Cyprus’ Deputy Minister for EU Affairs, Ambassador Andreas D. Mavroyiannis highlighted today, October 25, the important role of the Single Market as an engine for growth, during his intervention at the discussions of the European Parliament (EP) Plenary in Strasbourg. The Cypriot Deputy Minister, who was speaking on behalf of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU, also reassured that the financing of the Lifelong Learning programme in 2012 and 2013 would not be put in jeopardy.
Ambassador Mavroyiannis today made his final of a series of interventions at the EP Plenary, which took place throughout this week. The Deputy Minister voiced the Cyprus Presidency’s position over the 20th Anniversary of the Single Market and its future through the Single Market Act II, as well as the issue of resources attached to the Erasmus Programme for 2012 and 2013.
20th Anniversary of the Single Market
On the occasion of the Single Market’s 20th Anniversary, Ambassador Mavroyiannis seized the opportunity to recall the achievements of the Single Market over the last 20 years and mark its importance as a driving force for businesses, competitiveness and innovation capacities, as well as its positive impact on growth and job creation.
Despite the Deputy Minister’s positive outlook of the past 20 years, he also noted that there was still much that needed to be done.
“Even after 20 years of success, there is absolutely no room for complacency. On the contrary, what we learn from the celebrations is that we have to step up our efforts in order to pursue the establishment of a seamless Single Market. Europe has enormous unrealised potential to restore growth and confidence by unleashing the full power of the single market”.
In this respect, the Cyprus Presidency welcomed the launch of the EU's Single Market Act II by the European Commission, earlier this month.
Ambassador Mavroyiannis reiterated the Cyprus Presidency’s strong commitment to finalise as many pending dossiers of the Single Market Act I as possible, in particular those on Alternative Dispute Resolution /On Line Dispute Resolution ( ADR/ODR), patents, venture capital, social investment funds and accounting directive.
“We should all be committed to intensify the current pace of work and trust that sufficient flexibility on the side of both legislators will allow us for timely adoption of these files” he added.
The EP Plenary also discussed the financing of the Lifelong Learning Programme until 2012, raising concerns on availability of resources to cover the Erasmus Programme’s needs.To remedy these shortfalls, the Eruopean Commission tabled a revised budget on Tuesday, October 23.
The Lifelong Learning Programme is key for encouraging labour mobility and youth employment. The Programme’s largest dimension is widely known as the Erasmus Programme, which covers higher education and has just celebrated its own 25 years anniversary this year.
Ambassador Mavroyiannis assured the EP that the financing of the Lifelong Learning programme both in 2012 and 2013, will not be put in danger. He also assured the EP that the Commission's proposal for a draft amending budget, would be placed on high priority and that the Council would establish its position as soon as possible.
“I am convinced that, jointly with the European Parliament, we will be able to find an agreement on how to bridge any financing gap for 2012,” stated the Cypriot Deputy Minister.
As far as the appropriations for 2013 are concerned, Ambassador Mavroyiannis stated that these will be decided jointly by the EP and the Council during the ongoing budgetary negotiations.
“I am confident that the two arms of the budgetary authority will reach a balanced agreement on the 2013 budget in November, as foreseen by the Treaty of Lisbon,” added the Cypriot Deputy Minister.
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