State of the Union:
- extracts from the statement by the Council
- MEPs debate
Lieu: Strasbourg, France - European Parliament
End production: 11/09/2013 First transmission: 11/09/2013
Commission President José Manuel Barroso delivered the last state of the union speech to Parliament for this legislature on Wednesday. Political group leaders and MEPs took the floor to set out the priorities which they feel Commission should address in the coming months. They stressed the need to restore trust in the EU, pointing out that the May 2014 European elections offer voters a real chance to choose its future.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior shot of the EP, Strasbourg
||SOUNDBITE (English) Linas Antanas LINKEVICIUS, on behalf of the Council: "President Barroso has rightly underlined the importance of continuing to make progress on the establishing of the banking union. And indeed we need strong delivery, all of us, everyone of us".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Linas Antanas LINKEVICIUS, on behalf of the Council: "I want to ensure both the Commission and this House, of the support of the Presidency in accomplishing the heavy agenda which lies ahead of us. Our Irish colleagues set a formidable example in the results they were able to achieve, and we do hope to prove to be equally productive. I know that our Greek colleagues, as the other member of the 'trio' group share the same ambition".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Mariead McGUINNESs (EPP, IE): "7 Europeans in 10, and this is important, that what brings us together is much more significant that what separates us. This line should give those of us who know that Europe has a future great heart. A clear majority believe that by 2025 EU citizens will be more involved in European affairs than they currently are. So there is a future, and we have to build it. Which means we have to solve those problems we know that exist today, not mourn about them, not get up here all the time to say how bad it is. Get on and cure the problem. Member states are doing it with difficulty themselves; the EU has to assist them in that purpose. Let's continue the work and not because an election is coming, but because we are elected to do that work and serve our citizens".
||SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Juan Fernando LOPEZ AGUILAR (S&D, ES): "There is a lack of trust in the political project and the growing euro scepticism, populism and extremism is consequence of that. Coming out of recession is a statistical reality, that's what the cold figures say; but that doesn't justify saying we are entering a new era, it doesn’t justify the continuation of the austerity policy that has been applied so strictly, creating this feeling of guilt and penance in the countries with most difficulties, and breaking the solidarity spirit of Europe".
||SOUNDBITE (German) Alexander Graf LAMBSDORFF (ALDE, DE): "I would like to say something about youth unemployment: it's too high, it needs to be rolled back. But where were the socialists and the greens before the crisis? when youth unemployment in some countries was 20-25%. We proposed deregulation, we proposed structural reform, they rejected it. It's not that the crisis has caused the youth unemployment."
||SOUNDBITE (English) Gunnar HÖKMARK (EPP, SV): "We need to secure that we in Europe can achieve the new 'googles', the new 'yahoos', the new 'apples', and also to see that in the future the 'nokias' will buy the 'microsofts', not the other way round. I would like us to make the reforms that can make Europe to be a leading economy. That requires difficult decisions and you are we are responsible to take them".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Glenis WILLMOTT (S&D, UK): "The financial market is maybe recovering, and the experts may be more optimistic about the EU economy, but if you step aside the bubble Mr President you will see the true consequences of austerity. Living social standards dropping, ordinary people feeling the pain, exploitation from predatory employers using 0 hour contracts. A massive rise in food banks and the need for aid across the EU while energy prices rise and unemployment remains creepingly high".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Jill EVANS (Greens-EFA, UK): "Next year there is a legally agreed referendum on Scottish independence. I represent Wales, a nation with its own government, but in the Council of Ministers our vote is cast by the UK, and not in the Welsh national interest, even when funding and jobs are at stake. We want the ability to play a full part in rebuilding the economy, reclaiming Europe for all of its nations and regions. That will make Europe stronger".
||SOUNDBITE (Czech) Jan ZAHRADIL (ECR, CZ): "There is a growing body of opinion against the European Union. This people don't want to destroy the EU, they want to improve it, they want a different EU. But you can't have a different EU as long as people like you are in the Chamber. I'm sorry to put it like this but you are completely off the mark".
||Cutaways (5 shots)