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Procedure : 2010/2152(INI)
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Document selected : A7-0255/2011

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PV 27/09/2011 - 4
CRE 27/09/2011 - 4

Votes :

PV 27/09/2011 - 8.17
CRE 27/09/2011 - 8.17
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Texts adopted
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Tuesday, 27 September 2011 - Strasbourg
New trade policy for Europe under the Europe 2020 Strategy

European Parliament resolution of 27 September 2011 on a New Trade Policy for Europe under the Europe 2020 Strategy (2010/2152(INI))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions entitled ‘Trade, Growth and World Affairs – Trade Policy as a core component of the EU's 2020 strategy’ (COM(2010)0612),

–  having regard to the Communication from the Commission entitled ‘EU 2020: a strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth’ (COM(2010)2020),

–  having regard to the Communication from the Commission entitled ‘Global Europe: competing in the world. A contribution to the EU's Growth and Jobs Strategy’ (COM(2006)0567),

–  having regard to its resolution of 17 February 2011 on Europe 2020(1),

–  having regard to its resolution of 11 May 2011 on the state of play in the EU-India Free Trade Agreement negotiations(2),

–  having regard to its resolution of 11 May 2011 on EU-Japan trade relations(3),

–  having regard to its resolution of 8 June 2011 on EU-Canada trade relations(4),

–  having regard to its resolution of 6 April 2011 on European international investment policy(5),

–  having regard to its resolution of 17 February 2011 on the Free trade agreement between the EU and the Republic of Korea(6),

–  having regard to the Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament and the European Economic and Social Committee entitled ‘Contributing to Sustainable Development: the role of Fair Trade and non-governmental trade-related sustainability assurance schemes’ of 5 May 2009 (COM(2009)0215),

–  having regard to its resolution of 25 November 2010 on trade policy in the context of climate change imperatives(7),

–  having regard its resolution of 25 November 2010 on human rights and social and environmental standards in international trade agreements(8),

–  having regard its resolution of 25 November 2010 on corporate social responsibility in international trade agreements(9),

–  having regard its resolution of 21 October 2010 on the European Union's trade relations with Latin America(10),

–  having regard its resolution of 21 September 2010 on trade and economic relations with Turkey(11),

–  having regard to its resolution of 16 June 2010 on EU 2020(12),

–  having regard to its resolution of 26 March 2009 on an EU-India Free Trade Agreement(13),

–  having regard to its resolution of 5 February 2009 on Trade and economic relations with China(14),

–  having regard to its resolution of 5 February 2009 on enhancing the role of European SMEs in international trade(15),

–  having regard to ?its resolution of 18 December 2008 on the impact of counterfeiting on international trade(16),

–  having regard to the Commission communication of 17 October 2008 entitled ‘The outermost regions: an asset for Europe’,

–  having regard to its resolution of 4 September 2008 on Trade in services(17),

–  having regard to its resolution of 20 May 2008 on trade in raw materials and commodities(18),

–  having regard to its resolution of 24 April 2008 on ‘Towards a reform of the World Trade Organisation’(19),

–  having regard to ?its resolution of 19 February 2008 on the EU's Strategy to deliver market access for European companies(20),

–  having regard to its resolution of 13 December 2007 on the trade and economic relations with Korea(21),

–  having regard to its resolution of 22 May 2007 on Global Europe - external aspects of competitiveness(22),

–  having regard to its resolution of 12 October 2006 on economic and trade relations between the EU and Mercosur with a view to the conclusion of an Interregional Association Agreement(23),

–  having regard to its resolution of 28 September 2006 on the EU's economic and trade relations with India(24),

–  having regard to its resolution of 1 June 2006 on EU-US transatlantic economic relations(25),

–  having regard to the Presidency conclusions following the European Council meeting of 17-18 June 2010,

–  having regard to Rules 48 of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on International Trade and the opinions of the Committee on Development, the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy and the Committee on the Internal market and consumer protection (A7-0255/2011),

