European Council: joint intermediary press conference by Herman van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso

Type: Complete press conference   Reference: I-070342   Duration: 00:13:08  Lieu:
End production: 23/06/2011   First transmission: 23/06/2011
EU Heads of State or Government met in Brussels on 23 and 24 June 2011 for a European Council devoted to economic matters, migration, the EU's Southern Neighbourhood and Croatia's accession to the EU. Herman van Rompuy, President of the European Council, and José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, held a joint press conference after the first day of meeting. On 23 June, the Council discussions fell into three parts: economic policy coordination, with the work done in the European Semester and the Euro Plus Pact; the implementation of the comprehensive March package; and the situation of the countries under EU/IMF programs, not to mention Greece.

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00:00:00 Arrival of Herman van Rompuy, President of the European Council, and José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, to the press conference room 00:00:09
00:00:09 Statement by Herman van Rompuy (in ENGLISH) stating that the European Council is primarily interested in the economy; the discussions focused on these three areas: 1) the coordination of economic policies, with work carried out within the framework of the European Semester and the Euro Plus Pact, 2) the implementation of comprehensive measures adopted in March, 3) the situation with countries benefiting from EU and IMF programmes, and of course, Greece; 1) on economic policies: stating that the Heads of State or Government discussed the budgetary choices and economic reforms of each country; they closed the first European Semester, the new framework for economic policy coordination; they approved the Commission's recommendations to Member States; they also discussed the commitments taken under the Euro Plus Pact by the 23 participating Member States; 2) on the state of implementing the comprehensive package of economic measures adopted by the Council in March: stating that the Heads of State or Government endorsed the amended text relating to the European Financial Stability Facility and the text on the treaty establishing the European Stability Mechanism, which will serve as a permanent safety net for the future; it is of the utmost importance that banking sector stress tests are fully transparent; regarding the legislative package to strengthen economic governance in the EU (the "six-pack"), the enhanced Stability Pact and the new macroeconomic surveillance pact are on track; 3) on the situation concerning countries benefiting from EU and IMF programmes: stating that concerning Greece, they congratulated George Papandreou, the Greek Prime Minister, for the vote of confidence that his government has obtained; they adopted a long text on Greece; highlighting the most important passages; on the agenda for the following day: stating that the Council will examine three other points: 1) the Southern Neighbourhood, in particular Syria and Libya, and the Middle East peace process, 2) migration and free movement of persons within EU borders, 3) Croatia. 00:06:14
00:06:23 Statement by José Manuel Barroso (in ENGLISH) on the Council’s support for the Commission's recommendations specific to each Member State; stating that he presented a report which provides an overview of the response to the Europe 2020 objectives; he stressed the need to further consolidate the budget, consolidate public finance, correct macro-economic imbalances, pursue pension reform, and better measure the impact of reforms; on the situation of countries benefiting from EU programmes, in particular Greece; stating that the Council is happy with the progress made by Ireland and applauded the commitment of the new Portuguese government to implement reforms; in the case of Greece, the Council stressed the need for national unity on the implementation of various measures; on the need to promote growth and employment in Greece; on the implementation of European funds in Greece: stating that they intend to reprogram financing so that field results are more immediate and more visible; the EU is willing to put technical assistance at Greece’s disposal in order to strengthen the administration’s capabilities; stating that there is a real desire on the part of all Member States to do everything possible to preserve the stability of the Euro area and to work with the Greek people in order to strengthen EU governance. 00:06:44
00:13:08 Questions from journalists 00:11:34
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