Study – States of emergency in response to the coronavirus crisis: Normative response and parliamentary oversight in EU Member States during the first wave of the pandemic – 04-12-2020

Source: European Parliament 2

States of emergency in response to the coronavirus crisis: Normative response and parliamentary oversight in EU Member States during the first wave of the pandemic

04-12-2020

This study examines the normative response of the 27 EU Member States during the first phase of the Covid 19 pandemic (March to mid June 2020) and parliamentary oversight over the measures adopted. The study reveals that Member States’ normative responses to the pandemic were generally efficient, as very few of them were not preventively equipped with a set of rules enabling the national authorities to adopt the containment measures needed to address the first peak of the health crisis, and because the Member States lacking those normative tools were able to adopt the necessary empowering legislative acts quickly. The study also reveals that all EU national parliaments played some role in the management of the pandemic, either through the supervision of the measures adopted by the executive to contain the spread of the virus or through the exercise of their ordinary legislative and budgetary powers to provide the government with the normative tools needed to address the pandemic.

This study examines the normative response of the 27 EU Member States during the first phase of the Covid 19 pandemic (March to mid June 2020) and parliamentary oversight over the measures adopted. The study reveals that Member States’ normative responses to the pandemic were generally efficient, as very few of them were not preventively equipped with a set of rules enabling the national authorities to adopt the containment measures needed to address the first peak of the health crisis, and because the Member States lacking those normative tools were able to adopt the necessary empowering legislative acts quickly. The study also reveals that all EU national parliaments played some role in the management of the pandemic, either through the supervision of the measures adopted by the executive to contain the spread of the virus or through the exercise of their ordinary legislative and budgetary powers to provide the government with the normative tools needed to address the pandemic.

Briefing – Coronavirus: The battle continues [What Think Tanks are thinking] – 04-12-2020

Source: European Parliament 2

Coronavirus: The battle continues [What Think Tanks are thinking]

04-12-2020

As the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic appears to be peaking in Europe, governments and citizens are buoyed by the successful human trials of several vaccines which their producers hope to be able to distribute widely over the coming months. There is growing expectation that, as these vaccines start to become available to the general public in coming months, daily life may gradually return to normal, or at least to a ‘new normal’, during the course of 2021. Meanwhile, many regions of the world continue in some form of lockdown to stave off the second wave. The political debate on health policy is currently focussed not only on priorities for distributing the vaccine in the advanced economies, such as those of the EU, but on how to make it available to poorer countries too, as scientists underline that the virus knows no borders. This note offers links to recent commentaries, studies and reports from major international think tanks on pandemic-related issues. Earlier think tank studies on the issue can be found in the ‘What Think Tanks are Thinking’ of 10 November.

As the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic appears to be peaking in Europe, governments and citizens are buoyed by the successful human trials of several vaccines which their producers hope to be able to distribute widely over the coming months. There is growing expectation that, as these vaccines start to become available to the general public in coming months, daily life may gradually return to normal, or at least to a ‘new normal’, during the course of 2021. Meanwhile, many regions of the world continue in some form of lockdown to stave off the second wave. The political debate on health policy is currently focussed not only on priorities for distributing the vaccine in the advanced economies, such as those of the EU, but on how to make it available to poorer countries too, as scientists underline that the virus knows no borders. This note offers links to recent commentaries, studies and reports from major international think tanks on pandemic-related issues. Earlier think tank studies on the issue can be found in the ‘What Think Tanks are Thinking’ of 10 November.

Highlights – Women’s Rights Defenders: public hearing – Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality

Source: European Parliament

Women’s Rights Defenders © Women’s march

The Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality will hold a public hearing on the EU’s role to combat the increasing attacks against Women’s Rights Defenders (WRD) and women’s rights, on 7 December. The hearing will go over the EU’s existing frameworks and instruments that protect Human Rights Defenders in order to ensure the inclusion of a gender perspective. The specific challenges and risks faced by WRD will be also be discussed.

