Belgium (Brussels Morning Newspaper), MEPs are in the United States this week for meetings with their U.S. counterparts working on EU-US cooperation on justice and home affairs.
The delegation in Washington D.C. includes LIBE chair Juan Fernando López Aguilar and S&D spokesperson for justice and home affairs Birgit Sippel.
They will speak to counterparts about the protection of personal data, internal security, women’s rights and visa reciprocity.
It comes after members voted on the issue last week.
They claim the vote sent a message to the Commission over what they say are insufficient safeguards in the EU-US Data Privacy Framework.
In a plenary vote, with 306 votes in favour, MEPs urged the European Commission to refrain from adopting an adequacy decision on the transfer of personal data between the EU and the US until it is clear that EU citizens’ rights are sufficiently protected.
According to the Parliament, reforms introduced by an Executive Order of the President of the United States that were aimed at resolving previous failed agreements are not enough.
MEPs are keen to introduce a sunset clause that would allow the adequacy decision to expire and would trigger a renewal process that upholds the EU’s data privacy standard.
The vote was held by Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs.
Commenting, Juan Fernando López Aguilar, Chair of the LIBE committee, said: “Like its predecessors Safe Harbor and Privacy Shield, we are concerned that the new EU-US framework will yet again be rejected in the European courts. Citizens and businesses need certainty, not more doubt, and we are not there yet.
“We are not convinced that the new framework sufficiently protects the personal data of our citizens. The Commission needs to deal with the concerns raised by the European Data Protection Board and the Civil Liberties Committee so that we can reach equivalent levels of data protection between the EU and the US, even if that means reopening the negotiations.”
Further comment comes from Marina Kaljurand, S&D MEP and shadow rapporteur for the EU- US Data Privacy Framework.
She said, “I would like to recognise the Commission’s negotiation efforts and the legal steps taken by the Biden Administration. But this new framework is still not enough to fill our citizens with full confidence that their rights will be adequately protected.”
Meanwhile, the EPP Group in parliament say it wants European data on US servers to have equivalent protection as on servers in the EU.
The EPP Group says it supports the European Commission’s plan to consider US data protection provisions as adequate.
“A solid legal basis for transatlantic data transfer is very important for businesses, especially small companies, which do not have the legal and financial capacity to avail themselves of other data storage services,” a spokesman said.