Brexit: breaking out of the inner circle
3 hours ago
"It is regrettable that the Commission's Communication appears to understand neither the extent nor the significance of the changes in the Union's constitutional and legal framework ushered in by the Treaty of Lisbon.
The Commission deals with delegated acts as though they were the descendants of the "Lamfalussy procedure" and "comitology" measures adopted on the basis of Article 202 EC2. The time has come to abandon this way of thinking when dealing with the delegation of legislative power to the Commission.Yet another time the European Parliament is showing muscles to the Commission. A vote for the report is expected for April.
Control of the power delegated by the Legislator should in all logic remain the preserve of the Legislator. Moreover, any other form of control by anyone but the Legislator would per se be contrary to Article 290 TFEU. In particular, Member States, and a fortiori committees composed of experts from the Member States, have no role to play in this area.
If the Commission, before adopting a delegated act, wants to consult-informally with national experts, it is absolutely free to do so in the same way as it is free to consult civil society, interest representatives, companies, the social partners, academics, or even Members or organs of the European Parliament. In fact, your rapporteur considers that it would be very useful for the Commission to associate the responsible organs of the European Parliament in the preparations leading up to the adoption of delegated acts.
By contrast, Parliament categorically rejects any formal role of national experts having the effect of a control mechanism on the Commission as being contrary to the Treaties and the principle of institutional balance."
(quote from the draft report pp. 10-11; my highlights)
"The Commission informed the Committee about two leaked documents, one RESTREINT UE and the other LIMITED. The Commission stressed the need to keep the confidentiality of such sensitive documents."Which reminds me of the fact that La Quadrature yesterday leaked the full ACTA text with negotiation positions of the different sides (EU, USA, Australia, Japan) - and the water mark of the scanned document shows that it comes from the EU...
facilitate, promote and strengthen coordination of operational actions of the authorities of the Member States competent in the field of internal security. (Article 2)Citing from Article 6 of the Council decision, the European Journal remarks that
[w]hereas the committee is required to report its activities to the Council, the Council solely is required to “keep the EP and national parliaments informed.” Hence, such committee will not be subject to a proper parliamentary control.The scope of the work of the committee looks pretty broad, including a number of controversial security issues discussed in the member states and the EU.
While the Parliament's consent is required for the conclusion of trade agreements where Article 207 TFEU is the substantive legal base, Article 218 (7) TFEU provides for the possibility for the Council to authorise the negotiator to approve on behalf of the Union modifications to an agreement through a simplified procedure. Furthermore, Article 218 (9) provides for the establishment of positions to be adopted on the Union's behalf in a body set up by an agreement, when that body is called upon to adopt acts having legal effects. In both these cases the consent of the Parliament is not required.Or, in other words: "You didn't make your homework by reading the full Lisbon Treaty. Plus, if we want to ignore you, we will find ways."
[A] regularly updated calendar of the meetings of all the Council's preparatory bodies can be consulted on the Council's website [...].In plain English: "Don't ask stupid question that you could answer yourself if you took a look to the Council website." The slap in the face is even harder if you look into the Annex where there are nothing but links to public sources everybody used to EU stuff could easily find.
Since commercial policy is, by definition, directed towards our international partners, both the Council and the Parliament will wish that the new arrangements will strengthen the EU's performance in this part of the international arena.My translation: "If you don't behave, the EU will look bad on the international scene. So behave!"
"[T]he reporters considered calling on the institutions to make press releases available only to accredited Brussels journalists. Some in the room objected to the restrictions on access to information this would entail and the association ultimately voted to just request a wider use of the 'embargo' system, in which information is delivered to a journalist with enough time to prepare a story ahead of a document's full public release."Journalist demanding information that are meant for the public exclusively or ahead of time is just ridiculous.
"if the Parliament is to have a right of veto over agreements which contain 'classified' components, as the Lisbon Treaty now allows, then it follows logically that the Parliament needs to be in a position to make a considered and serious judgment about the content and significance of such elements."In other words: The European Parliaments wants to be involved in time and it wants to have access to all relevant documents. This request may implicitly refer to the ACTA secrecy but will be important for a lot of international agreements that the EU is dealing with.
"initiate a future-oriented study on copyright in the digital environment and give thought to the changes required to guarantee a flexible legal apparatus, enabling copyright law to adapt more easily to technical, economic and social changes"If I understand correctly, this recommendation is based on a motion issued by some parliamentarians three years ago.
"This text – already "Lisbonised" – was drafted taking into account the comments made by the delegations during the meeting of the Working Party [...]. COM said it would re-submit in due course a "fully Lisbonised" proposal [...]."I agree with Kattebel: This eurospeak sounds like a disease - and I suppose that this is how the Council feels having lost power under the Lisbon Treaty.
What is a "legislative acts" when it comes to the involvement of national and regional parliaments of EU member states?This involvement is foreseen in Protocol N° 2 (on the application of the principles of subsidiarity) to the Lisbon Treaty. But if the EU will apply a very narrow interpretation of "legislative acts", the national legislatures might be left aside in quite a number of relevant matters.
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