Kamall: Juncker fires the starting gun on existential EU debate
Brussels, 1st March 2017 -- Responding to the European Commission's publication of a Future of Europe white paper, Syed Kamall MEP, leader of the European Conservatives and Reformists group in the European Parliament, said:
"Recent referendum results in the UK, Netherlands, Italy, Hungary and Denmark have shown a loss of faith in the EU. The ECR Group has always made it clear that the EU can restore confidence by reforming to become a community of nations cooperating in shared institutions in areas where they share common interests such as trade, the single market, energy, development or cross-border transport.
"The ECR will present its own ideas, feeding into the Rome summit, which will set out some clear objectives for reform and ways in which we can deliver them. The main objective must be to reconnect the EU to people and make it worthy of their trust by being more respectful to its member states, focused on where it can add value, becoming more flexible and democratically accountable, delivering value for money, and looking outward to the world rather than gazing at its own navel.
"The European Commission has given us some options. Status quo is certainly not one of them. Either the EU moves towards becoming a community of cooperating states based around common sense, or it continues to integrate at a pace that the ECR believes will continue to tear it away from the people it is supposed to serve. That is why the broad outline of the ECR's approach will be one of doing less, but doing it more efficiently.
"The European Communities achieved a great deal in eliminating barriers, promoting prosperity and spreading stability, but today the European Union has lost its way. With major reform, decentralisation and respect for our Member States the EU can move past the era of expensive sticking plasters over many cracks, and towards delivering its original promise for citizens of EU states.
"As a British MEP, my main interest is to see our future neighbours and partners enjoy a stable, prosperous and open relationship with each other, and with the wider world."
Contact: ECR Press Office, James Holtum on +32 473 861762; email@example.com
The ECR was created to take the EU in a new direction, according to the principles of our founding Prague Declaration. It is the third largest group in the European Parliament with 74 MEPs from 18 EU states.