In an unusually competitive election, Italian MEP Antonio Tajani was elected the 29th president of the European Parliament earlier this week after striking a deal with between his political group, the European People’s Party, and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe.
EMMA welcomes Tajani to this new position, and look forward to working together to maintain the vibrant press sector that currently exists in Europe.
“There are over 20 billion copies of magazines sold in Europe every year,” said Auke Visser, EMMA President. “These publications play a crucial role in promoting knowledge, open debate and democracy, but also in entertaining people throughout the EU. It’s imperative that the free, independent, diverse and vibrant press sector that currently exists in Europe continues to be supported within all EU institutions, and at EMMA we are looking forward to continue working on this with President Tajani and his colleagues.”
Tajani is a well-known fixture in Brussels. He has been elected to the European Parliament four times and has previously served as European Commissioner for Transport, and European Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship. In Italy he was the spokesperson for the former Prime Minister, Berlusconi, and worked as a journalist for RAI, the public broadcaster and Il Giornale, an Italian newspaper.
This victory means that all three EU institutions – the Parliament, Commission and Council – are under the control of the centre-right EPP party. This marks a big shift in the political construction of the Parliament, marking the end of the “Grand Coalition” of centre-right and centre-left groups and diminishing the role of socialists, while enhancing the relevance of conservatives.
Antonio Tajani replaces Martin Schulz, who is leaving the European Parliament after five years as President to return to national politics in Germany.
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