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Home arrow newsitems arrow Despite BREXIT zig-zag +Terror Attack etc, EU Summit Advances on Civil Security/Defence +€uro-Budget

Despite BREXIT zig-zag +Terror Attack etc, EU Summit Advances on Civil Security/Defence +€uro-Budget

Written by ACM
Friday, 14 December 2018
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*Brussels/EU Summit/Angelo Marcopolo/- Despite the Fact that EU's Flags were exceptionaly Lowered to Half-staff in Brussels, and 28 Heads of State/Government started working by observing a Minute of Silence, as a sign of mourning for the Civilian Victims cowardly targetted by Islamist Terror earlier this week in Strasbourg, where EU Parliament concludes Today its December 2018 Plenary Session, (See : ..., etc),

 

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and nonobstant a considerable disruption, from the beginning up to the end, by a Bumpy BREXIT zigzag, added, almost at the Same Time, also to a quite "Foggy" situation on Future EU - UK Relations, (Comp : ..., etc),


nevertheless, this most Important EU Summit before the forthcoming, crucial European Elections of May 2109, succeeded to Mark a decisive Progress on certain Landmark Issues, including, particularly, EU Security and Defence, as well as €uroArea :


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- On the 1st point, EU Commission's President, Experienced former Long-Time Prime Minister of Luxembourg and €uroGroup's Chairman, Jean-Claude Juncker, speaking to Journalists, including "Eurofora",  at EU Summit's opening day's Press Conference, appeared, exceptionaly, "very Glad", for the fact that EU Leaders Timely Adopted a Key EU Commission's proposal on Civic aspects of EU's Security/Defence policy :


- This New EU Agreement creates "a Civil Protection Mechanism in Europe", for Both "Prevention and Reparation" of serious Incidents' consequences, as, f.ex., Big Fires or EarthQuakes, etc., which were particularly Highlighted f.ex. "by Greece and Italy" respectively, etc., as Juncker observed in this regard.


Experienced Former EU Commissioner, MEP and Minister, currently EU's Negotiator on BREXIT, Michel Barnier from France, had notoriously worked, in the Past, (including as pioneer Rapporteur), in order to Prepare such a Key EU Tool.


Now, EU Summit's Official Conclusions clearly Announce, under the Heading of "Security and Defence", that EU's Heads of State/Government have just "Endorsed" what is named as the "Civilian Compact" of EU's Common Security and Defence Policy ("CSDP").


- That "Civilian Compact" is Part of a Series of Recent EU "Initiatives" on CSDP, which "contribute to enhancing the EU's Strategic Autonomy", as well as "its Capacity to Act as a Security Provider", while also respecting the "Principle" of "Decicion-Making Autonomy of the EU", (despite the fact that it's, at the same time, "Complementing and ReinForcing" NATO's Activities, "strengthening EU-NATO Cooperation"), as also the Implementation of "PESCO" Projects, (See: ..., etc), and EU's Defence Industrial development programme", better Military "Mobility", "negotiations on the proposed European Defence Fund", etc., EU Summit's Conclusions add.


Indeed, EU Parliament has just Debated and Voted for the Creation of such a "European Defence Fund", during its Plenary session in Strasbourg,
 ... starting, by a Timely Coincidence, precisely when an Islamist Terrorist Attack cowardly Targetted and Killed 5 Civilian Victims, Wounding another 7 there, on Tuesday evening, 11 December 2018, during which MEPs (Staff and Journalsts, including "Eurofora") had been massively Locked in the main Buildings, as a matter of Precaution, overnight, while the French Police was still Searching to find the Armed Killer or Killers, Downtown, (See : ..., etc).


EU Parliament President Antonio Tajani, (an Experienced former EU Commissioner, Top MEP, Foreign Minister from Italy, christian-democrat/EPP), gave a Decisive Impulsion by Deciding for MEP's Work to Continue as Scheduled, without any Modification, despite those Deadly Terrorist Attacks, (while also Holding, afterwards, an UnPrecedented Plenary Meeting with MEPs on the Evacuation of the Parliament's Buildings, between 3 and 4 a.m. in the Morning, Comp., f.ex., also : ..., etc).


