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Procedure : 2012/2320(INI)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A7-0193/2013

Texts tabled :

A7-0193/2013

Debates :

PV 01/07/2013 - 24
CRE 01/07/2013 - 24

Votes :

PV 02/07/2013 - 9.4

Texts adopted :

P7_TA(2013)0291

Debates
Monday, 1 July 2013 - Strasbourg Revised edition

24. Member States' export credit agencies (short presentation)
Video of the speeches
PV
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  Der Präsident. - Als nächster Punkt der Tagesordnung folgt die Aussprache über den Bericht von Yannick Jadot im Namen des Ausschusses für internationalen Handel über den ersten Jahresbericht der Kommission an das Europäische Parlament über die Tätigkeiten der Exportkreditagenturen der Mitgliedstaaten (2012/2320(INI)) (A7-0193/2013).

 
  
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  Franziska Keller, deputising for the rapporteur. - Mr President, on behalf of the rapporteur, Yannick Jadot, who unfortunately cannot be present here, I would like to convey his thoughts to you:

It is to my great pleasure that this House will vote tomorrow on the report on the first annual report from the Commission on the export credit activities of Member States. This own-initiative report finishes, at least for this legislature, work which started more than three years ago, and I am deeply grateful and indebted to all shadow rapporteurs for their very constructive cooperation in this long-lasting endeavour.

More than three years ago, an innocent dossier came to us in the Committee on International Trade (INTA): the transposition of the latest OECD arrangements on export credit activities into EU law. It was one of those ‘thumbs-up’ dossiers, but it came to us under the ordinary legislative procedure shortly after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty. It was the time at which Parliament was testing its new powers and becoming aware of its responsibilities, not only towards European citizens but also towards filling the spirit and the letter of the new Treaty with concrete life. It was also the time at which the financial and economic crisis was unfolding in Europe, and along with this came much higher tension over public spending.

As the rapporteur for Parliament, I asked myself what we as Parliamentarians knew about the activities of the ECAs of the Member States, which to a large extent operate with public funds. It is not that I was in doubt about the usefulness of ECAs for European companies; I only noticed that we knew very little. Moreover, I detected no inherent relation between the work of the ECAs of the Member States and the new requirement of the Lisbon Treaty that all external activities of the Union and its Member States shall be conducted in the spirit of the Union’s external action goals as enshrined in Article 3 and Article 21 TEU.

To my surprise, my thoughts were widely shared by all my colleagues in the International Trade Committee. While we might have deeply-rooted controversies about trade policy matters, we found – and still find ourselves – united under the roof of the Lisbon Treaty and its prerogatives. Hence, I found almost full support across the entire political spectrum to ask the Commission to provide Parliament with an annual report about the ECAs of the Member States, and on its own activities, so as to get the emerging economies to adhere to the OECD arrangements for ECAs.

This new reporting requirement entails, in particular, an evaluation by the Commission as to whether or not Member States in their ECA policies are applying the principle of fostering the Union’s external action goals with regard, among other things, to the promotion of democracy and human rights and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

The Commission showed itself very helpful in conveying our message to the Council. My thanks go therefore also to the Commission, and in particular to Mr Denis Redonnet. The report that will be voted tomorrow evaluates the Commission’s first annual report on the reports of the Member States on ECA activities for the year 2011. We have to acknowledge that we are at the very beginning of this exercise. Member States find it difficult to frame a report on such non-financial issues as to how they ensure their spending is used to foster human rights and democracy, or on how ECAs screen environmental risks into the setting of their premiums. Therefore, in the report, we make suggestions as to how such reporting could be done in future, and how the Commission should be enabled to evaluate such reporting.

The next set of reports by the Member States will for sure be better, and I want to thank again all of my colleagues who in this legislature have laid the ground for making sure that, one day, Europe will be a more consistent global actor for democracy and human rights.

 
  
 

Catch-the-eye-Verfahren

 
  
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  João Ferreira (GUE/NGL). - Num contexto político e económico de aprofundamento da globalização capitalista, de crescente interdependência assimétrica das economias, de desmantelamento dos instrumentos de regulação e controlo da produção e do comércio, os créditos às exportações podem constituir-se como mais um fator de aprofundamento das desigualdades, sejam as desigualdades norte-sul, sejam as desigualdades no seio de blocos económicos heterogéneos, como a União Europeia.

É evidente a contradição de práticas como esta e os bondosos objetivos insistentemente proclamados em áreas como a cooperação para o desenvolvimento, apenas para dar um exemplo. Os defensores do sacrossanto princípio da livre concorrência capitalista não prescindem destas mãozinhas bem visíveis que sempre deitam por terra o mito da mão invisível, introduzindo fatores de distorção da dita concorrência, introduzindo inequívocos fatores de disrupção dos sistemas produtivos mais débeis.

 
  
 

(Ende des Catch-the-eye-Verfahrens)

 
  
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  Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, Member of the Commission. - Mr President, honourable Members, on behalf of Commissioner De Gucht I wish to thank you, and in particular the rapporteur, Mr Yannick Jadot, represented by Ms Keller, for this report and the highly interesting views on export credits which are reflected in it.

The global financial crisis has demonstrated in an impressive manner how essential the availability of adequate financing is for global trade flows. Export Credit Agencies play a vital role in this process. They are therefore instruments of strategic importance in our wider efforts to support the interests of European exporters.

It is, however, also vital to ensure that there is appropriate transparency at European level on how Export Credit Agencies operate and what they achieve. This has been one of the objectives of Regulation (EU) No 1233/2011 and in particular of the reporting mechanisms which it has established. Looking at the outcome of the first reporting exercise under this regulation, let me make the following observations.

The European Commission shares the view expressed in the present report that Member States in their annual activity reports have made available the financial and operational information on export credits requested in Regulation 1233/2011. The European Commission confirms its commitment to conduct external policies in accordance with Article 21 of the Treaty on European Union. We take particular note of the observations on the policies applied to export credit transactions contained in the present report. We will further analyse them and see how – in due consideration of the wording of the regulation and in agreement with all parties involved – appropriate follow-up can be given to them.

The Commission would also like to take this opportunity to thank you for the support expressed in the present report for our ongoing efforts to engage the major emerging economies in the establishment of the new International Working Group on Export Credits. Countries like China, India and Brazil have become major new players in export credits in recent years. Engaging them in a constructive dialogue will be an important challenge. Commission De Gucht will duly keep Parliament informed on further developments in this field.

 
  
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  Der Präsident. − Die Aussprache ist geschlossen.

Die Abstimmung findet am Dienstag, 2.[nbsp ]Juli 2013, um 12.00[nbsp ]Uhr statt.

 
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