Isabelle De Vinck, Chairwoman of EPACA, participated on Thursday 21 June in a high-level panel debate ‘Towards transparency and trust: the future of the EU lobby’, organised by Transparency International EU and co-sponsored by EPACA.
Other panellists present at Residence Palace were Mr Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, Danuta Hübner, Member of the European Parliament and Daniel Freud, Head of Advocacy EU Integrity, at Transparency International EU. The debate was moderated by Michael Peel, Financial Times Brussels correspondent.
The panel debate focused on the ongoing negotiations to the Commission’s Inter-Institutional Agreement (IIA) proposal for a mandatory transparency register. All panellists agreed that a solution should be found, ideally before the end of the current legislature, however discussions also showed the ongoing disagreement between Frans Timmermans requesting that the entire political level signs up with the ‘no register, no meeting rule’ whereas Danuta Hübner calling to protect the MEPs’ ‘freedom of mandate’. In the midst, Isabelle De Vinck reminded that EPACA members had already committed to apply this rule and supported more transparency in all institutions – including Commission, Parliament, and Council.