Belgium, (Brussels Morning Newspaper) This week, European Parliament committee meetings convene to discuss French Presidency priorities plus foreign interference and disinformation across the EU. MEPs will review national recovery plans and the Farm to Fork strategy. Parliament will initiate negotiations on the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Act and will pay tribute to victims of the Holocaust, 77 years after the liberation of Auschwitz.
French Presidency priorities
During the coming week France’s ministers will present their priorities in a series of meetings with parliamentary committees. France holds the Presidency of the EU Council until the end of June 2022, a period during which many European laws will be negotiated or adopted.
Paris will lead debates on digital technology, ecological transition and social issues, and will seek to establish European legislation on minimum wages. On the health front, the French Presidency is to propose a joint research agency and major research projects focused on specific issues such as Alzheimers.
Foreign interference and disinformation
On Tuesday, the Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Interference and Disinformation will review the issue along with NATO. MEPs will address Russia’s strategy in cyberspace and threats posed by China.
Also on Tuesday, MEPs in the Economic Affairs and Employment and Social Affairs committees are to quiz Commissioners Dombrovskis, Gentiloni and Schmit about the 2022 European Semester Autumn Package.
MEPs’ questions are likely to focus on upcoming country-specific recommendations and the implementation of recovery and resilience national plans, as well as on related social aspects, including the need to tackle youth unemployment and ensure a just transition.
Farm to Fork
Again, on Tuesday, the Agricultural and Environment Committees hosts a hearing on the impact of the Farm to Fork Strategy on agriculture and food systems.
Given that no Commission Impact Assessment for the Farm to Fork (F2F) strategy exists apart from a number of studies by individual research institutions, the hearing intends to consider these studies in providing an assessment of the general impact on the EU agricultural sector and food systems.
The legislative process of the AI Act kicks off on Tuesday as well with the Internal Market and Civil Liberties committees holding their first debate on the proposed regulation.
The draft bill aims to ensure that AI improvements are based on rules that safeguard people’s safety and fundamental rights as well as the functioning of markets and the public sector.
Holocaust Remembrance Day
On Thursday, Parliament is organising a special plenary meeting in Brussels on the International Day of Commemoration of the victims of the Holocaust, 77 years after the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp on 27 January 1945. The occasion will be marked with an address to MEPs by Holocaust survivor Margot Friedländer.