Hearing of Tonio Borg, Member designate of the EC in charge for Health and Consumer Policy: extracts from the hearing, questions and answers
Type: Institutional activity
End production: 13/11/2012 First transmission: 13/11/2012
A three hour hearing of Tonio Borg, Member designate of the EC in charge for Health and Consumer Policy, took place on 13 November 2012 by the European Parliament’s Committee on Public Health and Food Safety in cooperation with the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection and the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development.
Tonio Borg has been officially nominated as the Maltese Member of the European Commission following the resignation of John Dalli. In the following week’s plenary sitting the Parliament will vote on the appointment of the Commissioner by secret ballot.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior view of the EP building in Brussels
||Cutaways (4 shots)
||SOUNDBITE by Evelyne Gebhardt, Member of the EP (S&D, DE), (in GERMAN) saying that Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship, is preparing a draft legislation on the representation of women in company boards; asking if he is going to be supporting Mrs Reding in this initiative. (3 shots)
||SOUNDBITE by Tonio Borg, Member designate of the EC in charge for Health and Consumer Policy, (in ENGLISH) saying that he has no difficulties with the quota issue; of course one has to see the elements of the proposal itself because there are some reservations by a lot of people on elective posts; but on regulatory bodies, he says why not; he says why not because when everything fails one has to refer and rely on the quotas themselves. (2 shots)
||SOUNDBITE by Toine Manders, Member of the EP (ALDE, NL), (in DUTCH) saying that John Dalli had to resign because of accusations that were never proved; asking what he thinks about OLAF and its assessments of this type of issues.
||SOUNDBITE by Tonio Borg (in ENGLISH) saying that he has to be prudent on this matter; he worked with John Dalli in cabinet, outside cabinet; he hopes that he is allowed the space to defend his position; but all he can say is that he is there because there has been a resignation, there has to be a substitution; his government proposed him as a substitute to John Dalli and he will assure certain continuity but he comes with his new ideas as well; OLAF can defend itself, he doesn't need to say anything about that. (2 shots)
||SOUNDBITE by Corinne Lepage, Member of the EP (ALDE, FR), (in FRENCH) saying that he said he felt very strongly about the independence of EFSA; that's a good thing; asking if he plans to take concrete measures in order to effectively improve, not only the perception, but also the reality of the independence of that organisation; asking if he plans to revise assessment systems and specifically as regards GMO; saying that a number of Member States requested that these systems be reviewed; asking if he would review the guidelines.
||SOUNDBITE by Tonio Borg (in ENGLISH) saying that he shall not be a slave of EFSA; this does not mean that he will not give it the due consideration, whenever EFSA gives clear advice and solid scientific evidence on this question; on GMOs, he will not rush where angels fear to tread, which dos not mean he will not take a decision on that matter, because there are implications not taking a decision; there are legal implications as well; in the Court of Justice of the EU, there is a possibility of proceedings being brought forward for failure to act.
||SOUNDBITE by Tonio Borg (in ENGLISH) saying that the Council is leaving it up to the Commission to take decisions after all due authorization is issued by the Commissioner himself and not by EFSA; they have to be very careful, in this regard, to take the right decisions because if they take the wrong decisions they would have a lot of harmful effects either way; but at the moment in time, a decision has to be taken.
||Cutaways (2 shots)