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Procedure : 2016/2090(INI)
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Document selected : A8-0246/2016

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PV 13/09/2016 - 4.3
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Tuesday, 13 September 2016 - Strasbourg
Inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector

European Parliament resolution of 13 September 2016 on the inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector (2016/2090(INI))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to Article 226 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU),

–  having regard to Decision 95/167/EC, Euratom, ECSC of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of 19 April 1995 on the detailed provisions governing the exercise of the European Parliament’s right of inquiry(1),

–  having regard to its decision (EU) 2016/34 of 17 December 2015 on setting up a Committee of Inquiry into emission measurements in the automotive sector, its powers, numerical strength and term of office(2),

–  having regard to Rule 198 of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the interim report of the Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector (A8-0246/2016),

A.  whereas Article 226 of the TFEU provides a legal basis for the establishment by the European Parliament of a temporary Committee of Inquiry to investigate alleged contraventions or maladministration in the implementation of Union law, without prejudice to the jurisdiction of national or Union courts, and whereas this constitutes an important element of the Parliament’s supervisory powers;

B.  whereas, on the basis of a proposal by the Conference of Presidents, Parliament decided on 17 December 2015 to set up a Committee of Inquiry to investigate the alleged failures in the application of Union law in relation to emission measurements in the automotive sector, and that the Committee would make any recommendations that it deemed necessary in that matter;

C.  whereas the Committee of Inquiry operates according to a working plan, which includes:

   a programme of hearings of invited witnesses and experts with a view to gathering relevant oral evidence;
   requests for written evidence from witnesses and experts invited to hearings;
   requests for documents with a view to gathering relevant written evidence from the Commission, Members State authorities and other relevant actors;
   two missions to gather on-site information;
   briefings and studies commissioned under its expertise budget;
   a formal written opinion from Parliament’s Legal Service as regards inviting guests who may be subject to legal proceedings to testify;

D.  whereas the Committee of Inquiry has sent various questionnaires to Member States, Union institutions and other bodies, and has opened a public call for evidence on its website;

E.  whereas the results of the ongoing investigation could bring added value to the Union’s type-approval framework;

F.  whereas in its decision of 17 December 2015 Parliament required the Committee of Inquiry to present an interim report within six months of starting its work;

G.  whereas the nature of a Committee of Inquiry prevents it from putting forward any final conclusions arising out of its investigations before it considers that its mandate has been fulfilled; whereas, therefore, it is premature for the Committee to submit any observations on the various aspects of its mandate in this interim report;

H.  whereas the oral and written evidence submitted to and examined by the Committee to date confirms the need to investigate further all the points contained in its mandate;

1.  Encourages the Committee of Inquiry to pursue its work and to implement fully the mandate given by Parliament in its decision of 17 December 2015, and supports all the actions and initiatives leading to the accomplishment of the mandate;

2.  Asks the Conference of Presidents and the Bureau to support all measures needed to enable the Committee of Inquiry to fulfil its mandate, in particular regarding the authorisation of hearings and extraordinary meetings, the reimbursement of experts’ and witnesses’ expenses, missions and any other technical means which are duly justified;

3.  Asks the Commission to ensure prompt support and full transparency in assisting the work of the Committee of Inquiry, with full respect for the principle of loyal cooperation, providing all the technical and political support possible, in particular through swifter submission of requested documentation; expects full cooperation from the relevant current Commissioners and Directorate-Generals as well as from those who were in charge during past terms; asks the Member States, with full respect for the principle of loyal cooperation, to provide the Committee of Inquiry with the necessary technical and political support, in particular by enabling the Commission to submit documents that are requested more swiftly and, if the submission of documents requires the Member States’ consent, by accelerating their internal proceedings for the granting of such consent;

4.  Requires that the governments, parliaments and competent authorities of Member States assist the Committee of Inquiry in its tasks with full respect for the principle of loyal cooperation established in Union law;

5.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, and the governments and parliaments of the Member States.

(1) OJ L 113, 19.5.1995, p. 2.
(2) OJ L 10, 15.1.2016, p. 13.

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