“We need more transparency and a compulsory register of lobbies, both at the European and Italian level”. This is how the member of the European Parliament (S&D group), Elly Schlein, also member of the Italian party Possibile and Co-President of the ITCO Intergroup (Integrity, Transparency, Anti-Corruption and Organised Crime) in the EP, comments on the research published today by the newspaper ‘La Repubblica’ and conducted by Open Polis on lobbies in European countries. This piece of research finds that the majority of MEPs in the ITCO Intergroup are Italian.
“The figures emerging from this research are very interesting and they underline a problem that Parliament has long been signalling” – explains MEP Schlein: only six EU Member States have a compulsory register for lobbies. Together with the ITCO Intergroup, we have fought hard and we will continue to do so to ask for more transparency. This can be achieved by creating a compulsory register for lobbies, applicable to all three institutions (Commission, Parliament and Council) and by introducing the so-called ‘legislative footprint’, requiring the rapporteur of a legislative proposal to publish alongside the proposal the list of all stakeholders met. Last September, the European Commission presented a proposal on transparency, including only a small part of the requests we presented, which were partially accepted also by the new Parliament Regulation, voted for in December. In particular, the EP voted in favour of our amendment asking MEPs to meet exclusively with registered stakeholders.
“European institutions should be glass houses: European citizens have the right to know who influences decision-making processes and how this occurs. This concerns the credibility of the institutions themselves. We will continue our cross-cutting battle, by cooperating and working with organisations that have been dealing with these issues for quite some time” – concludes MEP Schlein, who has already published on her website (www.ellyschlein.it) the list of organisations she met during her mandate.