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European Commission

Press release

Brussels, 14 November 2013

Future of Europe Debate: Viviane Reding takes French views on board in Marseille

The future of Europe, citizens’ rights, and ending the economic crisis will be the subjects of the 37th Citizens’ Dialogue (see annex), which is taking place today, 14 November, in Marseille. It will be attended by Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship, and Christiane Taubira, Keeper of the Seals and Minister for Justice in the French government.

‘I hear people in France asking a lot of questions about the direction the European Union is taking and, in particular, about how best to find the right balance between economic objectives and social goals. What approach should the EU adopt on migration policy? What does the future hold for our young people? The European elections in 2014 will be the time for people to make a choice, and I am encouraged by the fact that 60% of French people say that the European elections matter to them. After this dialogue, I hope that the figure will be more like 100%,’ said Viviane Reding. ‘I am very happy to be here with Mrs Taubira in order to listen to people and to clarify what Europe means and debate its future. We’re sending out a clear signal: Europe is a team effort.

The citizens’ dialogue will take place on 14 November between 5.30 and 8.00 p.m. at the Dock des Suds, 12 rue Urbain V, 13002 Marseille. It will be an opportunity for people to have a direct exchange with the Vice-President and the Keeper of the Seals. A number of subjects will be tackled, in particular the future of Europe and citizens’ rights and expectations. The debate will be chaired by Thierry Bezer (of the France 3 television channel).

Internet users will also be able to follow the debate live and to respond via Twitter using hash tag #EUDeb8.

Background

What are the Citizens’ Dialogues about?

Since last January when the European Commission initiated the European Year of Citizens, (IP/13/2), Members of the Commission have been going out to meet the public and to debate with them.

So far, 36 Citizens’ Dialogues have already taken place across the European Union, with a Commissioner present on each occasion. A total of more than 50 such meetings are planned (see annex), all attended by people holding political office. The debates, which are open to all, can be followed at http://ec.europa.eu/european-debate.

In October, nine meetings took place in Marseille (European Capital of Culture in 2013), followed by public debates on 23, 24 and 25 October. These discussions have enabled more than 600 people to debate and exchange views. Some 260 contributions have also been centralised on a website dedicated to the listening process, www.debat-europe2013.fr. The big public debate on 14 November is the last of the series in Marseille.

Throughout the EU, people are exercising their rights on a daily basis. But they don’t always really know what these rights are. Getting on for seven out of ten French people would like to know more about their rights as European citizens (see annex).

That is why the Commission made 2013 the European Year of Citizens, and the citizens’ dialogues are at the heart of it.

Why is the Commission arranging these dialogues now?

Because Europe is at a crossroads. With many voices calling for political union, a federation of nation states, or a United States of Europe, the coming months and years will be crucial for the future of Europe. What is more, further European integration must go hand in hand with a strengthening of the EU’s democratic legitimacy. Giving people a direct voice is therefore more important than ever.

What will be the outcome of these dialogues?

People’s feedback will help guide the Commission as it draws up its plans. One of the main purposes of the dialogues is to prepare the ground for the 2014 European elections.

On 8 May 2013 the European Commission published its second EU Citizenship Report, putting forward 12 new practical measures to resolve problems that people still come up against (IP/13/410 and MEMO/13/409). The Citizenship Report is based on a major online consultation launched in May 2012 (IP/12/461) and on the questions raised and suggestions made by people during the dialogues on EU citizens’ rights and future.

For more information:

About the meetings and debates organised in Marseille

www.debat-europe2013.fr

Debates with citizens on the future of Europe:

http://ec.europa.eu/debate-future-europe/index_en.htm

European Year of Citizens:

http://europa.eu/citizens-2013/en/home

Europeans have their say: Results of the consultation on EU citizens’ rights:

http://ec.europa.eu/justice/citizen/files/eu-citizen-brochure_en.pdf

Homepage of the website of Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship:

http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/reding/index_en.htm

Follow the Vice-President on Twitter: @VivianeRedingEU

To contribute to the debate on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/UEenFrance and on Twitter : @UEfrance #EUdeb8

Contacts :

Mina Andreeva (+32 2 299 13 82)

Natasha Bertaud (+32 2 296 74 56)

ANNEXES

1. The Future of Europe Debate continues…

Member State

City

Date

European Commissioner

Local/national politician

Espagne

Cadiz

27/09/2012

Vice-présidente Reding

Teófila Martínez Saíz, Maire de Cádiz

Autriche

Graz

05/11/2012

Vice-présidente Reding

Michael Spindelegger, Vice chancelier/ministre des Affaires étrangères

Allemagne

Berlin

10/11/2012

Vice-présidente Reding

Dagmar Roth-Behrendt Député européen allemand

France

Paris

23/11/2012

Vice-présidente Reding

"-"

Italie

Naples

30/11/2012

Commissaire Andor

Luigi de Magistris Maire de Naples

Irlande

Dublin

10/01/2013

Président Barroso/ Vice-Présidente Reding

Enda Kenny, Taoiseach irlandais et Eamon Gilmore, Tánaiste / Lucinda Creighton, ministre des Affaires européennes

Suède

Göteborg

18/02/2013

Commissaire Malmström

None

Italie

Turin

21/02/2013

Commissaire Malmström

Piero Fassino, Maire de Turin

Portugal

Coimbra

22/02/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

João Paulo Barbosa de Melo, Maire de Coimbra Lydia Mutsch Maire d' Esch-sur-Alzette (video link), Felix Braz, Député luxembourgeois

Italie

Rome

18/03/2013

Vice-président Tajani

Gianni Alemanno, Maire de Rome

Grèce

Thessalonique

22/03/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Yiannis Boutaris, Maire de Thessalonique

