Another Europe is possible

New Public Services Intergroup



16 February 2010, Europolitics Transport
This week's Strasbourg session of the European Parliament saw the establishment of a new intergroup on public services. Instituted on 20 January, the group brings together some 50 MEPs from six political groups and 13 different member states. The President of the intergroup is Françoise Castex (S&D, France) and the Vice-President is Elisabeth Morin-Chartier (EPP, France).
The intergroup aims to work upon the main issues affecting public services. This includes the Monti-Kroes package of measures on state aid in the form of public service compensation (Commission decision of 28 November 2005), public procurement, concessions and public-private partnerships (PPPs), territorial cohesion, fundamental rights and the implementation of the Services Directive.
"Now that the Parliament has been given legislative powers in the field of services of general interest (SGIs), it is essential that future policies are based on the real needs of the providers of those services," said Ralf Resch, general secretary of CEEP, the European association representing public service providers. The association is keen to increase legal certainty for providers and employers in SGIs. "We also need an SGIs impact assessment before launching any further processes of liberalisation of network industries as those hinted by the EU2020 consultation paper and the EU Council conclusions from December 2009," noted Resch.
Also active in the intergroup's Steering Committee are Pascal Canfin (Greens-EFA, France) and Jean-Luc Bennahmias (ALDE, France), indicating a very strong French influence. Others include Sven Giegold (Greens-EFA, Germany), Miguel Portas (GUE-NGL, Portugal), Csaba Õry (EPP, Hungary) and Peter Simon (S&D, Germany).
The next meeting of the intergroup is on 24 March.

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