EU's Juncker to seek powers to screen foreign takeovers

Posted September 14, 2017

Juncker has also resurrected the idea of merging his own post with that of the President of the European Council, who now represents the interests of its member state governments, saying it would be easier if "one captain was steering the ship".

Claude Juncker, the President of the European Commission, announced this morning that the "wind is back in Europe's sails" and that the economy was "bouncing back" after a hard two years for the bloc. He believed that Britain would soon "regret" their decision.

The remaining "minimal fraction" of 22 British seats could be re-distributed among the remaining 27 European Union countries, to better take into account the principle of "degressive proportionality".

While Juncker can expect a generally warm reception in the European Parliament, a broadly federalist body with the noisy exception of dedicated anti-EU parties, the test of whether his proposals translate into action will be the reactions in the coming months of national leaders in the 27 member states.

Setting out hopes for closer integration, Mr Juncker announced plans to increase passport-free movement around the European Union, expand use of the euro and boost the number of member states.

A mass lobby will allow "EU citizens and their British family and friends, along with British citizens living in other European Union countries, to meet with their MP in parliament to raise their concerns and tell their own story", it said.

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Mr Juncker also called for the roles of the president of the European Commission and the president of the European Council to be merged in future.

Mr Juncker said the European Union had made economic strides in the year since his last such address. "It isn't the future of Europe - it's not the be-all and end-all".

Juncker also wants all states to join the European Banking Union, making bank supervision common across the bloc and more common standards in labour and social policies. It is crucial that the final agreement does not leave United Kingdom pension schemes exposed to any future European Union rules on the valuation and funding of pension schemes, as these would make it far more hard to run schemes and would probably lead to lower pensions.

"The message is very clear: Brexit has happened, new steam ahead..." If you had given (David) Cameron concessions, particularly on immigration, the Brexit vote - I have to admit - would never, ever have happened. Now we have a window of opportunity, but it will not stay open forever.

Lawmakers voted 601 to 69 in favour of the bill, part of a move to extend the exemption of global flights from the EU's cap-and-trade system pending the adoption of last year's United Nations deal on tackling aircraft emissions.