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Utorak, 14. siječnja 2014. - Strasbourg Revidirano izdanje

3. Ocjena litavskog predsjedništva (rasprava)
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  Der Präsident. − Als nächster Punkt der Tagesordnung folgen die Erklärungen des Rates und der Kommission zur Bilanz der litauischen Präsidentschaft (2013/2630(RSP)).

Ich begrüße dazu die Staatspräsidentin von Litauen, Dalia Grybauskaitė. Guten Morgen, Frau Präsidentin, herzlich willkommen! Ich begrüße den Präsidenten der Europäischen Kommission, José Manuel Barroso. Guten Morgen, Herr Präsident, herzlich willkommen!

 
  
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  Dalia Grybauskaitė, President-in-Office of the Council. − Mr President, I would like to begin in Lithuanian.

Man labai malonu kartu su Jumis įvertinti Lietuvos pirmininkavimo rezultatus. Didžiuojuosi, kad mūsų maža jaunos demokratijos šalis, neseniai atkūrusi savo valstybingumą, įrodė, kad ji gali atlikti Europos Sąjungos pirmininkavimo užduotis taip pat gerai kaip ir bet kuri valstybė narė, nesvarbu didelė ar maža. Lietuva įveikė šį išbandymą. Atlikome visus darbus, kuriuos turėjome atlikti, ir net nuveikėme daugiau nei buvo tikėtasi. Po šešių Lietuvos pirmininkavimo mėnesių turime stipresnę, patikimesnę ir labiau savimi pasitikinčią Europos Sąjungą.

When I addressed you in July I said that the Lithuanian Presidency would be about a credible, growing and open Europe. I stressed the need to regain credibility with the citizens of Europe by delivering on the outcomes they have been promised, by following through on what we have committed to do, and by showing we can work effectively together in the interest of our citizens.

I spoke of the need to restore growth to our economy and to make it competitive, with sustainable jobs for young people in particular. And I reminded this House that Europe has always been at its best when it has been an open Europe: a Europe which has stood up for peace, democracy and human rights, and a Europe which, after 50 years of conflict and division, has striven to reunite.

So what have we achieved in these six months? Despite the exceptional efforts of the Irish Presidency, reaching the final agreement on the multiannual financial framework (MFF) and the 2014 budget was not easy for us. The deal struck in November involved hard choices on all sides. No one got everything they wanted. I pay tribute to all those in this House who played a part in forging that agreement – not least to Mr Lamassoure and Ms Jensen. I think that together, we showed what can be done when we apply our collective ingenuity to the task of making Europe work for our citizens.

We delivered – on time – a modern, predictable, forward-looking and long-term budget, a budget that makes a difference to people’s lives, to every household across Europe. It is a budget that shows that Europe is part of the solution. Yes, it is a rigorous budget, in keeping with those that national governments are having to implement at home, but even if modest in size, at 1 % of European GDP, it represents an injection of nearly a trillion euros into the real economy of Europe. It addresses the urgent investment needs of hundreds of thousands of towns and regions across Europe. It recognises the social cost of the economic crisis, bringing badly-needed extra help to those living below the poverty line or desperately seeking a job.

It is a budget for smart growth, targeted on strengthening and sustaining the economic recovery which is already underway. It provides us with the means to prevent our young people being denied a future. It gives Europe the capacity to fight cybercrime. It addresses the tragedy we have seen too often at Lampedusa, strengthening our border and asylum management system. At home, it brings relief to the victims of catastrophic floods and drought. Also, beyond our borders, it provides the largest programme of development and humanitarian assistance the world has ever seen.

In putting our house in order, we delivered a budget fit for purpose and right for our time. However, delivery requires more than a budget. As you well know, the Lithuanian Presidency also faced the task of completing negotiations with you on separate programmes required to implement the MFF. I am pleased that we managed to reach agreement on nearly all of these. Only a very few remain for the Greek Presidency to complete.

Delivery on that scale is demanding on any individual. So I would like to put on record my thanks and admiration for the tireless efforts that your committee chairs, rapporteurs and members have put in, and for the skill and experience they bring to their task. Europe’s voters need to hear the message that they are well served by their legislators.

Everyone benefits from the programmes which have been in place since the start of this year – Horizon 2020, Creative Europe, COSME and Erasmus+, to name but a few. They provide evidence for the claim that Europe is building its way out of the crisis, that Europe is delivering for its citizens, and that Europe is working.

Credibility is not just about delivering sustainable growth; it is also about restoring confidence in the European Union’s financial system and regaining the trust of financial markets. That is why we pulled out all the stops to make progress on creating a functional Banking Union. The agreement reached just before Christmas on the Single Resolution Mechanism provides a blueprint for repairing insolvent banks. This is vital for securing economic recovery and financial stability.

The Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive will stop taxpayers having to bail out banks again, while the Deposit Guarantee Scheme means that depositors will be guaranteed up to EUR 100 000, not by taxpayers but by the banks themselves, and that they will get their money back within seven working days. This is the way to restore the trust of global markets and to help boost the Union’s economy. The Commission’s Annual Growth Survey shows that growth is gradually returning; financial markets are stabilising; consumers and businesses are more confident about the future; and we have the good news that Ireland has exited the bail-out programme.

During our Presidency, a total of 141 legislative and 283 non-legislative dossiers were concluded. That is more than twice what, on average, a Presidency is capable of achieving. Nevertheless, there will be those who remain disappointed that their particular dossier did not progress as far as they had hoped. However, let me single out some of the areas in which we did make a breakthrough, although there was little hope of this at the beginning of our Presidency.

Firstly, the interinstitutional task force made significant progress towards agreeing on single stock plans under the reformed common fisheries policy. This has always been a contentious area, and multiannual plans for the sustainable management of European fish stocks and our fishing industry would represent a historic step forward.

Secondly, we all wanted to see progress on a proposal on the statute and funding for European political parties and foundations, so I am glad that our negotiators appear to have made a breakthrough on this politically sensitive and legally challenging subject. It will serve as a strong basis for our trio partner Greece in seeking final agreement before the end of the term of this Parliament.

Lastly, the Lithuanian Presidency has reached a landmark agreement on the Posting of Workers Directive, which is key for the improved provision of cross-border services and protection of workers’ rights.

We also moved forward with the digital agenda and further deepened the single market, creating opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises, which are the true engines of our economies. In the field of energy, the December Council endorsed two reports – on the internal energy market and on EU external energy. It set the guidelines for completion of the internal energy market, which is scheduled to take place at the end of 2014. It is important that, for the first time, we have a separate instrument in the MFF for strategic energy links.

Trade has always been vital to growth, to creating jobs, and to sustaining families and communities. Here, too, there were breakthroughs: with Canada, on an ambitious Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA); with the United States, with whom we finally got down to serious negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (and agreement here would be game-changing for all, benefiting every family in the EU); with the World Trade Organisation, in Bali, where we rediscovered our hope that multilateral trade deals can become a vehicle for global growth; and with Georgia and Moldova, both of which, despite relentless and unacceptable pressure from Moscow, signalled their determination to integrate their economies with the European Union.

The outcome of the Vilnius summit triggered a historic change, giving fresh impulse to the Eastern Partnership. Ukraine will never be the same again. Together with Commissioners Füle and Ashton, with your envoys, Pat Cox and Aleksander Kwaśniewski, and with a massive show of support from Members from every corner of this House, we put heart and soul into demonstrating to our Eastern neighbours that our offer of partnership was – and is – genuine and that Europe is their centre of gravity.

By not signing the Association Agreement, Ukraine’s political leadership defied the expectations of its own people, who were unwilling to let go of their European dream. Who in the world could fail to have been moved by the image of ordinary people of all ages in Kiev’s freezing Euromaidan peacefully confronting rows of riot police; and, among them, a solitary pianist playing on an upright piano painted in the blue and yellow stars of the EU flag? Taking their future into their own hands, unwilling to be subdued by the Berkut militia units, these demonstrators refused to give up their quest for a fairer life and the right of all people in sovereign states to choose a better future for themselves.

The spirit of the Maidanci, who have taken to the streets to defend their European choice, represents a test for all of us. It is a test we cannot afford to fail. While commentators in Europe – and even in this Parliament – complain that the EU has lost its way, we are seeing precisely the opposite sentiment coming from the Euromaidan. The Vilnius summit served as a wake-up call. The EU is still a model and a centre of attraction for many in the world, beginning with our closest neighbours. Aspirations towards the European Union in our Eastern Neighbourhood, as in the Western Balkans, are not just a show of democracy: they are a rallying call for the democratic values that this Parliament represents. Once again, the European Union is a lighthouse of hope – for freedom, democracy and human rights.

In conclusion, 2013 was designated the European Year of Citizens. We all know very well that the interests of citizens can be best served and their trust gained when we deliver results – and I think the Lithuanian Presidency has delivered. From the outset, the European Parliament has been our partner. I would also like to thank the members of the European Commission for making the partnership a success. I believe that the experience of the last six months has given Lithuania new strength and new confidence. Faced with intolerable external pressures in the run-up to the Vilnius summit, we came to appreciate the value of European solidarity.

In extending every best wish to the incoming Greek Presidency, I can say this: we discovered that success in a Council Presidency has nothing to do with the size of the country. It has everything to do with hard work, efficiency, and determination to build a consensus. We came prepared, we learned along the way, and we have given it everything.

Thank you all for your cooperation.

(Applause)

 
  
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  José Manuel Barroso, President of the Commission. − Mr President, Madam President-in-Office, honourable Members, with the conclusion of the Lithuanian Presidency, the European Union ended the year 2013 on a high note.

The successful closure of Ireland’s support programme proves that, when adjustment and assistance go hand in hand, we can overcome even the most serious kinds of crisis in a eurozone country.

Spain’s exit from its specific banking programme shows that we can effectively address grave concerns about the financial institutions, even in a larger economy. It proves that, through reform and increased responsibility, we can put the banking sector on a sound footing once again.

With the accession of Latvia, the eurozone is expanding – another unambiguous sign of renewed confidence in the euro. These are encouraging signs for the European Union and especially for Member States that still face hard times and challenging transitions. I believe that Europe as a whole should take heart that the situation can be, and is being, turned around.

It is hugely important to note that, at the start of this New Year – a crucial year for Europe – we are in a far better place than we were at any time since the start of the financial crisis. We owe this only to combined, concerted and continued efforts at national and European level.

Honourable Members, I want to pay a sincere tribute to the Lithuanian Presidency. Through a lot of hard work and commitment, the Lithuanian team has been able to push forward a number of delicate and decisive initiatives. For the months ahead, our top priority remains the Banking Union.

Over the past five years, we have undertaken a fundamental reform of the way banks are regulated and supervised. We want a thriving and responsible European banking sector, at the service of the real economy, where banks – not taxpayers – carry the costs of their own mistakes.

Today, Europe’s banks are better capitalised, better regulated to manage risks, and better supervised. We are now at the beginning of the end of public bank bail-outs, with the welcome agreements reached by the co-legislators in December on the Bank Resolution Directive and Deposit Guarantee Schemes.

Banking Union is a crucial sign of our commitment to a genuine and deep Economic and Monetary Union and to restoring decent lending conditions throughout the euro area, and it is an essential part of decoupling bank risks from sovereign debt. So it is now imperative to work for agreement on the Single Resolution Mechanism, which is the last building block needed for a genuine European Banking Union. The Council set out its position in December, opening the door for negotiations with Parliament.

As you know, the Commission would have preferred a system based fully on the Community approach. The Commission has rigorously defended an Article 114 legal base for its proposal. Like Parliament, we are concerned that the introduction of an intergovernmental dimension to addressing the transfer and mutualisation of funds will undoubtedly add further unnecessary complexity.

But at the same time – and we have to face reality – there appears to be no other approach which will obtain the necessary support in Council. So the question is not whether we are happy with the Council position. The question is rather whether we can afford to waste the opportunity to reach a final agreement before the end of this parliamentary term. Can we afford to put at risk the emerging signs of returning confidence? This is what is at stake.

So I believe we should now work hand in hand as Parliament and Commission to achieve our goal of a Single Resolution Mechanism, which is the indispensable final piece of a European Banking Union. For that, we need to fight to the limit to ensure that the intergovernmental dimension is kept to the absolute minimum of what is politically necessary. We should also be very vigilant in making sure the outcome remains fully compatible with, and upholds the primacy of, EU law.

2013 was also very much the year in which we proved the maturity and the effectiveness of the economic governance framework as we have developed it since the start of the crisis, including the tools of the ʻtwo pack’ implemented for the first time. This European Semester cycle offered less drama than previous editions but more genuine debate and, in the end, more gratifying decisions. We can build on these experiences and the policy results when we further focus on growth and jobs in the months to come.

We have at the same time continued to deepen the debate about the future of our governance framework, notably at the December Summit, with a real in-depth discussion about contractual arrangements that could expand the partnership between Member States and the European Union, deepen the effective solidarity between countries and reinforce the sense of ownership of reforms within Member States.

