Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/1999-07-21-Speech-3-059"

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"(IT) Madam President, ladies and gentlemen, President Prodi, the representatives of the have taken note of your declared intention to renew and revolutionise the Commission. We will, of course, see whether your deeds measure up to your words and we will be keeping a check on concrete achievements, but I would like to say that right from the word go that we will base our assessments purely on facts, disregarding our respective positions in national politics. I know that we are politically opposed in our own country, but we are nevertheless united in our desire to build a Europe in which the peoples of the old continent are increasingly ready to place their trust. We appreciate your unequivocal statement regarding the urgent need to restore the faith of the citizens of Europe in the Commission. Their faith has been damaged, as we have seen from the fact that the number of voters at the European Parliament elections is ever-decreasing. It has been damaged, to our way of thinking, not only by the events which caused the resignation of the last Commission but also, and I would say above all, because of the fact that too often the citizens of Europe see the Commission as a source of bureaucratic obligations which are sometimes costly, sometimes neither indispensable nor urgent, sometimes stupid and even dangerous. These obligations seem to have nothing to do with the process of building a united Europe and, unfortunately, in many circumstances, undermine European ideals. Faith will be regained, therefore, when there is greater transparency, but especially when greater consideration is given to national and cultural differences when Directives are issued and there is greater and more frequent recourse to the principle of subsidiarity. Greater attention on the part of the Commission to the fundamental rights of the citizens of Europe will also be essential. We were particularly pleased to hear you express the intention to concentrate more on both workers" rights and the right to health, including the quality of food products. The damage caused by incidents such as dioxin in poultry or mad cow disease to the overall credibility of the Community institutions is huge and cannot be repaired by words. Unfortunately, these situations often take a great deal of time to remedy, and time is not always available in the institutions. In conclusion, I believe that in circumstances such as these it is essential not only to adhere to the facts, but to do so without bringing the dynamics of national controversies into this House. Above all, there must be a closer relationship between the institution of which you are President and the Parliament. This attitude must be mutual, and I hope that one effect will be to inspire the Commission of which you are President with greater respect for the work of Parliament, and therefore to greater diligence and to produce a higher quality of responses to questions than that of the recent past. (Applause)"@en1
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