Strasbourg 08.05.2022 The Conference on the Future of Europe is going to conclude its work on May 9, Monday, in Strasbourg, presenting the reports to the heads of the institutions for further consideration.
The conference was established last year with the aim of bringing citizens and politicians from across the EU together to come up with ideas to overhaul the bloc.
At a session in Strasbourg on Saturday, the conference plenary — composed of representatives of EU institutions, national parliaments and citizens’ panels — approved more than 300 proposals. They include the abolition of national vetos, granting the European Parliament the right to propose legislation, more investment in climate change mitigation, the launch of “joint armed forces” and transnational voting lists.
MEPs from the right-wing Identity and Democracy (ID) and European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) groups of the European Parliament refused to support the proposals, arguing that they don’t reflect public opinion in the EU, but are achieved through the deliberate selections of the participants, promoting the EU Federalists point of view.
“The selection of citizens participating in the Conference was itself very flawed,” the ECR group said in a statement. “Research shows that citizens who are in favour of a more centralised Union were much more likely to accept an invitation to participate in the citizens’ panels of the Conference than those more sceptical.”
The group said it rejects “the idea the conclusions being reached represent an expression of the will of the Europeans and … hereby [withdraws] from the Conference on the Future of Europe.“
The Conference on the Future of Europe is a citizen-led series of debates and discussions that will enable people from across Europe to share their ideas and help shape our common future.
The Conference is the first of its kind: as a major pan-European democratic exercise, with citizen-led debates enabling people from across Europe to share their ideas and help shape our common future.
This is done via an innovative Multilingual Digital Platformwhere any European can share ideas, and both national and European Citizens’ Panels. These contributions feed into the Conference Plenaries. The Conference offers a new public forum for an open, inclusive, and transparent debate with citizens around a number of key priorities and challenges.
It is part of President von der Leyen’s pledge to give Europeans a possibility to be more eloquent on what the EU does and how it works for them. All Europeans – whoever they are and wherever they are – can take part.
The Conference aims to reflect our diversity, and to bring Europe beyond its capital cities, reaching every corner of the EU, strengthening the link between Europeans and the institutions that serve them. It does so through a multitude of Conference-events and debates organised across the EU, as well as through an interactive multilingual digital platform. Young people in particular are encouraged to take part and share their ideas. European, national, regional and local authorities, as well as civil society and other organisations can also organise events to involve as many people as possible.