[Fsfe-ie] Nuala Ahern MEP - against softpat directive

teresahackett at eircom.net teresahackett at eircom.net
Sat Feb 7 16:57:53 CET 2004

Ian Clarke wrote:

> Realistically though, what practical influence can MEPs > have now that the swpat issue is in the hands of the EC  > Council?

MEPs still have an influence because of the co-decision procedure, where Council and Parliament must agree on the text. Council want to ensure that Parliament, during the 2nd reading, accept their text. So there'll be informal meetings with Parliament in advance. [If I've understood correctly where it's at].
Like you say, it's with the Council now to agree on a Common Position (the Irish Presidency are aiming for 17-18.5.2004). The CP will go back to Parliament to be either approved, rejected (by an absolute majority) or amended again by the Parliament, also by an absolute majority. So the Council will be doing their best right now to agree a text with the Parliament so that it'll be accepted without amendments. Otherwise, it goes back to the Commission, gets delayed, may end up in conciliation, etc.
There'll be informal meetings between the three institutions, like there are now for the IPRE directive, to thrash out a text that's acceptable to the Council and to Parliament. It's usually the shadow rapporteurs for the political groups who are directly involved. 
So although it's formally in the hands of the Council, Parliament are still part of the process. I don't know who the shadow is for the Greens on this dossier, but it's useful to know what sort of amendments are being discussed, where are the fault lines, etc. Then Avril Doyle will know what's happening in the PPE group. So there's a little possibility for direct influence or else it can be useful intelligence. You know what I mean?


Teresa Hackett
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