Prague, May 11th, 2009
On 10 – 12 May Prague hosts the 41st Conference of Community and European Affairs Committees of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC). In today’s part of the meeting the parliamentarians discussed among other things the current economic and financial situation in Europe. Czech Finance Minister Eduard Janota and former Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek addressed the conference as well.
The opening speech about the economic situation and how the Czech Presidency thinks it should be tackled was given by former Finance Minister and President of the Council of the EU for Economic and Financial Affairs (the ECOFIN Council) Miroslav Kalousek. Among other things he underlined the need to respect European state aid rules. He also appealed to all to refrain from protectionism when supporting their economies. He stressed the need to start consolidating public budgets as soon as possible and thereby ensure long-term sustainable public finances. The former minister mentioned the successes of the Czech Presidency in fulfilling the common EU strategy to fight the crisis – particularly the agreement to lower VAT rates on labour-intensive services in order to boost employment in the relevant sectors and the agreement with the European Parliament on important legislative acts in the financial services area.
After Kalousek, the newly appointed Minister of Finance of the Czech Republic and the current President of the ECOFIN Council, Eduard Janota took the floor. He outlined the plans of the Czech Presidency, particularly regarding the preparations of the ECOFIN Council’s contribution to the European Council in June. It is primarily focused on an evaluation of the progress made in the fulfilment of European Economic Recovery Plan and the preparations of the financial market supervision reforms in the EU.
Spokeswoman of the Ministry of Finance
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