The Union's and the United States' share in the world's relative GDP(26) is declining while the emerging countries are rapidly increasing their performance

A.  whereas, while the Union accounted for 25 % of world GDP in the year 2000 (measured at purchasing power parity (PPP)) at the launch of the Lisbon Strategy, it is now estimated that it will account for only 18 % of world GDP in 2020, signifying a decline of 28 % in its relative economic performance,

B.  whereas, while the two biggest developed economies, the Union and the United States, accounted for 48 % of world GDP in the year 2000 (at PPP), it is now estimated that they will account for 35 % of world GDP in the year 2020, signifying a decline of 27 % in their relative joint economic performance,

C.  whereas, while the two biggest emerging economies, China and India, accounted for 10 % of world GDP in the year 2000 (at PPP), it is estimated that they will account for 25 % of world GDP in the year 2020, signifying an increase of 150 % in their relative economic performance,

This relative decline in the Union's GDP is mirrored in its trade performance(27)

D.  whereas the Union accounted for 19 % of world exports of goods in the year 1999 and whereas it accounted for 17,1 % of world exports in 2009, signifying a decline of 10 % in its relative export performance,

E.  whereas the Union accounted for 19,5 % of world imports of goods in the year 1999 and whereas it accounted for 17,6 % of world imports in 2009, signifying a decline of 10 % in its relative imports,

F.  whereas the share of export of services increased from 26,7 % to 30,2 % in the Union's global export performance between 1999 and 2009(28),

G.  whereas 50 countries (30 if the EU is counted as one entity) account for 80 % of world trade,

Demographic changes(29) also have an influence on economic performance

H.  whereas the Union's population is projected to increase by almost 5 % by the year 2035, followed by a steady decline thereafter, and whereas the Union's working age population is expected to start declining from the year 2010 onwards,

The Union's economy is highly dependent on participating in external growth

I.  whereas growth, prosperity, jobs and maintaining the European social model are all interlinked and underpin each other,

J.  whereas it is estimated by the Commission that, by 2015, 90 % of world growth will be generated outside the Union,

K.  whereas trade opening leads to higher productivity, contributes to increased external competitiveness and could contribute immediately to more than 1,5 % of direct economic growth and bring significant consumer benefits,

L.  whereas it is estimated by the Commission that 18 % of the Union's labour force, or 36 million jobs, are dependent on the Union's trade performance and whereas the comparison between trade opening and employment over the past 10 years shows that trade opening goes together with employment and job creation,

M.  whereas, bearing in mind the Union's demographic estimates and their adverse effects on the growth potential, it is paramount to harness, and benefit from, the growth potential inherent in increasing productivity, and the growth potential inherent in external trade,

A future European Strategy on Trade Policy should take the specific features of EU industries, territories and dependence on external growth into account

N.  whereas the Commission's Communication ‘Trade, Growth and World Affairs’ suggests proper short-term measures but fails to reflect on the Union's future role in a changed world,

O.  whereas the Commission proposed a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing transitional arrangements for bilateral investment agreements between Member States and third countries as part of the EU's investment policy,

Parliament expected to receive a real future trade strategy, which took account of mid- and long-term developments and did not build on the false assumption of a continuing status quo on the world trade stage

1.  Welcomes in general the triple objectives of Europe 2020 of smart, inclusive and sustainable growth and the Commission's Communication ‘Trade, Growth and World Affairs’, and urges on the Commission to present a forward-looking and innovative future strategy on trade and investment taking into account the new challenges of the EU;

2.  Regrets that many targeted goals of the Global Europe Strategy have not been reached as yet and would have expected a more critical analysis of the Strategy with a view to a better understanding of certain failures to achieve;

3.  Insists that the Union needs a coherent long-term trade strategy in order to take account of the challenges ahead and in particular of the major emerging countries; insists that such a strategy should be based on a thorough analysis of the current trends in world trade, the Union's internal and external development as well as the diversity of European enterprises, their know-how and their technological advances; regrets that the Communication fails to deliver a profound forecast of how the ‘world of trade’ could look in a policy-planning perspective of 15 to 20 years; considers that this review should establish the Commission's ambitions for its bilateral trading relationships over this period including a distinct geographical strategy, for example through the creation of new agreements or targets for eliminating tariffs and non-tariff barriers with its major trading partners;

4.  Asks the Commission to deliver such a forecast as a basis and to present a revised mid-and long-term trade strategy by summer 2013, as the Communication on Trade Growth and World affairs fails to do so;

Parliament is aware that trade policy is not an end in itself

5.  Reminds all stakeholders that a modern trade policy is required to take into account other policy areas such as:

   a) human rights,
   b) securing and creation of jobs,
   c) labour rights and ILO core labour standards,
   d) corporate social responsibility,
   e) agricultural policy,
   f) environmental policy,
   g) climate change,
   h) the fight against poverty within and beyond the EU,
   i) development policy,
   j) protection of consumer interests and rights,
   k) security of raw materials and energy supply,
   l) foreign policy,
   m) neighbourhood policy,
   n) industrial policy,
   o) protection of property rights, including intellectual property rights,
   p) promotion of the rule of law;

6.  Emphasises that the principles expressed in the resolutions of 25 November 2010 adopted by the European Parliament by a large majority on human rights, social and environmental standards in international trade agreements(30), on corporate social responsibility in international trade agreements(31) and on International trade policy in the context of climate change imperatives(32), respectively should be horizontally taken into account, and the inclusion of social, environmental standards and human rights should be binding in all FTAs;

7.  Is of the opinion that achieving climate goals is possible only by cooperation with the EU's main trade partners, who at the same time are the biggest CO2 producers;

8.  Emphasises that, while trade policy should not be unduly restrained with issues not directly related to international trade, it cannot be dealt with in a vacuum, and underlines the need to find a balance between the Union's commercial objectives and other aspects of its external policy, such as environmental strategy, humanitarian goals and the EU's earlier commitments to ensure Policy Coherence for Development; calls on the Commission to give high priority to the EU's trade interests vis-à-vis its trading partners when negotiating trade agreements and to achieve a better intra- and inter-institutional coordination when dealing with trade issues;

9.  Urges that future multilateral and bilateral trade agreements must be part and parcel of a long-term EU industrial strategy in particular for the sustainable renewal and strengthening of the industrial fabric, and the jobs it provides, in the European Union;

10.  Emphasises that trade policy is an important element of the Union's new industrial policy and that trade should be based on fair global competition and full reciprocity to maintain a healthy manufacturing base in Europe;

Parliament strongly prefers a multilateral approach within the WTO

11.  Reiterates that the multilateral trading system, embodied in the WTO, remains by far the best framework for achieving free and fair trade on a global basis; considers, however, that the WTO system, in particular the Dispute Settlement Body, should be reformed in order to increase its effectiveness and that the EU should develop proposals to strengthen the WTO and to extend its rulemaking capacity to new areas of trade policy including by ensuring that WTO rules are interpreted and developed in such a way as to support commitments made in multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs);

12.  Regrets that even after 10 years, it has still not been possible to complete the Doha Round and that the necessary and reasonable conclusion of these negotiations seems currently to be highly unlikely; reiterates its strong support for a successful conclusion of the Doha Development Round, bearing in mind that a good conclusion should reflect the shifts in the world's trading patterns and distribution of the benefits of world trade since the launch of the Round, bearing in mind also the need for a balanced NAMA text to guarantee access to emerging markets such as India, China and ASEAN countries while preventing emerging economies from using NAMA flexibilities to shelter specific key sectors by maintaining peak tariffs;

Parliament sees Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) as important instruments for market access