But it was Polish Conservative MEP, Professor Zdzislaw Krasnodebski, vice-President of EU Parliament, and Rapporteur for that European Defence Fund, (as well as GrandSon of a Famous Military Aiplane Pilot of the 2nd World War), who, while Chairing that Plenary Session, already during the Previous Reports tabled for that Tragic Evening, slamed some Other MEPs' attempts to Stop EU Parliament's Work, by Opposing mainly the Argument that the Creation of new EU Tools such as a Defence Fund would, precisely, Strengthen Europe also into Fighting against similar Deadly Islamist Terrorists !


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+ In Addition, during the 2nd Day of this December 2018 EU Summit, Focused on €uro-Area developments, (but including also several Other EU Member Countries), it was Decided, "for the 1st Time", to create an "€uroZone's Budget", in the foreseable Future, as French President Emmanuel Macron, (notoriously a Fervent Supporter of such an Idea), stressed from the Outset, at his Concluding Press Conference Today (14/12/2018).


- EU Leaders decided to Fix the concrete "Features" of such a "Budgetary Instrument" on "June 2019", and this Fact proves that such Ideas were "Not Impossible", (Contrary to what some Others had Claimed in the Past), observed the French President.


- According to the "Compromise" endorsed Today by an inclusive €uro-Summit, that New Tool will mainly Aim to Strengthen "Convergence" and "Innovation", even if France's position would also like to Add "Stabilisation" : A point on which Negotiations are Still on-going, Macron said.

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+ Meanwhile, German Chancellor Angie Merkel, in her parallel Press Conference, also Today, added that the "€uroZone's Budget" (as she named it),  was decided "on the Basis of a Franco-German proposal, and a proposal by EU Commission", after "a Long and very Controversial Debate" among Ministers of Finance.


- Its main "Purpose" is "to promote Competitiveness and Convergence between €uro-Area's Member Countries", but it will be "Part of EU's Budget", and evolve in "Parallel" with (on-going) "Negotiations on the Medium-Term Financial Perspectives", she noted.


=> This Agreement includes "Essential Parts of what (French President) Emmanuel Macro had (initialy) proposed", Merkel Replied to a relevant Press Question, but also "in a Version in which All €uroArea's Member States can Join", while, in Addition, "we have also Opened this €uroZone Budget for Countries .. which  are  very Close to Joining the €uro, (i.e., already in the ERM II Mechanism), and can Participate in the Process, on a Voluntary basis".  "It was always foreseeable that some very Different Ideas existed. So, it's not a question of just making a proposal, but that, at the end of the day, Something is Actually being Created, that today 27 Member States have been able to support".


- So, it's mainly "through a Franco-German Cooperation", that "we have made a good contribution" for €uroArea's further development, and "the French President was fully Satisfied that this has now been Achieved. And me, too. ...That was very Good", Chancellor Merkel stressed.


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++ According to the Official EU Summit's Conclusions, published Today, European Leaders "Mandate the €uroGroup to Work on the Design, the Modalities of Implementation, and Timing of a Budgetary Instrument, for Convergence and Competitiveness of the €uro-Area".


- It can also include "ERM II Member States (Comp. Supra), on a Voluntary Basis".


- Even if "it will be Part of EU Budget", and "Coherent withy Other EU Policies", nevertheless, it will also be "subject to Criteria and strategic Guidance from the €uro-Area Member States".


- This is done "in the Context of the (EU's) Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF)" for 2021-2027, according to which, EU Leaders "will Determine its (€uroArea Budget's) Size".


- While the more concrete "Features of the (€uroArea's) Budgetary Instrument will be Agreed on June 2019", nevertheless, "the Instrument" itself, "will be Adopted  in accordance with the Legislative Procedure, as foreseen by the (EU's) Treaties, on the Basis of the relevant EU Commission's proposal, to be Amended, if necessary", (i.e. according to the Usual Process, for the rest).

 

 

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(../..)
 

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(NDLR : "DraftNews", as already send, Earlier, to "Eurofora"'s Subscribers/Donors. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be Published asap).

 

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