Plenary topics

Strasbourg Plenary Session

The Parliament meets regularly to vote and debate at its plenary session, in Brussels or Strasbourg. Ahead of each plenary session, the S&D Group announces its priorities and its objectives for the main debates, reports and resolutions.

The S&D Group holds a press conference at 10:10-10:30 CET on Tuesdays during Strasbourg plenary weeks, in room LOW N-1/201. You can also watch it live via our homepage.

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E.g., 09/18/2018
E.g., 09/18/2018
Result: 242

Community trade mark


The trademark reform comes at a moment when EU customs authorities are reporting massive breaches of intellectual property rules, in particular concerning counterfeit goods, and new border-infiltration strategies.  Firm EU action to protect EU citizens from the danger of counterfeit goods is needed. A trademark (or a 'brand') is a 10-year (renewable) intellectual property tool that guarantees the origin of goods and services, thereby limiting risks to consumers' safety and health.

There is a broad consensus amongst political groups on the content of the package. The main elements relate to goods in transit,small consignments, generic medicines, mediation , trademark owners' rights, the genuine use of trademarks and entitlement of individuals to file a case where rules are breached.

2020 target to reduce CO2 emissions from new passenger cars


EU legislation, adopted in 2009, set mandatory emission reduction targets for new cars. Its aim is to reduce emissions from new passenger cars to an average of 130 grams of CO2 between 2012 and 2015 and to 95g/km by 2020. The current Commission proposal defines the modalities for reaching the 2020 target reduction in CO2 emissions from new passenger cars.

Reducing CO2 emissions from cars is beneficial for both consumers and the environment. It reduces fuel consumption while maintaining the competitive advantage of the European automotive industry on the global market.

Conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of seasonal employment


The proposed directive forms part of a package of measures on legal migration (alongside rules on intra-corporate transferees and students, researchers and au-pairs, yet to be agreed).

The S&D Group welcomes the fact that our negotiator, Claude Moraes, has been able to reach agreement on the first legal migration instrument directed at low-skilled/low-paid employment and that this will be the first part of the legal migration package to be adopted.

The first-reading agreement is, as always, a compromise text but it includes many significant gains for the European Parliament in general and for the S&D Group in particular.

Compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding and of cancellation or long delays to flights


The Bach report deals with compensation for passengers, including for delayed and cancelled flights. After extensive negotiations, a balance was reached between strengthened rights for passengers and applicable rules for air companies.

The S&D Group’s main concern was to ensure a coherent approach by providing citizens with a clear understanding of their rights and effective remedies, so that the new regulation can be properly enforced.

Protections against dumped and subsidised imports from third countries to the EU


The EU's trade defence system is based on the rules of the World Trade Organisation which allows its members to address unfair practices from exporting countries – such as dumping or subsidies – with the aim of creating a level playing field.

As Doha development talks are stalled, the Commission has decided to modernise the functioning of the EU trade defence instruments (TDIs) and it has put forward proposals to modify the two basic anti-dumping and anti-subsidy regulations. Given the diversity and divergence of interests involved – from EU producers who suffer the effects of dumped/subsidised goods to EU importers who benefit from cheaper goods – the Commission has proposed modifications in an attempt to please all parties.

Nomination to the Court of Auditors


The nomination of Klaus-Heiner Lehne was approved in the budget control committee with a reasonable majority. Concerns were raised before the vote about his financial interests (mainly declared income from the law firm he works for, including some work for a large tobacco company).  He answered questions satisfactorily about ceasing such activities if he were to be appointed to the European Court of Auditors.

Integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce


The fragmentation of delivery systems and lack of guarantees for cross-border deliveries undermines consumer confidence in national and cross-border e-commerce. The Commission green paper highlighted specific concerns about the current delivery chain for e-commerce in the internal market, which is not fully or adequately developed.

The S&D Group supports the development of both the digital single market and e-commerce more generally. Nevertheless, strong consumer protection, high-quality services and responsible employment policies are necessary to develop a sustainable and innovative EU-wide e-parcel delivery system for the benefit of consumers, workers and business.

EU roadmap against homophobia and discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity


The report builds on ten previous requests by the Parliament in the last three years to roll out an EU equality roadmap for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. Similar EU equality strategies already exist in the field of Roma integration, discrimination on the basis of disability, and gender equality.

The report respects the principle of subsidiarity but calls on the European Commission to make proposals to end discrimination in employment, education, health and access to goods and services; in the field of citizenship, families and free movement; freedom of assembly and expression; hate speech and hate crime; asylum and migration; and foreign affairs.

Criminal sanctions for insider dealing and market manipulation


An agreement has now been reached on this regulation (subject to final approval by the plenary and the Council), including the following elements:

• harmonisation of minimum/maximum levels for sanctions as requested by the European Parliament – four years for insider dealing and market manipulation, and two years for improper disclosure
• the concept of serious offences, with appropriate criteria
• sanctions for legal persons – including a list of criminal and non-criminal sanctions.

Copyright and related rights and multi-territorial licensing of rights in musical works for online uses


Harmonisation of collective-rights management in the EU has been on the Commission’s agenda since as far back as 1995. We welcome the fairly balanced agreement reached on the collective management of rights that promotes new requirements of transparency and governance for the management of copyright, enhancing guarantees for the fair remuneration of artists.