De Jong: ‘Make the EU more democratic and more social’

5 May 2010

De Jong: ‘Make the EU more democratic and more social’

‘You're establishing unchangeable rules for the social and economic future of our country, without giving the Dutch electorate the chance to express their views at the elections on June 9th.' So said Dennis de Jong, chair of the SP group in the European Parliament, confronting European Commission President Jose Barroso on Wednesday with the SP's views on the Commission's strategic plan ‘Europa 2020’.

Five SP proposals

Dennis de JongDe Jong presented five proposals for a more democratic and more social Europe. "The danger exists that the outgoing Balkenende cabinet will be able to fix our economic future just before it steps down. A new cabinet will then, after June 9th, once again carry out ten years of neoliberal EU policy. We say: give the Netherlands the space to determine its own, more social future."


De Jong presented four further proposals to make Europe more social. "The EU is indeed in favour of employment but not for worthwhile employment: the number of working poor continues to grow and many young people are pushed in the direction of insecure jobs. The SP is for work that pays." In addition the SP wants to see EU member states investing in health care and education, also in times of economic crisis. "If spending cuts have to be made in Europe then the EU should begin at home and reverse the proposed 5% budget growth for next year as well as putting an end to the meaningless pumping back and forth of money from members states to Brussels and back again."

Social Europe

In ‘Europa 2020’, the EU does far too much for major corporations, despite the fact that medium-sized and small firms are the real driving force of the economy, De Jong argues. "The SP wants to see more room for social and quality criteria in public procurement procedures and more possibilities for small firms to win state contracts." The EU considers that only economic growth will help combat poverty, but nothing is done about greed and corruption. As De Jong says, "The poor get poorer and the rich ever richer, and this must now be turned around."

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