This must certainly include paying more attention to the social dimension of Economic and Monetary Union, which is the topic of a communication from the European Commission and of two ministerial debates under the Lithuanian Presidency. As part of the European Semester, we have proposed a new scoreboard to allow for better and earlier identification of major social and employment problems. From the beginning, this has been an integral part of what our reform efforts are all about. There is now broad support across Europe to fine-tune our approach further, to focus our attention even more and to work more closely with the social partners in order to improve results.

Earlier in the Lithuanian Presidency we reached an agreement that forms the very basis of the European Union’s role and ability to make sure reforms lead to more jobs and better opportunities: the Multiannual Financial Framework. I remember well the extensive discussions we had, between the Council and Parliament, and also how we were together able to make the final deal. I want once again to thank all the leaders in the European Parliament who worked with us to conclude that historic agreement.

As I have always stated, our response to the crisis has to go beyond fiscal consolidation and structural reform. They are indispensable, to be sure, but we also need investment, and for many of our regions the European budget is the first – and even in some cases almost the only – source of public investment. So it is vital that we make progress and do not delay its implementation.

One aspect remains especially urgent, and it is one in which European institutions and actors have strongly taken the lead but where cooperation with Member State governments is essential: youth unemployment. The Commission has been giving top priority to all initiatives aimed at tackling youth unemployment, but implementation by the Member States remains crucial. By 31 December 2013, 17 out of 20 Member States in which the youth unemployment rate is above 25 %, and which are therefore eligible to benefit from the Youth Employment Initiative, had submitted their Youth Guarantee Implementation Plans, so three Member States are still missing.

An important contribution to fostering action on the ground was the agreement reached on the European Social Fund Regulation, and in particular on the Youth Employment Initiative. Now that the framework for the Youth Employment Initiative is set, it is crucial that national authorities proceed with speedy programming of activities in order to ensure quick and effective implementation.

Also, to further link up Europeans with job opportunities across the European Union, the Commission will later this week present the way we aim to strengthen the EURES network. I call on all Member States and social partners not to slow down this issue, which is so decisive for our credibility and for the future of our young people.

Also regarding the social agenda, let us not forget that we successfully concluded on the posting of workers issue under the Lithuanian Presidency as well. This was a very important agreement and an important step towards encouraging people to use their right of free movement, and to do so in a way which is – and is seen to be – socially fair.

Honourable Members, The Lithuanian Presidency gave priority to the Vilnius Summit so that we could move forward with the Eastern Partnership. Indeed, it was a very important and, I would say, historic summit, and we were able to make progress in our relationship with our Eastern partners, especially by moving towards economic integration and political association with those who are ready and willing for it. It also confirmed how challenging the situation in Ukraine is, and why we should not give up on our commitment to those countries in our neighbourhood that want to link up with the freedoms and the way of life they see in the European Union. Indeed, one of the most important moments of the Vilnius Summit was on the streets of Kiev. The summit was not only in Vilnius; it was also on the streets of Kiev. We saw Europe at its most popular: a beacon of hope and values and a guarantee of human rights and liberties.

Around diplomatic tables, we saw Europe at its best: united in defending Ukrainian citizens’ dignity and opinions and ready to support their sovereign right to decide on their own destiny and to improve their chances of a better, more prosperous and more democratic future. At a time when we have so many people disappointed in the European Union, I think that to see young people – and sometimes not so young people – in the freezing Kiev nights, holding so high the flags of the European Union, confirms how important the European Union and its values are, not only for us here in our Member States, but also for the rest of the world.

Other elements of the Eastern Partnership were also pursued. The European Union-Georgia Association Agreement was initialled, and so was the Association Agreement with Moldova. Visa facilitation was on the table, and the Joint Declaration of the Vilnius Summit made clear that we will enhance cooperation in strategic areas in the future as well.

The tragic events of Lampedusa – I had the occasion to witness the dramatic consequences personally on that island – and the unforgettable deaths of 350 people signalled and symbolised the difficulties of individual Member States in dealing with complex migration issues in a globalised world and pushed us all towards a renewed effort in this area.

In the Task Force we have worked out a holistic strategy to respond to such problems, recommending more than 30 concrete actions in the areas of cooperation with third countries; regional protection, resettlement and reinforced legal migration; the fight against human smuggling and organised crime; proper management and better surveillance of sea borders; and solidarity with Member States experiencing especially high migration pressures.

At the same time, we have prepared the ground for debates that may often be less visible but are equally important for the future economic welfare and political relevance of the European Union.

At the December Summit the European Council, for the first time ever, discussed concrete defence issues which are so important for our leverage as a political actor and international player. This is a theme I have raised in all my State of the Union speeches before you in this Parliament. Everyone underlined the need for a credible, reinforced and refocused Common Security and Defence Policy as a strategic, geopolitical and economic imperative, and there was a consensus on the wish for more cooperation among Member States and with our allies, especially NATO, and on the obligation to maintain a technological lead in our defence capabilities and our industrial base.

From 2001 to 2010, in a rapidly changing and often threatening global context, EU defence spending declined from EUR 251 billion to EUR 194 billion, meaning that we must do more with less money. We can only do that together.

Security issues in the broader sense – from energy policy in both its internal and external dimensions, which also remains high on the agenda for the months to come, to cyber security and data protection – are at the heart of the European Union’s raison d’être. We share the problems and suffer the threats together, so we are increasingly destined to work out the solutions together.

I hope this common European destiny in these and many other areas will be realistically highlighted and strongly defended in the months to come, when the future of the European project will be debated and decided on, and especially during the European elections.

We are not yet there, as we will discuss tomorrow a number of important files, and the preparatory work of the Commission and the Presidency will need to be followed up and brought to a conclusion before the end of this parliamentary term. We still have a lot of work to do, even if – when you think of where we were some time ago and where we are now – we have reason to be confident.

Let us not forget that, not so long ago, some people were predicting the implosion of the euro and even the disintegration of the European Union. And yet now, with consumer and investor confidence resuming, growth – even if it is timid growth – is expected. The recession is behind us, but we should avoid any kind of complacency. With such high levels of unemployment in some of our Member States and with many of our companies, especially SMEs, still lacking the financial means to invest and create jobs, we cannot yet say that we are out of the crisis.

But with determination and resolve we can overcome the current challenges. In recent months we have again done a lot of the groundwork in order to do so. 2014, I am sure, will be a year of positive change for the European economy. Let us work together for that to happen sooner rather than later.

 
  
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  Raffaele Baldassarre, a nome del gruppo PPE. – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, basterebbe ricordare che in soli sei mesi sono stati adottati ben 241 atti legislativi, ovvero due volte e mezzo la media dei semestri precedenti, per evidenziare l'ottimo risultato raggiunto da questa Presidenza.

Ma la Presidenza lituana non si è distinta solo per la quantità dei risultati concreti e di quelli ottenuti, bensì soprattutto per la qualità del lavoro che è stato svolto. Grazie alla bravura e passione del proprio governo e dei propri esperti, la Lituania ha pienamente meritato la fiducia e l'apprezzamento di questo Parlamento. Ciò è accaduto soprattutto grazie al vigoroso europeismo con cui la Presidenza ha portato avanti iter legislativi complessi, spesso resi ancora più difficili da tendenze politiche euroscettiche e talvolta antieuropeiste. Basti pensare al completamento dei negoziati relativi ai ben cinquantanove programmi per l'attuazione del bilancio dell'Unione europea per il periodo 2014-2020. Se dai primi giorni di gennaio è possibile iniziare a impiegare i fondi stanziati dall'Unione europea per i prossimi sette anni, lo si deve anche e soprattutto alla perseveranza e all'impegno di una Presidenza che è riuscita a far prevalere il valore dell'integrazione europea sugli egoismi e la miopia di alcuni Stati membri.

Ma il ruolo fondamentale della Presidenza lituana ha riguardato numerosi altri dossier, dal meccanismo unico di risoluzione delle crisi bancarie sino alla direttiva sul sistema di garanzia dei depositi. Per ciò che concerne la mia attività di relatore, ringrazio la Presidenza lituana per aver sbloccato l'impasse politico sulla direttiva relativa alla rendicontazione non finanziaria da parte delle imprese.

Concludo quindi rinnovando i miei complimenti alla Presidenza lituana, la quale ha raggiunto accordi politici importantissimi che serviranno a rafforzare la sicurezza finanziaria, economica e sociale dell'Unione, contribuendo allo sviluppo di un'Europa forte e inclusiva.

 
  
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  Hannes Swoboda, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, first of all I want to thank the President-in-Office personally, as well as all the representatives of her government who worked so hard to produce a very good Presidency which was, I think, successful in many areas. Some elements still remain to be discussed in this Parliament, for example the Banking Union. I am not as positive as the President of the Commission. It is a bad solution and we have to improve it, and I do not know why you accepted it. We still need to have a lot of debate on the posting of workers. But these are issues that I will come back to tomorrow.

I want to speak about two main issues: the MFF and the Vilnius Summit. Regarding the MFF, once again I am not as positive as you about smart growth. Maybe it is a smart solution, but I doubt it; it is not a very growth oriented solution.

But we have to speak about the future. I appeal to all the Member States to take up the money which is available. We talk about the social issues; migration is a big issue, and poverty migration is a big issue in many debates. Then we look at the European Social Fund: if I am right, the absorption rate was 55 %. In Germany, where there is also a big debate about poverty migration, the rate was 63 %. The money is there: why do you not take the money and solve the problem instead of pointing to Brussels and the Commission and the bad institution? That would be an important step. Therefore I think that the budget – low as it is – should be taken up by the Member States so they can do their job.

Secondly, regarding the Vilnius Summit: was it a success or not? It was partly a success if we look at Moldova, Georgia and even Azerbaijan. On Ukraine the picture is mixed. I agree with you, and I agree here with the President. We gave a clear message: money cannot buy everything. The Russians will not be able to buy everything. They cannot buy reforms and they cannot buy citizens.

Perhaps the Maidan spirit is something we need in Europe in general: people going onto the streets and fighting for values. I know that not every single individual on the streets there is keeping up the values of the European Union, but the overall majority of the protesters – the citizens going onto the streets and demonstrating for Europe – is something that should encourage us. Sometimes it would be good to have demonstrations of this sort in our own countries too, inside the European Union.

My last point: Lithuania will hand over the Presidency to the Greek Government. Maybe this is symbolic for us – from the north to the south. We need the whole of Europe, we need the north with their capacities, but we need the south too. We need the west and we need the east. We need the poorer and the richer. It is not possible to divide this Europe, it is not acceptable. The people who favour division are not here today because we are talking about a specific subject.

We have to have a united Europe: a Europe of solidarity and mutual understanding. Everyone has to do their job. But do not let there be a victory for those who want to divide Europe. Let us have common Europe, a Europe of solidarity. That is the vision of the Social Democrats and this House.

 
  
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  Adina-Ioana Vălean, on behalf of the ALDE Group. – Mr President, I think that Lithuania had a difficult task ahead of it when it took over the Council Presidency in July 2013. Fortunately, the many hurdles were transformed into opportunities, and that is why I wish to congratulate the Lithuanian Presidency on the results of its mandate.

The potential for growth in the EU was unlocked by the positive outcome of the interinstitutional negotiations on the MFF, especially through the establishment of a new funding mechanism for long-term competitiveness. The Connecting Europe Facility is one of the programmes that are aimed at attracting private investment for our energy, telecommunications and transport infrastructures. Upgraded networks will connect European citizens to the best prices and services, and large-scale infrastructure projects will be better financed through maximised use of financial instruments.

As rapporteur on this dossier, I very much appreciate the good cooperation we had in concluding the negotiations. I also wish to salute the agreement with Parliament on notification of investment projects in energy infrastructure, which will help provide an overview of infrastructure development, thus helping to build up and fine-tune the EU’s energy policy.

Finally, I would like to thank the Lithuanian Presidency on behalf of the people of Moldova, who have come one step closer to their European aspirations by initialising the Association Agreement, as well as through the completion of the EU-Moldova visa liberalisation act.

 
  
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  Philippe Lamberts, au nom du groupe Verts/ALE. – Monsieur le Président, Madame la Présidente, je voudrais tout d'abord vous dire ma surprise. Ma surprise parce que je ne m'attendais pas à cela de la part de la Lituanie. On pourrait dire, en effet, petit État, jeune démocratie, donc présidence un petit peu chaotique. Non, pas du tout. J'ai été extrêmement et agréablement surpris de voir la compétence de vos équipes, mais aussi leur capacité à être une force de proposition, quand il y avait des difficultés entre le Parlement et le Conseil. À chaque fois, en tout cas celles à qui j'ai eu à faire – souvent c'étaient des femmes – ont eu la capacité de faire des propositions qui ont permis de débloquer la situation. Je voulais vous en remercier.