13.  Reiterates that all new FTAs concluded by the EU should be WTO-compatible, comprehensive, ambitious including with regard to sustainable development, balanced and lead to real reciprocal market access and go beyond both existing multilateral commitments and those expected to result from a successful conclusion of the DDA; welcomes the progress made in some negotiations; at the same time regrets that most of the negotiations have not yet been concluded; asks the Commission to analyse what could be done or changed in order to conclude outstanding FTA negotiations better and faster, though never at the expense of sacrificing European interests as content should always take precedence over timing; asks the Commission to analyse the possible impact in terms of jobs, in particular, in order to adjust its mandates to be able to conclude FTAs with long-term benefits for EU growth; asks the Commission to analyse the possibility of including WTO dispute settlement mechanisms in bilateral Free Trade Agreements; asks the Commission to reduce the Spaghetti-Bowl Effect, e.g. by negotiating multilateral rules of origin; calls for the integration of a sustainability chapter, which is connected to safeguard clauses, to cover areas such as trade, environment, production and processing within FTAs;

14.  Reminds the Commission to carry out – within a framework defining trade priorities in terms of timetables and strategic geographical areas – a thorough, impartial and unprejudiced ex-ante evaluation of European interests before deciding on future FTA partners and negotiation mandates; emphasises that FTAs should only be negotiated with countries of economic interest and should respect key principles such as reciprocity, zero for zero tariff dismantling, removal of non-tariff barriers, prohibition of duty drawback regimes, and uniform application of a high rules-of-origin threshold; reminds the Commission and the Council to take seriously into account Parliament's views when deciding about the mandates; calls on the Commission to carry out extensive impact assessments, in particular with regard to the impact on the various EU industries and sectors by in-depth consultations with all the parties concerned, before the conclusions of negotiations and regularly during the duration of the agreement; points out to the Commission and the Council that if they want Parliament to exercise its assent powers responsibly, they must involve Parliament at every stage from the agreement of the negotiating mandate and through each round of negotiations;

Parliament demands more and better results from high-level dialogues with major trading partners such as the US, China, Japan and Russia

15.  Stresses the importance of making progress in our commercial relations with major trading partners such as the US, China, Japan and Russia aimed at eliminating tariff and non-tariff barriers, in particular in respect of technical standards, intellectual property rights, market access, public procurement and supply of raw materials; regrets, however, that insufficient progress has been made so far in these areas; therefore urges the Commission to conduct more proactive negotiations with a view to successful progress in our trade relations with these countries, and encourages our trading partners to do the same;

16.  Stresses the importance of continuing with the strengthening of transatlantic economic relations but without threatening the EU policies in fields such as environmental standards, cultural diversity, social rights and public services; emphasises in particular the importance of achieving more progress in the world's biggest trade relationship, in particular in respect of standards and technical barriers to trade; welcomes the relaunching of the TEC and considers that, to be successful, this dialogue needs to be further intensified at all levels and that high-level meetings of the Commission, the European Parliament and their US counterparts should occur on a more regular basis; suggests that the European Union and the United States both work to develop the evolving, comprehensive ‘Transatlantic Growth and Jobs Initiative’, which would include plans for the removal of remaining non-tariff barriers to trade and investment by 2020 (‘the transatlantic market’), and that they take steps towards zero-tariff levels in some product areas, as proposed earlier this month by the US Chamber of Commerce; maintains that such an initiative should be included on the agendas for forthcoming meetings of the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) and for the EU/US Summit;

17.  Calls for the Commission to carry out a comprehensive impact assessment of the benefits and drawbacks for Europe's various industrial sectors and job sector so as to be able to make progress with the High-Level Economic and Trade Dialogue (HED) with China; states that the EU's strategy on trade with China must be based on taking account of European interests, especially as regards intellectual property rights, market access, public procurement and raw materials, and on respect for the principle of reciprocity; states that China, if it wants to avoid recourse to trade defence instruments, must meet its WTO obligations; stresses that the Union should make more systematic use of appropriate legal instruments whenever China does not abide by its obligations;

18.  Welcomes the resolution of outstanding bilateral issues in the accession of Russia to the WTO and regards a quick accession to the WTO as key priority; also welcomes the bilateral negotiations on a comprehensive EU-Russia agreement and urges Russia to improve the trading environment for Union operators in Russia;

