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Conservatives blocking lobby transparency and moves to sanction conflicts of interest in the European Parliament


The Constitutional affairs committee was invited to vote Monday 12 September on the report for ‘Transparency, Accountability and Integrity in the EU institutions’. Yet the Conservatives (EPP) asked for a postponement of the vote and eventually received the support of Liberals and Social Democrats. The Grand Coalition in the Committee postponed the vote without setting a new date. For the case of a vote, the Conservatives asked for separate votes on core formulations indicating their opposition to the main demands of the report. They ask to eliminate the legislative footprint, a ban on lobby side jobs for MEPs and the sanctioning of conflicts of interest.

 

MEP Sven Giegold, rapporteur for ‘Transparency, Accountability and Integrity in the EU institutions’ comments on the postponement:

The postponement of the vote on more lobby transparency and tougher integrity rules is a missed chance to rebuild trust of citizens in the EU institutions. Conservatives say they search for a broader compromise but want to delete all real progress, such as lobby transparency, a ban on lobby side jobs and effective sanctions against conflicts of interest.

The Commission will propose an update of the interinstitutional agreement on the Transparency Register at the end of September. My report was planned as contribution by Parliament how MEPs. can increase transparency. All key members of parliament should join the Commission in only meeting registered lobbyists and publishing meetings with lobbyists whrn making law. Due to the postponement by the Conservatives, Commission will go ahead and Parliament will stand by. The conservative blockade threatens the reputation of Parliament. Liberals and the leadership of the Social Democrats feed this damage for the European Parliament by supporting the blockade.

‘Legislative footprints” would help to make the Transparency Register as mandatory as possible by attaching to reports all stakeholders consulted. The conservative request to delete the legislative footprint puts big question marks about any of their statements pro transparency.

Background: Core compromises and demands of the report which Conservatives (EPP) want to delete: press_briefing_INI_Transparency_13092016

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