Wednesday

28th Sep 2022

Agenda

EU leaders meet This WEEK amid EU-Poland clash

  • Polish prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki will be at the European Parliament on Tuesday to discuss a landmark anti-EU court ruling (Photo: Council of the European Union)
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Vaccine roll-outs, energy prices, migration and the upcoming COP26 climate summit will top the agenda at an EU summit in Brussels next Thursday and Friday (21 and 22 October).

EU heads will discuss "lessons learned" from national vaccine strategies, amid concern over a 'pandemic of the unvaccinated', for instance, in Bulgaria and Romania where fewer than 35 percent of adults have had two jabs.

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They will mull over an EU Commission 'toolbox' to mitigate the impact of skyrocketing energy prices on businesses and vulnerable households.

They will also discuss irregular migration from Belarus to Poland and Lithuania, in what the two EU states have called a "hybrid war" against Europe.

And climate diplomacy will be high on the agenda ahead of a global 'COP26' summit in the UK on CO2-cuts, as well as recent UN talks on biodiversity.

Rule-of-law saga

The EU leaders' meeting takes place amid bad will on Hungary and Poland's alleged abuse of rule of law.

EU affairs ministers will discuss the issue on Tuesday.

Polish prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki and EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen will also slug it out in a debate in the EU Parliament's plenary chamber in Strasbourg on Tuesday over Poland's recent court decision denigrating the primacy of EU treaties.

MEPs are preparing to urge EU leaders to impose voting-sanctions in the EU Council on Budapest and Warsaw.

They are also planning to urge the EU Commission to freeze their money in a rule-of-law 'conditionality mechanism', worth tens of billions of euros.

And EU deputies will put the spotlight on EU values on Wednesday, in a debate on Poland's recent near-total abortion ban.

Good food

Despite delay tactics by agri-food lobbyists, MEPs will also debate the 'Farm to Fork' strategy on sustainable food on Monday (18 October), with a resolution put to vote on Tuesday.

The EU Parliament wants a ban on the export of pesticides which are illegal in the EU and the phase-out of cage-farming by 2027.

In other day-to-day affairs, MEPs are to discuss the EU's budget for 2022 on Tuesday, with a vote on Wednesday.

They will discuss the 'Pandora Papers' scandal on tax evasion and prospects for a global minimum-tax agreement also on Wednesday.

And they will name the winner of the 2021 EU 'Sakharov Prize' for human rights, with Afghan women, Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny, and Bolivia's former interim president Jeanine Áñez among finalists.

Ethiopia

Meanwhile, EU diplomacy in the Gulf region and the humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia will be on the agenda when EU foreign ministers meet in Luxembourg on Monday

They will prepare an upcoming summit with 'Eastern Partnership' countries - Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.

The Slovenian presidency will also inform ministers about the Conference on the Future of Europe after a recent round of consultations with citizens' panels.

A Europe-conference plenary session will take place on Saturday and Sunday, with citizens' spokesmen, EU officials, and national MPs.

Meloni mood and energy in focus This WEEK

Italians cast their ballot yesterday on Sunday and chose a rightwing majority parliament, which is expected to have a turbulent relationship with Brussels.

Europe braces for far-right Italy This WEEK

The far-right Brothers of Italy, which dominates the conservative alliance, is set to be the largest single party, and has widened its lead over the centre-left Democratic Party (PD).

State of Union and Hungary's democracy in focus This WEEK

MEPs will also hear from Finland's prime minister Sanna Marin on her vision for Europe, and vote for the Renewable Energy Directive on Tuesday, in an effort to cut energy needs and speed up the use of renewable energy.

Column

EU should admonish less, and listen more, to the Global South

Whether on Russia, or gas, or climate change, or food security, the EU's constant finger-wagging and moralising is becoming unbearably repetitive and self-defeating. Most countries in the Global South view it as eurocentric and neo-colonial.

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