Highlights – Trade policy role in advancing the Green Deal objectives: hearing – Committee on International Trade

Source: European Parliament

Just Transition Fund © used under the licence of shutterstock.com

The Committee on International Trade will hold a hearing with experts to assess the trade policy measures that can help the EU achieve the goals it set for itself in the European Green Deal. The debate will take place on 7 December, and is expected to shed light on how trade policy could be an enabler towards a climate neutral, resource efficient and circular global economy, while and supporting the achievement of the Green Deal and Sustainable Development Goals.

Highlights – AI for civil and military uses, monitoring EU law: committee votes – Committee on Legal Affairs

Source: European Parliament

Votes © European Union (2015)

The Committee on Legal Affairs will vote on the report on Artificial Intelligence in the areas of civil and military uses and of state authority outside the scope of criminal justice, on 7 December. The report on monitoring the application of European Union law for 2017, 2018 and 2019 will also be voted. The Committee will further discuss, among other things, the reports on liability of companies for environmental damage, and on challenges of sport events’ organisers in the digital environment.

Highlights – Combating trafficking in human beings: joint committee debate – Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs – Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality

Source: European Parliament

anti-trafficking © Image used under the license from Shutterstock.com

The Committees on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, and on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality will discuss amendments to the report on the implementation of the Directive on preventing and combating trafficking in human beings and protecting its victims. The discussion will take place on 7 December, after which the report is set to be voted on 11 December (tbc).

The draft report proposes to update provisions such as those regarding specific measures for the prevention and prosecution of trafficking for sexual exploitation, the use of online technologies in both the proliferation and the prevention of trafficking in human beings, and the prevention and early identification of victims.

Highlights – EU agriculture after Brexit: public hearing – Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development

Source: European Parliament

EU agriculture after Brexit © Adobe Stock

The Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development will hold a hearing with EU Agriculture and Agri-Food experts, on EU agriculture after Brexit. The hearing will be held on 7 December and will deal with the impact of Brexit on agricultural trade flows, including the particular situation of Ireland and the protection of geographical indications. The discussions are expected to focus on the most affected sectors/Member States.

Highlights – 2021 European Semester: Economic Dialogue – Committee on Employment and Social Affairs – Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs

Source: European Parliament

Egov © EP

The Committees on Employment and Social Affairs, and on Economic and Monetary Affairs will hold the Economic Dialogue on the 2021 European Semester, on 7 December. The meeting will be held with Valdis Dombrovskis, Executive Vice-President for An Economy that Works for People, Paolo Gentiloni, Commissioner for Economy and Nicolas Schmit, Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights. It will kick off next year’s European Semester of coordination of economic and employment policies.

At a Glance – The New Leipzig Charter – 04-12-2020

Source: European Parliament

The New Leipzig Charter

04-12-2020

Adopted during the 2007 German Presidency of the Council of the EU, the Leipzig Charter on Sustainable European Cities helped establish the concept of integrated urban development at EU level and was influential in the development of EU initiatives such as the Urban Agenda. It has now been updated to link in with this new urban framework and take account of the fresh challenges facing cities, with the New Leipzig Charter adopted at the informal meeting of ministers responsible for urban and territorial development on 30 November 2020.

Adopted during the 2007 German Presidency of the Council of the EU, the Leipzig Charter on Sustainable European Cities helped establish the concept of integrated urban development at EU level and was influential in the development of EU initiatives such as the Urban Agenda. It has now been updated to link in with this new urban framework and take account of the fresh challenges facing cities, with the New Leipzig Charter adopted at the informal meeting of ministers responsible for urban and territorial development on 30 November 2020.