C'est d'ailleurs la deuxième fois que vous m'avez surpris. La première fois c'est lorsque la Lituanie a désigné Algirdas Šemeta comme commissaire européen. Ce n'est sans doute pas un commissaire flamboyant. C'est quelqu'un d'assez discret mais qui a en charge un dossier extrêmement difficile: la fiscalité, dossier où, comme chacun sait, chaque État a le droit de veto. Votre commissaire est quelqu'un qui est capable, sans relâche, de faire des propositions de manière à faire avancer les dossiers fiscaux qui sont des dossiers extrêmement compliqués. Là aussi, je voudrais remercier la Lituanie. Elle nous a donc doublement surpris. Je suis fier d'être un Européen aux côtés de la Lituanie. Je viens, moi aussi, d'un petit pays.

Cela dit, je voudrais revenir sur trois points de cette présidence, qui ne sont peut-être pas à porter au débit de la présidence lituanienne mais qui sont à porter au débit du Conseil.

Le premier est le budget. Les perspectives financières pluriannuelles qui ont été adoptées sont des perspectives financières en régression. C'est un budget réactionnaire dans lequel – je suis désolé de le dire – non seulement les montants qui ont été décidés mais le contenu marquent un choix de priorités du vingtième siècle. Tous les éléments véritablement porteurs de progrès dans le budget, pour les sept années qui viennent, ont fait l'objet de variables d'ajustement, à la baisse bien sûr, dans un budget globalement en baisse. Je pense, évidemment, aux politiques de recherche. Je pense au deuxième pilier de la politique agricole commune. Je trouve que ce budget est inacceptable et c'est d'ailleurs pour cela que nous ne l'avons pas accepté.

Deuxième point, dans la négociation sur les nouvelles règles qui permettent de gérer les crises bancaires, les restructurations des banques – la directive que l'on appelle BRRD –, j'ai été très désagréablement surpris de voir le Conseil insérer, presque en catimini, une disposition qui permettra aux États de continuer à recapitaliser leurs banques, qui ne seraient soi-disant pas en difficulté, des banques soi-disant saines, avec de l'argent public.

Je dois constater qu'au sein de l'Union européenne, malgré tous les discours, la préférence reste, aujourd'hui, de faire payer le contribuable plutôt que de faire payer les créanciers des banques en raison du fait que faire appel aux créanciers privés pourrait être déstabilisateur pour les marchés. Mais faire payer le contribuable, évidemment, ce n'est pas déstabilisateur! Ce n'est pas systémiquement dangereux! Tout cela parce que les contribuables sont évidemment captifs alors que les investisseurs – car on les appelle encore ainsi –, c'est-à-dire les propriétaires de capitaux, eux, peuvent bien sûr aller d'un endroit à l'autre avec leur argent.

Cette attitude existe toujours et donc, malgré le progrès que représente la directive BRRD, il sera encore possible à un État de recapitaliser ses banques avec de l'argent public. Ce qui, pour nous, devrait être véritablement une solution de dernier recours reste malheureusement une solution que certains voudraient continuer à généraliser.

Dernier élément – c'est le plus grave, je pense –, c'est la question de l'union bancaire. Je vous ai entendu, Monsieur Barroso, et, une fois de plus, je ne suis pas d'accord avec vous. Nous n'avons pas mis un terme à cette spirale infernale qui lie les grandes banques et leurs États souverains. Aujourd'hui, la prétendue solution qui a été avancée par le Conseil n'en est pas une. Il n'y a pas de mutualisation de l'effort financier pour faire face à des crises bancaires entre les États membres. Chacun reste responsable chez soi. Il n'y a pas d'engagement du mécanisme européen de stabilité pour recapitaliser directement les banques.

Et le mécanisme de décision que vous proposez pour l'union bancaire pour la restructuration des banques, est un mécanisme de décision d'une complexité qui aurait probablement fait perdre son latin à Einstein. C'est un mécanisme impraticable. C'est un mécanisme illisible. C'est un mécanisme qui ne rendra pas possible ce que Mario Draghi – qui n'est pourtant pas au nombre de mes amis – réclame, c'est-à-dire la possibilité de mettre en résolution une banque sur la durée d'un week-end.

Donc, la solution que vous avez préconisée n'est pas une solution. Nous avons engagé, la semaine dernière, les négociations sur ce sujet. J'invite, en tout cas, les collègues, ici, au Parlement européen, et la Commission, de grâce, à se lever pour faire barrage à ce deal malsain du Conseil européen.

Je sais, Madame la Présidente, que vous n'êtes pas seule responsable de la chose mais je voudrais véritablement m'adresser au Conseil pour vous appeler à revoir vos batteries en la matière.

 
  
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  Valdemar Tomaševski, ECR frakcijos vardu. – Pirmininkavimas Europos Sąjungos Taryboje visada yra didelis iššūkis ne tik politine prasme, bet taip pat ir organizacine. Su pasitenkinimu ir malonumu kalbėdamas ECR frakcijos vardu noriu pabrėžti, kad Lietuvos pirmininkavimas buvo aukšto lygio ir praėjo sėkmingai. Tarp Lietuvos pirmininkavimo prioritetų galima išvardinti energetinį saugumą, Rytų partnerystę, išorinių ES sienų stiprinimą, Baltijos jūros regiono valstybių bendradarbiavimą. Lietuva užsibrėžė ambicingą tikslą užtikrinti nuoseklumą priimant sprendimus, todėl ES darbotvarkėje buvo suplanuota daugiau negu 500 teisės aktų užklausimų. Visgi svarbiausiu Lietuvos pirmininkavimo pasiekimu buvo, be abejo, susitarimas su Europos Parlamentu dėl daugiamečio ES biudžeto, skirto nuo 2014 m. iki 2020 m., t. y. dėl Sąjungos daugiametės finansinės programos. Ukrainos asociacijos susitarimo su ES nepasirašymas negalėtų būti pavadintas Lietuvos pirmininkavimo nesėkme, kaip tai įvardijo daugelis komentatorių, bet akivaizdaus žaidimo pasekme, žaidimo, kurį žaidė Kijevo valdžia ir kurio rezultatai buvo nuspėjami dar iki susitikimo. Pirmininkavimas – tai puiki proga pačios valstybės narės reklamai, jos vaidmens sustiprinimui Sąjungoje bei teigiamo valstybės kaip patikimos partnerės įvaizdžio pristatymui. Deja, bet pastarieji skandalingi įvykiai Lietuvoje, nukreipti prieš tautines mažumas, paliko blogą įspūdį ir tapo lyg deguto šaukštas Lietuvos pirmininkavimo medaus statinėje. Kalėdų išvakarėse Lietuvos vyriausybės atstovo prašymu Vilniaus apygardos teismas, spaudžiamas viešų politikų pareiškimų, nustatė drakonišką apie 13 tūkstančių eurų baudą Šalčininkų rajono savivaldybės direktoriui Boleslavui Daškevič už dvikalbių informacinių lentelių su gatvių pavadinimais valstybine lietuvių bei lenkų kalbomis naudojimą, kurios kabo ant privačių namų. Šiame regione 80 proc. gyventojų sudaro vietinė lenkų tautinė mažuma. Kova su autochtoninių tautinių mažumų kalbomis, palaikoma aukščiausios valdžios, yra ne kas kitas kaip kraštutinio nacionalizmo pasireiškimas, kurio neturėtų būti Europos Sąjungoje. Praėjusių metų liepą Europos Parlamentas specialioje kalbų įvairovės rezoliucijoje paragino valstybes nares, kurios to dar nepadarė, pasirašyti bei ratifikuoti Europos regioninių bei mažumų kalbų chartiją. Parlamentas taip pat paragino smerkti bet kokius veiksmus, kurie diskriminuoja kalbos pagrindu arba per nustatytą arba paslėptą asimiliaciją pažeidžia kitų bendruomenių kalbas bei tapatybes. Kreipiuosi į Tarybą ir Komisiją nedelsiant imtis veiksmų įgyvendinant šią rezoliuciją ir reaguoti siekiant sustabdyti represijas, diskriminaciją bei tautinių mažumų persekiojimus Sąjungos teritorijoje. Ačiū už dėmesį ir linkiu sėkmės Graikijai.

(Kalbėtojas sutiko atsakyti į klausimą, pateiktą pakėlus mėlynąją kortelę (Darbo tvarkos taisyklių 149 straipsnio 8 dalis))

 
  
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  Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė (PPE), pakėlus mėlynąją kortelę pateiktas klausimas. – Pirmas dalykas – ar jūs kalbate savo frakcijos vardu ar savo asmens vardu, kalbėdamas konkrečiai apie tautines mažumas Lietuvoje ir neva esamus tam tikrus pažeidimus? Ir antras dalykas – jūs ko gero gerai žinote, kad Lietuvoje valstybinė kalba yra lietuvių kalba, ir tos baudos, kurios buvo skirtos, jos susiakumuliavo į tokią sumą, kurią jūs buvot minėjęs. Ir kitas klausimas – ar jūs manot, kad valstybės tarnautojas gali leisti sau nesilaikyti valstybės, kurioje jis dirba ir kurios pilietis yra, įstatymų?

 
  
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  Valdemar Tomaševski (ECR), atsakymas į pakėlus mėlynąją kortelę pateiktą klausimą. – Ačiū labai už klausimą. Taip, aš sakiau, kad kalbu ECR frakcijos vardu, tai yra mūsų frakcijos nuomonė, kadangi mūsų frakcijos vienas iš autoritetų buvusi Britanijos premjerė Margaret Thatcher būtent ir kovojo už tokią Europą, kurios mes šiandien norime ir, deja, kurios dar nėra mano valstybėje, kadangi tautinės mažumos (tautinės mažumos vietinės autochtoninės, kurios gyveno čia 700 metų) yra persekiojamos ir baudžiamos už savo gimtosios kalbos vartojimą net tuose rajonuose, kur tautinės mažumos sudaro 80 proc. gyventojų. Šitie užrašai rašomi šalia valstybinės kalbos. Jie buvo legaliai pakabinti dar 1991 m., kada buvo priimtas įstatymas, kada mes, Lietuvos lenkai, kovojom už nepriklausomybę ir iškovojom šitą nepriklausomybę. Bet po dvidešimties metų buvo panaikintas šitas įstatymas ir dabar yra taip, kaip yra. Tai yra skandalinga ir taip negali būti.

 
  
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  Martina Anderson, on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group. – Mr President, one of the good news stories during the Lithuanian Presidency was the Irish exit from the bailout. Sinn Féin has long advocated saying goodbye to the Troika, and we would encourage all other Member States who are suffering from the deep social and economic winds being inflicted by the Troika to show it the door as well.

The Irish Government has now adopted the mind-set of austerity, so there is no need for the Troika to remain. In case the government should think of stepping outside that policy, the 26-county state will remain under supervision by the EU for several decades to come. Exiting the bailout will change little for middle- and low-income families, for the unemployed or for those who have been forced to emigrate. It will do nothing to stop the dissipation of public services and the deterioration of living standards for the vast majority of Irish people.

One truly good news story to come out of this Presidency was the agreement reached on the Tobacco Products Directive. As a shadow for this file, I was able to witness the resolve and the hard work put in by the Lithuanian Presidency to agree on legislation which will have tangible effects for the health of future generations. I want to congratulate the Lithuanian Presidency for this.

 
  
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  Rolandas Paksas, EFD frakcijos vardu. – Lietuva buvo pirmoji iš trijų Baltijos valstybių, kuriai teko garbė ir pakankamai sunki užduotis antrąjį praėjusių metų pusmetį pirmininkauti Europos Sąjungai. Džiaugiuosi, kad pakankamai jauna bendrijos narė pasirodė kaip subrendusi, patikima ir politikoje viena solidžiausių bendrijos narių, gebanti pasiekti svarbius susitarimus ir rasti pačius geriausius sprendimus. Aš sveikinu Jus, Ekscelencija Prezidente. Suprantama, kad didžiausias dėmesys pirmininkavimo metu buvo skirtas Rytų partnerystės klausimams. Tai, kad Ukraina ir Europos Sąjunga nepasirašė asocijuotos narystės bei laisvos prekybos sutarties, kartais vertinama kaip Lietuvos pralaimėjimas. Aš manau, kad tai iš principo neteisingas vertinimas. Turime pripažinti, kad ir pati Ukraina, ir Europos Sąjungos institucijos nepadarė visko, ką galėjo, kad ant partnerystės sutarties būtų sudėti visi taškai. Tačiau nereiktų pamiršti, kad per šį laikotarpį Rytų partnerystės srityje pirmininkaujant Lietuvai pasiekti kiti svarbūs dalykai: sutarta dėl bevizio režimo Moldovai, pasirašyti kiti keturi susitarimai. Pirmininkaujant Lietuvai pasiektas susitarimas dėl septynmečio biudžeto. Daug dėmesio buvo skirta bankų sąjungos kūrimo, bankų priežiūros ir pertvarkymo, indėlių garantijų klausimams. Praėjusį pusmetį pasiektas ir susitarimas su Europos investicijų banku bei struktūriniais fondais dėl galimybių finansiniais ištekliais padėti mažoms ir vidutinėms įmonėms. Tačiau kalbant apie iš tiesų svarbius pasiekimus ir gerus rezultatus neturėtume pamiršti, kad Europos Sąjunga šiandien stovi kryžkelėj tarp federacinės sąjungos ir nacionalinių valstybių sandraugos, ir apsisprendimas, kuria kryptimi teks eiti, yra neišvengiamas. Gal ne šiam Parlamentui, gal net ne kitam, bet išrinktam po 2020 m. tai bus neišvengiama. Tačiau iki to laiko privalome šiek tiek pakeisti kai kurias bendrijoje vis garsiau skambančias politines nuostatas. Jeigu šūkis „Daugiau Europos“ reikš mažiau laisvių ir teisių nacionalinėms valstybėms, nebus iš to nieko gero. Orientuokime šiandieninę politiką į nacionalinių valstybių sąjungą, nes būtent stiprios, savo identitetą, kultūrą ir religiją turinčios valstybės yra stiprios Europos pagrindas.

