Bratislava, June 2 (TASR) – The European Union (EU) is facing a major challenge – it must take its place in the newly-forming global arrangement of relationships, head of the parliamentary European affairs committee Peter Kmec of the extra-parliamentary Voice-SD party has told TASR in connection with the Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE).
“The EU’s actions in the world must be more united in order to be respected by other powers. Simplifying and streamlining decision-making processes in the field of foreign and defence policies and strengthening the EU’s defence capabilities within the so-called strategic autonomy concept should contribute to this,” said Kmec.
Concerning the CoFoE’s recommendations, whether or not citizens’ recommendations to improve the way in which the EU functions are translated into practice will depend on the will of political leaders.
“The CoFoE’s final report contains 49 thematic proposals that have been developed into more than 320 measures in nine thematic areas. All the proposals are based on recommendations of citizens who met within European citizens’ panels, national citizens’ panels, or contributed with their ideas to the multi-language digital platform,” noted Kmec.
He views it as a very rare collection of ideas that must be taken into account when shaping future European legislation. “Citizens proposals can be divided in two parts: those that can be implemented under existing treaties (such as the European minimum wage, the medical union, the defence union etc.), and those that will require changes in basic treaties (such as a majority vote in the field of foreign and security policies),” added Kmec.
He emphasised that revising basic treaties only makes sense if there is preliminary support for such a move on the part of EU-member states.