EU Parliament outlines remaining legislative work for 2016
Parliament has outlined the "extensive" legislative work MEPs will work on for the remainder of 2016.
European Parliament Brussels | Photo credit: Press Association
Until the end of the year, MEPs will be working on a broad range of issues, from tackling the terrorism threat to improving the digital single market.
In the coming months, deputies will work on a permanent relocation mechanism for people in need of international protection from EU countries under extreme pressure. Two emergency relocation systems were already adopted in September 2015.
Members will also establish a common list of safe countries of origin to speed up applications from people coming from countries considered as safe.
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The threat of terrorism is still very much on the agenda; MEPs will vote on updated rules on firearms to make it more difficult for terrorists and serious criminals to buy and possess guns.
A parliamentary source said, "They also want to make preparations for terror attacks a crime in the EU, such as travelling or receiving training for terrorist purposes."
Another topical area is taxation. Following the Panama Papers revelations, Parliament launched an inquiry committee to investigate tax evasion and money laundering practices in the EU. Operational work will start in September.
MEPs will also work on improving the transparency of multinationals' taxation following a proposal published by the European Commission in April.
Environmental issues will also play a key part of legislative work until the end of year.
In the wake of the Volkswagen scandal, Parliament decided to set up an inquiry committee on emission measurements in the car industry. The committee will present its findings in a final report.
Elsewhere, in order to further improve the digital single market in Europe, MEPs will vote on a proposal to update audiovisual rules and stop unjustified geo-blocking.
They will also decide on modernising the legislation on the posting of workers in order to tackle unfair practices and unequal remunerations.
Meanwhile, Parliament President Martin Schulz started a two-day official visit to Argentina and Colombia on Monday.
Schulz will hold meetings with Argentinian President Mauricio Macri, as well as with the leadership of the Argentinian Parliament. Later, he will lay a wreath at the Monument of General San Martín and will visit the memorial of the victims of the dictatorship.
Ahead of the visit, Schulz said: "Argentina is taking a new, bold and reformist approach both at home and on the international stage. President Mauricio Macri and the new administration are reaching out to Argentina's regional and international partners to revive regionalism and multilateralism."
He added, "Argentina-EU relations are witnessing a rebirth which must lead to strengthened relations on a host of policies. The European Parliament fully supports this new dynamic and my visit is a testament to it."
On Tuesday, Schulz will travel to Bogotá where he will hold a meeting with President Juan Manuel Santos and also meet the Speaker of the Colombian House of Representatives Miguel Angel Pinto Hernández and that of the Senate, Mauricio Lizcano Arango.
Before returning to Brussels, Schulz will address the Colombian Senate.
Concerning the visit to Bogotá, the German Socialist deputy commented: "Colombia is nearing a momentous peace agreement. Colombia today is sending a message of hope which resonates across Latin America and the world."
He added, "A conflict which seemed endless and which scarred the country deeply is reaching its endpoint. It will take time to heal the wounds and strong international support to restart development in the areas most affected by the conflict. The international community and certainly the EU will be at Colombia's side."
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