Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2001-02-28-Speech-3-164"

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"Mr President, unlike the Commission our Parliament is not really in a position to establish priorities. The main question at issue at present is whether we support the six areas of special interest as formulated by the Commission. The answer is yes, with the proviso that communication and energy should be added to transport. The European Union must concentrate as far as possible on those areas in which it has value added. A crucial element in this is a properly functioning government apparatus in the developing countries. If the essential tasks – maintenance of the rule of law, health care, education, infrastructure – are not effectively carried out, participation in the free-market economy is not really feasible. In my view therefore, the building up of administrative capacity should be at the top of the list of priorities. Even more important than strengthening the institutions as such, is the combating of abuse of power, corruption and unlimited force. The promotion of regional cooperation should also be given new impetus. It is better for us to do less very well than a great deal badly. It is a question of effectiveness. This is why the policy of the Commission and that of the Member States should complement each other. That is, it must not be a matter of Europe following the Member States or of Member States following Europe. The much-discussed internal coherence is also crucial to the success of this policy. In addition it is of the utmost importance that we can actually implement the priorities that we are now establishing, with the help of well-qualified staff. Reducing poverty in the world is more important than increasing one’s own wealth. Development cooperation must therefore be a major component of European policy. That will only be possible if this Parliament itself also establishes clearly defined priorities and does not get carried away in amending the sound report of Mr Gemelli. The Commission’s proposals now need to be elaborated further into a clear strategy. That must also be given absolute priority by our Parliament."@en1

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