Gedvilas promises open policy debate

  • 2013-07-10
  • From wire reports

OPEN DEBATE: The Seimas will lead discussions on solving Europe’s problems.

VILNIUS - During the meeting of chairpersons of the Conference of Community and European Affairs Committees of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC), Seimas Speaker Vydas Gedvilas asserted that the Lithuanian Seimas is ready to spare no efforts so that the guidelines for a better, stronger, more united future of all Europe would be determined in open parliamentary debates, reports ELTA.

“Through consistently and persistently working together, we must find ways to create more jobs, encourage economic growth in European countries, ensure European financial stability, enhance its competitiveness, create energy, services and single digital markets and restore the confidence of the society in the European project,” said Gedvilas.
While speaking about the European Parliament elections to be held in May, the Seimas speaker said that the work and initiatives of the Lithuanian Presidency would have a direct effect on the choice of European residents: to vote or not to vote. According to Gedvilas, this is our common responsibility.

“That is exactly why the Seimas of Lithuania, for the first time leading the interparliamentary cooperation, has chosen an active and ambitious form of the Presidency,” said the Seimas speaker.
There are envisaged nine parliamentary dimension events and eleven additional events to be held, related to the Presidency in Lithuania.

The meeting of chairpersons of COSAC began on July 8 in the Seimas. During the morning meeting the agenda of the COSAC chairperson meeting, procedural matters were approved: the presentation of the results of the Presidential Troika of COSAC (Ireland, Lithuania, Greece) meeting, the presentation of the draft program for the 50th COSAC, the outline of the 20th bi-annual COSAC report and other issues.

In a separate conference, experts on European politics presented their recommendations, with the conference concentrated on EU energy policy, the economy and finance, and the European Neighborhood Policy and Eastern Partnership.

At the conference experts from the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA) said that during the Presidency important steps could be expected towards closer EU relations, not only with Ukraine, but also with Moldova, Georgia and Armenia. Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, who opened the conference, was of the same opinion. According to her, the Lithuanian Presidency should be regarded as successful if the Association Agreement with Ukraine and Initial Association Agreements with Armenia and Moldova are signed.

In the recommendations for the Lithuanian Presidency, TEPSA representatives stressed the obligation to guarantee further smooth solutions towards EU economic problems. Political scientists said that Lithuania should devote considerable attention towards restoring the stability of the euro and could speed up the development of the Economic and Monetary Union, and especially confidence in policy and compliance with rules.

The experts and Lithuanian officials agreed that the European energy sector remains overly fragmented, it lacks a variety of suppliers and competition. TEPSA energy experts do not think that much change will come during the current Presidency due to the slow EU energy sector regulation’s renewal efforts, differing EU state energy policies and the forthcoming elections to the German parliament, which might change Germany’s position on energy.