Issue 533 | 29 March 2021

Gracing this issue’s cover is Romanian Renew Europe deputy Vlad Gheorghe, who was a just toddler when Romania’s 50-year experiment with Communism came crashing down in December 1989. He explains to editor Brian Johnson how the country’s integration back into the EU fold has been a major factor in shaping his politics and worldview.

In our first feature we look at Parliament’s report on Europe’s medicinal shortages. Discussing how to get the medicines that patients need, more easily and quickly to market, are the European Parliament’s shadow rapporteurs on the file, Véronique Trillet-Lenoir and Katerina Konecná.

We also look at a key enabling technology of the digital age - cloud computing. Chair of the European Internet Forum, Pilar del Castillo, and rapporteur on Parliament’s report on the European Strategy for Data, Miapetra Kumpula-Natri, share their views on how Europe can take advantage of the data economy – estimated to be worth €829bn by 2025.

We also have a co-president of Parliament’s Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup, Peter Pollák, sharing his thoughts ahead of International Roma Day (April 8), while fellow co-presidents Hilde Vautmans and Younous Omarjee shine a light on racism in Europe.

Elsewhere, we look at how Europe’s animal welfare rules are changing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, featuring vice-chair of Parliament’s Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport Committee, Marlene Mortler, and vice-chair of Parliament’s Animal Welfare Intergroup, Manuela Ripa.

Seán Kelly, a member of the European Parliament’s Cross-Party Alliance on PKU, raises awareness of the crippling metabolic disease, and commissioning editor Rajnish Singh looks at how India can be a key partner for the EU in the global vaccine rollout campaign.

Finally, answering our five questions this issue is Finnish GUE/NGL deputy Silvia Modig.