Italie

Pise

05/04/2013

Commissaire Potočnik

Marco Filippeschi, Maire de Pise

Belgique

Ghent

12/04/2013

Commissaire De Gucht

Maire de Gand Daniël Termont / Député du parlement belge Geert Versnick

Belgique

Eupen

23/04/2013

Commissaire Hahn

Mathieu Grosch, Député européen/Karl-Heinz Lambertz, Ministre-président de la Communauté germanophone de belgique

Belgique

Bruxelles

04/05/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Charles Picqué, Ministre-président de la région de Bruxelles Capitale/ Marc Tarabella, Député européen

Allemagne

Düsseldorf

08/05/2013

Commissaire Oettinger

Jürgen Klute, Député européen / Nicolaus Kern, président du " Committee on Europe and a Single World"/ Ilka Freifrau von Boeselager, Stefan Engstfeld, Markus Töns et Dr Ingo Wolf, Porte-paroles sur les questions européennes du Parlement Rhin Nord-Westphalie

Slovénie

Ljubljana

09/05/2013

Commissaire Potočnik

"-"

Pologne

Varsovie

11/05/2013

Commissaire Lewandowski

"-"

République tchèque

Prague

13/05/2013

Commissaire Füle

John Perry, ministre irlandais du Commerce/ Jan Bauer, président du comité des Affaires européennes du Parlement tchèque / Jan Březina et Libor Rouček, Députés européens / Martin Tlapa, Vice-secrétaire d'Etat aux Affaires européennes

Italie

Ventotene

27/05/2013

Vice-président Tajani

Giuseppe Assenso, Maire de Ventotene

Italie

Milan

07/06/2013

Commissaire Hedegaard

Giuliano Pisapia, Maire de Milan

Luxembourg

Esch

30/06/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Charles Goerens Député européen / Félix Braz, Député luxembourgeois / Benoit Lutgen, Ministre régional wallon / Nicolas Schmit, Ministre luxembourgeois du Travail et de l'Emploi

Pologne

Varsovie

11/07/2013

Président Barroso / Vice-présidente Reding

Róża Thun, Députée européenne / Tadeusz Masowiecki; ancien Premier ministre

Grèce

Crète

12/07/2013

Commissaire Damanaki

Stavros Arnaoutakis, Gouverneur de la région de Crète / Spyros Danellis, Député grec / Giannis Kourakis, Maire de Heraklion

Allemagne

Heidelberg

16/07/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Winfred Kretschmann, Ministre-président du Bade Wurtemberg

Bulgarie

Sofia

23/07/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Président de Bulgarie Rosen Plevneliev

Belgique

Namur

13/09/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Rudi Demotte, Ministre-président de Wallonie

Estonie

Tallinn

14/09/2013

Vice-présidents Reding / Kallas

"-"

Italie

Trieste

16/09/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Ministre des affaires européennes Enzo Moavero Milanesi

Finlande

Helsinki

24/09/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Sirpa Pietikäinen, Député européen / Tuomo Puumala, Député finlandais et membre du Grand comité (Centre/ALDE) / Miapetra Kumpula-Natri, Député finlandais, Président du Grand comité et ancien Président du Mouvement européen de Finlande (SDP/S&D) / Chairperson of the Young People's Working Group on the Future of the EU Milla Ovaska, Président du groupe de travail

Hongrie

Györ

03/10/2013

Commissaire Andor

Affairs Enikő Győri, Secrétaire d'Etat aux Affaires européennes et Csaba Őry, Député européen.

Slovaquie

Košice

05/10/2013

Vice-président Šefčovic

Pavol Paška, Président du parlement slovaque

Suède

Stockholm

15/10/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Birgitta Ohlsson, Ministre des Affaires européennes, Olle Ludvigsson, Députée européenne et Sten Nordin, Maire de Stockholm

Belgique

Liège

17/10/2013

Président Barroso

Didier Reynders, Ministre des Affaires étrangères, du Commerce extérieur et des Affaires européennes / Jean-Claude Marcourt, Ministre de l'Economie de Wallonie

Lettonie

Riga

18/10/2013

Commissaire Piebalgs

Ministre de la Défense

Malte

La Valette

07/11/2013

Commissaire Borg

"-"

France

Marseille

14/11/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

Christiane Taubira, Ministre de la Justice

Chypre

Limassol

28/11/2013

Commissaire Vassiliou

à confirmer

Autriche

Eisenstadt

29/11/2013

Commissaire Hahn

à confirmer

Autriche

Innsbruck

06/12/2013

Commissaire Hahn

à confirmer

Lituanie

Vilnius

13/12/2013

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

Belgique

Wavre

19/12/2013

Commissaire Barnier

à confirmer

Online

Dialogue virtuel

16/01/2014

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

Danemark

Copenhague

06/02/2014

Commissaire Hedegaard

à confirmer

Royaume-Uni

Londres

14/03/2014

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

Espagne

Barcelone

23/02/2014

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

Belgique

Dialogue-Citoyens européens

27/03/2014

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

Pays-bas

Amsterdam

14/03/2014

Vice-présidente Reding

à confirmer

2. Almost seven out of ten French people would like to know more about their rights as European citizens

Source: Eurobaromètre Standard 79 – Printemps 2013.

3. Three out of four French people consider that European integration is a guarantee of peace in Europe

Source: Eurobaromètre Flash 387 – Les Français et l'Union européenne.

4. Six out of ten French people say that the forthcoming European elections matter to them

Source: Eurobaromètre Flash 387 – Les Français et l'Union européenne.


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