 
  
  

PRESIDENZA DELL'ON. GIANNI PITTELLA
Vicepresidente

 
  
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  Ewald Stadler (NI). - Herr Präsident! Frau Präsidentin, Ihre Ratspräsidentschaft, die ansonsten wirklich sehr professionell und akkurat war, wird immer mit dem Scheitern der Bemühungen, ein Assoziierungsabkommen mit der Ukraine auf dem Gipfel von Vilnius zustande zu bringen, verknüpft sein. Das ist bedauerlich für Ihre Präsidentschaft, aber es ist gleichzeitig bezeichnend für die EU-Außenpolitik.

Der Versuch der Europäischen Union, die Ukraine gegen Russland auszuspielen, ist gescheitert. Und daraus sollten wir Lehren ziehen. Den Geist des Maidan-Platzes, den Sie und auch Kommissionspräsident Barroso beschworen haben, sehen Sie wirklich etwas zu romantisch. Er ist relativ rasch verdunstet – nämlich unter dem Eindruck eines Gaspreisrabatts, den die Ukrainer in der Zwischenzeit bekommen haben. Der Geist des Maidan-Platzes ist in Wahrheit ein Geist der Wohlstandserwartung. Das haben wir vorher schon in Rumänien und Bulgarien gesehen. Die Menschen in der Ukraine glauben, sich mit der Nähe zu Europa ihre Lebensverhältnisse verbessern zu können. Die romantischen Werte, die Sie in diese Maidan-Platz-Demonstrationen hineininterpretieren, haben mit der Realität dort nichts zu tun. Daher mein Appell an die Verantwortlichen der Europäischen Union, insbesondere an Frau Ashton, aufzuhören, Länder gegen Russland auszuspielen!

Damit bin ich beim nächsten Kapitel: Es ist bedauerlich, dass Ihre Ratspräsidentschaft mit dem dauernden Bemühen verknüpft sein wird, aus dieser Union eine Militärunion zu machen. Ich sage das als Angehöriger eines neutralen Staates: Das ist für uns inakzeptabel. Wir sind keiner Militärunion beigetreten, und ich will keine Militärunion. Ich will keine Militärunion, die klar ein Feindbild hat. Und das wird hier offen ausgesprochen. Diese Konfliktsituation, die sich hier gegenüber Russland aufbaut, ist meiner Ansicht nach hochgefährlich und brisant. Ich spreche mich daher dezidiert gegen das aus, was Sie, aber auch die anderen Verantwortlichen dieser Union auf dem Gipfel vom 19. Dezember gesagt haben. Es darf nicht zu einer Verschmelzung von EU und NATO kommen. Ich möchte keine Militärunion in Europa haben!

 
  
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  Dubravka Šuica (PPE). - Poštovani g. predsjedavajući; gospođo predsjednice, imali ste vrlo težak i izazovan zadatak koji je ne samo tehničke prirode bio nego i političke prirode. Postignuti su izvrsni rezultati, ne samo u količini, kao što ste i sami rekli, nego je poznata i energija koju je litavsko predsjedništvo uložilo u ovaj šestomjesečni mandat. Uspjeli ste se izboriti protiv nekih uskogrudnih sebičnih politika, a na samom početku postavili ste jedan vrlo ambiciozan program koji se odnosio na energetsku sigurnost, na financijsku stabilnost, na smanjenje nezaposlenosti i na stalno promicanje gospodarskog rasta. Vjerujem osobno da ste u tome uspjeli.

Isto tako želim reći da je počelo sve ubrzanim ritmom jer osim proračuna Litva je morala riješiti i brojne i kompleksne dosjee koji su ostali od prošlog predsjedavanja. Isto tako, kad je riječ o Istočnom partnerstvu treba reći da sigurno će Litva ukrajinskom narodu, drugim narodima Istočnog partnerstva biti dobar primjer s obzirom na to da se svrstava među države Europske unije koje su najuspješnije prevladale krizu i čiji su ekonomski i financijski pokazatelji jasni.

Isto tako, želim reći da je litavsko predsjedavanje koincidiralo s ulaskom Hrvatske u Europsku uniju i imali ste jedan vrlo važan zadatak uvesti najnovijeg člana Europske unije i želim vam se zahvaliti na toj izvrsnoj suradnji. I na samom kraju, također je vrlo simbolično da nakon Litve Grčka preuzima predsjedanje, dakle, od samog sjevera na kojem ste vi do samog juga – simbolika Europe, dakle. Ja se uporno zalažem da nema razlika i da ne bude razlika između Sjevera i Juga, Istoka i Zapada, nema zemalja Eurozone i onih koje nisu u Eurozoni, nema zemalja u Schengenu i onih koje nisu u Schengenu, želimo jednu solidarnu jedinstvenu Europu i na tome vam se zahvaljujem.

 
  
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  Vilija Blinkevičiūtė (S&D). - Sveikinu ir džiaugiuosi pasiektais puikiais Lietuvos pirmininkavimo rezultatais ir ypač sveikinu pasiekus susitarimą dėl Europos Sąjungos daugiametės finansinės programos, nes šis susitarimas leis užtikrinti, kad visos ES finansuojamos programos bus pradėtos įgyvendinti laiku. Lietuvos pirmininkavimo metu po ilgų derybų galiausiai buvo susitarta dėl socialinę dimensiją turinčių Europos Sąjungos programų, o tai reiškia, kad Europos Sąjungos biudžetas bus orientuotas į žmones, ir mūsų piliečiai pajus konkrečią naudą. Iš jų noriu pasidžiaugt pasiektais susitarimais dėl Europos socialinio fondo, Europos globalizacijos fondo, Paramos labiausiai skurstantiems fondo, nes visi šie fondai prisideda prie mūsų žmonių gerovės skatinimo ir yra skirti nuo krizės nukentėjusiems žmonėms. Lietuvos pirmininkavimo metu patvirtinta Jaunimo garantijų iniciatyva bei švietimo ir mokslo programa Erasmus+ šiame kontekste yra labai svarbi, nes kartu pasiekėm, kad nedarbo problemos sprendime ypatingas dėmesys būtų skirtas jaunimo užimtumo didinimui. Ir be to, iš tikrųjų tai yra geras pasiekimas, kad švietimui ir mokymui skirtas biudžetas padidintas net 40 proc., palyginti su praėjusiu finansinio programavimo laikotarpiu. Iš tikrųjų Lietuvai pirmininkaujant pavyko rasti bendrus kompromisus, priimti bendrus sprendimus dėl bendro bankų priežiūros ir pertvarkos mechanizmo, dėl indėlių garantijų sistemos direktyvos, dėl ilgai diskutuotos Tabako direktyvos. Labai džiaugiuosi ir dėl judančių darbuotojų papildomų teisių į pensiją ir galiausiai tvirta padaryta pažanga, ir dėl komandiruojamų darbuotojų direktyvos, ir dėl daugelio kitų klausimų, kurie daro Europos Sąjungą iš tikrųjų labiau patikimą, augančią ir atvirą. Ir baigdama, gerbiama Prezidente, dėkoju Jums ir Jūsų komandai, dėkoju ambasadoriui R. Karobliui, dėkoju viceministrui Vytautui Leškevičiui, kuris iš tikrųjų labai gerai dirbo su Europos Parlamentu, ir visai Lietuvos vyriausybei ir visiems čia esantiems žmonėms, todėl, kad žinau, kiek daug jie dirbo, kiek naktų nemiegojo, kiek nervų sugadino, bet užtai rezultatas yra tikrai geras.

 
  
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  Anneli Jäätteenmäki (ALDE). - Arvoisa puhemies, Liettua hoiti puheenjohtajakautensa aivan mallikkaasti, onnittelut siitä. Valitettavaa on, että puheenjohtajakausi tullaan kuitenkin muistamaan lähinnä vain siitä, että itäinen kumppanuus kärsi haaksirikon. Se oli Liettuan puheenjohtajakauden painopiste.

Mutta se, että tämä haaksirikko tapahtui, ei ole vain Liettuan syy, vaan siinä täytyy EU:n itse uskaltaa katsoa toimintaansa avoimesti. EU:n vetovoima ja vipuvoima ovat hiipuneet. EU:n on myös mietittävä, mitä se tarkoittaa sanoilla yhteistyö, kumppaneiden arvostus ja sillä, että kunnioitetaan toisten arvoja.

On hyvä asia, että neuvotteluja Ukrainan kanssa jatketaan. Ukrainan tulee saada itse päättää, minkälaista yhteistyötä se EU:n kanssa tekee, ilman minkäänlaista painostusta. Minun mielestäni on aivan luontevaa, että itäiset kumppanivaltiot ja kaikki EU:n jäsenvaltiot tekevät yhteistyötä eri suuntiin. Ei voi olla sellainen tilanne, että tehdään yhteistyötä vain EU:n kanssa, vaan EU itsekin tekee yhteistyötä erilaisten valtioiden kanssa. EU:n lähtökohdan pitää olla se, että EU:n omat kumppanivaltiot voivat myös harjoittaa itsenäistä politiikkaa moneen suuntaan. Se on Euroopan etu, se on maailman etu, ja se takaa myös rauhan.

 
  
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  Mark Demesmaeker (Verts/ALE). - Voorzitter, ik wil op mijn beurt van de gelegenheid gebruik maken om het Litouwse voorzitterschap van harte te bedanken en te feliciteren.

Ik wil graag toch ook even terugkomen op de top van Vilnius, het niet-ondertekenen van de associatieovereenkomst met Oekraïne. De huidige leiders van Oekraïne hebben dan inderdaad misschien hun Europese droom laten varen, maar een groot deel van de bevolking koestert die droom nog altijd en die bevolking mogen we natuurlijk niet in de steek laten.

Samen met een aantal andere collega's was ik in Kiev getuige van de Maidan en wat uniek is bij deze protestbeweging is dat het een burgerbeweging is, dat het de civil society is die mobiliseert en organiseert. Het niet-ondertekenen van de associatieovereenkomst was voor hen de aanleiding om een dieper ongenoegen uit te drukken.

Die beweging mikt op verregaande hervormingen, op een systeemshift: de spelregels zelf moeten veranderen met de hulp van de Unie. De leiders van de Maidan beseffen dat dat straatprotest, dat nu nog altijd doorgaat, vroeg of laat moet leiden naar een politieke oplossing. Ze vragen om een echte dialoog. De huidige meerderheid en oppositie moeten hierbij betrokken worden, maar ook het maatschappelijk middenveld, dat zijn blik vestigt op de Europese Unie, die een rol zou moeten spelen bij die onderhandelingen - en ik gebruik mijn spreektijd om de verzuchtingen te verwoorden van de leiding van die Euromaidan, waarmee ik uitgebreid kon spreken. Ik reken erop dat de Europese Unie die rol op zich wil nemen, want dat zijn wij de bevolking verschuldigd.

 
  
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  Tomasz Piotr Poręba (ECR). - Panie Przewodniczący! Pani Prezydent! Przy okazji podsumowania litewskiej prezydencji nie można milczeć, lecz należy głośno mówić o tym, jak w kraju, który przez ostatnie miesiące przewodził sprawom Unii Europejskiej, traktuje się mniejszości narodowe, a szczególnie mniejszość polską. Ostatnio na wniosek pełnomocnika litewskiego rządu nałożono drakońskie kary sięgające tysięcy euro za używanie tablic informacyjnych w języku polskim na prywatnych posesjach. Na Litwie nie można też używać oryginalnych nazwisk. Ponadto pod koniec roku parlament litewski zadecydował o nieuchwaleniu na Litwie ustawy o mniejszościach narodowych, pomimo że stanowią one aż 16% mieszkańców Litwy, w tym sami Polacy w rejonie Wilna stanowią 60% mieszkańców. Mimo tego próbuje się rugować język polski z litewskiej przestrzeni publicznej, tym samy Litwa w dalszym ciągu łamie Konwencję ramową Rady Europy o ochronie mniejszości narodowej, którą ratyfikowała, a także ignoruje Europejską Kartę Języków Regionalnych lub Mniejszościowych.

