Brussels, 16 October 2020
THE SPINELLI GROUP AND THE UNION OF EUROPEAN FEDERALISTS LAUNCH A JOINT STATEMENT ON THE STATE OF THE UNION AND NEXT GENERATION EU 2020
The Spinelli Group and UEF welcome the “more than ever before” ambitious State of the Union speech on 16 September 2020 by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s. The speech took place 500 days after the European elections and in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Together with the adoption of the “Hamiltonian” recovery instrument Next Generation EU by the European Council, an economic stimulus of € 750 billion on top of the MFF for 2021-2027 that we strongly believe is a clear step towards a Federal Europe, we would like to draw attention to a number of worthy proposals stated by President von der Leyen during this year’s Debate on the State of the Union. We would also like to highlight that many of them had already been proposed by The Spinelli Group:
- The establishment of a European Health Union
- The transformation of the European economy through the recovery plan to meet climate objectives
- The adoption of a European Directive on fair minimum wages
- Aiming at an increased emissions reduction target for 2030 to at least 60%, instead of 40% as planned.
- The strengthening of the European cultural dimension through the creation of a new European Bauhaus.
- The need for the completion of a New Pact on Migration in 2021 along with a Strategy on the future of Schengen evaluation mechanism as well as concrete proposals aimed at creating safe and legal channels for migrants.
- Boosting initiatives against racism, “LGBT-free zones” and anti-Semitism
- The activation of a qualified majority in the Council, at least, for the adoption of common rules on sanctions for Human Rights violations (Navalny Act)
- The introduction of new guidelines for the strengthening of the Union’s multilateral system, showing firmness towards Russia and a sustainable solution with Turkey
“Whereas these proposals are of the utmost importance for the democratic life and values of our Union, they have to be implemented in time to be properly called reforms which push towards a federal Europe”, says MEP Sandro Gozi, President of Union of European Federalists (UEF) and member of The Spinelli Group “The EU needs a stronger 2021-2027 MFF supporting strategic EU Programmes and must launch the Conference on the Future of Europe as soon as possible”, continues Gozi. “In addition, among other things, NextGenerationEU needs to be approved with a legally binding calendar for the introduction of new own resources.”
“Von der Leyen's speech conveyed the need to increase Europe's unity of action. The President's message was clear: Together we are stronger. The anti-crisis response should be an opportunity to boosting the EU’s ecological and digital transitions, but also to complete the nascent financial Union with a stronger political Union. This can only be done through the reflection and debate on treaty changes, that can finally lead to the construction of a federal Europe”, says MEP Doménec Ruiz Devesa, member of The Spinelli Group and UEF.
“Europe cannot afford to waste any more time. Any time missed jeopardises our European project. Imminent problems needs common European solutions, discussed in an open and constructive way in a new and innovative exchange with EU citizens: we must start the Conference on the Future of Europe. We call on the German Presidency of the Council to ensure that the Conference is launched this autumn with an interinstitutional declaration in autumn 2020”, concludes Gozi.
The Joint Statement can be downloaded here: