bardzo bym chciał, żeby szczególnie ci dyplomaci w krajach partnerstwa wschodniego widzieli ją jako służbę w tej części Europy, która kiedyś będzie wspólnie z nami.

Czego brakuje? Myślę, że za dużo mówimy o takim sztucznym wzmacnianiu Europejskiej Służby Działań Zewnętrznych. Róbmy to przez dobrą pracę, przez kompetencje i przez skromność. Myślę, że duch służby i skromność w pracy urzędników będzie dobrym przykładem, będzie dawał im siłę. Brakuje mi i chciałbym poprosić o to Panią Przewodniczącą, żeby tak pięknie jak mówi Pani o prawach kobiet (to jest potrzebne), powiedzieć parę słów o prawach chrześcijan. Oni są faktycznie w wielu miejscach dzisiaj prześladowani, potrzebują Pani głosu i wołają do Unii Europejskiej o wsparcie choćby tylko tymi słowami.

Potrzebujemy lepszego balansu narodowego, Polska jest daleko w tej statystyce. Jeżeli ta służba ma się sprawdzić, to elementem także Pani sukcesu, Pani Przewodnicząca, jest dopilnowanie osiągnięcia tej równowagi.

 
  
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  Frank Vanhecke (EFD). - Voorzitter, het spijt mij een beetje dat ik de heersende consensus moet doorbreken, maar het is eerder mijn indruk dat de Europese dienst voor extern optreden eigenlijk bijna een schoolvoorbeeld is van hoe het níet moet en hoe het absoluut níet verder mág in dat labyrint van de Europese instellingen.

De aanbevelingen waarover wij morgen gaan stemmen, die kan ik onderschrijven, die zal ik goedkeuren. Dat gaat over potentiële verbeteringen.

Maar ik blijf van mening dat het om een kurieren am Symptom gaat. Want zelfs wanneer een aantal manifeste misbruiken worden weggewerkt, zelfs indien Barones Ashton morgen met pensioen zou gaan, zelfs indien een onmiskenbaar soort profitariaat en de overbetaling van een aantal Europese zogenaamde diplomaten wordt aangepakt, dan nog blijft het centrale probleem bestaan. De Europese Unie is géén federale staat, is niet klaar voor een eengemaakte buitenlandse politiek en dus ook niet voor een eengemaakte diplomatie.

Men kan dat betreuren, en ík betreur dat, maar men heeft, denk ik, niet het recht om elk jaar honderden miljoenen euro's te blijven pompen in een project dat nauwelijks aarde aan de dijk brengt en dat naast de bestaande diplomatieën van de lidstaten blijft bestaan.

 
  
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  Arnaud Danjean (PPE). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Haute représentante, le Service européen pour l'action extérieure et la fonction que vous occupez aujourd'hui sont des créations positives du traité de Lisbonne, malgré les imperfections, malgré les ajustements nécessaires, malgré nos fréquentes critiques. N'oublions pas que lorsque nous demandons à nos concitoyens quels sont les domaines dans lesquels ils aimeraient voir l'Union européenne jouer un rôle collectif plus actif, la diplomatie et le secteur de la sécurité et de la défense font partie des priorités qu'ils nous assignent. Il est donc positif de voir cette évolution et ce n'est pas en trois ans que l'on peut créer un corps diplomatique commun, une culture diplomatique commune, mais les progrès sont là et ils sont indéniables.

Pour autant, tout en souscrivant à toutes les recommandations qui ont été portées par nos excellents rapporteurs, Gualtieri et Brok, je voudrais insister plus particulièrement sur les missions civiles et militaires de l'Union européenne. J'ai rencontré dans mes capacités tous les chefs de mission, j'ai visité toutes les missions. Le même constat revient, trop souvent malheureusement: une planification souvent trop lourde et parfois défaillante, une coordination insuffisante, une flexibilité quasi inexistante. Nous devons améliorer impérativement ceci. Il en va de notre crédibilité sur les théâtres extérieurs et de notre visibilité.

J'insisterai particulièrement, Madame la Haute représentante, sur votre fonction de vice-présidente de la Commission. Il faut que les circuits de la Commission, la mécanique de la Commission et les financements de la Commission soient beaucoup plus efficacement utilisés au service de nos missions extérieures.

 
  
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  María Muñiz De Urquiza (S&D). - Señor Presidente, quiero destacar de esta Recomendación del Parlamento dos elementos positivos: en primer lugar, que se anime a evitar duplicidades con la Comisión y con la Secretaría General del Consejo; y, en segundo lugar, que se flexibilice el papel de la Alta Representante, que no tiene el don de la ubicuidad y que debe poder ser reemplazada por sus adjuntos o por Comisarios RELEX.

Pero, por otra parte, además de estos aspectos positivos, creo que debemos ser más ambiciosos, con un Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior que dé prioridad a los diplomáticos de los Estados miembros que cierren sus embajadas en beneficio de las embajadas de la Unión Europea. Es importante que se perciba que el Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior es un servicio útil que ahorra costes a los Estados sin disminuir las garantías para los ciudadanos europeos en terceros países.

Y, por último, quiero hacer una crítica muy seria, que es tanto al Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior como a la Recomendación del Parlamento, que no abordan de manera efectiva el problema del desequilibrio de género que se produce tanto en los niveles altos de la Administración con, señora Ashton, el 0 % de mujeres en los grados AD 16, menos del 20 % en los grados AD 13, y menos del 25 % en los jefes de delegación, como en los grados de asistente, con, por el contrario, un 70 % –son mujeres las secretarias–, y creo que hay que poner remedio a esta anomalía. Es un compromiso que ha adquirido usted y es una política de la Unión Europea.

Lamento que el Grupo PPE rechazara una enmienda nuestra, del Grupo socialista, en la Comisión de Asuntos Exteriores, en la que se recordaba una Resolución de este mismo Parlamento que proponía o recomendaba las cuotas en los niveles más altos ...

(El Presidente retira la palabra a la oradora)

 
  
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  Anneli Jäätteenmäki (ALDE). - Arvoisa puhemies, olen iloinen siitä ja on tärkeä asia, että tässä parlamentin päätöslauselmassa EU:n ulkosuhdehallinnon kehittämiseksi painotetaan maantieteellistä tasapainoa. Tällä maantieteellisellä tasapainolla ja jakautumisella tietysti tarkoitetaan sitä, että kaikkien jäsenvaltioiden tulee olla tasapainoisesti ja tasapuolisesti edustettuna tässä hallinnossa mukana.

Tällä hetkellä valitettavasti on niin, että ulkosuhdehallinnossa jylläävät isot ja vanhat jäsenvaltiot. 14 prosenttia diplomaateista on ranskalaisia. He ovat varmasti hyviä, mutta muissakin jäsenvaltioissa on aivan erinomaisia diplomaatteja. Kuten lady Ashton totesi, 18 prosenttia tulee 12 uudesta jäsenvaltiosta, mutta toinen puoli on se, että 15 vanhasta jäsenvaltiosta tulee 82 prosenttia. Tämä ei ole tasapuolista, ja tähän tulee saada korjaus. Tässä on tekemisen paikka, ja tähän parlamentti odottaa korjausta.

 
  
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  Mirosław Piotrowski (ECR). - Przegląd funkcjonowania ESDZ ma uwzględniać między innymi zapewnienie tzw. równowagi geograficznej. W przedłożonym sprawozdaniu, w artykule 40, Parlament Europejski podkreśla potrzebę – cytuję – „wszelkich niezbędnych środków w celu przywrócenia równowagi geograficznej na wyższych szczeblach oraz na wszystkich innych stanowiskach”. Niestety, nadal takiej równowagi brak. Dyplomaci z nowych państw członkowskich, w tym z Polski, stanowią w ESDZ niewielką liczbę w porównaniu z dyplomatami z tzw. starych krajów Unii.

Przy zastosowaniu kryterium wspomnianej równowagi geograficznej Polsce, szóstemu co do wielkości krajowi Unii, na 140 unijnych delegatur powinno przypadać 12, a nie jak obecnie 4. Polacy są także niedostatecznie reprezentowani na niższych stanowiskach ESDZ. Na około 3,5 tysiąca osób tam zatrudnionych Polacy stanowią zaledwie 3%. Parlament Europejski, domagając się zapewnienia równowagi geograficznej, powinien na poważnie rozważyć wprowadzenie kwot narodowych w ESDZ.

 
  
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  Cristian Dan Preda (PPE). - Mă bucur că textul recomandării Brok - Gualtieri subliniază un fapt, şi anume că Serviciul de Acţiune Externă este un organism nou şi că, prin urmare, nu puteam aştepta o funcţionalitate deplină în primii doi ani şi jumătate de la înfiinţare. Cred, de aceea, că unele voci din Parlamentul nostru au fost prea dure cu Lady Ashton, având în vedere constrângerile la care a fost supusă noua construcţie instituţională.

Există, însă, desigur, loc pentru îmbunătăţiri şi cred că, în acest context, termenul cheie este flexibilitatea: flexibilitate în ceea ce priveşte realocarea resurselor şi a personalului, atunci când priorităţile politice se schimbă rapid, cum a fost cazul Primăverii arabe; flexibilitate atunci când vorbim despre capacitatea de reacţie a asistenţei externe; dar şi mai multă flexibilitate atunci când sunt necesare decizii operaţionale în cadrul politicii de securitate şi apărare comune, cum s-a întâmplat în cazul Mali. Introducerea votului cu majoritate calificată în Consiliu ar fi utilă în astfel de situaţii, acesta fiind, de altfel, cum se ştie, permis de tratate.

Aş dori, de asemenea, să subliniez faptul că, deşi nu e menit să înlocuiască diplomaţiile naţionale, Serviciul de Acţiune Externă reprezintă o resursă într-un context în care, la nivel naţional, scad bugetele pentru reprezentare diplomatică şi consulară.

 
  
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  Wolfgang Kreissl-Dörfler (S&D). - Herr Präsident! Ich begrüße es sehr, dass wir eine Zwischenbilanz ziehen und überprüfen, welche Strukturen sich beim EAD bewährt haben und wo es Potential für Verbesserungen gibt. Eines ist bei den vielen außenpolitischen Krisen der vergangenen Jahre wie zuletzt im Fall Syrien klar geworden: Wir brauchen eine klare politische Führungsrolle des Hohen Vertreters, um eine erfolgreiche gemeinsame Außen- und Sicherheitspolitik gestalten zu können.

Verehrte Catherine Ashton, Sie können Ihr Potential noch besser ausschöpfen! Auch als Vizepräsidentin der EU-Kommission und Vorsitzende der für Außenbeziehungen zuständigen Kommissionsmitglieder. Wir werden Sie hier bei allem mit aller Kraft unterstützen. Neben einer stärkeren politischen Führungsrolle sind auch einfachere Strukturen und eine verbesserte Koordinierung nötig, um die Effizienz des EAD zu steigern. Entscheidend für unsere Außenpolitik ist auch, dass der Bereich der europäischen Nachbarschaftspolitik in der Kommission verbleibt und damit weiterhin der Gemeinschaftsmethode unterliegt. Die Nachbarschaftspolitik darf nicht intergouvernementalen Strukturen unterstellt werden. Ich möchte Ihnen auch noch einmal gratulieren zu der Arbeit, die Sie bisher geleistet haben. Sie haben hervorragende Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeiter! Ganz besonders möchte ich Ihren Kollegen zu Ihrer linken Seite erwähnen, Herr Vimont, der eine ausgezeichnete Arbeit hier im Parlament abliefert.

 
  
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  Μαριέττα Γιαννάκου (PPE). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, είναι αλήθεια ότι η δημιουργία της Υπηρεσίας Εξωτερικής Δράσης προσέφερε πάρα πολλά θετικά μέχρι στιγμής και θέλω να συγχαρώ την Λαίδη Άστον για τις προσπάθειες που έχει καταβάλει, γιατί η υπόθεση αυτή δεν ήταν καθόλου εύκολη.

Όμως, παρακολουθώντας το πως έχει λειτουργήσει η Υπηρεσία, νομίζω ότι πρέπει να δεχτεί κανείς ότι ορισμένα πράγματα πρέπει ν' αλλάξουν, όπως άλλωστε προτείνει το Κοινοβούλιο. Κατ' αρχήν η ιεραρχική δομή πρέπει να τύχει καλύτερης διάρθρωσης. Φαίνεται πως υπάρχει μια υπερφόρτωση από ανώτερους υπαλλήλους και πως πολλές φορές παρατηρείται ένας συγκερασμός των προσπαθειών, όχι απόλυτα συντονισμένος, μεταξύ της Ευρωπαϊκής Επιτροπής γενικά και της Υπηρεσίας Εξωτερικής Δράσης.

Έχω την εντύπωση, λοιπόν, ότι μαζί με μια προσπάθεια να υπάρξουν περισσότερες γυναίκες, οι οποίες υπό-εκπροσωπούνται δυστυχώς στην Υπηρεσία αυτή, και με την εγκατάσταση ενός βασικού στρατηγείου στις Βρυξέλλες για την ασφάλεια και την άμυνα, είτε για στρατιωτικές είτε για μη στρατιωτικές δράσεις, η Υπηρεσία Εξωτερικής Δράσης της Ένωσης θα έχει να επιδείξει πολύ μεγαλύτερη αποτελεσματικότητα και θα είναι σε θέση να αντιδρά με πολύ μεγαλύτερη ταχύτητα. Βεβαίως, κύριε Πρόεδρε, επαναλαμβάνω θα πρέπει να αναγνωρίσουμε τις προσπάθειες που έχουν γίνει καθώς και τον αγώνα που γίνεται, και με βάση αυτές τις προσπάθειες, ζητούμε να υπάρξουν ουσιαστικότερες αλλαγές, τέτοιες που θα κάνουν την Ευρωπαϊκή Υπηρεσία Εξωτερικής Δράσης να συντονιστεί καλύτερα και κυρίως να αναδείξει τα αποτελέσματα, γιατί η Ένωση πρέπει να αποκτήσει ένα brand name στο εξωτερικό που δεν το έχει ακόμη.

Είναι δυσανάλογα αυτά τα αποτελέσματα σε σχέση με τις ουσιαστικές προσπάθειες που καταβάλλονται. Εκεί, λοιπόν, χρειάζεται μεγαλύτερη προώθηση.

 
  
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  Ricardo Cortés Lastra (S&D). - Señor Presidente, querría felicitar a la Vicepresidenta de la Comisión y Alta Representante por el excelente trabajo diplomático que está llevando a cabo el Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior y reconocer también que es una organización todavía joven como para evaluar plenamente determinados aspectos de su organización y funcionamiento.

Como miembro de la Comisión de Desarrollo, aplaudo el hecho de que la Vicepresidenta de la Comisión y Alta Representante se haya dirigido a la misma con carácter anual, lo cual ha mejorado sustancialmente la comunicación entre el Servicio Europeo de Acción Exterior y nuestra comisión.

Además, espero que la revisión intermedia evalúe el valor añadido del SEAE para la cooperación al desarrollo de la Unión Europea. En particular, se ha llegado a una mejora en la calidad y eficacia de la formulación de las políticas y en su programación.

Además, quiero alentar al SEAE y a la Comisión a que, a pesar de las dificultades iniciales, perseveren en sus esfuerzos para coordinar más estrechamente las políticas de cooperación al desarrollo y basen su labor en la experiencia positiva de la programación conjunta de ayuda al desarrollo para el próximo ciclo de programación que comienza en 2014.

Para terminar, quiero reiterar la necesidad de lograr un equilibrio de nacionalidades y sexos en la composición del personal del SEAE.

 
  
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  Eduard Kukan (PPE). - Európska služba pre vonkajšiu činnosť (ESVČ) by mala byť silným a stabilným pilierom európskej zahraničnej politiky. K tomu treba lepšie a efektívnejšie využívať zdroje a prostriedky, ktoré máme k dispozícii. Ide o novú štruktúru, ktorá je ešte stále v procese tvorby. Tri roky jej fungovania priniesli pozitívne výsledky, ale odhalili aj nedostatky, ktoré treba napraviť. Potrebujeme silnú a efektívnu zahraničnú službu. To znamená – aby mala silný politický leadership.

Zahraničné vzťahy a predovšetkým naša susedská politika sú oblasťou, kde má Únia potenciál zohrávať kľúčovú rolu. K tomu treba primerane reagovať a hovoriť jedným silným a rešpektovaným hlasom. Po druhé, musí mať štruktúru, ktorá bude oporou pre implementáciu spoločnej zahraničnej politiky. Treba preto viac využívať možnosti, ktoré máme, a vyhýbať sa zdvojovaniu úloh. Rola ministrov zahraničných vecí by mohla tiež pomôcť posilniť vonkajšiu politiku Únie. Ďalej potrebujeme transparentnú ESVČ. Európsky parlament a jeho názory by mali byť častejšie brané do úvahy pri prijímaní dôležitých rozhodnutí. A to aj preto, že parlamentná kontrola posilňuje legitimitu vonkajšej činnosti a približuje zahraničnú službu občanom Únie.

Na záver by som chcel znovu upozorniť na geografickú rovnováhu v európskej zahraničnej službe a pripomenúť barónke Ashtonovej potenciál a schopnosti diplomatov z nových členských krajín.

 
  
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  Othmar Karas (PPE). - Herr Präsident, Frau Vizepräsidentin, meine sehr geehrten Damen und Herren! Wenn wir die Menschen fragen, was sie von der Europäischen Union wollen, dann wollen sie vor allem eine gemeinsame Außenpolitik, also ein klares, geschärftes, kompetentes Gesicht Europas in der Welt. Wenn wir uns die Konsequenzen der Globalisierung für diesen Kontinent ansehen, dann wissen wir, dass wir die Europäische Union zum Sprecher des Kontinents in der Welt machen müssen. Beides ist nur möglich, wenn wir einen effizienten außenpolitischen diplomatischen Dienst haben. Hier haben wir noch sehr viel zu tun! Wir stehen am Beginn dieser Entwicklung. Aber einiges läuft schief.

Die Zersplitterung bei den Zuständigkeiten zwischen der Kommission, den Mitgliedstaaten und dem Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienst schafft Ineffizienz. Daher gehört diese Zersplitterung beseitigt. Ich habe in einem Aufsatz von meiner Kollegin Ingrid Gräßle das Organigramm gefunden. Dieses Organigramm zeigt sehr deutlich, wie zersplittert und unübersichtlich der Dienst ist. Ich höre von manchen Dienstmitarbeitern im Ausland, dass es unterschiedliche Urlaubsregelungen und Verantwortungsträger gibt. Diese Unterschiede gehören beseitigt!

Dieses Parlament haben Sie auf Ihrer Seite, wenn es darum geht, einen wirklichen Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienst zu schaffen und die ineffiziente Zersplitterung zu beseitigen.

 
  
  

IN THE CHAIR: ANNI PODIMATA
Vice-President

 
  
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  Inese Vaidere (PPE). - Ashton kundze! Godātie kolēģi! Kopš Eiropas Ārējās darbības dienesta izveides ir panākts nozīmīgs progress. Taču vēl ir daudz darāmā, lai tas tiešām atbilstu izvirzītajiem uzdevumiem.

Ir svarīgi panākt ģeogrāfiski līdzsvarotu pārstāvību augstākajos amatos. Delegācijās joprojām ir mazāks skaits darbinieku no jaunajām dalībvalstīm. Galvenajam vērtēšanas kritērijam jābūt kompetencei ārpolitikā, nevis ilgākai pieredzei Eiropas Savienības amatos. Tāpat jānodrošina delegāciju vadītāju profesionālā atbilstība izaicinājumiem attiecīgajās valstīs. Vairākās Parlamenta delegāciju vizītēs esmu konstatējusi, ka vēstnieki nespēj efektīvi veicināt sadarbību, jo nepietiekami vai vispār nepārvalda vietējo valodu. Kā piemēru varu minēt Starptautiskās tirdzniecības komitejas delegācijas vizīti Maskavā, kur šī iemesla dēļ nebija izveidojušies nepieciešamie kontakti, lai varētu nodrošināt augsta līmeņa tikšanās ar Krievijas amatpersonām.

Tādēļ ļoti pozitīvi vērtēju to, ka Baltijas valstu pārstāvji ir tikuši nominēti augstākajos amatos gan Krievijā, gan Baltkrievijā. Tas apliecina, ka ir beidzies tāds kā piesardzības laikmets attiecībā uz mūsu valstu diplomātiem un tiek novērtēts viņu profesionālisms. Rītdienas notikumu kontekstā vēlos augsto pārstāvi aicināt izveidot pārstāvniecību Turkmenistānā, kas ir stratēģiski nozīmīga valsts ne tikai enerģētikas jautājumos, bet arī ģeogrāfiski atrodas vienā no pasaules „karstajiem” reģioniem.

Domāju, ka dienestam jāpiešķir tiesības pildīt konsulārās aizsardzības funkcijas. Tas ir ļoti nozīmīgi mazajām dalībvalstīm, kurām ir ierobežots diplomātisko pārstāvniecību tīkls. Paldies!

 
  
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  Roberta Metsola (PPE). - It-twaqqif tal-European External Action Service inqisuh bħala akkwist kbir għall-Ewropa. Rajna din l-istituzzjoni tissaħħaħ, tmur mit-tajjeb għall-aħjar minkejja d-diffikultajiet u l-ambjent ekonomiku ta' bħalissa.

Minkejja r-riżorsi limitati, l-EEAS ħadem bis-sħiħ, biex ikun assigurat, li lkoll kemm aħna jkollna vuċi aktar b'saħħitha. Permezz t'hekk kien, u hu possibbli, li l-perspettiva Ewropea tinstema' b'mod aktar koerenti u effettiv fid-dinja.

Naturalment, dejjem hemm lok għat-titjib. Jeħtieġ li jkun hemm aktar okkażjonijiet fejn l-Unjoni Ewropea titkellem b'leħen wieħed. Dan hu l-uniku mod kif l-Unjoni Ewropea tista' tkompli tieħu l-akbar vantaġġ possibbli fid-dinja.

Speċifikament fuq dan ir-rapport li qegħdin niddiskutu, nixtieq li nittratta punt wieħed partikolari li hu importanti ħafna għal pajjiżi, Malta. Dan hu marbut mar-reklutaġġ.

Waqt in-negozjati li saru fil-Kunsill biex jitwaqqaf l-EEAS, Malta mbuttat biex tidħol il-ħtiega dwar l-istaff tal-EEAS u nikkwota: li jkun hemm preżenza sinifikanti ta' ċittadini minn kull Stat Membru. Filwaqt li nirrikonoxxi l-isforzi li saru sa issa, nixtieq li nara li din il-kundizzjoni tiġi implimentata aktar, u b'mod aħjar, fis-snin li ġejjin.

F'dan is-sens, jiena nilqa' b'sodisfazzjon il-paragrafu nru 40 tar-rakkomandazzjoni biex tittieħed l-azzjoni kollha meħtieġa biex tiġi indirizzata r-rappreżentanza ġeografika fil-livelli għolja u fil-gradi u l-pożizzjonijiet l-oħra kollha.

B'dan il-mod ikun verament qiegħed jiġi indirizzat l-iżbilanċ li hemm u barra minn hekk iktar uffiċjali u Stati Membri jkunu jistgħu jqisu l-EEAS bħala tagħhom. Dan ikun ta' ġid għal kulħadd.

 
  
 

Διαδικασία "Catch-the-Eye"

 
  
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  Eija-Riitta Korhola (PPE). - Arvoisa puhemies, kuulun niiden meppien joukkoon, joiden mielestä tarvitsemme voimakkaampaa yhteistä ulko- ja turvallisuuspolitiikkaa. Euroopan ulkosuhdehallinto on erittäin tärkeä elementti tämän tavoitteen saavuttamiseksi sekä kansalaistemme edun ajamiseksi maailmalla. Minusta oli erittäin arvokasta, että eräs kollega muistutti myös siitä, että kristittyjen vainoja pitää nostaa esiin.

Ulkosuhdehallinto on hybridi-instituutio, sen toiminnan tehokkuutta ei varmastikaan ole helppo arvioida emmekä voi odottaa kolmen vuoden jälkeen kuuta taivaalta. On kuitenkin selvää, että EU:n reagointi kriiseihin on ollut hitaampaa raskaan byrokratiamme takia. On aivan liian monta päätöksentekotasoa. Arabikevät tai Malin kriisi ovat hyviä esimerkkejä tästä.

