Coming up: what Parliament will be working on this year 6.01.2017, written by Łukasz Bejm
From fighting terrorism to tackling the migration crisis: MEPs will be dealing with many significant challenges over the next six months. They will also be dealing with issues such as tax evasion and climate change. Read on for an overview of the main legislative proposals coming up.
MEPs are expected to be voting on the proposed new Dublin regulation, which determines which country is responsible for processing asylum applications. The European Commission is proposing that the emergency mechanism allowing member states to reintroduce temporary border controls is triggered automatically when dealing with a certain number of asylum seekers.
By the late spring Parliament’s inquiry committee investigating the revelations of tax evasion contained in the Panama papers is expected to publish its final report. The committee was created in June 2016 to assess how the European Commission and EU countries have been fighting money laundering and tax evasion.
At the end of November Parliament and Council negotiators provisionally agreed on the final version of the combatting terrorism directive. The legislation would make preparing terrorist acts an offence all over the EU. This include activities such as travelling for terrorist purposes, facilitating such trips, training for terrorists acts or financing any of these preparations.
Digital single market
MEPs will vote on a draft resolution regarding the digital single market during the January plenary. This includes a call to end geo-blocking to ensure consumers all over the EU enjoy the same rights when buying products and services in another member state online, unless this can be objectively justified for reasons such as VAT.
Energy and climate change
The biggest piece of climate change legislation the coming years is probably the reform of Europe’s emissions trade system. It also represents the EU’s first concrete steps to comply with the limits agreed at the COP21 conference. It could help to reduce emissions and encourage companies to shift to renewable or low-carbon sources. It should also help to prevent firms moving production to countries with lower environmental standards.