COSAC is the Conference of Community and European Affairs Committees of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC) is a conference of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and national Members of Parliament (MPs) who are drawn from parliamentary committees responsible for European Union affairs
Congratulations to Greece on a successful presidency. It’s great to be here in the cradle of western civilization to discuss developments in the EU at this important juncture post elections.
We have just seen the growth in the number of independents and the number of far right members elected, some of whom are engaged in a battle to destroy the EU from within. In my own country we have seen the emergence of a large number of independents at local level but less so at EU luckily. Of our 11 MEPs there are only 2 independents and only one of those would fall into the euro sceptic category. Most of these new euro sceptic MEPs have little in the way of positive policies to offer to citizens who voted for them.
The Eurpoean project has been the single greatest peace project above all else. It is worth remembering as Elmar Brok reminded us this morning – Shumann’s plan and what Europe means in very broad terms – years of peace, stability and prosperity, a united presence on the world stage, the emergence of common principles and values, the Single Market, open skies and telecoms – to name but a few- and other commercial policies, in short, practical measures that help EU citizens in their everyday lives.
It is also worth remembering as the new European Parliament develops its Groups and Committees in the weeks to come that main-stream pro-European parties have retained more than 72% of the seats in the parliament. The core of this majority, that is the EPP, ALDE and S&D will hold over 62% of the seats giving just short of a two thirds working majority. I prefer to focus on alliances which can work together towards common ideals and who are supported by a high number of EU voters rather than be distracted by those who cannot or will not work together to build a better, more open, more prosperous Europe even for those who voted for them. We must do what it takes to ensure the continuing peace, stability and prosperity the EU has afforded is and which is so precious.