Olen kuitenkin iloinen, että ulkosuhdehallinto on oppinut kokemuksista ja että se on instituutiona lähestynyt kansalaisyhteiskuntaa kolmansissa maissa. Olen myös hyvin tyytyväinen kuullessani, että ulkosuhdehallinnon Turkki-osaston johtaja tapasi jo viime viikolla turkkilaisia nuorisojärjestöjä.

Tarvitsemme hallinnon, joka kuuntelee ihmisiä ja vastaa heidän tarpeisiinsa. Tämän takia ulkosuhdehallinnon tilivelvollisuutta suhteessa Euroopan parlamenttiin on yhä parannettava. Sama toteamus, johon päätin puheeni viime vuonna.

 
  
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  Ingeborg Gräßle (PPE). - Frau Präsidentin! Ich möchte darauf hinweisen, dass der Weg für den Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienst noch sehr weit ist. Ich möchte nur einige Fragen stellen: Warum halten Sie dieses Organigramm weiter so vor? Der Dienst funktioniert ja trotz dieses Organigramms und nicht wegen des Organigramms. Es gibt in keiner anderen EU-Institution so viele hochdotierte Stellen wie im Auswärtigen Dienst. Ich freue mich, dass Sie einen Rückbau angekündigt haben und bin schon gespannt, wie der dann wirklich aussieht.

Ich möchte nach den Sonderbeauftragten fragen. Was ist mit den Sonderbeauftragten? Was ist ihr Konzept? War außer Spesen hier was gewesen? Was sind die Ergebnisse, und warum gibt es überhaupt noch diese Sonderbeauftragten? Es wäre vielleicht klüger, die Delegationen zu stärken. Ich glaube, dass wir mit Ihnen für einen effizienten Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienst kämpfen müssen. Europas Steuerzahler zahlen 55 000 Diplomaten. Das sind mehr als doppelt so viele, als die Vereinigten Staaten haben. Es wäre doch angemessen und sinnvoll, den Europäischen Auswärtigen Dienst zu stärken. Dann hätten alle etwas davon, und die Steuerzahler hätten viel Geld gespart.

 
  
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  Χαράλαμπος Αγγουράκης (GUE/NGL). - Κυρία Πρόεδρε, οι ρυθμίσεις που προτείνει η έκθεση αποσκοπούν στην αναβάθμιση της Υπηρεσίας ως πολιτικό στρατιωτικό μηχανισμό με μεγαλύτερη δύναμη πυρός για τις ιμπεριαλιστικές επεμβάσεις της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης σε διεθνή κλίμακα. Αποσκοπούν να κάνουν την εξωτερική πολιτική της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης ακόμη πιο επιθετική, μία πολιτική μόνιμων επεμβάσεων με ενίσχυση των στρατιωτικών χαρακτηριστικών της για διεξαγωγή εκτεταμένων πολεμικών επιχειρήσεων.

Η αναβάθμιση της υπηρεσίας προωθείται με μέτρα όπως: καθιέρωση μόνιμου επιχειρησιακού στρατηγείου για επιχειρήσεις Κοινής Πολιτικής Ασφάλειας και Άμυνας, συμμετοχή των μάχιμων μονάδων (battle groups) στις επεμβάσεις της ΕΕ, επιτάχυνση των διαδικασιών χρηματοδότησης και λήψης αποφάσεων, μέτρα για μόνιμη δομή διεξαγωγής στρατιωτικών επιχειρήσεων "διαχείρισης κρίσεων".

Με την σύσταση πολιτικού συμβουλίου και μέτρα επίδρασης στις πολιτικές των κρατών μελών επιχειρείται να διασφαλιστεί η ανεξέλεγκτη δράση της Υπηρεσίας. Το, έτσι κι αλλιώς, απραγματοποίητο και υποκριτικό αίτημα για δήθεν ενημέρωση και έλεγχο του Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου στη δράση της Υπηρεσίας, μοναδικό σκοπό έχει να προσδώσει δημοκρατικοφανή, δήθεν, νομιμοποίηση στις στρατιωτικές επεμβάσεις της ΕΕ και του ΝΑΤΟ.

 
  
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  Andreas Mölzer (NI). - Frau Präsidentin! Welche Vision haben denn die Europäer von der Zukunft dieser Europäischen Union? Wollen Sie ein zentralistisches Gebilde, das nach innen hin zentralistisch ist, seine Bürger, seine Mitgliedstaaten sozusagen tyrannisiert, und nach außen hin schwach ist? Oder wollen Sie umgekehrt eine Union, die nach innen föderal, subsidiär, demokratisch und liberal ist, nach außen hin hingegen stark und in der Lage ist, die europäischen Interessen in der Welt zu vertreten? Sicher Letzteres. Zu einem solchen Europa würde natürlich eine gemeinsame starke Außenpolitik gehören und ein gemeinsamer außenpolitischer Dienst. Das ist keine Frage.

Das, was wir aber jetzt haben, ist eine merkwürdige Doppelstrategie. Wir haben noch die alten europäischen Großmächte oder die, die sich dafür halten, die ihre eigene Außenpolitik betreiben, und wir haben auf der anderen Seite die EU, die außenpolitisch eher als impotent gilt, die als außenpolitischer Zwerg gilt, der nichts bewirkt, allenfalls zahlen kann. Das muss geändert werden. Wir brauchen einen außenpolitischen Dienst, aber zuerst eine gemeinsame sinnvolle europäische Außenpolitik!

 
  
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  Andrzej Grzyb (PPE). - Pani Przewodnicząca! Funkcjonowanie i organizacja Europejskiej Służby Działań Zewnętrznych, można powiedzieć, wykluwały się w boju, ponieważ służba ta była tworzona, a z drugiej strony działo się to też w okresie takiego zbalansowania pomiędzy instytucjami europejskimi i państwami członkowskimi, które pan Gualtieri określił jako „naturalny stan niezadowolenia pomiędzy instytucjami”. Jednocześnie chciałbym także podkreślić, że to był także okres ważnych wydarzeń, które weryfikowały funkcjonowanie tej służby, tzn. arabska wiosna, nowa rola w zakresie praw człowieka, powołanie nowych instytucji takich jak pełnomocnik do spraw praw człowieka.

