The Parliamentary Dimension of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU opened today with a meeting of COSAC Presidential Troika. The Troika is composed of the Chairs of parliamentary Committees for Union affairs of the previous, current and future Presidency – Estonia, Bulgaria and Austria – and the delegation of the European Parliament.
The meeting of the Troika is preparatory, and the results of the discussion will be presented to the other delegates at tomorrow’s COSAC meeting, which will be held at 08:30 hrs in Hall 3 of the Palace of Culture.
At the meeting of the Troika, Kristian Vigenin told his European counterparts that the working programme on Monday had three focal points: the priorities of the Bulgarian Presidency and its goals in order to move further key EU policies, presented by Minister for the Bulgarian Presidency Lilyana Pavlova; the future of Europe: the European and national interpretation with the participation of Bulgarian Vice President Iliyana Iotova, First Vice President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans, and EP Regional Development Committee Chair Iskra Mihaylova. The last working session will be dedicated to the EU policy on macro-regions to support their sustainable development with an overview of the achievements and challenges to those European strategies.
The Parliamentary Dimension troika discussed and identified which topical issues from the European agenda would be in focus at the meeting of EU parliamentarians in June: an overview of Bulgaria’s achievements over the six months of its presidency, the EU prospect of the Western Balkan states, a more social Europe, the future of the Cohesion policy after 2020, as well as the role of national parliaments in the debate on bringing Europe closer to the citizens who directly elect their representatives. Kristian Vigenin emphasised that the next meeting would be at the end of the Bulgarian Presidency, but the Bulgarian Parliament and the Parliamentary Dimension had already identified their priorities of European and national significance, which would be also in the focus of attention of parliamentary events from the calendar of the Presidency.
One of the highlights at the meeting of the Troika was the setting up of a COSAC working group in connection with the work of the Working group on subsidiarity and proportionality led by first Vice President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans. The COSAC working group will be led by Vigenin and include representatives from all national parliaments of the EU. One of its tasks will be to discuss the role of national parliaments in setting the processes from the European agenda as well as those political areas in which the competences of the Union may yield to those of the member states.