Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-04-23-Speech-1-165"

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"Mr President, ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of my group, I should like to make quite clear once more that the Pieper report is a report not about enlargement, but about future cohesion policy. In addition, it comes at precisely the right time; for, if we sleep through our chance to reform cohesion policy and wait until, say, 2011, 2012 or 2013 to consider the kind of policy we want for the following year, it will be too late for reform. Nor does this report take a decision on the accession to the EU of Turkey or any other applicant country or future applicant country. To dispel any doubts about this and eliminate any possible sources of irritation, however, we shall be voting to delete paragraph 14 from the report. Nonetheless, starting today, we must make sure we are clear as to the kind of cohesion policy we want in future. In this regard, we are right to define a product comprising efficiency, solidarity, sustainable development and focus on the citizen. We must gather all of this together and see how the things we want to do can be implemented in practice. The rapporteur is absolutely right to mention key phrases regarding, for example, the review of the system of own resources, the elimination of disparities in the whole rather than just a small part of the EU, individual responsibility of the Member States, the issue of whether, in future, greater use should be made of loan financing, and the issue of how to reinforce and increase the use of private cofinancing. Enlargement or no enlargement, we shall also have to face the issue of demographic change. Thus, the ideas in the Pieper report provide a stimulus for debate, and we need time, as they will undoubtedly give rise to controversy. I think that the mid-term review represents a further step towards reform – but reform is urgently needed, and therefore I would appeal for broad support for the Pieper report."@en1

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