Pani Wysoka Przedstawiciel mówiła o swoim zastępstwie. Wydaje mi się, że te wypracowane zasady współpracy z komisarzami, którzy odpowiadają za cały ten obszar spraw zagranicznych, tzn. politykę sąsiedztwa, pomoc humanitarną czy pomoc rozwojową, są dobrymi zasadami. Cieszy przede wszystkim to, że również pozostali komisarze są włączeni w ten proces, bo w chwili obecnej polityka zagraniczna to nie tylko dyplomacja, ale przede wszystkim również kwestie gospodarcze.

Rzeczywiście ministrowie spraw zagranicznych państw członkowskich stanowią potencjał do wykorzystania. Gdy uda się to w jakiś sposób na nowo określić, byłoby to bardzo dobre.

No i ostatnia sprawa to balans geograficzny w służbach. Pani Ashton podkreślała pozytywny wpływ dyplomatów z nowych państw członkowskich. Dobrze, żeby równowaga ta również objęła nowe państwa członkowskie.

 
  
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  Nicole Sinclaire (NI). - Madam President, many of my colleagues here today have called for one voice for the European Union, indeed one mentioned ambassadors rather than heads of delegation. But surely that needs some type of federalism? The European Union does not have a mandate for that. That is why, in my view, the EEAS is fundamentally flawed.

I am sure it is a big problem for Baroness Ashton to carry out her duties when she cannot speak for all 27 nations. But I cannot help the feeling that she is part-author of her own problems. Of course she was leader of the Lords when she pushed through the Lisbon Treaty, when she argued there was no fundamental change of power. And here she is in fact really wanting more power. So which was it, Baroness Ashton? You know, you cannot have it both ways. The only way that the EU can actually speak with one voice is if it gives a mandate from the people.

One specific question that I would really like you to answer this afternoon: in what capacity, Baroness Ashton, were you at the Champions League final this year?

 
  
 

(Λήξη της διαδικασίας "Catch-the-Eye")

 
  
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  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. − Madam President, may I first say in response to Ms Sinclaire that I was at the UEFA Champions Final at the invitation of UEFA.

Can I thank you for all of the contributions. I said I thought it would be lively discussion and it has been that. I am very grateful for all of the comments, whether you agree with what we are doing or disagree. It is important that this Parliament and all its voices are heard.

I want to just try and pick up a few of the core issues which have been raised and try and address them. We will of course return to this and to these issues as we publish the review. I want to take a few subjects one by one.

The first is about how we work with Member States. As I said in my opening remarks, Lisbon left a lot of what we do as intergovernmental and subject to unanimity. I find that the members of the Foreign Affairs Council, whether as Foreign Ministers, Defence Ministers or Development Ministers, are keen and determined to reach a common view; not a lowest common denominator but a highest common factor, even where this is difficult and even where we do not have agreement.

I can assure you that the way in which all 27 interact with each other is an extremely valuable discussion and debate, seeking solutions. That is also true of the twelve hours we spent in debate on the issues of Syria and the embargo.

Honourable Members asked whether Member State parliaments should have a role. Every Presidency, I meet with representatives from each of the 27 Member State parliaments. They come together for the Presidency and the opening session of their conference is always with me; a chance for a long debate and discussion. It may not be enough but it is certainly an important part of the work that I do.

In terms of how we work with Member States, specifically the example was given of what happened in the case of the kidnap victims in Yemen. I can tell you that Austria and Finland both thanked us for the work we did in our démarches with the government. I spoke with the President and with those involved in coordinating and that is true for any kidnap victims of any Member State anywhere in the world. If we are asked to help we do.

I would also perhaps mention one other thing, which is that Foreign Ministers work together extremely well. They collaborate in trips; as I said, they do things on behalf of the Union, as well as their own Member States. William Hague, Carl Bildt and Radosław Sikorski very recently made a very important journey together which they found of enormous value.

I want to turn to the issue of deputies, because many of you have rightly pointed out that it is impossible to be in two or three places at the same time. I can remember a very sad day when I had been to five countries in a day and was criticised for not being in the sixth. It is impossible to achieve everything without using the incredibly valuable support of the rotating Presidency.

When all of this was put together, all of the statutory meetings which existed before continued to exist, all of the association councils. We built up different ways over time and these meetings continued even though there was one person not three. I had to chair three councils not one, and so on.

Therefore the rotating Presidency has been fantastic in taking on a huge amount of work, as has Štefan Füle who I work closest with; so have other commissioners who have been willing to represent me and the Union in different ways and so too have other Foreign Ministers. It is not unusual to find that a Foreign Minister in making a statement at a conference on behalf of their own country will also make a statement on behalf of the EU.

It is a very good use of the resources that we have and one I commend to you. It does not take away from the broader debate – which you do need to have – about how in the future this role is going to be performed if it is one person and if you are going to keep the number of demands that you have on the individual concerned.

I also believe that the whole question of how we work in conflict prevention and crisis management needs to be under this umbrella of the comprehensive approach; how we use our mediation skills and rule-of-law skills and so on. It is extremely important that we do that effectively and it does need looking at to make sure that it fits together. There are different structures; again, inherited structures which I do not necessarily have the power to change, but that I can with the support of you and with the Member States.

In a similar vein, when we think about the work we do on defence, on CSDP missions, I could not agree more, we need to speed up the process. The process is far too long-winded, takes too many different committees to make decisions and so on. These are important decisions. I am not trying to take them away from Member States but I think we do not have to go through all of these procedures.

One of the things I introduced, as you will recall, was exit strategies for our missions. There were none, and there are now. It is really important.

We depend on the Commission as well for this type of work; we have to look at some of the regulations that we have, and I need your help because some of it requires quite a lot of change. It cannot be done except by the institutions agreeing to do it and, if necessary, by changing the rules or sometimes the legislation to do it. But we have to get quicker and it is not going to happen just by wishing it to happen. It is going to happen because we make it happen.

On embassies/delegations, all I will say is that the UK is actually opening embassies at the present time. William Hague is extremely proud of that so I should tell you on his behalf that they are opening not closing.

