Press Release

It’s either an ambitious Europe or no Europe at all

Strasbourg
, 17.01.2018 - 13:28
Enlargement

Speaking in plenary today during the debates with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Manfred Weber, Chairman of the EPP Group in the European Parliament, highlighted the main challenges ahead in the European Union for the year 2018 and beyond.

Manfred Weber praised Bulgaria and the Republic of Ireland for their bold policies and clear European stance.

“Ireland has always had a very positive attitude towards Europe, because their politicians do not blame Europe but explain the decisions taken in Brussels and Strasbourg at home,” he told the Irish Taoiseach.

“Bulgaria's development shows that, based on European values, you can go forward, modernise the state, fight against corruption and give your country a clear European direction,” he told Prime Minister Boyko Borissov.

“One of the most important challenges ahead of us will be the debate on EU money. We should first define what Europe's priorities are and then discuss how they will be financed,” he said.

“This year we also need to solve the migration crisis,” he added.

“Bulgaria offers a good example of successful management of the Union’s external borders. We need to strengthen controls at all our external borders to fight against illegal migration more efficiently. We need more resources for Frontex and more Frontex officers,” Manfred Weber underlined.

Finally, he said, "the  countries of the Western Balkans are part of Europe and could become members of the European Union. We are in favour of this outlook if the conditions are met. The EPP wants to focus on very concrete projects, such as infrastructure, so that the people can see the benefits of being in the European family."

In the debate with Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, Manfred Weber also stressed the need to secure the European way of life through concrete policies and projects.

“Europe stands at a crossroads - between hate and hope," he said. "Demagogues play with people’s fears and prejudices. For their own selfish goals, they are spreading hate. We have to bring hope to people. It is either a Europe that is fair, that is united on defence, a Europe that treasures its cultural richness, or no Europe at all. Let’s get things done. It’s either an ambitious Europe or no Europe at all."

Note to Editors
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 217 Members from 27 Member States

MEP Contacts

-
Manfred WEBER
BRU - Phone: +32 (0)2 2845890 Fax: +32 (0)2 2849890
Email: manfred.weber@europarl.europa.eu

Press Contacts

Marion Jeanne
Chairman's Press Adviser
Phone: +32 479 840 293

Latest

Nicole Fontaine EP President at a plenary session in Strasbourg on July 1999
18.05.2018 - 21:19

Passing of N.Fontaine: a militant of the European ideal

“It is with a deep sadness that I learnt of the passing of Nicole Fontaine. After Simone Veil, the first woman elected as President of the...
traffic on german autobahn,european cars and trucks
17.05.2018 - 13:22

EPP Group in favour of capping CO2 emissions for trucks

EPP Group backs Commission’s proposal to cut CO2 emissions for trucks, but urges that we remain realistic The EPP Group in the European...
Environment Committee backs stronger EU disaster relief
17.05.2018 - 12:00

Environment Committee backs stronger EU disaster relief

The European Parliament’s Environment Committee has approved draft legislation to step up EU disaster relief. Authored by the EPP Group’s...
Freedom of expression
17.05.2018 - 09:53

Slovak police must immediately stop harassing journalists

EPP Group Chairman Manfred Weber strongly condemns the behaviour of the Slovak police towards Czech investigative journalist Pavla Holcov...

Highlights of the week

22.05.2018 - 25.05.2018
Riga, Latvia

Discussing the European way of life in Riga

European politicians, academics, policy-makers and opinion-shapers will gather in Riga, Latvia, from 23-25 May at the annual conference of the...
Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg to meet EP leaders

An extraordinary meeting with the Chief Executive Officer of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, will take place on Tuesday in the European Parliament. The...
High angle view of traffic on highway

Road charges: fair charging for better roads

The Transport and Tourism Committee will vote on Thursday morning on the phasing-out of the Eurovignette for heavy duty vehicles and vans....
Alojz Peterle rides a bicycle