This year, two persons were given the European Citizens Award in Romania, Professor Dr. Iordan Gheorghe Bărbulescu and Dr. Barbara Helen Knowles, a British research biologist, protector of natural and cultural values of Transylvania, and in particular the region of Szeklerland. The awards were handed over on the 23rd of September at the European Parliament’s Information Office in Bucharest.
The European Parliament has just adopted MEP Marian Harkin’s comprehensive report on the functioning of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF), the fund which provided the financial support for the employees made redundant following the closure of two large plants in Transylvania: Nokia in Jucu and Mechel in Câmpia Turzii. As shadow rapporteur on behalf of the European People's Party, MEP Csaba Sógor also contributed to the document adopted on 15 September in Strasbourg.
Eastern and Central European companies may be forced out of the western market should their competitive advantage related to cheaper labour cease. In the opinion of MEP Csaba Sógor, Romanian companies that conduct business abroad could be adversely impacted by recent efforts to level services prices, which are becoming increasingly visible within the European Union and in some Member States.
European policy makers participated at a Transylvanian wine and beer tasting in Strasbourg at the event organised by the European Parliamentary Association (EPA) following this week’s plenary session of the European Parliament.
Reports of the European Union focus more on the recently arrived migrant communities than on the autochthonous national minorities of Europe – stated Csaba Sógor during the hearing of the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) on the situation of fundamental rights in the European Union in 2015. During the public hearing organised on June 16th in the European Parliament, several documents were under discussion: the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights’s (FRA) 2016 report and the European Commission’s 2015 report on the application of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.
The European Parliament aims to discourage unfair trading practices, affecting micro-, small and medium sized enterprises on the European market. SMEs, which make up over 90 percent of the EU’s economic structure, should benefit from a better protection in the food supply chain - concluded the MEPs during the June 6th-9th June Strasbourg plenary session the European Parliament.
Illegally smuggled cigarettes and tobacco products cost the member states of the European Union an estimated ten billion Euros per year in lost revenues. In addition to the economic losses, smuggling also undermines public health policies and violates the EU regulations on tobacco manufacturing, distribution and sale - said MEP Csaba Sógor.
In the country where I come from 70 percent of employees are making less than net € 380 per month. What is a middle-class lifestyle in Western Europe is a privilege of the rich in the East – pointed out Csaba Sógor in the European Parliament.
The anti-Roma manifestations that took place on International Romani day in Romania are not worthy of a European Union Member State, and we cannot allow for these acts of open discrimination to become socially acceptable.
Humanitarian, legal and political crises accompany the refugee crisis in the European Union. It could take a while for Member States to coordinate these three factors - stated Csaba Sógor during a lecture held in Csíkszereda/Miercurea Ciuc on March 30thorganised by theConsulate General of Hungary in Romania and Németh Géza Association.
Drug abuse, just like alcoholism is social problem that is treated as a taboo in Hargita County. Even though the phenomenon is not a pervasive social problem in the region, it no doubt has an increasing tendency, concluded the specialists during a discussion organised on the 30th of March at the County Council. The discussion was preceded by an exhibition on the subject, which can be currently visited in Csíkszereda/Miercurea Ciuc. The exhibition was organised by the Áradat Association and sponsored by EPP MEP Csaba Sógor.
It would disadvantage the competitiveness of European companies if the bill proposed by the European Commission on the posting of workers is adopted – argue some members of the European Parliament. The proposal would modify the directive in force since 1996. In the opinion of MEP Csaba Sógor the Equal work for equal pay principle proposed by the Commission would adversely affect not only entrepreneurs who have activities abroad but also Europe's competitiveness in general. This is the reason for which the proposal divides MEPs.
Freedom of speech is one of the fundamental values of democracy; therefore there cannot be taboo or uncomfortable subjects in the European Parliament that we are forbidden to speak of – stated Csaba Sógor in response to last week's incidents late at night on March 7th during the Strasbourg plenary session.
A vehement protest action preceded a conference hosted in the European Parliament’s building in Brussels by RMDSZ MEP Csaba Sógor on the Turkish minority in Greece. Right before the start of the conference entitled Freedom of association in Greece - a loophole in European minority rights standards MEPs of the Greek far-right tried to disrupt the conference by using violent language and claiming that there is no Turkish minority in Greece - a fact, which according to Csaba Sógor only demonstrates how real the problems of ethnic minorities are in Greece.
The failure of the European Union as regards the efficient tackling of the refugee crisis has largely been triggered by the fact that European leaders disregarded their own decisions and the relevant European regulations. This is the conclusion expressed by MEP Iuliu Winkler (UDMR, EPP) in his written declaration submitted during the debate on the refugee crisis, the protection of EU´s external borders and the future of the Schengen Area, Tuesday night, in the European Parliament’s (EP) Plenary session in Strasbourg.
According to Csaba Sógor candidate countries should fulfil the commitments before becoming member states. Romania is yet to adopt the minority protection law approved by the government in 2005, before the EU accession – pointed out Csaba Sógor during the Wednesday afternoon plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
The Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) between the European Union and Kosovo is to come into force, after the European Parliament voted on the proposal on the 21st of January. In the opinion of RMDSZ MEP Csaba Sógor the agreement deals with minority protection issues only in general terms, which is not enough as experience shows.
Members of the European Parliament call for an increase in women's entrepreneurial activity. In 2012 only 31 percent of entrepreneurs within the European Union are women – states the EP in its report adopted in Strasbourg, on January 19th.
The collective stigmatisation of a community will hinder dialogue and discussion on important issues that we have had little of to this day in Romania – stated Csaba Sógor during the December plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Monday evening.
A structured dialogue with Vera Jourová, EU Commissioner of Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality was on the agenda of the December 10th meeting of the LIBE committee, as well as a public hearing on a monitoring mechanism of the situation of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in the European Union.