A question was put specifically about Barbados versus Panama. Barbados gets a lot of bad publicity for all the wrong reasons. Let me explain what Barbados is: it is a regional aid hub. There are 44 staff, of whom three are from the External Action Service, six are from the Commission and 35 are local staff. They are responsible for delivering aid for 10 countries and territories: Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia and so on. They are responsible for EUR 250 million of aid to all those countries.

Rather than having 10 different places with 10 bureaucracies, we have put it all into one, but there are only three EEAS staff there, the rest are delivering development aid. I agree that we should open in Panama, I agree we should open in Turkmenistan, I agree that we should open in the rest of the Gulf and I agree we should do that in good time, but we need the resources to do it. That is also important.

We have opened in Libya; we have opened in Myanmar; we have tried to respond to dramatic changes by putting people on the ground who can be there and stay there, but that of itself is a challenge.

On staffing of course there is more to do. Remember, most of the staff came in from the other institutions, so their gender and their background were inherited and changing and developing; in any organisation that takes time – and I have quite a bit of experience of this. We have to work on the processes that enable people to come in. I have tried to get more women into the service, I have been very pleased at the number of women who have come in – bearing in mind that in national diplomatic systems as well there are not so many women involved in foreign policy. But we have to solve some of the obstacles that, as I have said, are in place. We are looking at that; we are sending people out to capitals where you are under-represented to talk about how to do that.

But I do not want to do quotas; I want to appoint on merit. Every single person who is a head of delegation knows they got the job because we think that they were the best person to represent the Union in the work that we need to do.

I also agree, by the way, on holidays and all the other regulations, but I cannot do it unless we can change those regulations. It does not make any sense to me the way the holiday structure is. Of course people in hardship posts and very difficult places need more time off. I do not think anybody disputes that, but I do not see why we have different regulations. They have just grown up like that. But to change it I need to change the regulation – so I need you, and that is true of other things as well.

I am not against making these changes but you know, and I know, it requires others to put forward proposals, and for it to be agreed that this should move forward. That requires some careful and sensitive handling, too. So all of our proposals on how we change things like that have been brought forward from the delegations themselves. I asked them through their representative bureau to give us their ideas on what we should do and to act upon them.

I have also been looking at what we can do in terms of reducing the senior level posts. The creation of the service at the very beginning was a structure that we needed to get the thing off the ground. Now we have to look again. Therefore, I have proposed to reduce five AD 16 and nine AD 15 posts in the establishment plan for next year.

I have proposed to Member States most recently a suggestion of what we should do on Special Representatives; looking at their mandates, looking at the numbers, and looking eventually at how they can be more integrated into the service. It is an important element that we have available to tackle sometimes very difficult crisis situations where you need somebody who is not based in one place, but can span across, and sometimes it is about moving forward on issues where you need the combination of a Head of Delegation and that broader special representation, places like Afghanistan. But they also bring staff with them that we need so, it is about how we integrate this further and more fully. Nobody is more committed to trying to do that than I am, believe me. But it needs to be done in a way that is going to ensure that we can continue to develop.

Finally, the Vice-President issue: I agree. I have been talking with President Barroso about this over these months. We agree that we need to do more to develop that. I have pointed out in my opening remarks some really good examples of how we work together with different Commissioners on different issues. Just as we met last week to talk with Commissioners about Syria and we met with Commissioners to talk about defence, so too there are many more occasions when we should try and do that. We are both, the President and I, committed to trying to make that work more effectively.

Thank you again for this debate. I have often said that setting up the service was like trying fly a plane or get it off the ground while you are still putting the wings on: bringing staff in from different places who arrived from different institutions, seven different locations across Brussels; asking them to create something new; and then asking delegations on the ground to take on completely new responsibilities without the resources that would give them that additional help.

Remember, in places like New York when the rotating Presidency came in, they put more than 20 additional staff on the ground. We could not do that, and so we have tried to make it as efficient as we possibly can. My ambition was to build the foundations. I said there were three priorities: to be more relevant in our neighbourhood. We are. To develop our strategic partnership links. We have. And to build the beginnings of a service that you can all own and, I hope, you can all be proud of.

There is an awful lot more to do and with your support I will finish my mandate and hand over to someone the beginnings of something that can be incredibly important for Europe.

 
  
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  Elmar Brok, Berichterstatter. − Frau Präsidentin, Frau Vizepräsidentin, Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Ich glaube, dass dieses Parlament gezeigt hat, dass es bereit ist, bei der Verbesserung des Dienstes mitzuwirken und in der Aufbauphase konstruktiv mitzuarbeiten. Das hat diese Diskussion in deutlicher Weise gezeigt. Ich erwartete auch in Ihrer Stellungnahme keine vollständige Antwort darauf, denn ich glaube, wir werden über Manches in den nächsten Wochen und Monaten zu reden haben, wo wir Dinge voranbringen können. Sie haben gerade zum Schluss etwas in Bezug auf die regulations angebracht. Ich glaube, auch die Haushaltsordnung gehört dazu. Es gibt Manches, was auch der Gesetzgeber verändern muss, damit es schlagkräftiger wird. Ich glaube, dass wir dafür auch die Kommission und den Rat brauchen, um das entsprechend hinzubekommen.

Wir müssen auch sehen, dass die Mitgliedstaaten manchen Nutzen haben. Es kann nicht sein, dass ein Land, das Sie am besten kennen, es verhindert, dass andere Länder auch die Möglichkeit einer Ansiedlung von konsularischen Diensten – das ist etwas, was auch dem Bürger angeht – verhindern wollen. Das sind wichtige Fragen, die wir sehen müssen, weil es kostensparende Effekte für unsere Mitgliedsländer mit sich bringt. Wenn jemand das machen will, soll er das machen können. Über die Frage der politischen Vertreter müssen wir – ich stimme dem zu, was sie da gesagt haben – aber noch einmal reden und auch darüber, wie dieses doch noch stärker in Erfahrung gebracht werden kann. Das heißt, ich freue mich auf die weiteren Debatten in den nächsten Wochen und Monaten und auf ihren Bericht als Antwort darauf, damit wir das letzte Jahr, in dem dieses Parlament besteht, nutzen können, um dieses voranzubringen.