RECOMMENDATION FOR SECOND READING on the Council position at first reading with a view to the adoption of a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the quality of water intended for human consumption (recast) – A9-0241/2020

Source: European Parliament

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the Council position at first reading with a view to the adoption of a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the quality of water intended for human consumption (recast)

(06230/3/2020 – C9‑0354/2020 – 2017/0332(COD))

(Ordinary legislative procedure: second reading)

The European Parliament,

 having regard to the Council position at first reading (06230/3/2020 – C9‑0354/2020),

 having regard to the reasoned opinions submitted, within the framework of Protocol No 2 on the application of the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality, by the Czech Chamber of Deputies, the Irish Houses of the Oireachtas, the Austrian Federal Council and the United Kingdom House of Commons, asserting that the draft legislative act does not comply with the principle of subsidiarity,

 having regard to the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee of 12 July 2018[1],

 having regard to the opinion of the Committee of the Regions of 16 May 2018[2],

 having regard to its position at first reading[3] on the Commission proposal to Parliament and the Council (COM(2017)0753),

 having regard to Article 294(7) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

 having regard to the provisional agreement approved by the committee responsible under Rule 74(4) of its Rules of Procedure,

 having regard to Rule 67 of its Rules of Procedure,

 having regard to the recommendation for second reading of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (A9-0241/2020),

1. Approves the Council position at first reading;

2. Takes note of the Commission statements annexed to this resolution;

3. Notes that the act is adopted in accordance with the Council position;

4. Instructs its President to sign the act with the President of the Council, in accordance with Article 297(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union;

5. Instructs its Secretary-General to sign the act, once it has been verified that all the procedures have been duly completed, and, in agreement with the Secretary-General of the Council, to arrange for its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union;

6. Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission and the national parliaments.

 

ANNEX TO THE LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

DECLARATION BY THE COMMISSION ON DELEGATED ACTS IN THE DRINKING WATER DIRECTIVE

 

The Commission regrets the decision of the co-legislators to limit its empowerment to modify the annexes of the revised Drinking Water Directive to Annex III, whereas the Commission had sought an empowerment to modify Annexes I to IV in its original proposal[4].

 

The Commission specifically regrets that the co-legislators did not agree on an empowerment to amend Annex II, which is particularly necessary in light of the need to update the monitoring requirements set out in Annex II to scientific and technical progress.

 

 

DECLARATION BY THE COMMISSION ON THE PROCEDURE OF ADOPTION OF IMPLEMENTING ACTS

 

The Commission underlines that it is contrary to the letter and to the spirit of Regulation (EU) No 182/2011[5] to invoke point (b) of the second subparagraph of Article 5(4), without proper justification. Recourse to this provision must respond to a specific need to depart from the rule of principle, which is that the Commission may adopt a draft implementing act when no opinion is delivered. Given that it is an exception to the general rule established in Article 5(4), it cannot be simply seen as a “discretionary power” of the Legislator, but must be interpreted in a restrictive manner and thus must be justified.

SHORT JUSTIFICATION

The Council position at first reading reflects the agreement reached between the Parliament and the Council in interinstitutional negotiations at early second reading stage, after legal-linguistic verification. Since the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI), at its vote of 18 February 2020, already confirmed the outcome of those interinstitutional negotiations, as your rapporteur I am proposing that ENVI recommend that the plenary confirm the position of the Council at first reading, without amending it.

PROCEDURE – COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

Title

Quality of water intended for human consumption (recast)

References

06230/3/2020 – C9-0354/2020 – 2017/0332(COD)

Date of Parliament’s first reading – P number

28.3.2019 T8-0320/2019

Commission proposal

COM(2017)0753 – C8-0019/2018

Receipt of Council position at first reading announced in plenary

13.11.2020

Committee responsible

 Date announced in plenary

ENVI

13.11.2020

 

 

 

Rapporteurs

 Date appointed

Christophe Hansen

18.7.2019

 

 

 

