Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-11-28-Speech-3-146"

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". Mr President, Mr Vice-President of the Commission, ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of my Group, I would like to thank both rapporteurs very warmly for their good and constructive cooperation. I think we always succeeded in finding common ground on matters of substance, we were able to reach agreement very quickly and I would like to congratulate the two rapporteurs for the way in which they managed to reach a deal so swiftly with the Council. After all, what benefit would a protracted dispute with the Council have brought? We could have lost a whole year! No, in my view, in spite of everything, we have managed to make progress on this matter at first reading and that is a great triumph for the House, the Commission and the Council. I would just like to focus on two or three points, and I am sure, Commissioner, you will pass this on to the European Railway Agency. We are giving the Agency greater responsibility for the setting of safety standards and interoperability criteria. I hope that the Agency will utilise these opportunities in the interests of our industry, that it will set new standards quickly, and that it will operate in an efficient and practical manner. As a passing comment, I also hope – and here I turn to Mr Costa if only he could hear me, he is on the phone, and phone calls are always more important – I hope that as more tasks are taken on by the European Railway Agency, the less the national agencies will have to get involved, and the less the national agencies have to do, the less bureaucracy there will be. If the bureaucracy works properly at European level, we will not need 25 national authorities. We want to save the European rail industry unnecessary overlap and duplication of work. I have a final comment for the Commissioner and the two rapporteurs: it is very important that we have reached an agreement. If the Member States miss their deadlines to decide on mutual recognition, then they are assumed to have given their authorisation. It is only through this authorisation function that we can exert the kind of pressure on national authorities that is needed to prevent them from constantly dragging their feet. Together, then, let us ensure that we save costs through cross-acceptance of locomotives and rolling stock, thereby increasing availability and giving further impetus to European rail freight in particular."@en1

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