19.  Notes that Parliament is interested in improving the EU-Japan trade relationship by removing non-tariff barriers to trade and investment as a first step; is not satisfied with the negligible progress in this area during recent years; asks the Commission to present Parliament in due course with a comprehensive impact assessment with the possible advantages and disadvantages of an EU-Japan FTA before making any commitments;

20.  Acknowledges the achievements of the Market Access Strategy and the prevention of protectionist measures during the financial crisis; welcomes, therefore, the Market Access Strategy and the close cooperation between the Commission, the Member States and the stakeholders; calls, nevertheless, on the Commission and Member States to do more to promote and encourage the use of existing initiatives and tools available such as the ‘market access database’ and the ‘export helpdesk’, so that citizens and SMEs can take full advantage of the EU's trading relations;

21.  Emphasises that the main reason for the EU's economic success is the activity of various economic operators, including both SMEs and multinationals; therefore urges the Commission to reflect in all trade negotiations and new internal regulations the specific needs and interests of different economic operators;

But on the other hand the Union as a relatively open economy needs effective trade defence instruments

22.  Reiterates that the pursuit of further trade liberalisation still requires an ability to protect European producers against unfair trading practices; regards Trade Defence Instruments (TDIs) therefore as an indispensable component of the EU's strategy even though they should never be used in bad faith for protectionist reasons; welcomes all efforts to streamline and speed up these instruments, including by improving transparency, predictability, and to improve their accessibility for Union industry, in particular for SMEs (e.g. the market access helpdesk complaint tool);

EU competitiveness and economic success cannot exist without services and well-protected foreign direct investments

23.  Emphasises the strongly increased potential of goods and services in international trade, but reiterates that market access and the abolition of trade barriers at WTO level and in FTA negotiations has not been able to keep pace with these developments; is aware that many barriers to trade in goods and services may be caused in particular by national regulations; recalls that any further liberalisation in this area must not undermine the ability to develop existing and future services of general interest that are a key element of sustainable development in all countries;

24.  Demands that the Commission does its utmost to ensure that our trading partners grant better market access to our service providers in industrialised countries or major emerging economies, bearing in mind that the EU internal market is already quite open to foreign service providers; notes, however, that some public services have to remain excluded on the basis of national or regional cultural diversities;

25.  Puts the protection of investors as the first priority in the light of the future European investment policy and considers that public regulation capacity must also be guaranteed and safeguarded; asks the Commission, therefore, to secure the legal certainty of the protection for EU investors; calls on the Council to give its mandates for future investment agreements to the Commission taking into account Parliament's views and positions as set out in the resolution of 6 April 2011 on the future European international investment policy(33);

26.  Points out that the EU has historic ties with Africa, Latin America and Asia and that an appropriate investment policy should therefore be conducted there, with a view to sustainable development;

27.  Recognises that the temporary movement of natural persons (Mode IV) has an important role to play within the EU's bilateral negotiations; believes that it is important that Mode IV does not undermine the principle of collective bargaining and minimum wage legislation;

Parliament asks for positive reciprocity in international public procurement markets

28.  Regrets that the large degree of openness of EU public procurement markets at all levels of government are in many cases not matched by commensurate access for EU suppliers abroad; points out that some public services have to remain excluded on the basis of national or regional cultural diversities;

29.  Asks that the Commission work towards positive reciprocal access in that important economic sector, bearing in mind that the clear priority in reciprocal access is not to close our markets, but to open up foreign public procurement markets;

Parliament asks for an ambitious attempt to tackle regulatory barriers - within and outside Europe

30.  Stresses the increasing relevance of regulatory issues to international trade and therefore calls for greater consistency between EU rules and practices and those of our main trading partners, bearing firmly in mind that this should not bring down EU standards, but lead to a better acceptance of existing multilateral standards;

