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Friday 15th

I have met up at lunch with Franceska xxx and Rob van Kranenburg who both work with Internet of Things. It was nice. I had a sandwich.

I am now in the not-Mickey Mouse-bar (NMMB from now on), where I ran into Benjamin Henrion from FFII. I followed his tweets on the Nellie Kroes-hearing yesterday. She is the new Commissioner of DG Telecoms. He is dissatisfied with her view on patents. I am currently speaking with Maxime, from Trautmann’s office. He seems not to be satisfied with the Kroes hearing either: she was too vague on telecoms market competition. Even as she has been good at coming down on near monopoly situations in the software (Microsoft cases) and telecommunications markets (Telefónica and BT), in the latter cases it hasn’t made a lot of difference for the bad situations in Spain and the UK.

Spanish broadband prices still exceed the European average by some 12%. In the UK, the infrastructure is owned predominantly by BT which obviously gives them the power to control the conditions under which other service providers can act.

Kroes, he says, was vague on open standards, but for commercial net neutrality. It’s not an optimal point of view, because another pressing issue is member state willingness to filter child pornography, sites on holocaust or jihad instigating pages. It is something we will have the change.

At 03:00 hours I realised that the EU-South Korea FTA could have been on the agenda on the 18-21 January in Strasbourg. That would have meant that the European Parliament would have approved a trade agreement that would have efficiently cut off the legislative powers of the European Parliament. Now, Henrion tells me today that the counter-argument is that IPRED1 is already acquis communautaire, which means that at least EPP will not see this as cutting off legislative power. The FTA is incredibly detailed, and will limit the parliament’s options when changing legislation considerably. We’re locking ourselves in, and that’s bad.

But, since IPRED1 belongs to the acquis communautaire, being already legislation (acquis communautaire is everything included in http://eur-lex.eu), the Commission does not supercede their mandate simply by introducing copy-pasted legislative text in a trade agreement. So the question is what legislative powers the Parliament does have. Within what frames can the Parliament legislate? According to the acquis communautaire, what liberties does the Parliament have to do whatever they want?

The intuitive answer is of course everything. A legislative power such as the Parliament is legislative because they can create legislation, all legislation. But we really need a framework treaty or any other legislative document that supports that.

The only thing I can find related to the FTA on the agenda for next week is a question on the FTA. Which calms me down, because it means another month to work with this.

I now have a badge for entering the parliament and getting out of it without too much pain. My further work this afternoon will consist of finally reading up on the internet of things, work more on the diffs between the recent FTAs/CETAs and existing EU legislation and finish off the ECTA annual report. Between networking, journalists and going for lunch, I really end up having too little time to do stuff that needs to be done.

  1. januari 15, 2010 kl. 16:39

    So the question is whether the Commission *and* the Council has exceeded it’s competence by agreeing to secret negotiations according to the McCoy agreement. There was obviously an option for the Commission to not agree with secrecy. That secrecy cannot be unconditional, since the Turco case stipulates that ”legislative initiatives” and/or ”legislative action” have to be transparent.

    ”The possibility for citizens to find out the considerations underpinning legislative action is a precondition for the effective exercise of their democratic rights.”

    ”[…] such an overriding public interest is constituted by the fact that disclosure of documents containing the advice of an institution’s legal service on legal questions arising when legislative initiatives are being debated increases the transparency and openness of the legislative process and strengthens the democratic right of European citizens to scrutinize the information which has formed the basis of a legislative act[…]”

    Is verbatim copypasting of directive articles in a trade agreement a ”legislative initiative” and/or a ”legislative action”? I’d say yes.

  2. Daniel Wijk
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 17:52

    Nice to know you finally got into the parliament and that your work isn’t that terribly impaired by the strange delays…

  3. db
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 18:32

    Sluta skriv på engelska, språkfelen är tortyr för mina ögon

  4. teirdez
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 18:38

    I would say that the Turco case question… stipulates that legislative action can also be interpreted in a future sense. If former legislation is suddenly in an international ”trade agreement” you’re removing future powers of the parliament to legislate. Currently looking into analyses of the Turco case, although I suspect I’ll have to wait until I get some good reference points. It must be an action to remove legislative powers, that’s kind of my point. The Parliament is now not allowed to change even single sentences in the IPRED1 directive that may change it’s interpretation to something milder, because that would go against the agreement. But reasonably, that must go against what a democratically elected legislative institution is not allowed to do.

    That would make it a constiutional issue, I suppose, which is always tricky, especially with a new treaty in place. But the Commission hearing with de Gucht (right?) said it’s still the Nice treaty in force (which reminds me I need to ask the library service here to get me information about the applications of the special provisions in art 133(6) as well).

  5. teirdez
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 18:40

    I did not finally get into the parliament, other than having a trainee badge from Christian Engstroms office. :P

    It does make a huge difference that I don’t have to wait for Erik Josefsson or HAX to let me through the security check points though.

  6. teirdez
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 19:04

    @db: there’s at least a couple of people who do want information in English, but if I write them in Swedish we could co-operate so that you translate them?

    I would be able to post in both languages, and you would get the use of language that you want. You can reach me at amelia.andersdotter at piratpartiet.se if you’re interested :)

  7. Anders
    januari 15, 2010 kl. 19:21

    Tackar för den mycket fina rapporteringen. Du uträttar redan storverk. Om det drar ut på tiden med din lön så får vi fixa donationer på något sätt.

  8. Fiery Spirited
    januari 20, 2010 kl. 13:48

    I think you should write in English and learn from your mistakes. Writing drafts and ask for constructive input is the only way to improve your English. It is worth to remember that not like all native Englishmen or Americans can actually write good English.

    Also a person that your English language quality, but who write the complaint in Swedish is perhaps not the best person to evaluate language quality.

  1. januari 15, 2010 kl. 17:34


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