The Young European Federalists (JEF Europe) welcome the Commission’s communication “Communicating Europe in Partnership” which is going to be presented on Wednesday. However, its key project, an inter-institutional agreement (IIA) on communication will not be enough. Jan Seifert, President of JEF Europe, stated: “If we really want to be serious about EU communication policy we need a constitutional base embedded in the Reform Treaty”.
The JEF president explained: “Today there is a lack of agreement and priorities between the institutions when it comes to communication policy. Instead of working together, each institution is more concerned with its own powers. This situation needs to be overcome for the sake of a common European approach that shows coherence but also the necessary lines of confrontation towards the citizens. Good political communication is a condition of a democratic society and it is time to take this issue as serious as Commissioner Wallström has suggested previously”.
JEF Europe therefore demands that the current Commission initiative will be backed up through new provisions in the Reform Treaty. – “Communication policy needs a proper legal basis within the Union”, Seifert demanded.
In a second step the inter-institutional agreement needs to be replaced by a proper programme along the European elections in 2009. “I expect the Commission to start working on such a legal base as soon as the relevant provisions are provided for in the Reform Treaty”.
For successful elections in 2009, European political parties and their top personnel in the institutions will hopefully show proof of new efforts. Seifert commented: “In order to truly stimulate the political debate in the member states and secure transparency in the political process, the European political parties should all keep their agenda open by announcing which candidates they support as President of the Commission. JEF Europe is currently preparing a platform for this demand”.