TOPICS FOR THIS WEEK IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT – 01 FEBRUARY

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TOPICS FOR THIS WEEK IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT - 01 FEBRUARY
01 Feb 2016

TOPICS FOR THIS WEEK IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT – 01 FEBRUARY

Brussels Daily

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EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT TOPICS WEEK 01-05 FEBRUARY

 

Debate on refugees, border checks and the future of Schengen

MEPs will discuss the refugee crisis and border checks, both at EU external borders and within the Schengen passport-free area, with Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans on Tuesday afternoon. The European Commission warned on 27 January that regular ID checks might be reintroduced for up to two years if Greece does not solve some “serious deficiencies” in the management of its EU external border. (Read more: Debate on refugees, border checks and the future of Schengen)

MEPs will air their views on migration and the UK’s upcoming in-or-out EU referendum in a Wednesday morning debate ahead of the European Council summit on 18 and 19 February. Contributors to the debate will include European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Dutch Minister for Foreign Affairs Bert Koenders, on behalf of the Dutch Council Presidency. (Read more: Pre-summit debate: migration and UK’s EU referendum)

 

Tax Commissioner Pierre Moscovici will present the Commission’s latest corporate tax proposals in the plenary session on Tuesday morning. They include a draft Council directive to counter base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS), which follows up the OECD action plan for corporate taxation. (Read more: EU Commission to present corporate tax proposals)

 

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will be in Strasbourg on Monday afternoon for a debate with MEPs on the Bank’s annual report for 2014. (Read more: MEPs set to quiz ECB President Mario Draghi in plenary debate on Monday )

 

Talks on a Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), with countries representing 70% of world trade in services, should give EU firms more opportunities to provide services, such as transport and telecoms, in third countries. At the same time, EU public services and audiovisual services should not be opened up to competition, say MEPs in draft recommendations to be debated on Monday and voted on Wednesday. (Read more: Parliament to set out its demands for trade in services deal (TiSA))

 

A proposal to veto a draft decision to raise diesel car emission limits for nitrogen oxides (NOx) by up to 110% when the long-awaited Real Driving Emissions (RDE) test procedure is introduced will be put to a vote on Wednesday. The Environment Committee argues that Parliament should veto plans to relax the limits because this would undermine the enforcement of existing EU standards. The issue was debated during the January plenary session. (Read more: Vote on objection to new diesel car emission limits)

 

A debate on whether the EU should recognize China as a “market economy” will be held on Monday afternoon with trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström. MEPs are concerned that the European Parliament has yet to be consulted on this issue. If the EU does decide to treat China as a market economy, then the European Parliament would have to co-decide on any changes needed in EU law. (Read more: “Market economy” status for China: what will the EU do?)

Questions about €3 billion in funding from EU and national budgets for a proposed facility to support Syrian refugees in Turkey are to be raised in a joint debate on migration issues on Tuesday afternoon. MEPs may ask the European Commission where the EU budget share is supposed to come from, how much individual member states have pledged so far, and how it can be ensured that the money will be effectively channelled to meet refugees’ needs. (Read more: New €3bn Refugee Facility in Turkey: questions on funding)

Following recent attacks on women in Cologne (Germany) and elsewhere in the EU, MEPs will debate the issue of sexual harassment and violence against women in public spaces on Wednesday evening. In a debate on Tuesday, MEPs will ask the EU Commission and the Council what steps they plan to take to prevent gender-based violence against women in the EU. A resolution to be voted on Wednesday will urge the Commission to deliver a “New Strategy for Gender Equality and Women’s Rights post 2015”. (Read more: MEPs to call for zero tolerance of violence against women)

 

 

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