Apeluję dzisiaj do Pani Prezydent, aby skończyć z tą jawną dyskryminacją mniejszości polskiej na Litwie, co zupełnie niepotrzebnie niszczy wizerunek Pani pięknego kraju w Europie.

 
  
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  Paul Murphy (GUE/NGL). - Mr President, I have a question for President Barroso, though unfortunately he has again left the debate before answering any questions. Perhaps Commissioner Šefčovič will be able to assist. At the EU summit in December, Mr Barroso spoke about the question of the bank bailout in Ireland, saying that it would be wrong to give the impression that Europe had created a problem for Ireland, and that now Europe had to help Ireland. I hear it sometimes suggested that the problem has been created by the EU, or by the euro, but it is exactly the opposite. I think that Mr Barroso perhaps protests too much, because Irish developers, Irish bankers and the Irish Government should of course bear responsibility for the building of a massive property bubble which benefited a tiny section of the population – but what about the bank bailout? Together with the government, did the European Commission and the European Central Bank not support the idea of a massive bank bailout at the expense of working people in Ireland? The consequence is that Irish people have paid more in terms of the bank bailout than any other state in Europe, with less than 1 % of Europe’s population meeting 42 % of the total cost of that bailout.

Can the Commission spell out the consequences of this thinking clearly? Does it mean that the notion of retroactive burden-sharing of the bank bailout is off the table from the Commission’s point of view? How does that square with the Irish Government’s statements that this was agreed at the summit in June 2012? This is not about asking nicely for Europe to help Ireland; it is about saying that all working people across Europe have paid more than enough to the bankers, the bondholders and the billionaires. The debt should not be paid.

 
  
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  Andrew Henry William Brons (NI). - Mr President, the Lithuanian Presidency claims credit for progress on the Banking Union and enhanced EU control over the economies of Member States, especially those in the eurozone, as though these were simply means of achieving economic well-being. However, these are not a means to an end, but rather an end in itself: centralised control of Member States.

The Presidency has boasted of its achievements on hate crime, which properly refers to criminal acts, violence, abuse and property damage motivated by hatred of a particular category of people, and should always be deplored. Hatred is always destructive of the hater as well as the hated. However, assaults and extreme violence and damage motivated by hatred and contempt are not perpetrated only – or even mainly – by the indigenous populations of Europe against ethnic minorities, as we know from the cases of Lee Rigby in London, those of Kriss Donald and Richard Everitt, the London riots in 2011 and the countless victims of Asian grooming.

Lithuania boasts of hosting a conference in November of the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA), which believes in the criminalisation of disapproved expressions of opinion on ethnicity, including racism – a word undefined but coined by Trotsky – and xenophobia, which can only be described as an Orwellian thought crime. Ironically, the application of these words to political opponents – a favourite activity of the FRA and Eurocrats – is a subliminal message of hatred: stop reading, stop listening, stop judging for yourself; hate the speaker, hate the writer.

 
  
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  Tunne Kelam (PPE). - Mr President, may I congratulate Lithuania on the success they have clearly deserved. It was not only the first Lithuanian, but also the first Baltic Presidency, and may I add that this was a combined success of all the pro-European forces in the country, prepared too by the previous Kubilius Government.

Last year resulted in a compromise on the MFF. This was in fact good teamwork by two presidencies, with Ireland preparing an agreement on substance and Lithuania successfully finalising it. The Vilnius Summit was well prepared by its host. While the main hopes were not formally met, the Eastern Partnership’s validity has been confirmed by the Ukrainian people’s inspiring verdict in favour of their European future. As the President-in-Office said, Ukraine will never be the same again.

It was also a realistic assessment of Russia’s policies. The Kremlin’s vigorous and hostile opposition to the expansion of the rule of law and citizens’ rights area in Europe shows that Mr Putin views the EU not as a partner but as a strategic rival. What we need now is an even stronger commitment to the six nations of the Eastern Partnership, beginning with the visa liberalisation that Lithuania has started.

Under the Lithuanian Presidency a mandate was given to start accession negotiations with Serbia. This reminds us that the start of similar negotiations with Macedonia is still in a demoralising impasse. I would appeal to the Greek Presidency to demonstrate statesmanship, generosity and loyalty to all European interests, to give all Balkan applicants an equal chance and a solid perspective in the future.

Lastly, Latvia has just joined the euro area. The next Lithuanian Presidency may be 14 years away, but there is hope that, next year, Lithuania will become the 19th member of the euro area. I wish you every success and I thank you.

 
  
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  Libor Rouček (S&D). - Mr President, I would like to congratulate Ms Grybauskaitė, her government and her country. Madam President-in-Office, as you mentioned, Lithuania is a young democracy and a small country, but you have done a huge job very well: the huge task that lay ahead of you six months ago.

It has been mentioned that 241 legislative acts were adopted. Most importantly, you finished the work on the multiannual financial framework (MFF) so that we have a budget. Yes, many of us wish we had more money or that we had redirected money to different priorities, but we do have a budget for the next seven years. I participated in some of the negotiations, so I know well how difficult they were.

Lithuania organised the Vilnius summit, and organised it well. Some of our colleagues and others took the view that it was a failure. I am not of that view. It was clear from the beginning that we had to deal with six different countries: OK, they had all been under the Soviet Union, but they were, are and will be very different. On the one hand, for instance, we have Belarus and, on the other, Azerbaijan. For those countries who wanted to take up our offer of an Association Agreement or a Deep and Comprehensive Trade Agreement, they were initiated.

The case of Ukraine has, of course, been mentioned. Ukraine will never be the same. In spite of this, we have to work towards the goal of not letting down the people in Kiev and Ukraine as a whole. We have to keep our offer open.

Madam President-in-Office, your people and your country can be proud of your Presidency. I congratulate you on it, and I also hope, as Mr Kelam mentioned, that by January next year your country will be the 19th member of the eurozone.

 
  
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  Graham Watson (ALDE). - Mr President, the first former Soviet Republic to preside over our Union has done so well. Congratulations are due on a landmark agreement on the EU budget and on agreements with Georgia and Moldova at the Eastern Neighbourhood Summit. The absence of Ukraine can hardly be blamed on Lithuania.

Among the lesser achievements, the progress on the status of European political parties is especially welcome to me and to other Members of this House. Yet there remains one area of deep concern. During our debate at the start of the Presidency, I questioned official attitudes in Lithuania to ethnic Russians. I cited the case of Viktor Uspaskich, an ethnic Russian who is persecuted for the success of a Party he founded and the threat it poses to longer-established parties. We hoped that Lithuania would satisfy us that due process in this case is paramount and that Lithuania has not only a free economy but also a just society, in which the separation of powers is respected – that Lithuania has become, as President Grybauskaitė said of the European Union, ‘a lighthouse of hope for freedom, democracy and human rights’.

We have been disappointed. The irregularities in the judicial process against Mr Uspaskich are striking. Evidence of meddling in the judicial and political processes by the State Security Department and the Office of the President are worrying. Here, as in the case of Malik Gatayev, we need assurance that justice and the rule of law prevail in Lithuania.

 
  
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  Danuta Maria Hübner (PPE). - Mr President, I would like to say a few words, as Chair of the Committee on Regional Development, on interinstitutional cooperation between this Parliament and the Lithuanian Presidency.

As you probably know, Parliament has for the first time been a co-legislator on the entire package for this policy, taking responsibility for this European investment policy for the years to come on an equal footing with the Council negotiators. Together we had to cope with a very complex multi-regulation framework for this policy which will, in the future, make a decisive contribution to Europeʼs growth, the creation of jobs and also to improving European competitiveness.

I think it is worth looking back at this interinstitutional joint effort, because lessons were learnt during this process with regard to both the working methods and also communication between the institutions and their legal services.

We had parallels from the interlinked negotiations on umbrella and fund-specific regulations, which required extremely deep knowledge of the entire portfolio, but we could also clearly see that interinstitutional cooperation – which is based on trust and common goals – can be key to the efficiency and democratic legitimacy of European policy-making. I would like to thank most wholeheartedly all colleagues working at all levels of the Presidency, starting with ministers, through ambassadors and right up to expert level.

I would like to add just one or two sentences on a different issue. I would like to say that I welcome the Presidencyʼs drive to take revision of the balance of payments facility forward. I understand that the file could not be finalised and presented for Parliamentʼs approval due to the resistance of several Member States, but I sincerely hope that the Greek Presidency will build on the Lithuanian Presidencyʼs work and reach a final agreement on the balance of payment facility. And lastly, I will keep my fingers crossed for Lithuaniaʼs successful entry into the euro area.

 
  
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  Linda McAvan (S&D). - Mr President, as rapporteur on the Tobacco Products Directive I would like to address the President-in-Office to put on records my thanks to her Presidency for the commitment it showed to reaching agreement on the Directive. In particular I would like to thank Minister Vytenis Andriukaitis for his determination to reach agreement; Ambassador Vinciunas, who I can see is here this morning; and the chair of the working group, Martynas Pukas, who did a tremendous job to make sure that we were able to reach agreement between Parliament and Council on 16 December 2013, almost one year to the day since the Commission presented the Tobacco Products Directive to the outside world.

We know that the Tobacco Products Directive had a very difficult birth. We know all about the intense lobbying and people trying to delay it, trying to push it into the long grass and to undermine it. I hope that all the institutions will learn lessons about what happened and that we will all look at the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and implement in full its recommendations on transparency and lobbying.

I think the agreement that we have reached is a good one. I said at the beginning that the EU has to play catch-up with many other countries in the world on tobacco control. We know that Australia, the US and Canada are ahead of us, but so too is Brazil, where tough tobacco control measures have seen the proportion of smokers drop from 37 % to 15 %. We are, of course, going to have a vote in this House, hopefully in late February. I hope that we will reach agreement and that this will indeed be a testimony to the work of the Lithuanian Presidency, which will be a real legacy.

 
  
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  Olle Schmidt (ALDE). - Herr talman! Jag vill tacka Litauen för ett alldeles utmärkt ordförandeskap. Som ett litet land i unionen har ni gjort ett fantastiskt bra arbete. Jag tror att man kan säga att vi alla är imponerade. Eftersom jag själv kommer från ett litet land så vet jag, från den gång då Sverige först var ordförandeland 2001, hur mycket det betydde för vårt land och det kanske betyder än mer för ert land. Man kan inte annat än uttrycka sin beundran och stolthet över det ni har gjort.

Som ledamot i det utskottet för ekonomi och valutafrågor har jag följt arbetet rörande regleringar av banker och de finansiella marknaderna. Jag har deltagit i förhandlingar om det så kallade MiFID-direktivet – direktivet och förordningen om marknader för finansiella instrument – och suttit med i tolv trepartsmöten. Tyvärr föll vi på mållinjen under det senaste trepartsmötet i december, och det grekiska ordförandeskapet får ta över stafettpinnen. Men jag vill ändå rikta ett särskilt tack till Dovile Naktinyte och hennes team för deras utmärkta arbete.

I hope that you will pass on the message, Madam President-in-Office, and the tribute to her team. Without her work we would not have come as far as we have done.

Finally, I will also support you in joining the eurozone. I hope this will encourage my own country, Sweden, to join, following Latvia and Lithuania. You are two brave countries: hopefully my country can learn from that.

 
  
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  Marian-Jean Marinescu (PPE). - Domnule președinte, Președinția lituaniană a acoperit o perioadă dificilă și intensă, caracterizată de negocieri importante, care au vizat politici vitale pentru funcționarea și evoluția Uniunii.

Refacerea economică a Uniunii este prioritatea zero în acest moment, de aceea felicit încă o dată Parlamentul și Președinția lituaniană, pentru că au reușit să ajungă la un acord privind bugetul 2014-2020.

S-au concluzionat și consolidat politici care vor asigura pe termen lung creștere durabilă și stabilitate. Sunt de menționat, în primul rând, acordurile pe bazele legale privind politicile de coeziune și agricultură. Sunt de salutat și măsurile privind combaterea șomajului, mai ales în rândul tinerilor. Prin adoptarea prevederilor comune privind fondurile structurale și de investiții europene se va asigura canalizarea resurselor alocate într-o direcție optimă, generându-se astfel prosperitate regională.

Trebuie remarcat și susținut activ progresul obținut în ultimul timp în stabilirea uniunii bancare, în generarea de politici economice responsabile din partea statelor membre, precum și în legislația care protejează interesele financiare și garantează drepturile cetățenilor Uniunii în sectorul financiar.

Nu trebuie să uităm un punct important de pe agenda Președinției lituaniene, și anume Acordul de Asociere și cel de liber schimb dintre Uniune și Republica Moldova. Acest acord reprezintă o recunoaștere a eforturilor de reformă din ultimii ani ale guvernului de la Chișinău, dar și o dovadă că Uniunea Europeană își onorează angajamentele față de partenerii estici.

