The “Europe of Projects” has been an unrivalled success story, announced Chancellor Angela Merkel in front of parliamentarians from throughout the EU. Before the European elections in 2009,
however, the work of the Union must be placed on a new contractual footing, she affirmed.
As acting President of the European Council, the Chancellor was speaking on the future of Europe at the XXXVIIth COSAC meeting of parliamentary committees dealing with the European Union and
community affairs.

Merkel warned that important tasks, such as accepting new members, are impossible on the basis of the current Treaty of Nice. In front of the parliamentarians, she once again spoke out in
favour of the Constitutional Treaty.

Any fears raised by the European Constitution are wholly unfounded, said the Chancellor. The nation states remain firmly in charge of the European treaties. “Authority will be delegated only
with their approval, now and in future,” she stressed.

Photo: REGIERUNGonline / K?r Chancellor Angela Merkel in the German Bundestag”Europe must focus its energy in order to perform the tasks entrusted to it – and to enforce the advantages of
the European social system,” Merkel declared, and pointed out that the rest of the world will not wait for Europe.

Shared values

One hundred years ago, Europe accounted for 25 percent of the world’s population. Today this figure has slipped back to 13 percent – and will continue to drop. It is thus by no means
automatic that European values be taken as a model for other countries, said the Chancellor.

Commitment to certain values, however, is one of the elements that has guided the historic process of European unification over the last fifty years, Merkel stated. “Peace in freedom is one of
the fundamental philosophies of the European Community,” the Chancellor explained. And the approach has paid off. Today the individual is at the heart of political actions in Europe.

Energy for Europe

The Chancellor welcomed the fact that the national parliaments of member states are deeply involved in the process of European unification. This helps win over the people to the European
vision. If the EU begins to move away from its citizens it will automatically see defeats in referendums and resistance emerging.

Merkel recalled the visions of the founders of the European Community, who wanted to prevent any more wars being fought over coal and iron ore: this was the beginning of the European Coal and
Steel Community.

It is remarkable, that today energy is again an important issue within Europe, she went on – from security of supplies to climate protection and solidarity among member states in the energy
sector. The Chancellor believes that the continent will have an important role to play in this context in future.

The Committee on the Affairs of the European Union ensures that the German Bundestag is able to contribute to decisions taken in Brussels, Strasbourg and Luxembourg. As a recognised partner
of the German government it helps to elaborate and implement German policy on the European Union. One special feature of the committee is that members include German MEPs in addition to the
members of the Bundestag, thus allowing it to engage in direct dialogue with the European Parliament.

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