We want a better Europe closer to the needs of its citizens, say S&Ds

We want a better Europe closer to the needs of its citizens, say S&Ds, better functioning European Union, Treaty of Rome, Lisbon Treaty, Mercedes Bresso, Elmar Brok, Jo Leinen, #TaxJustice,

Today, the European Parliament’s constitutional affairs committee passed two reports with an ambitious vision for a better functioning European Union, which operates closer to the needs of European citizens. These proposals are part of a package explaining the position of the European Parliament on the future of the EU for the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome. As a first step, the possibilities of the Lisbon Treaty should be used, while in the medium term a new treaty is needed.

Mercedes Bresso, S&D Group spokesperson for the constitutional affairs committee and co-author of one the two reports, said:

“During this long two years of reflexion with my colleague Elmar Brok, we have explored all possibilities inside the actual Treaties to improve the European Union to make it able to cope with the challenges it faces and especially to answer to the real need of its citizens.

“It is a fact that major steps towards an Energy Union, a Defence Union, a democratic governance of the Eurozone, a new European Immigration and Development policy and especially a strong and protective Social Union, are possible in the treaty. Now, this tool-box is ready for use and we need willingness and vision from the member states in order to achieve this historical step.

“Before the anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, our proposals could be a direct solution for immediate action in order to improve the life of all European citizens.”

Jo Leinen, the S&D Group’s spokesperson on possible evolutions to the institutional set-up of the European Union added:

“European citizens expect more efficient solutions for challenges like migration, security or growth and jobs. Re-nationalisation is the wrong answer in a globalised world. We therefore ask to equip the European Union with the necessary competences and instruments to be more successful. We must overcome veto rights and cherry-picking by single member states.

“We want to strengthen the community method with majority voting in the European Parliament and the Council and overcome the intergovernmental agreements that risk being non-transparent and without sufficient parliamentary control.

“To avoid harmful tax competition between member states, we propose minimum corporate tax rates throughout the EU, a core demand by the S&D Group. We cannot allow a race to the bottom in corporate taxes, which leaves citizens and small and medium enterprises paying the bill.”