EU-UK debate: MEPs will not back a deal at any cost  

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Plenary session 
 
 
MEPs debated with Council and Commission ahead of EU summit on EU-UK relations and EU financing © EP-DLL  

In a joint debate ahead of the EU summit covering future EU-UK relations and EU financing, MEPs urged Council to agree on the recovery plan.

Parliament will not back a deal at any cost, warned several MEPs commenting on the ongoing negotiations about the future relationship between the EU and the UK. They rejected the UK’s intention to select certain policy areas on which to negotiate while ignoring others.


Several speakers underlined that both parties have to stick to the Political Declaration, signed by the UK and the EU last year, which provides a clear framework for a future relationship. MEPs also called for commitments to be met faithfully, among others in the interest of UK citizens in the EU and EU citizens in the UK, as laid down in the legally binding Withdrawal Agreement. Parliament hopes for a new dynamism to conclude talks, for which there are but 204 days left. A resolution assessing the talks will be adopted on Thursday, followed by a press conference.


EU long-term budget and COVID-19 recovery support


On the next long-term EU budget and the COVID-19 recovery package, MEPs said that time is pressing and it is now in the European Council’s hands to quickly take the next important step: finding a common position among member states. The economy has to get back on track urgently, and the recovery plan “can get things going, but only with an ambitious long-term budget can we cross the finishing line”.


Many MEPs underlined that the Commission’s proposal is the bare minimum. In addition, the Parliament’s role has to be strengthened in devising and implementing the package, as “a crisis cannot be an excuse to undermine democracy”.



Please click on links to watch the speeches:


Nikolina Brnjac for the Council

Ursula von der Leyen, European Commission President

Christophe Hansen, (EPP, LU), Rapporteur

Kati Piri, (S&D, NL), Rapporteur

Nicolae Ștefănuță, (Renew Europe, RO), Committee on Budgets

David McAllister (EPP, DE)

Iratxe Garcia Pérez (S&D, ES)

Marco Zanni (ID, IT)

Ska Keller (Green/ALE, DE)

Jan Eppink (ECR, NL)

Martin Schirdewan (GUE/NGL, DE)

Dacian Cioloș (Renew Europe, RO)



Background information


EP President Sassoli will address EU heads of state or government on 19 June at their video conference meeting to discuss the recovery fund plans to respond to the COVID-19 crisis and a new EU long-term budget presented by the European Commission on 27 May 2020 in Parliament. According to Council, the EU leaders' discussion will serve as a “thorough preparation” for a summit at a later date. The EP President will hold a press conference after his intervention, at 11.00.


In addition, the Presidents of the European Council and of the Commission will inform the leaders about their discussions with Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the EU-UK high-level meeting via video conference on 15 June 2020.


Following the departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 31 January 2020, the two parties have been engaged in negotiations to establish a future partnership starting after a transition period that ends on 31 December 2020.