Regret că nu au fost deschise discuțiile privind regulamentul „Cerul unic european”. Acest regulament este foarte important, atât pentru Uniunea Europeană, cât și pentru cetățenii săi, prin îmbunătățirile pe care le aduce traficului aerian și confortului pasagerilor pe acest mod de transport.

Mulțumesc Președinției lituaniene pentru colaborarea excelentă din cadrul negocierilor pentru Fondul de securitate internă al Uniunii.

 
  
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  Pervenche Berès (S&D). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Présidente, merci de cette présidence. Pour les affaires sociales, je dois dire que l'arrivée de votre Présidence a vraiment permis de débloquer, dans la négociation du cadre financier pluriannuel, beaucoup de dossiers. Vous avez manifesté, vis-à-vis des demandes du Parlement européen, une qualité d'écoute qui nous a permis, notamment sur le Fonds social européen, d'avancer, y compris sur les questions de prise en compte de la situation des jeunes, de l'articulation avec la garantie jeunesse, que ce Parlement européen a soutenue avec tant de détermination depuis le début. Bien sûr, nous n'avons pas pu aboutir sur la part du Fonds social européen dans le cadre des fonds structurels de la politique de cohésion. Nous aurions souhaité pouvoir nous exprimer sur le besoin, pour cette politique sociale, de déboucher sur 25 % de l'enveloppe globale, mais pour le reste, nous avons, je crois, obtenu un bon accord.

Quant à la directive sur le détachement des travailleurs, merci là aussi de ce que votre présidence a fait pour débloquer ce dossier et parvenir à la conclusion, au Conseil, d'un accord qui a permis d'ouvrir la négociation avec le Parlement européen. Soyez certains que nous ferons tout pour conclure ce dossier avant la fin de la législature, même s'il faut que vous disiez à la Présidence qui vous succède que, bien sûr, le Parlement européen présentera, sur la base du mandat qui lui a été donné par sa commission, des demandes fortes qui devront être entendues pour que cet accord puisse être le meilleur possible.

Un dernier mot, Madame la Présidente, simplement une marque de regret. Dans le dossier de l'Union économique et monétaire – au vu du mandat qui avait été donné – pour que nous puissions évoquer, faire vivre pleinement la question de la dimension sociale de l'Union économique et monétaire, il me semble aussi que vous devez indiquer à vos successeurs que le chantier est ouvert et qu'il faut le prendre à bras-le-corps.

 
  
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  Kristiina Ojuland (ALDE). - Mr President, Madam President-in-Office, I am very proud of the Lithuanian Presidency, because Lithuania is our neighbour in the Baltic countries, and I hope that Estonia, my country, will take a lesson from your Presidency’s experience. However, I believe that the success of each Presidency is comprehensively connected with the political will and determination of the Council Members. Outcomes must be put in the context of the objective possibilities that are open to each country during its Presidency.

In the field of foreign policy, hopes were high for the Vilnius Summit. The failure to sign the Association Agreement with Ukraine was not the fault of the Presidency but rather was due to the shortcomings of long-term enlargement policy and to Ukraine’s selfish leadership. Nevertheless, the success achieved with Moldova and Georgia should not be underestimated, and hopefully the Council will continue at full speed with the signing of both these agreements before the end of the current parliamentary term. Signing a cooperation agreement with Azerbaijan is also a very important step forward.

I would also like to welcome the progress made with the Single Supervisory and Single Resolution Mechanisms. A fully integrated Banking Union will ensure that, in future, banks will bear the cost of their own mistakes rather than have taxpayers foot the bill. The banks will be better regulated and supervised. With many different opinions on how to achieve that, the success of the Lithuanian Presidency in proceeding with this proposal has to be acknowledged.

Finally, I would like to highlight the progress made with the negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement with the USA. We all know that completion of this agreement will bring significant financial benefits to both sides. I hope the Greek Presidency will continue with the same relentless effort to ensure that the negotiations are concluded successfully.

 
  
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  Laima Liucija Andrikienė (PPE). - Kadangi atstovauju Lietuvai, pirmiausia dėkoju visiems kolegoms iš Europos liaudies partijos ir kitų frakcijų, kurie prisidėjo prie Lietuvos pirmininkavimo sėkmės. Visiems, dirbusiems su mumis ranka rankon šiuose rūmuose, dėkoju už supratimą, paramą ir bendrą darbą.

Keletas išvadų.

Pirmininkaudama Europos Sąjungai, Lietuva sugebėjo sutelkti Europos dėmesį į glaudesnius santykius su Rytų partnerystės šalimis, o Rusijai atsakius spaudimu, Europos Sąjungoje nebeliko iliuzijų dėl Maskvos politikos tikslų. Ukrainos atsisakymas viršūnių susitikime Vilniuje pasirašyti istorinę sutartį su Europos Sąjunga yra tik trumpalaikė ir labai brangiai kainavusi Rusijos ir prorusiškų jėgų Ukrainoje pergalė. Turime pripažinti, kad mūsų Rytų partnerystės programa pradžioje buvo biurokratiška ir techniška, tačiau dabar tapo aišku, kad tai yra geopolitinis klausimas, ir mūsų požiūris į jį turi būti atitinkamas. Pažymėsiu, kad Rusija visiškai sugadino savo įvaizdį pasaulyje: daugelis žmonių suprato, kad Rusija nesiūlo draugiškos partnerystės, bet siekia dominuoti. Rusija, žaisdama be kompromisų, gali laimėti trumpalaikių pergalių, bet ilgalaikėje perspektyvoje tautos sieks išsilaisvinti iš Rusijos įtakos. Lietuvos pirmininkavimas ir buvo sėkmingas pirmiausiai todėl, kad jo metu Rytų kaimynystė tapo visaverte Europos Sąjungos darbotvarkės dalimi. Ir pabaigai, nors tarp Graikijos prioritetų Rytų partnerystės politikos nėra, bet manau, kad būtent šiai politikai artimiausią pusmetį turime skirti ypatingai didelį dėmesį.

 
  
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  Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė (PPE). - Labai smagu girdėti tiek daug sveikinimų Lietuvos atžvilgiu ir smagu girdėti, kad Lietuva daug ką nustebino savo geru gerai organizuotu pirmininkavimu. Pavyko pasiekti bene didžiausią susitarimų skaičių įtraukiant ir bankų sąjungą, ir daugiametį biudžetą, taip pat įvykdančias programas, ypač kalbant apie jaunimo nedarbo mažinimą. Vilniaus susitikimas buvo labai reikšmingas stiprinant ryšius su Rytų partnerystės šalimis. Dabar turime atsižvelgti į didžiųjų veikėjų žaidimus, turime nepalikti Ukrainos žmonių vienų. Taip pat kuo greičiau užtvirtinti viršūnių susitikime pasiektus susitarimus su tomis šalimis, kurios tvirtai stovi suartėjimo su Europos Sąjunga kelyje. Manau, kad pasiekėme pirmininkavimo uždavinius, kurie buvo energetinis saugumas, integruotas sienų valdymas, Europos Sąjungos Baltijos jūros strategija, Rytų kaimynystės politika.

Noriu pabrėžti, reaguodama į kai kurių kolegų pasisakymus, kad Lietuvoje tautinių mažumų teisės pilnai atitinka tarptautinius susitarimus. Tas buvo patvirtinta ne vieną sykį ir ESBO, ir kitų tarptautinių institucijų. Niekur pasaulyje, konkrečiai kalbant apie lenkų tautinę mažumą, neturi lenkų mažuma tiek teisių ir sąlygų puoselėti savo kultūrą, socialinį ir visą kitą gyvenimą. Todėl prašau nebeklaidinti kolegų ir nevelti jų į politinius žaidimus.

Prieš 23 metus sausio 13-ąją Lietuvos žmonės stovėjo prie Parlamento gindami beginkliai su daina ir su tvirtu tikėjimu. Mes stovėjome prieš sovietų armiją. Ir turbūt stebuklas, kad šiandien po 23 metų mes džiaugiamės sėkmingu Lietuvos pirmininkavimu Europos Sąjungoje. Todėl labai noriu padėkoti visai Lietuvos komandai, labai noriu padėkoti kolegoms Europos Parlamento nariams ir tikiuosi, kad turėsime ateityje daug progų bendradarbiauti ir gražiai sutarti dėl mums visiems rūpimų klausimų.

 
  
 

Procedura catch-the-eye.

 
  
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  Mairead McGuinness (PPE). - Mr President, I would like to thank the Lithuanian Presidency. I listened very carefully this morning to Ms Grybauskaitė’s presentation of a very effective, efficient and hardworking Presidency.

Often the headlines do not really tell the story of a Presidency’s work – and the Irish can vouch for that – but I compliment you on how you handled the Presidency. I particularly welcome your mention of Ireland’s exit from the bail-out. It is important that we remember what is good and positive in terms of the evolution of the European Union. We welcome the stability that has come with that.

I would like to comment briefly on what President Barroso said in relation to the unresolved issue around the Banking Union. Here in this House we share a real concern that we are adding complexity and will reduce the effectiveness of the measures. So there is a great deal of work to be done by the Greek Presidency.

However, well done Lithuania! Small is beautiful, as Ireland knows.

 
  
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  Edit Herczog (S&D). - Elnök Úr! Gratulálni szeretnék a vilniusi elnökségnek az MFF terén bizonyított munkájáért. Ugyanakkor szeretnénk elmondani, hogy továbbra is forráshiányosnak tartjuk a költségvetést, ami a következő évek során az éves költségvetések elfogadását nagymértékben megnehezíti, esetleg a célok is sérülhetnek. Külön felhívnám a figyelmet a kisvállalkozásoknak, illetve a fiataloknak szánt összegnek az érzékenységére. Azt hiszem ezzel még sok problémánk lesz. A vilniusi csúcs esetében én azt hiszem, hogy a pohár félig tele van. Külön szeretném hangsúlyozni Grúzia esetét, ahol a vészmadarak annak idején azt mondták, hogy amennyiben nem Szakasvili úr pártja győz, akkor az európai integráció folyamata leáll.

Azt hiszem, egyértelműen kimondhatjuk, hogy a Georgian Dream elkötelezettsége Európa irányában megkérdőjelezhetetlen. És végül, elnök asszony, szeretném Önnek megköszönni személyesen, hogy konzervatív politikusként a régióból Európa-pártiságot sugároz. És csak tiszta szívemből kívánni merem, hogy egyszer az Ön üzenetét Magyarországon, a magyar kormány is megérti.

 
  
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  Czesław Adam Siekierski (PPE). - (...) Litwa poradziła sobie z tym zadaniem bardzo dobrze. Do sukcesów litewskiego przewodnictwa należy zaliczyć przede wszystkim osiągnięcie długo oczekiwanego porozumienia w sprawie budżetu Unii na lata 2014–2020 – na co już tu wielokrotnie wskazywano – oraz powiązanych z nim reform głównych polityk unijnych, w tym polityki spójności i wspólnej polityki rolnej. Na duże uznanie zasługują również postępy w tworzeniu tzw. unii bankowej.

Jest jednak sprawa, która podważa pozytywny wizerunek Litwy na arenie międzynarodowej. Mimo że kraj ten jest od ponad 20 lat członkiem Rady Europy, to nadal brakuje tam kompleksowych regulacji w obszarze ochrony praw mniejszości narodowych. Przedstawiciele innych narodowości na Litwie nie mają prawa do zapisu swoich mion i nazwisk w językach innych niż litewski. Zakazane jest umieszczanie dwujęzycznych nazw miejscowości. Przykłady takiej dyskryminacji i innych działań w ostatnich dniach już tu przedstawiono. Sytuacja taka pozostaje w sprzeczności z zapisami konwencji ramowej Rady Europy o ochronie mniejszości narodowych, która gwarantuje możliwości umieszczania dwujęzycznych nazw miejsc publicznych. Jeszcze raz gratuluję efektów prezydencji.

 
  
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  Csaba Sándor Tabajdi (S&D). - Tisztelt Gribauskaite Elnök Asszony! Kedves Barátaim! Valamennyi új tagállam számára rendkívül nagy büszkeség Litvánia teljesítménye. Ebben a Házban az egyik német képviselő arról beszélt, hogy meglepetés volt a számára, hogy Litvánia ilyen kiválóan teljesítette a soros elnökséget. Ez is azt mutatja, hogy nem ismerjük egymást és tele vagyunk előítéletekkel. Számomra, ismerve a litván történelmet, kultúrát, Čiurlionis festményeit, ismerve Gribauskaite asszony intelligenciáját, számomra nem volt meglepő, törvényszerű volt. Sajnálatos, hogy véget ér a litván elnökség, mert az unió egy rendkívül szomorú pillanatot él át, amikor David Cameron brit miniszterelnök és Seehofer bajor miniszterelnök durva támadást indít a bevándorló munkásokkal szemben.

Románokkal, bolgárokkal, leginkább a lengyelekkel szemben, Európa megosztásához hozzájárulva most lenne nagy szükség föllépni ez ellen. Ez ellen a populista ragály, populista demagógia ellen, ami káros Nagy-Britannia, káros Németország, káros az egész Európai Unió számára. Gratulálok még egyszer, azt kell mondjam, ačiū a litván elnökségnek!