Discussed in committee

21.10.2019

6.11.2019

2.12.2019

20.1.2020

Date adopted

1.12.2020

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

73

2

5

Members present for the final vote

Nikos Androulakis, Margrete Auken, Simona Baldassarre, Marek Paweł Balt, Traian Băsescu, Aurelia Beigneux, Monika Beňová, Sergio Berlato, Alexander Bernhuber, Malin Björk, Simona Bonafè, Delara Burkhardt, Pascal Canfin, Sara Cerdas, Mohammed Chahim, Tudor Ciuhodaru, Nathalie Colin-Oesterlé, Esther de Lange, Christian Doleschal, Marco Dreosto, Bas Eickhout, Cyrus Engerer, Eleonora Evi, Agnès Evren, Pietro Fiocchi, Andreas Glück, Catherine Griset, Jytte Guteland, Teuvo Hakkarainen, Anja Hazekamp, Martin Hojsík, Pär Holmgren, Jan Huitema, Yannick Jadot, Adam Jarubas, Petros Kokkalis, Athanasios Konstantinou, Ewa Kopacz, Joanna Kopcińska, Peter Liese, Sylvia Limmer, Javi López, César Luena, Fulvio Martusciello, Liudas Mažylis, Joëlle Mélin, Tilly Metz, Silvia Modig, Dolors Montserrat, Alessandra Moretti, Dan-Ştefan Motreanu, Ville Niinistö, Ljudmila Novak, Grace O’Sullivan, Stanislav Polčák, Jessica Polfjärd, Luisa Regimenti, Frédérique Ries, Sándor Rónai, Rob Rooken, Silvia Sardone, Christine Schneider, Günther Sidl, Ivan Vilibor Sinčić, Linea Søgaard-Lidell, Nicolae Ştefănuță, Nils Torvalds, Edina Tóth, Véronique Trillet-Lenoir, Petar Vitanov, Alexandr Vondra, Mick Wallace, Pernille Weiss, Michal Wiezik, Tiemo Wölken, Anna Zalewska

Substitutes present for the final vote

Sven Giegold, Karin Karlsbro, Ulrike Müller, Andrey Slabakov

Date tabled

3.12.2020

 

FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

73

+

EPP

Traian Băsescu, Nathalie Colin-Oesterlé, Christian Doleschal, Agnès Evren, Adam Jarubas, Ewa Kopacz, Esther de Lange, Peter Liese, Fulvio Martusciello, Liudas Mažylis, Dolors Montserrat, Dan-Ştefan Motreanu, Ljudmila Novak, Stanislav Polčák, Jessica Polfjärd, Christine Schneider, Edina Tóth, Pernille Weiss, Michal Wiezik

S&D

Nikos Androulakis, Marek Paweł Balt, Monika Beňová, Simona Bonafè, Delara Burkhardt, Sara Cerdas, Mohammed Chahim, Tudor Ciuhodaru, Cyrus Engerer, Jytte Guteland, Javi López, César Luena, Alessandra Moretti, Sándor Rónai, Günther Sidl, Petar Vitanov, Tiemo Wölken

RENEW

Pascal Canfin, Andreas Glück, Martin Hojsík, Jan Huitema, Karin Karlsbro, Ulrike Müller, Frédérique Ries, Nicolae Ştefănuță, Linea Søgaard-Lidell, Nils Torvalds, Véronique Trillet-Lenoir

ID

Simona Baldassarre, Aurelia Beigneux, Marco Dreosto, Catherine Griset, Joëlle Mélin, Luisa Regimenti, Silvia Sardone

GREENS/EFA

Margrete Auken, Bas Eickhout, Sven Giegold, Pär Holmgren, Yannick Jadot, Tilly Metz, Ville Niinistö, Grace O’Sullivan

ECR

Sergio Berlato, Pietro Fiocchi, Joanna Kopcińska, Rob Rooken, Andrey Slabakov, Alexandr Vondra, Anna Zalewska

GUE/NGL

Anja Hazekamp

NI

Eleonora Evi, Athanasios Konstantinou, Ivan Vilibor Sinčić

 

2

ID

Sylvia Limmer

GUE/NGL

Mick Wallace

 

5

0

EPP

Alexander Bernhuber

ID

Teuvo Hakkarainen

GUE/NGL

Malin Björk, Petros Kokkalis, Silvia Modig

 

Key to symbols:

+ : in favour

 : against

0 : abstention

 

 

[1] OJ C 367, 10.10.2018, p. 107.

[2] OJ C 361, 5.10.2018, p. 46.

[5] OJ L 55, 28.2.2011, p. 13.