Highlights of the week

26.02.2018 - 02.03.2018

New Tax Committee: artificial shifting around of companies' profits must end

Palm growing from pile of euros

New Tax Committee: artificial shifting around of companies' profits must end

Parliament is setting up a new special committee on Thursday to look further into the problem of the tax evasion and tax avoidance of multi-national companies. "The EPP Group wants companies to pay taxes where the actual economic activity takes place and where the value is created. The artificial shifting around of companies' profits from one country to another must end. The main measure to stop this is the so-called Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB), the EU-wide harmonisation of what is taxed and where it is taxed. The ball is now in the Council's court to decide on this law proposal", say Françoise Grossetête MEP, Vice-Chairwoman of the EPP Group in charge of economic affairs, and Burkhard Balz MEP, EPP Group Spokesman in Parliament's Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs.

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845952 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175952
BRU: +32 (0)2 2845119 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175119
  • Daniel Köster, tel:  +32 487 384 784

EP hearing for ECB Vice-President candidate Luis De Guindos

Germany, Frankfurt, European Central Bank, low angle

EP hearing for ECB Vice-President candidate Luis De Guindos

The Ecofin Council, which gathers together the EU's 28 Finance Ministers, confirmed at its meeting on 20 February the nomination of Spanish Economy Minister Luis de Guindos to become the next Vice-President of the European Central Bank, starting on 1 June 2018. The European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee will receive the candidate on Monday for a hearing.

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845119 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175119
  • Daniel Köster, tel:  +32 487 384 784

Honey bees in trouble

A bee on a flower

Honey bees in trouble

The European Parliament will debate the future of beekeeping at its mini-Plenary on Wednesday. "We must keep an eye on our bees as their role in pollination is indispensable and therefore a huge part of the food industry relies on them", says the Rapporteur, Hungarian EPP Group Member Norbert Erdős. The Report calls for a determined combat against honey adulteration, asks for a revision of EU support for beekeepers and calls for a clear and science-based approach to manage permits for different chemicals which may affect bees' health. "Honey adulteration must be stopped by improving the food labelling system in place", says Erdős.

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845716 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175716
  • Pete Pakarinen, tel:  +32 470 830 213

Circular economy: higher recycling rates, more waste separation

glass globe in hand

Circular economy: higher recycling rates, more waste separation

The European Parliament, Commission and Council agreed last December on the so-called Waste Package. "With the new targets for recycling and landfilling, we have clearly pointed the way to the future: our raw materials must be kept in the circle", says the EPP Group negotiator for the Waste Package, Karl-Heinz Florenz MEP. "We have substantially improved environmental and climate protection by reducing landfill amongst others, and at the same time we have put together an economic package in the form of 80,000 new jobs and with an economic potential worth billions. Competitiveness and sustainable growth are two sides of the same coin. Europe cannot afford to lose 2.5 billion tons of raw materials due to miserable waste management." Florenz was pleased that clear, harmonised definitions and a consistent calculation method for the recycling targets were agreed for the first time allowing not only to compare the recycling results of the Member States but also avoiding glossing over the figures.

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845320 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175320
  • Taina Mertalo, tel:  +32 477 311 515

Improving spirit drinks laws to protect traditional practices

Wine producer in his cellar

Improving spirit drinks laws to protect traditional practices

The European Parliament will vote on Thursday on updates to the existing legislation on spirit drinks. The EPP Group improved a Commission proposal by making sure that traditional practices, which are the backbone of the production of spirit drinks for many European SMEs, remain protected. In other words, consumers will continue to be able to enjoy their eggnog made with real eggs the way it has been made for generations. For Parliament's lead negotiator Pilar Ayuso the message is clear: “Consumers have the right to enjoy the products the way they are meant to be.”

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845398 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175398
  • Marta Osojnik, tel:  +32 473 625 868

Boosting competition enforcement and the EU market

business statistics in blue - white chart with a blue arrow going up

Boosting competition enforcement and the EU market

The Economy and Monetary Affairs Committee will adopt new rules on Tuesday to enable Member States' competition authorities to be more effective enforcers of EU antitrust rules. Parliament's lead negotiator on this legislation, Andreas Schwab, sees it as an important oppurtunity to boost competition enforcement and market functioning in the EU by enabling national competition authorities (NCAs) to fully apply EU competition rules. In his view, public enforcement of competition rules is a fundamental element of the social market economy, as anti-competitive agreements and the abuse of market dominance render one of its main pillars, i.e. fair competition, impossible. It is consequently crucial that all NCAs have the right tools to effectively enforce the common competition rules, thus ensuring a genuine level playing field in the EU.

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845938 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175938
  • Daniel Köster, tel:  +32 487 384 784

Chairman's Agenda

EPP Group February Plenary Briefing

Chairman's Agenda

Monday: visit to Paris

Tuesday: speech at the Bruegel think-tank, Brussels;  meeting with Wouter Beke, Chairman of CD&V, Brussels

Wednesday: speech in Plenary on the informal European Council

BRU: +32 (0)2 2845890 - STR: +33 (0)3 88 175890
  • Marion Jeanne, tel:  +32 479 840 293

Press Conferences


Press Conferences

  • Monday @ 11.00 hrs: Briefing on the parliamentary agenda
  • Thursday @ 13.30 hrs: Frank Engel, Rapporteur, on the situation of fundamental rights in the EU in 2016


Man voting on elections in Europe
23.02.2018 - 17:59

People should know who can become the Commission President

"Europe should not be an elite project. It must become more of a project for the people again. This is why we need more democracy and...
22.02.2018 - 11:39

End rebate logic - we all benefit from EU budget

“The EU budget must be strengthened without penalising taxpayers. Post-2020, we have to stop rebates, compensations and end the logic of...
Online shopping with digital tablet
22.02.2018 - 10:10

Shop like at home

Whether buying online or offline from another EU Member State, European consumers will in the future be entitled to a harmonised level oF protection...
Combines harvesting wheat
21.02.2018 - 18:14

Evaluation and authorisation of pesticides needs to hold up to scrutiny

After the controversy surrounding the renewal of the use of glyphosate in farming, the European Parliament has set up a Special Committee to...