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VIDEO From European Parliament Available on Merkel-Sarkozy Pact Under Fire at European Parliament
Feb 08, 2011 (05:02 PM EST)

NEW YORK, Feb. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- See video from  European Parliament at:

Martin Schulz, leader of the European Parliament's main progressive group, the 186-strong Socialists and Democrats, deplored the summit's Franco-German inspired EU competitiveness pact. Behind it, he said, lay reduction of the European Union to deals between governments. "If you look now to the proposals, that's exactly what the liberals and Germans want to see to prolong the life time, the working time, to cut the salaries, to reduce the pensions... All this kind of neo-liberal propaganda. They are not speaking about the increase of salaries. They are not speaking about equal pay all over in Europe. They are not speaking, and that's the big mistake, about investments in sustainable growth. Because, in our eyes, without growth, no jobs and without jobs, on the base on a descent income, no social coherence and stability in Europe. "Dismissing the competitiveness pact, Mr Schulz said that increasing competitiveness is a laudable goal, but which can't be achieved by massive and one-sided social cutbacks. He also denounced the pact's plans to abolish salary-indexation that exists in some EU countries which would create a lop-sided situation socially and deny compensation to the lowest paid people. "What Europe needs is stability, yes for sure, and stability of our currency yes for sure. But what we need indeed is especially investments in education, in research, in development, in the infrastructure of the European Union and all these elements are missing." "You will see that Germany and France and I presume the third one in this alliance, Cameron, will come and tell us that the next step must be to cut the European budget" He added Calling for defence of the EU community method of policy-making, Mr Schulz questioned the role of Mr Van Rompuy: "What is the role of Mister Van Rompuy? Is this the decision made by the Council or by the German and the French? Is this a council decision? Is this a proposal? What is the opinion of the president of the European Council who represents not Germany and France but the 27?"

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