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Tuesday 13th March 2012 | 12:37
Martin Callanan: Shocking complacency taking hold in EU corridors of power
Strasbourg, 13th March 2012 -- Speaking in the European Parliament's debate this morning on the outcome of the recent EU summit, European Conservatives and Reformists group chairman Martin Callanan MEP warned that a concerning 'corrupting complacency' was taking hold in the EU.
He warned Presidents Barroso and Van Rompuy that the EU was failing to put growth at the forefront of its activities, and warned that time has been wasted on the intergovernmental fiscal compact treaty.
"I am increasingly concerned that a corrupting complacency is starting to take hold in European corridors of power.
"Some now seem to believe that the worst of the crisis may be over - after all a new treaty has been signed!
"Well, Europe is not OK; the underlying economic weakness is problem shared by the whole of Europe; and the new treaty is simply an irrelevance.
"The European Council has wasted considerable energy on a treaty that will make no difference to the fundamentals whilst taking decisions which will condemn the Greek people to a generation of poverty.
"The letter signed by twelve Heads of Government from three political families in this house should have been seized upon to re-launch a constructive growth agenda in Europe. But the initial reaction was very cool.
"Mr van Rompuy - surely the time has come for the Council to stop behaving as if the drafting of Council communiqués has been delegated to the foreign ministries of France and Germany? Why didn't you immediately face the opportunity to focus on a positive, forward-looking agenda for real economic growth? When you asked the council to put jobs on the agenda, were you only referring to yours?!
"And Mr Barosso: shouldn't this kind of growth agenda be the centrepiece of the work of your Commission and define its purpose? Isn't that what we were promised? The global competitive challenge requires a determined policy response from the whole commission, not just one or two Commissioners who understand what's at stake.
"And I hope you will take this opportunity to condemn Sunday's remarks from the President of France calling for Protectionism and Restriction on Trade. We should be abolishing trade barriers, not erecting more of them."President Sarkozy also said last week that there are too many foreigners in France. I'm one foreigner that would be very happy not to have to come to this Strasbourg Parliament every month - but it is his Government that keeps telling us we have to!