 
  
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  Roberto Gualtieri, relatore. − Signora Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, questo dibattito ha dimostrato, penso, che esiste una larga convergenza nel Parlamento sulle linee della nostra relazione. Sono stato anche lieto di ascoltare ad esempio, dall'on. Tannock il riconoscimento dell'importanza e dell'utilità del servizio europeo di azione esterna.

Il dibattito ha dimostrato anche una significativa convergenza tra il Parlamento e Lei, Alto rappresentante. Devo dirlo, signora Ashton, Lei ha fatto un eccellente discorso e ciò è motivo di reale compiacimento non solo per i riconoscimenti che Lei ha tributato al Parlamento, ma soprattutto perché ha dimostrato una visione della natura, dei compiti, delle potenzialità, del servizio europeo di azione esterna che noi condividiamo appieno.

In particolare sulla sfida rappresentata dal comprehensive approach e cioè della capacità di coordinare in modo sinergico i diversi strumenti di cui l'Europa dispone per rendere efficace la sua azione esterna. Proprio per questo, seppure i casi di buona cooperazione con la Commissione che Lei ha richiamato sono indubbiamente reali, noi ribadiamo che su questo fronte va fatto e può essere fatto ancora molto. Sono fiducioso che la revisione su queste basi sarà proficua e quindi ringrazio Lei e tutti i collaboratori, lo staff del servizio europeo d'azione esterna, a cominciare naturalmente da Pierre Vimont, per l'impegno, per i risultati e per la disponibilità al confronto con questo Parlamento.

 
  
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  Πρόεδρος. - Η συζήτηση έληξε.

Η ψηφοφορία θα διεξαχθεί αύριο Πέμπτη στις 12 το μεσημέρι.

Γραπτές δηλώσεις (άρθρο 149)

 
  
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  Ioan Mircea Paşcu (S&D), in writing. – 2013 is the year of the first review of the newly-established EEAS, set up by the Lisbon Treaty at a time when the current world crisis was not yet a permanent feature of our lives. Looking back, one sees the true dimensions of the task confronting the EEAS: to construct itself - in a field still subject to national decision - at a time when the EU has been forced to become increasingly inwards-looking and, inevitably, centrifugal, given the propensity of the MS to care more for themselves individually than for the common entity the EU represents. Those were huge challenges, given that the EAAS was a first-time experience, in the sense that it combined foreign policy, development and defence - which were fields pursued individually and in parallel; that it did not have enough personnel, which had to be recruited and, most important, that it had to react to a number of important issues, many conflictual in nature, while structuring itself. Although I personally have my doubts about any bureaucracy, I have to recognise that, in this case, the EAAS has succeeded in playing the positive role of doubling national foreign action with EU action.

 
  
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  Csaba Sándor Tabajdi (S&D), írásban. – Hiába történt elmozdulás a földrajzi egyenlőtlenségek megszüntetése érdekében az Európai Külügyi Szolgálatnál, nagyon távol vagyunk a probléma megoldásától. Mivel az új tagállamok számos szempontból hátrányból indulnak a kiválasztási folyamat terén, nem várhattuk el azt, hogy egyik napról a másikra minden szinten megoldódjon a kiválasztási folyamat kérdése. Az azonban fontos, hogy legalább törekedjünk erre.

A Külügyi Szolgálatot ma sem érezheti magáénak igazságos mértékben minden tagállam, mivel az új tagállamokból érkező személyzet aránya továbbra is jóval kisebb a 15 régi tagállamból származó személyzetnél. Sőt, az új tagállami alkalmazottak többsége a küldöttségvezetői szint alatt van foglalkoztatva.

Felszólítom Catherine Ashton Főképviselő Asszonyt, hogy minél előbb teremtsen valódi egyensúlyt a Szolgálat felső szintjein. Továbbá tegyen lépéseket annak érdekében, hogy az új tagállamok alacsonyabb rangú diplomatái is egyenlő esélyekkel induljanak az EKSZ kiválasztási folyamataiban.

Követendőnek tartom azt a megállapítást, hogy a tagállamok részéről korlátozni kell a kiválasztási folyamatba történő beavatkozási kísérleteket. Az elmúlt hónapokban sajnos tudomásomra jutott több olyan sajnálatos eset is, ahol Magyarországon politikai okokból menesztett diplomatákat a tagállami támogatás hiányában kizártak a felvételi eljárásból. Ez azt mutatja, hogy az uniós szabályozás egyértelműen rossz! Elfogadhatatlan, hogy az eljárási rend jelenleg lehetővé teszi, hogy bármely tagállami kormány politikai okokból megakadályozhassa kiváló diplomaták felvételét a Külügyi Szolgálatba!

 
  
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  Indrek Tarand (Verts/ALE), in writing. – The functioning of the EEAS has been seen by some as quite all right for an institution that is starting up and has to negotiate 27 Member States’ opinions and somehow voice them all at once. I would say one voice in EU external affairs is more than needed and the EEAS has a critical role in that, but there is much room for improvement and initiative. For example, arms exports and the sale of Mistral warships to a country that recently invaded one of its neighbours and is publicly supplying arms to a Syrian dictator. Ceterum censeo, France will seriously regret the Mistral warships sale to Russia.

 
  
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  Marina Yannakoudakis (ECR), in writing. − I did not vote to set up the European External Action Service. I’m glad that I did not, not only because I believe foreign policy to be the exclusive competence of sovereign Member States, but also because the EEAS has turned out to be inefficient, unproductive and, worst of all, expensive. Baroness Ashton promised that the EEAS would be budget-neutral, yet we have seen the service come cap in hand to this Parliament for an increase in its budget at a time when national governments are being forced to cut theirs. The costs come from its top-heavy bureaucracy, where 50 civil servants earn more than the British Prime Minister, a lavish lifestyle for staff posted overseas with some of the highest accommodation costs of any diplomatic service in the world and extravagant perks including all-expenses-paid ‘respite trips’ to tropical resorts, and unnecessary expenditure on representation and social activities including a bloated communications budget. We need to trim the fat of the European institutions and it strikes me that the EEAS is fattier than most. I hope that Baroness Ashton’s successor will succeed where she failed by offering a budget-neutral service and getting issues such as spending and staffing under control.

 
Avis juridique - Politique de confidentialité