EU's Juncker to seek powers to screen foreign takeovers

Elias Hubbard
September 13, 2017

As the Union comes to terms with losing one of its biggest member states, Juncker called for EU leaders to meet in Romania the day after Britain leaves on March 29, 2019 to chart the bloc's way forward as 27 member states.

"The wind is back in Europe's sails", Juncker told MEPs in the French city of Strasbourg, in a speech that mixed English, French and German. "We will move on because Brexit isn't everything". With the largest defence budget in Europe, the largest Navy British troops and planes deployed across land, air and sea in Europe, our role in the continent's defence has never been more vital.

"We will keep moving on because Brexit isn't everything, it is not the future of Europe", he said in a speech that Brexit supporters said showed they were right to take Britain out of a bloc set on creating more powerful, central institutions.

In a renewed demonstration of the UK's commitment to European security, the latest future partnership paper signals the Government's willingness to partner with the EU in the face of ever-growing global threats.

It is understandable that Juncker would be up beat about the European Unions future or is he just being hopeful?

He praised the European Union's role in negotiating with Iran and uniting in response to Russian aggression in Ukraine.

The expected to leave the European Union in March 2019 after a 44-year-long membership in the bloc.

European Union diplomats say the bloc will change the current rules, a plan also backed by Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, in a move that could make it easier for Macron to carry out economic reforms at home by showing he is delivering for French workers.

European leaders have a "political responsibility to know what is happening here in order to be able, if we need, to protect our collective security", Juncker said.

Such consultations would allow the EU27 - the remaining member states - and the United Kingdom to continue to cooperate and align positions on issues of mutual interest after Britain is no longer party to the EU's official decision-making processes.

Juncker also said he will propose the establishment of a pan-European cybersecurity agency as online attacks around the world mount. When I listen to that with the ears of many people who feel left behind by the current macroeconomic policies that we have, then I have my doubts because he still pushes for free trade deals that basically are tailor-made for multinationals.

Turkey was also on the receiving end of Juncker's barbs, as he urged Ankara to "let our journalists go" following the jailing of several European reporters. The parliament plays an essential role in passing legislation together with the Council, and is the only European Union institution where it's members are directly appointed by European Union citizens.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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