Round-up of EP plenary: ECB's anti-deflation policy; cloud computing; civil protection; 2013 LUX film prize winner
12 Dec 2013
PTC Open John on Welcome to our round-up of the European Parliament's latest plenary session here in Strasbourg.
The week saw the ECB President Mario Draghi tell Parliament that he is ready to defend by all means against the threat of deflation.
Now unleashing the power of cloud computing has been approved in Parliament, as was improved funding for the EUs civil protection mechanism.
And the winner of the 2013 LUX cinema prize is...? We´ll tell you shortly.
But we begin with the visit of Mario Draghi, "Mr. ECB", to Strasbourg...
B roll, plenary pictures John off Mario Draghi, who received parliamentary praise for helping stabilise the European banking sector, returned the complement, saying Parliament has done much of late to help secure the future of the Euro.
Seance en Direct
09:40 - 10:16 Through a concerted legislative effort the Euro area and the EU as a whole has been put on a more stable footing. Your institution has made a decisive contribution to this effort. The establishment of the Single Supervisory Mechanism represents probably the most significant change to the European Union since the establishment of the single currency. And I´m happy to report the internal preparations are well underway.
B roll John off
Draghi again insisted that Europe does not face a deflation risk a la Japan.
Seance en Direct images Mario Draghi, President ECB
01:44 - 02:09
We don´t see deflation in the Euro area today. Our situation is different from what it was in Japan in the 90s and early 2000s. The inflation expectations in the medium-long term are firmly anchored. The monetary stimulus that we have injected in the last two years as many of you have acknowledged was not there in Japan at that time.
However inflation is to stay low for a protracted period of time and therefore we are well aware of the downside risks that this might entail.
PTC Bridge John on
Reaping the benefits of Cloud computing remains a priority for the Parliament, which this week voted to improve the ability of citizens to utilise it both effectively and safely.
John off Estimates suggest Cloud-related revenue could reach nearly 150 billion Euros in 2014, with more than 60% of all computer server workloads taking place in the virtual sphere.
But critical infrastructure on the ground still lags behind and funding has not been forthcoming while competitors haggle over a comprehensive Telecoms Single market agreement. It´s an agreement which would strengthen and harmonise fixed and mobile communications networks vital to the Cloud´s viability.
To improve the advantages of the cloud, proponents say a veritable "jungle of standards" has to be cut down to size.
The EPP Group´s Pilar del Castillo wrote the report in Parliament on how to realise the benefits of the Cloud without endangering choice or competition.
Interview Pilar Del Castillo, EPP Group Rapporteur
Pilar del Castillo, MEP Spain
There are a lot of benefits which we cannot deny. But it is crucial that we have choices. Having choices means that all aspects of possibility to change service providers who are not satisfied and then having the real competitive market is extremely important. So portability must be assured, interoperability is extremely important, standards are extremely important in this field.
Plenary pix John off
Madame del Castillo said fair contractual terms also need to be safeguarded and that security concerns due to the outsourced nature of the Cloud need to be addressed.
Interview Pilar Del Castillo, EPP Group Rapporteur Pilar del Castillo, MEP Spain
All these initiatives are a way of really securing protection in terms of privacy and security in the Cloud system for data.
John on Meanwhile more help is on the way in
Ioannis ZografosEPP TV Managing ProducerBelgiumIoannis.firstname.lastname@example.org+32(0) 2 284 18 45