31.  Stresses that the harmonisation in international standards and certification practices with third countries cannot be carried out at the price of lower technical, health and safety and consumer protection standards; calls on the Commission to protect EU standards and to effectively enforce them vis-à-vis importers and economic operators who market their products in Europe;

32.  Supports the Single Market Act proposal on regulatory convergence with the EU's major trading partners, in particular in the areas of consumer and environmental protection, animal welfare, health and labour standards; underlines the importance of adopting international standards at a high level in these crucial areas; confirms that standardisation policies, mutual recognition, licences, services and access to public procurement should be at the heart of FTA negotiations;

33.  Asks the Commission to include the aspect of international competitiveness in all impact assessments related to new legislative proposals;

34.  Reminds the Commission to pay particular attention to the ‘non-tariff barriers’ and regulatory barriers used by many countries, including WTO members, vis-à-vis EU exports, not least with a view to future trade partnership agreements; points out that, during negotiations, provision should be made for intervention instruments aimed at restoring reciprocity and conditions of equilibrium between the parties in the event of unilateral measures (‘non-tariff barriers’) being taken, including merely administrative measures (certification, inspection), which may place EU businesses at a competitive disadvantage and give rise to asymmetrical operating conditions; calls on the EU to take steps at international level in favour of regulatory cooperation with a view to promoting equivalence and convergence of international standards and thereby limiting disputes and the associated trade costs;

Parliament is engaged in the fight against poverty within and outside the EU

35.  Recalls that Parliament is committed to free and fair trade – not only the Member States but also the Union as a whole have a social responsibility; both the EU cohesion funds and the Globalisation Adjustment Fund have to be used and further developed in the interest of the people and to support the continued creation of new competitive jobs within the Union;

36.  Recalls that micro-enterprises and small and medium-sized enterprises represent 99 % of all enterprises in the EU and have great potential to create new jobs and innovation; considers, therefore, that internal and external policies should better address their specific needs to enhance their competitiveness, and that a special focus has to be laid on the improvement of the EU cohesion funds in terms of accessibility and transparency in order to boost the competitiveness of SMEs;

37.  Notes that, with regard to external policy, Parliament supports the Commission in its goal to promote – inter alia – sustainable development, free and fair trade, international labour standards and decent work, for example by negotiating EPAs, which combine European and ACP interests; points out that trade policy must promote development, permit better regional cooperation, encourage investment and improve economic governance, reminding all stakeholders that other regions of the globe have shown how trade can contribute to welfare; asks the Commission for an integrated approach on trade, foreign, development, social, agricultural and environmental policies; reiterates its earlier call on the Commission to ensure coordinated policies in support of Fair Trade;

38.  Points out that, as part of its new trade strategy, the EU has a particular interest in supporting the endogenous development of the outermost regions, given their biodiversity and geographical location, which provides the EU with access to the sea, to tropical forests and to a space testing and research range;

39.  Calls on the Commission, with regard to EPAs, to respect Parliament's past resolutions on the need to show flexibility in the negotiations with our partners and honour the commitment to special and differential treatment with developing countries;

40.  Notes that Parliament intends to adopt a future GSP System which should include an improved focus on how the countries most in need and meeting our ‘Trade and’ requirements can benefit from the GSP;

41.  Calls on the Commission to look into the possibility of taking emergency trade aid measures for countries hit by natural disasters and conflicts to rebuild their economies; asks the Commission to present concrete examples of measures which could bring relief to an emergency in the short term as well as measures that could have an impact on mid- and long-term development before asking Parliament's consent for such measures;

42.  Emphasises that external trade policy must safeguard the EU's ability to maintain a strong agricultural sector in order to guarantee food security and food sovereignty for 500 million consumers in the EU;