 
  
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  Andrej Plenković (PPE). - Gospodine predsjedavajući, želio bih prije svega čestitati našim kolegama iz Litve na vrlo angažiranom i učinkovitom, organiziranom predsjedništvu. Znam koliko je to za zemlju veličine koja je slična Hrvatskoj naporno i zahtjevno i u smislu administracije i u smislu političkih ciljeva. Kao član Odbora za proračune posebno bih istaknuo izvrstan rad i suradnju koju smo imali i na usvajanju višegodišnjeg financijskog okvira i na usvajanju proračuna, a mali poseban dio koji nije bio spomenut je i aktivnost koja se odnosila na važan zakonodavni akt o davanju jamstava Europskoj investicijskoj banci za kredite prema trećim zemljama. Posebno mi je drago da ste bili angažirani i na Istočnom partnerstvu i na proširenju, učinili ste sve što ste mogli, a vaše će predsjedništvo za Hrvatsku uvijek biti upamćeno po govoru predsjednice 1. srpnja u Zagrebu i stoga...

Ačiū, gerbiama Prezidente, kad pasveikinote Kroatiją.

 
  
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  Oleg Valjalo (S&D). - Gospodine predsjedavajući, moja je ocjena da je litavsko predsjedanje bilo jedno pragmatično, realistično, efikasno i u konačnici vrlo kvalitetno i uspješno predsjedanje. Mislim da se s time bez velikih zadrški možemo složiti gotovo svi. Naravno, svatko od nas u svom području djelovanja s litavskim predsjedanjem imao je određena iskustva. Kao član Odbora za proračune, ali i Odbora za ekonomsku i monetarnu politiku ja bih u ovom kratkoj ocjeni želio istaknuti svoje posebno zadovoljstvo s načinom na koji je litavsko predsjedništvo vodilo pregovore oko proračuna Europske unije za 2014. godinu, kao i pregovore oko višegodišnjeg financijskog okvira za naredno sedmogodišnje razdoblje. Litavski pristup bio je staložen, otvoren kompromisu, senzibilan prema stavovima Europskog parlamenta. Drugim riječima, litavsko je predsjedništvo uvažilo punu ulogu Parlamenta i bilo je voljno čuti ono što smo mi kao direktno izabrani predstavnici građana imali za reći u važnim pregovaračkim trenucima. Ovom posebno dajem na težini, osobito jer su pregovori oko proračuna zbog teške ekonomske krize uglavnom bili obilježeni riječima „rez” i „rezovi”. Na koncu osjećam potrebu da posebno zahvalim g. Agimantasu Rimkūnasu i g. Vytautasu Leškevičiusu na entuzijazmu i golemoj energiji koju su uložili u svoj rad i to na dobrobit svih građanki i građana Europske unije. Nadam se da će se s jednakom spretnošću u kormilarenju Vijećem snaći i Grčka, koja ima čast iduća primiti ovu odgovornu zadaću.

 
  
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  Miloslav Ransdorf (GUE/NGL). - Pane předsedající, já bych těm, kteří tady vychvalovali úspěchy Východního partnerství, chtěl položit otázku: O jakém úspěchu tady chcete mluvit, když ve skutečnosti tento projekt krachuje? Ukrajina nepodepsala onu dvanáctisetstránkovou dohodu. Pokud jde o Arménii, ta se rozhodla pro partnerství s Ruskem, a Ázerbájdžán prakticky suspenduje práci v rámci Východního partnerství. Takže, protože s Běloruskem nemluvíte, tak vlastně zůstává jenom Moldavsko a Gruzie. Kde je jaký úspěch Východního partnerství? Ve skutečnosti je projekt Východního partnerství v troskách.

 
  
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  Davor Ivo Stier (PPE). - Gospodine predsjedniče, i ja pozdravljam gospođu predsjednicu koja je litavsko predsjedništvo započela od prve sekunde u Zagrebu prilikom ulaska Hrvatske u Europsku uniju. Naravno, svi smo očekivali da će i na kraju litavskog predsjedništva možda biti i potpisan sporazum s Ukrajinom da bi se potvrdile te iste vrijednosti u koje svi zajednički vjerujemo i na kojima radimo i tim sporazumom. To se nije dogodilo, ali ne greškom litavskog predsjedništva. Složio bih se s predsjednikom Barrosom – summit iz Vilniusa zapravo se proširio i na ulice Kijeva i tamo su se doista te europske vrijednosti i pokazale i dokazale, gdje su ih ukrajinski građani još jednom potvrdili i na taj način obnovili i taj duh. Upravo zbog toga bih želio i litavskom predsjedništvu još jednom čestitati i s tim elanom zaželjeti dobrodošlicu Grčkoj.

 
  
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  Tonino Picula (S&D). - Poštovani gospodine predsjedavajući; gospođo predsjednice, prije svega dopustite da zahvalim vama i litavskim kolegama na iskazanoj dobrodošlici mojoj zemlji Hrvatskoj u Europsku uniju, čime ste ujedno i započeli svoje predsjedanje. Na taj način su i nacionalne povijesti naše dvije zemlje povezane zaista velikim datumom. Želim vam čestitati na nedvojbenim rezultatima koje ste postigli radeći na onome što ste u programima opisali kao kredibilna Europa, Europa rasta i otvorenosti. Među brojnim postignućima valja istaknuti koordiniranje i artikuliranje inicijativa o daljnjem ekonomskom povezivanju. Također, uspješno je zaključena ozbiljno zakašnjela tema višegodišnjeg proračunskog okvira kao i reforma poljoprivrede. Jednako tako, pregovori o slobodnoj trgovini u Svjetskoj trgovačkoj organizaciji dobili su snažan poticaj. Spomenut ću i doprinos politici proširenja, koja osim pristupanja Hrvatske uključuje dogovor o početku pregovora sa Srbijom te napredak u pregovorima s Crnom Gorom i Turskom. Premda impresivan broj od čak 137 zakonodavnih akata služi kao brojčani izraz ukupnog uspjeha vašeg predsjedanja, još je važnije što ste dokazali da zemljopisno i populacijski manje zemlje članice mogu i trebaju djelotvorno obavljati zadaću predsjedanja Europskom unijom. Čestitke još jednom!

 
  
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  Danuta Jazłowiecka (PPE). - Panie Przewodniczący! Pani Prezydent! Dziękuję za tę prezydencję. Litwa, obejmując przewodnictwo w Radzie, postawiła przed sobą bardzo ambitne cele, a wśród nich kluczowy – zacieśnienie stosunków ze wschodnimi sąsiadami Wspólnoty. Wydawało się, że zaplanowany szczyt partnerstwa wschodniego w Wilnie będzie nie tylko ogromnym sukcesem Litwy, ale całej Unii Europejskiej. Niestety wydarzenia potoczyły się inaczej, pomimo że politycy litewscy włożyli ogromny wysiłek w próbę przekonania ukraińskich przywódców do wybrania europejskiej drogi.

Osobiście uważam, że największym sukcesem prezydencji litewskiej było przyjęcie przez Radę ogólnego podejścia w sprawie delegowania pracowników. Udało się pokonać trwający ponad rok impas i wznowić rozmowy w tak ważnym dla wewnętrznego rynku temacie.

Szczególne podziękowania składam na ręce pani minister Pabedinskiene i jej zespołu. Podkreślić należy, że to właśnie podczas litewskiej prezydencji ostatecznie sfinalizowano negocjacje nad wieloletnimi ramami finansowymi na lata 2014-2020. Szczególnie my w Parlamencie Europejskim wiemy, jak trudne było to zadanie, zwłaszcza teraz w okresie cięć budżetowych i nasilających się tendencji antyunijnych. Dyplomatom i urzędnikom Litwy należy się więc szczególne podziękowanie. W czasie tych trudnych negocjacji potrafili kierować się interesem całej Unii i dbać o to, aby perspektywy wzrostu nie zostały poświęcone na ołtarzu cięć budżetowych.

 
  
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  Olga Sehnalová (S&D). - Pane předsedající, dovolte mi uvést další příklad spolupráce, který se týká jedné z oněch zmíněných 241 legislativních složek, kterými se zabývalo litevské předsednictví. V uplynulém půlroce jsem měla možnost intenzivně spolupracovat se zástupci litevského předsednictví z pozice zpravodajky za Výbor pro dopravu a cestovní ruch k legislativě o silničních technických kontrolách užitkových vozidel, která byla součástí po všech stránkách náročného balíčku o technické způsobilosti vozidel. Chtěla bych na tomto místě poděkovat zástupcům litevského předsednictví pro oblast dopravy za veškeré úsilí, které bylo z jejich strany vyvíjeno k dosažení kompromisu, a to i přes tlak a neochotu k ústupkům, zejména ze strany velkých členských států v Radě.

Ačkoliv se jedná o první předsednictví, jak už zde dnes mnohokrát zaznělo, litevské předsednictví v této zkoušce obstálo. Vážená paní prezidentko, dovolte mi poblahopřát celému Vašemu týmu.

 
  
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  Joanna Katarzyna Skrzydlewska (PPE). - Panie Przewodniczący! Dziękuję prezydencji litewskiej, nie będę już powtarzać o jej sukcesach, o których tutaj moi koledzy wspomnieli. Gratuluję Pani Prezydent i jej zespołowi, dziękuję za ciężką pracę.

Czuję się jednak w obowiązku zwrócić uwagę, że Litwa nadal dopuszcza się dyskryminacji zamieszkujących na jej terenie mniejszości narodowych. Szczególnie dyskryminowana jest mniejszość polska, której zabrania się używania języka polskiego. Ostatnio wileński sąd okręgowy wymierzył karę za używanie polskojęzycznych tablic z nazwami ulic zawieszonych na prywatnych posesjach.

Parlament Europejski przeciwstawia się różnym formom dyskryminacji. W wielokrotnie przyjmowanych na tej sali rezolucjach zwalczaliśmy dyskryminację ze względów etnicznych, dziś natomiast mamy do czynienia z sytuacją, w której państwo członkowskie Unii toleruje dyskryminacyjne zachowania wobec tych swoich obywateli, którzy przyznają się do przynależności do polskiej mniejszości narodowej. Z przykrością i ubolewaniem stwierdzam, że postawa zdecydowanie przeczy wizji Europy budowanej w duchu poszanowania praw człowieka. Dlatego zwracam się do Pani Prezydent, aby w końcu rozwiązała ten problem, a Komisję Europejską proszę o zajęcie się sytuacją mniejszości etnicznych na Litwie.

 
  
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  Monika Flašíková Beňová (S&D) - Litva prevzala predsedníctvo v neľahkej situácii. Európu sužovali veľké sociálne nepokoje a prudká hospodárska a dlhová kríza, bol veľký rast nezamestnanosti a najmä zvyšujúca sa nespokojnosť občanov členských štátov s neefektívnymi a neúčinnými reakciami EÚ na zvyšujúce sa sociálne napätie.

Litovské predsedníctvo však ukázalo, že dokáže prevziať zodpovednosť za záležitosti, ktoré sú dôležité pre celú Európu. Ja osobne za najväčšie úspechy považujem schválenie viacročného finančného rámca pre roky 2014 až 2020 a tiež ročného rozpočtu na rok 2014, ako aj posilnenie už spomínaného Východného partnerstva. Litva zamerala úsilie na posilnenie schopnosti EÚ poskytovať adekvátnu a rýchlu reakciu, či už na hospodárske, finančné alebo sociálne problémy.

Podarilo sa tiež dosiahnuť dohodu s Európskym parlamentom o smerniciach na obnovu a riešenie problémov bánk a na systémy ochrany vkladov občanov, ktoré budú v budúcnosti vytvárať pevný základ pre väčšiu finančnú stabilitu v Európe. Dúfam a verím, že podobne úspešne bude prebiehať aj predsedníctvo Grécka.

 
  
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  Marino Baldini (S&D). - Gospodine predsjedavajući, poštovani, osobno vjerujem kako ste u vrijeme predsjedanja Europskom unijom postigli veoma značajne rezultate. Da je 1. srpnja 2013. moja zemlja postala dio Europske unije smatram jednim od najznačajnijih događaja. Upravo, međutim, predsjedanje Litve među bitnim rezultatima ima postignuća na planu financija. Prvi jasni znakovi oporavka Unije ekonomske i financijske prirode dosegnuti su upravo u vrijeme litavskog predsjedanja. Na kraju, ono što je još bitnije, Litva je pokazala dostojanstvo predsjedanja Europskom unijom dokazujući kako širenje Unije nije samo stvar novih država ili primjerice proširenja zone eura, već je moguće generalno prinositi rastu našeg zajedničkog europskog doma bez računa ili partikularnih koristi, već radom za sve, što donosi opći rast. Prvi stupanj bankovne unije, značajni pomaci u proširenju u jugoistočnoj Europi i obilje drugih rezultata dokazuju kako je razvoj Europske unije dostojno predstavljen i vođen u tragu kulture koja nije pojedinačni proizvod već univerzalna društvena vrijednost.

