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European Neighbourhood Policy: now is the time to act! Mário David MEP


14 Dec 2011


Global Europe

The absolute necessity of advocating our fundamental values in relations with our neighbouring countries are the main objectives of Mário David's Report, which was adopted today in plenary by an overwhelming majority.

"We can no longer acquiesce in our defence of democracy, human rights and, especially, social justice. We can no longer focus on short-term stability at the expense of the best interests of the citizens, of their dignity, of constantly defending them, and of their individual and collective freedom, with particular focus on women's and children rights", said Mário David MEP, EP Rapporteur of this dossier for the Southern dimension.

A new strategy with regard to the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), aimed at empowering citizens, people and their organisations, as well as the regional and local authorities, will be put into practice by the EU, adapted to the socio-economic and political realities of each EU's neighbouring countries.

Mário David, Chairman of the Delegation for relations with the Mashreq countries and Member of the Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterranean, therefore defends a bottom-up approach, stronger conditionality and stronger differentiation of this policy, ensuring a better targeted assistance to each EU neighbouring country and guaranteeing that funding matches political ambition.

Mr David said: "The EU should pursue a bottom-up approach and a tailor-made Neighbourhood Policy, increasing its support for institution-building, civil society and the will to start democratisation processes, supporting organised movements striving for positive democratic changes in their countries: in advancing women's and children rights - in particular the civic and political participation of women, building and deepening the democratic principles of freedom (of speech, association, media, of choice, etc), fair elections or fighting against corruption, the rule of law, greater social justice, respect for minorities, environmental protection and resource efficiency, for example. We also need to promote immediate economic assistance in order to foster socio-economic changes, which are preconditions for long-term stabilisation and prosperity. It's a fact, that by helping solve the economic problems of our neighbour partners in the south, we will also be solving part of our migration problems."

"Now is the time to act! The faster, the better! For the effective needs and aspirations of the peoples of our neighbouring countries, tomorrow is always too late!", concluded Mário David.

For further information:

Mário DAVID MEP, Tel: +33-3-88175143

Sandra Carreira, EPP Group Press and Communications Service, Tel: +32-2-2832508

Notes to Editors:

The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 272 Members.