Parliament demands a sustainable and undistorted supply of raw materials

43.  Calls on the Commission to pursue a consistent, sustainable, comprehensive and cross-policy strategy concerning raw materials with the aim of preventing and eliminating unfair trade practices such as export restrictions, export taxes and so-called dual pricing mechanisms at multilateral and bilateral level, while recognising that under certain circumstances export restrictions may be seen as important for the support of development objectives, the protection of the environment or the sustainable exploitation of natural resources in poorer developing countries such as LDCs and SIDs; calls on the Commission to diversify its raw material suppliers and to conclude long-term bilateral agreements in this area; considers that this policy has to take into account EU development policy and the development objectives of the economic partnership agreements (EPAs);

44.  Highlights the importance of involvement of civil society within FTAs; supports the initiative taken by the Commission within the EU Korea FTA to convene a Domestic Advisory Group to allow civil society input; asks the Commission to develop this initiative within future FTAs;

45.  Urges the Commission to stay firm on the elimination of export restrictions, export taxes and so-called dual pricing mechanisms in all future bilateral free trade agreements; asks the Commission to engage in the context of the WTO to negotiate on clear multilateral rules;

46.  Urges the Commission not only to complain about the unacceptable behaviour of some trading partners but also to react in a strict and proper way in this regard; reminds the Commission of the fact that, besides trade policy, there are other policies such as agriculture, environment, development, research and foreign affairs that have to support a joint policy on raw materials supply; stresses the need to support and develop research, in particular as regards bio-vegetal chemistry, and recycling of chemical substances, in order to lessen the EU's dependence on countries supplying raw materials and rare earths;

Better customs cooperation inside and outside the EU is needed

47.  Supports the Commission's initiative to strengthen the international customs cooperation within the World Customs Organisation and on a bilateral level to make customs procedures more efficient, to reduce costs for traders and to better address security, safety and IPR challenges;

48.  Invites the Commission and the Member States to give serious consideration to the idea of setting up a unified EU customs service for a more effective application of custom rules and procedures throughout the customs territory of the EU;

Parliament asks for adequate IPR protection which also bears in mind the interests of the poorest

49.  Stresses that counterfeiting results in job losses and undermines innovation, and stresses that adequate IPR protection and effective enforcement are the bedrock of a global economy; regards the appropriate protection of IPRs, especially trademarks and geographical indications by our main trading partners as an indispensable requirement for preserving and improving the EU's competitiveness; welcomes the Commission's commitment to the enforcement of existing commitments;

50.  Reminds the Commission that European IPR policy towards the least developed and poor developing countries, as well as the main producers of generics, notably India and Brazil, should remain within the TRIPS Agreement obligations and must fully respect the 2001 Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health, especially in the field of generic medicines and public health;

o   o

51.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the European Economic and Social Committee, and the Committee of the Regions.

(1) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0068.
(2) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0224.
(3) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0225.
(4) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0257.
(5) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0141.
(6) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0063.
(7) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0445.
(8) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0434.
(9) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0446.
(10) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0387.
(11) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0324.
(12) OJ C 236 E, 12.8.2011, p. 57.
(13) OJ C 117 E, 6.5.2010, p. 166.
(14) OJ C 67 E, 18.3.2010, p. 132.
(15) OJ C 67 E, 18.3.2010, p. 101.
(16) OJ C 45 E, 23.2.2010, p. 47.
(17) OJ C 295 E, 4.12.2009, p. 67.
(18) OJ C 279 E, 19.11.2009, p. 5.
(19) OJ C 259 E, 29.10.2009, p. 77.
(20) OJ C 184 E, 6.8.2009, p. 16.
(21) OJ C 323 E, 18.12.2008, p. 520.
(22) OJ C 102 E, 24.4.2008, p. 128.
(23) OJ C 308 E, 16.12.2006, p. 182.
(24) OJ C 306 E, 15.12.2006, p. 400.
(25) OJ C 298 E, 8.12.2006, p. 235.
(26) ‘Convergence, Catch Up and Overtaking’, PwC, 2010.
(27) Eurostat data.
(28) Eurostat, UN Servicetrade.
(29) European Commission, Ageing Report 2009; Eurostat/UNECE Work Session 2010.
(30) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0434.
(31) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0446.
(32) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0445.
(33) Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0141.

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