The European Parliament gathered in plenary session in Strasbourg approved the appointment of the Luxembourgish Jean-Claude Juncker as President of the European Commission, with 422 votes in favour and 250 against. This is the first time the President of the Commission is formally elected by the European Parliament. This is due to the application of the provisions of the Treaty of Lisbon and, as pointed out by several leaders of political parties during the discussion which took place before the formal vote, it is a demonstration of greater democracy. Indeed, it was up to the voters to confirm the candidacy proposal by the heads of State and Government for the role of President of the EC.
The new European Parliament was in session for the first time on Tuesday, 1 July 2014. 751 MEPs from 28 member states sat in Strasbourg for the reconstitution session and, despite the surge of Euroscepticism in the wake of the EU elections, in a vote widely expected the Socialists’ Martin Schulz was re-elected as President of the Parliament.
1st July 2014 was also the official starting of the Italian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, taking over the Greek semester. For this occasion, on 3rd July the Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi shortly presented the programme and focused on the vision for a new Europe. He said European leaders should act with conviction and determination to keep Europe in the lead on global issues and acknowledged that the crisis had left all of us with a “deep wound”.
Between 23 and 26 June the EU annual Energy week was held in Brussels, an occasion to learn more on the EU applicable and future legislation and trends. EFESME took part in the session dedicated to the joint discussion on “The way forward for European Energy Efficient Product Policy”, which was held on 24th June.
Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Energy, affirmed that the reduction of greenhouse emission is essential to ensure sustainability, but a real strategy for energy efficiency still need to be completed. In this framework, building energy consumption is a leading field for improvement, and a special attention has to be given to machinery and electrical devices.
The Directive on the harmonisation of the laws of the Member States relating to lifts and safety components for lift 2014/33/EU, known as the Recast of the Lifts Directive 95/16/EC was published on the Official Journal of the European Union on Saturday, 29th March 2014.
The new provisions aim at clarifying some issues which were subject to misinterpretation and hindered the implementation of a safe single market.
For instance, the new Directive will provide with developed and more precise definitions on subjects, obligations of economic operators, presumption of conformity provided by harmonized standards, policy in submitting the Declaration of Conformity, CE marking, notified bodies and conformity assessment procedure.