EU: Parliament sets out its policy priorities for 2013

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Parliament calls for real economic and monetary union, as first step towards a stronger political union, with greater democratic accountability, in its contribution, voted on Tuesday, to the European Commission’s 2013 work programme. Growth initiatives and better controls on national spending of EU funds are among several specific proposals put forward by MEPs.

The Commission should play “a full part” in the EU summits of October and December, where a roadmap for a stronger economic union should be agreed, Members say in a joint resolution. The aim should be to create a financial and fiscal policy framework and ensure greater democratic legitimacy, it adds..

More powers for the ECB

To achieve this outcome, MEPs want the Commission immediately to propose legislation under the ordinary procedure, which involves Parliament fully and guarantees transparency. The first proposal should address the need for a genuine banking union, with increased supervisory powers for the European Central Bank (ECB).

More EU project bonds

With the help of the European Investment Bank, the scope and use of the European project bonds, so far introduced only as a pilot project, should be broadened, Members say, calling on the Commission to table a “detailed growth agenda” . This should also include a strategy to fight energy price rises and their impact on citizens.

Better control on EU spending

Compulsory “national management declarations” should be introduced, MEPs say, to ensure compliance with EU spending rules, backed up by independent evaluations of all EU-financed projects.

Lesson learned from ACTA’s rejection

Finally, in the aftermath of the rejection of the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), Members suggest that the Commission continue to work on copyright reform, taking full account of the problems that arose during the debate and vote on ACTA .

The resolution was adopted by a show of hands. The Commission will draft its work programme in the coming weeks. Here to read more.

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