 
  
 

(Fine della procedura catch-the-eye).

 
  
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  Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President of the Commission. − Mr President, if you will allow me, I will focus my closing remarks on the most frequently debated topics in this debate. I will speak firstly on the economic situation and the Banking Union, because I believe that we have to look at this issue in the perspective of recent history and of the near future.

I remember very well our debates a year ago, both in this House and outside in the capitals of Europe, where there were actually many who predicted the implosion of the euro, the falling apart of the European Union and a never-ending economic doom for Europe and its citizens. We know that today the situation is different. The recession is over, growth is gradually returning to our countries and the most affected Member States are one by one exiting the programmes and returning to the financial market.

On top of this we have Latvia as the 18th euro area Member State, and we in the Commission, of course, extend our good wishes for Lithuania to become, very soon, the 19th member of the euro area.

This change was achieved by the hard work of our citizens in the Member States, who also bore the heavy load of the financial consequences of the crisis. But the gradual restoration of confidence was also achieved by changes in our economic governance, by the improved regulation of our banks and by the structural reforms implemented under the European Semester.

Now we need to put the last piece of the new economic construction in place: the completion of the Banking Union and the conclusion of the negotiations on the single resolution mechanism. As you well know, the Commission would have preferred a system based fully on the Community approach. We have been rigorously defending the Article 114 legal base for this proposal and, like you, are also concerned that the introduction of the intergovernmental dimension to address the transfer and mutualisation of the fund undoubtedly adds further complexity to the system.

But at the same time, we also have to be aware of the fact that this approach was supported unanimously by all the Member States in the Council. It was supported unanimously in the European Council and it had the support of the European Central Bank as well.

Therefore we should now work very hard together on how we can make sure that the intergovernmental dimension is kept to the absolute minimum of what is politically necessary. We must be very vigilant to make sure that the outcome of these negotiations remains fully compatible with and will uphold the primacy of European law.

We all know that we need to complete these very difficult negotiations before the parliamentary recess. The Commission is ready for close cooperation with the co-legislator to complete this very important work and add this last piece of the puzzle for the new European economic construction.

If you will allow me, Mr President, I also would like to thank the Lithuanian Presidency for finalising the MMF negotiations. Thanks to this, Europe has its investment budget. It has the possibility to help finance very important measures such as the Youth Guarantee, especially in those countries which are most affected by youth unemployment. Here I also have to agree fully with what Mr Swoboda said and with his appeal to the Member States to spend better and to spend more of what is actually allocated for them in the European Union budget. Absorption is still very low, and we – and here I mean all of us: the Member States, Parliament and the Commission – must make sure that this improves significantly under the new MMF.

The Commission is working very hard with the Member States on partnership agreements to make sure the EU budget is focused on the right priorities; that timing for the spending of EU funds is much better; and that we will have the ability to intervene jointly in time before absorption becomes a real problem in our Member States. So let us use the EU financial instrument better for consolidating the recovery and for boosting growth, especially in those countries which suffered the most in the crisis.

I know that the Lithuanian Presidency did its utmost to achieve a successful Eastern Partnership Summit, and I think that – as we heard from many of the honourable Members – we made really good progress on many fronts and many issues. I believe that people in Georgia and Moldova clearly appreciate that.

I would also like to stress that we are offering Ukraine a true partnership, a true European perspective. What was on offer from the other side? I believe that the Ukrainian citizens know the answer to this question very well and demonstrated it very clearly on Maidan Square in Kiev and in other Ukrainian cities. I agree with President Grybauskaitė that, thanks to this offer and to this clear demonstration of the will of the Ukrainian citizens, Ukraine will never be the same again.

To conclude, I would like to re-emphasise the statements and the comments of Mr Lamberts on, as he put it, pleasant surprises. I have to say that I was not that surprised, because I know how much Lithuania invested in the high-quality preparation of its Presidency – in the preparation of its team – and I would like to congratulate you on how well all this was put together and how the Lithuanian Presidency prepared a strong gender-balanced team for the execution of its priorities under the Lithuanian Semester. I also share the feeling of Mr Lamberts when it comes to my colleague, Commissioner Šemeta, who is doing a great job with his calm, hardworking determination on what are very difficult files.

So if you will allow me, Mr President, I would once again like to thank Madam President and her team for the great job they did, the enormous effort they made and the very impressive result they achieved.

 
  
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  Dalia Grybauskaitė, President-in-Office of the Council. − Mr President, I would like to thank the Members for all the remarks we have heard on our cooperation through the whole six months, on our preparations and on doing our best together. Without their support and that of the Commission, we would not have been able to deliver. Delivery was important for Europe in order to stabilise growth and guarantee stability for the next seven years – and we delivered. Now we need to base our election campaign on talking with our citizens and convincing them that the European Parliament and the European institutions and governments can be helpful – and are helpful – for their future.

I would like to reply to the two main criticisms of us which were made during the discussion. Firstly by Mr Watson, who repeated remarks made at the beginning of our Presidency. I was not able to reply last time, but now I am and I would just like to remind him that this House revoked Mr Uspaskich’s immunity three times – this House, three times. There is nothing discriminatory about it. One might also criticise this House’s decision, but a Lithuanian court found Mr Uspaskich and some partners guilty of financial fraud and tax avoidance, so my reply is that I hope it will not be your watchword to protect financial and tax avoidance at the European elections.

With regard to the remarks on the Polish minority, I want to remind the House that Lithuania fully complies with all international norms. Not one international organisation responsible for the protection of minority rights has ruled that Lithuania violates any of the international norms on ethnic minority protection, including the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe. I would therefore say to Mr Tomaševski that his personal target and the goal of his political career is to discredit Lithuania – inside Lithuania, in this House and internationally.

 
  
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  President. − The debate is closed.

Written statements (Rule 149)

 
  
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  Ildikó Gáll-Pelcz (PPE), irásban. Magam is szívből gratulálok a litván elnökség munkájához! Kiemelkedő munkát végzett el az elnökség nem túl könnyű körülmények között, hiszen ne feledjük: ugyan már stabilizálódni látszik Európa gazdasága, a szuverén államadósságok fokozott mértékben ugyan, de csökkenő tendenciát mutatnak, ugyanakkor valójában még nem vagyunk túl a gazdasági és pénzügyi válságon, és a munkanélküliség is egekbe menő. Még inkább értékelendő, hogy az elnökség mintegy 137 jogalkotási dossziét zárt le és olyan meghatározó folyamatokban sikerült vezetőként sikeresen helytállnia, mint a bankunió vagy a biztosítási szolvenciarendszerek témaköre. A bankunió kapcsán külön kiemelendő, hogy a litvánok ügyes kompromisszumok alkalmazásával elérték, hogy a bankunió két további nagyon fontos fázisába lépett: megállapodás született a biztosítási garanciarendszerekről, valamint a közös bankszanálási hatóságról és alapról, aminek köszönhetően az EP is felhatalmazást kapott, hogy mielőbb megalkossa támogató és építő álláspontját. Sajnos a körülmények nem mindig befolyásolják jó irányban a dolgokat, lásd az ukrán kapcsolatok teljes kénytelen befagyasztása, de ha objektívek akarunk maradni, akkor meg kell állapítanunk, hogy a litván elnökség igazi européerként telejésített, és sokunk várakozásait múlta felül!

 
  
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  Lidia Joanna Geringer de Oedenberg (S&D), in writing. Despite Lithuania being a small Baltic nation in its ninth year as an EU member and its 23rd year as an independent state, its first EU Presidency of the EU Council has been solid, competent and effective. The Presidency successfully completed negotiations on 137 legislative acts on various dossiers ranging from environmental legislation to the digital agenda and the EU Banking Union. Furthermore, it adopted 251 documents that are important to Europe's future, made progress on negotiating 114 initiatives and finalized 239 non-legislative acts. Another important element of the Presidency was the Eastern Partnership. Here, despite the failure to conclude an agreement with Ukraine, the Lithuanian Presidency delivered association agreements with Moldova and Georgia and signed visa facilitation deal with Azerbaijan. However, among these important achievements, I deplore the fact that the Lithuanian Presidency did little to change the country’s attitudes towards its ethnic Polish minority. This group, which forms about 8 % of the nation’s population, continues to face discrimination in language, schools and land titles. It is therefore my hope that the experience Lithuania gained during its six-month term in the Presidency will help change the country’s approach to this particular ethnic minority group and to others which also suffer discrimination.

 
  
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  Kinga Göncz (S&D), irasban. A litván soros elnökség aktív közreműködésével sikerült megállapodni az Európai Unió következő költségvetéséről. A volt soros elnök érdeme, hogy a büdzséhez kapcsolódó többi jogalkotási dosszié – benne az Európai Szociális Alapról szóló rendelet – végére is sikerült pontot tenni. A litván elnökség szakértői konszenzuskereső, kreatív és a Parlament véleményét tiszteletben tartó magatartásukkal nagymértékben hozzájárultak ahhoz, hogy az alapról szóló tárgyalások mindenki számára elfogadható módon zárultak. A válság katasztrofális munkaerő-piaci és szociális hatásait ismerő litván elnökség támogatta a Parlamentet abban a törekvésében, hogy az ESZA valóban segítség legyen a legrosszabb helyzetben élők és a legveszélyeztetettebb csoportok számára, s hogy a tagállamoknak kötelezően a szegénység és kirekesztés felszámolására kelljen fordítaniuk az alap 20 százalékát. Köszönet jár Litvániának azért is, hogy az elnöksége alatt sikeresen befejeződtek a tárgyalások azokról a támogatási programokról, amelyek az igazságügyi együttműködés, az európai polgársággal járó jogok gyakorlása terén állnak a tagállamok rendelkezésére. Fontos, hogy az elmúlt félévben tanácsi állásfoglalás született arról, hogy a jelenleginél átfogóbb védelem illesse meg a gyűlölet táplálta bűncselekmények áldozatait. Sajnálatosnak tartom ugyanakkor, hogy a Tanács egy sor területen megpróbálja csorbítani a Parlament együttdöntési jogát, vagy igyekszik megkerülni, illetve kész helyzet elé állítani, mint például az Európai Rendőrakadémia jövőbeni sorsára vonatkozó döntések meghozatalakor.

 
  
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  Andreas Mölzer (NI), schriftlich. Gerade für ein kleines Land mag die EU-Vorsitzführung eine große Herausforderung sein, sie bietet indes auch eine große Chance: eine Chance für ein Ende diverser Fehlentwicklungen. Und diese Chance hat die litauische Vorsitzführung ungenutzt verstreichen lassen. Hinsichtlich der Reformen der Bankenlandschaft sind die EU-Regeln für Bankenrettung auf halbem Weg stecken geblieben. Weiterhin fehlt eine Trennung von traditionellem Bankgeschäft und dem riskanten Investmentbanking. Auch wurden keinerlei Fortschritte hinsichtlich des Datenschutzes erzielt. Weder innerhalb der EU selbst noch hinsichtlich den Datentransfers in die USA, die nicht nur den Einblick in die Daten von Reisenden, Bankkunden und Co. verlangen, sondern gleich en gros die Datenleitungen ihrer sog. „Partner“ anzapfen. Dennoch wurde am Freihandelsabkommen mit den USA, das realistisch betrachtet nicht einmal im Interesse Europas liegt, festgehalten. Ebenso wenig punkten konnte Litauen beim Chaos rund um den mehrjährigen Finanzrahmen und beim Kiew-Debakel. Und die Türkei wurde gar – nach einem kurzen Klapps auf die Hand – für die Polizeigewalt gegen Demonstranten belohnt. Im letzten Halbjahr wurden zentralistische Irrwege starr fortgesetzt, erfolgreiche nordeuropäische Volkswirtschaften weiter ausgeplündert. Es ist höchste Zeit, diese Irrwege zu beenden.

 
  
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  Ivari Padar (S&D), kirjalikult. – Soovin Leedule õnne eesistumise eduka lõpetamise puhul ning tunnistan, et minule ei tulnud üllatusena, et Leedu suudab sellel perioodil edukas olla. Leedu on esimene kolmest Balti riigist, kellel on võimalus ennast eesistujana teostada ning latt on Eesti ja Läti jaoks kõrgele asetatud.

Leedu eesistumise perioodi jäävad ilmestama eelkõige kaks olulist sündmust, millest üks on uus 7-aastane finantsperiood ja sellega seoses edukas kompromisside leidmine. Lõplike otsuste lihvimisel oli Leedul kui eesistujal väga oluline osa. ELi stabiilsuse huvides oli väga tähtis, et need kompromissid saavutati.

Omaette teema, millega Leedul tuli tegelda, oli idapartnerlus. Usun, et ka siin tegi Leedu maksimumi. Toonitaksin siin seda, mida ütles Leedu president Grybauskaitė oma sõnavõtus - Ukraina ei ole enam kunagi see, mis ta oli.

 
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