Ahead of the EU summit in romania, commission president jean-claude juncker called for a clear social orientation of the european union. "I am against an eu where social dumping is the rule," juncker said in sibiu (hermannstadt).
The EU also needs to do better on climate protection. "Europe must be the place where climate change is tackled as best as possible"."
At the summit in sibiu, german chancellor angela merkel and her eu colleagues want to discuss the "strategic agenda" for the coming years. Two weeks before the european elections they also want to send a signal of unity and new beginnings. A "sibiu declaration" should reaffirm EU core values such as democracy, rule of law and justice, close cooperation and a stronger role for europe on the world stage.
A number of participants have reform ideas in the bag. Austrian chancellor sebastian kurz, for example, advocates faster decisions, a smaller eu commission and a revision of the eu treaties. French president emmanuel macron also continues to pursue EU restructuring. He also joined seven other countries in calling for more ambitious climate protection targets.
"I firmly believe that the hermannstadt summit will be an important event in the history of the eu project," said rumanian president klaus iohannis at an event with juncker on the eve of the summit. On the sidelines, the sibiu meeting was also allowed to discuss the timetable for filling the EU top posts after the election, which is scheduled to take place from 23. Until 26. May runs. Among other things, a new head of commission is being sought as juncker’s successor.
Social democratic candidate frans timmermans thinks the summit is not too important. "It is a good thing that the EU leaders are meeting to talk about the future of the continent," the dutchman told the editorial network germany. "In view of the upcoming european election and the open outcome of the brexit, my expectations for the summit are, however, very limited."
Grunen europe boss reinhard butikofer also expressed skepticism. "The sibiu summit will not deliver what commission president juncker has long promised," butikofer predicted. Juncker had proposed the 2017 summit as a means of achieving a more decisive policy after the fur 29. To set the tone for the departure of the remaining 27 countries after the announced brexit in march. But britain’s EU exit has been postponed, and the UK is even taking part in the european election once again. The "brexit mess" is still hanging on to the EU like a lead weight, butikofer said.
Left-wing politician cornelia ernst urged the summit participants to commit to more climate protection. Instead of 2050, europe must achieve "net zero emissions" as early as possible in 2040. What is meant is that then no more additional greenhouse gases will escape into the atmosphere and pollute the climate. CSU member of the european parliament markus ferber called for a concrete plan on how the EU should move toward a more decisive foreign policy in the future.
EU council head donald tusk met with czech prime minister andrej babis to prepare for the summit. There tusk referred to czech leader vaclav havel, who died in 2011. Havel said freedom and responsibility are two sides of the same coin. "With this, he has captured exactly what it means to be a european," said tusk.