New EMU blueprint lacks democracy
Responding to the Council and Commission's presentation of the blueprint for future Economic and Monetary Union, to be discussed at this week's European Summit, GUE/NGL President Gabi Zimmer asked "how long you will content yourselves with paper shuffling and pen pushing rather than getting on with the job of improving human lives?
"Your proposals are not appropriate to achieve this objective and to re-establish social peace. There is no regard for social, environmental or democratic issues. They will lower democratic standards and make the social crisis even worse."
She accused the Commission of being inconsistent in its approach. "Your analysis of the debt crisis is wrong because it continues to make countries responsible for their deficits. The extent of the crisis has been consistently misdiagnosed," she added, "and the memoranda are based on incorrect forecasts. On the basis of these forecasts and analyses, the EU cannot work. It simply means that austerity policies will continue unchallenged."
The proposal for 17 bilateral agreements between the EU and the member states was motivated for power reasons, she said. "This will mean less transparency and will make it more difficult for the European Parliament and national parliaments to assert their democratic right to supervise this process."
As for the banking union, also to be discussed this week, "it may be the right idea, but not in its present form. As it stands now, it will be difficult to carry out proper supervision. From a democratic control point of view, this is simply unacceptable."
On the issue of this week's Nobel peace prize win and honouring the Sakharov laureates, Nasrin Sotoudeh and Jafar Panahi, Gabi Zimmer said this was "an obligation to do more."
"On Iran we must find smart solutions such as sanctions that target the government and not the people and ensure that those who seek to silence the opposition are supported. The European Parliament must make an effort to talk with the opposition and step up the pace of dialogue with civil society."
GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
David Lundy +32 485 50 58 12