European Semester: - extracts from the statements by the Rapporteurs

Type: News   Reference: 90184   Duration: 00:04:55  Lieu: Strasbourg, France - European Parliament
End production: 05/02/2013   First transmission: 05/02/2013
MEP'S debated this afternoon on the European Semester. The European Semester is an annual cycle that starts with the annual growth survey (AGS) and results in the publication of country-specific guidance to countries whose policies and budgets are out of line. The most recent AGS rose serious concerns about employment, as youth unemployment has hit 50% in some countries. MEPs consider the Commission should revise its economic policy recommendations to take into account of the International Monetary Fund's recent admission that the social and employment effects of austerity measures have been "underestimated". A number of countries, such as Portugal, Greece and Ireland have been forced to implement tough budgets of tax rises and spending cuts to comply with EU and IMF bailout conditions. The new economic governance arrangements being introduced, inter alia through the European Semester, directly affect every aspect of national economic policy, and hence must be subject to stronger democratic control, acknowledged MEPs. Without this control, citizens may eventually just stop accepting reform recommendations, they warned.

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TIME DESCRIPTION DURATION
00:00:00 TITLE : European Semester: extracts from the statements by the Rapporteurs 00:00:05
00:00:05 EXTERIOR SHOT of the European Parliament in Strasbourg 00:00:05
00:00:10 SOUNDBITE (German) Andreas SCHWAB (EPP, DE) Rapporteur (English translation) "There is huge potential for growth and for the Single Market, there is huge potential to be tapped into on the part of the Member States, but we need to make sure that the law is dealt with a more uniform manner, and I'm very pleased that the Single Market and how relevant that is, has been taken on board finally." 00:00:19
00:00:29 SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Eider GARDIAZABAL RUBIAL (EPP, ES) BUDGET Committee (English translation) "The Member States should adopt all the necessary structural reforms amongst others, reform on labour taxation which encourages employment, also self-employment and new start-ups. We also need to improve the framework for companies activity, facilitate the SME's access to funding, also reform undeclared work as well as labour market to markets them more inclusive and flexible and also look t wage adjustment system to bring them into line with productivity and exploit the major employment potential that exists in certain fields such as health and social care and the environment which will help creating new jobs." 00:00:51
00:01:20 SOUNDBITE (Portuguese) Elisa FERREIRA (S&D, PT) Rapporteur (English translation) "Coming to the systematic imbalances in the Eurozone, we see there are systematic surpluses in the trade balance of the Luxemburg, the Netherlands and Germany, while, on the periphery, great efforts are expected from the weaker countries : 18% adaptation in Greece, over 6% in Portugal, which means far more than demanded within the European legal text. No wonder there are 27 million unemployment, 60 million young unemployed within the periphery of Europe, and these will become cheap labour for the rest of Europe." 00:00:52
00:02:12 SOUNDBITE (English) Lucinda CREIGHTON, Minister for European Affairs, Council "We can't simply agree on policy guidance and then assume that our task in done. The semester has to be implemented in the Member States and by the Member States. This is the only way which will produce concrete results, even if we have to accept that these will sometimes take time." 00:00:22
00:02:34 SOUNDBITE (English) Lucinda CREIGHTON, Minister for European Affairs, Council "Following the publication by the Commission of its Annual Growth Survey, the European Council confirmed the 5 priorities. These are : - differentiated growth friendly fiscal consolidation - restoring landing to the economy - growth and competitiveness - unemployment and the social consequences of the crises - and modernizing public administration 00:00:23
00:02:57 SOUNDBITE (English) Andor LASZLO, European Commissioner for Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion "The Commission considers that Member States should prioritize investments such as education, and should maintain and reinforce coverage and effectiveness of employment services, and active labour market policies such as training for the unemployed and youth guarantee schemes. The modernization of social protection systems should ensure their effectiveness, adequacy and sustainability. 00:00:28
00:03:25 SOUNDBITE (French) Michel BARNIER, European Commissioner for internal market and services. English translation : "Internal market is indeed a crucial lever for growth. Now, not all of growth come to the internal market, just the basis, the floor, but if it is broken up into too much legislation, administrative rules, national administrative bureaucratic etc, if those foundations are not solid then everything we build on that like private initiatives, initiatives from local authorities, or from the states of Europe, from public and private companies, everything else will be more shaky. And that's why we together with you are focusing on consolidation of the internal market through competition, encouraging growth and employment." 00:00:39
00:04:04 SOUNDBITE (Portuguese) Paulo RANGEL (EPP, PT) AFCO Committee English translation : "The European Parliament must intervene even before the Commission's position has been defined, which means that the Parliament has to be consulted by the Commission so that it can put forwards its priorities. We think it's very important that national parliaments should be taken into account as well. This is an inter-parliamentary dialog with the European parliament, that was what happened last week, so that they can adapt their budgetary procedure in two steps, where the intervention of the national parliaments is important." 00:00:42
00:04:46 CUTAWAYS : 4 shots 00:00:09
00:04:55 END 00:00:00
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