SME Chamber

Strong appeal for the EU to be more determinist in its support of the Libyan people democrat process

 Libya is, through the great sacrifice of the Libyan people's blood and loss of life, fast changing from what was a threat to the stability of the EU to a strong ally. Libya and Libyan oil is too important for European stability, industrial production and the EU energy policy. But It is important for the EU to be there already helping the Libyan people with our expertise to help the democratisation process moving and the oil industry production starting and working.


Our support during the last revolutionary months was lukewarm; our High Commissioner for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton was simply dancing round the fire frightened to burn her fingers. It would have been smarter if we were bolder as some important EU individual members were. Malta, though small, was bold too. As regards the implementation of the EU energy policy we must be more determinist. Being simply frightened to impose a specific policy is short-sighted. It is a pre-world economic recession concept, a time when we used to think that nothing could really ever happen. It happened and it will happen again. So we need to be more determinist and better be able to co-ordinate our foreign policy and the policies towards our neighbouring countries in the Mediterranean. We need to co-ordinate better our economic and our energy policies. Libya plays an important role in all of this. We need to be more, much more forthcoming. The Libyan people through their sacrifice have given Europe new potential for economic stability and assured good quality entry supplies.

Vince Farrugia, Maltese Employer's representative at EESC, addressing the last TEN (Transport, Energy, Infrastructure and Information Society) Section soon after the intervention of the President of European Parliament Jerzy Karol Buzek, whospoke during the Section meeting on the new EU Energy Action Plan. Vince Farrugia participated in the European Economic Congress in Katowice Poland together with the President of EESC Mr Stefan Nielsen and participated in the European Energy Policy Forum in his address at EESC he praised the Polish Presidency for the way it is highlighting the issue. In his address to the TEN section Mr Vince Farrugia said he wanted to appeal for a stronger action in the light of developments in the Mediterranean and especially the light of the Libyan people's fight for the democratisation of their country. The alternative energy program is important and the traditional fiscal structure in Europe has to change to reflect better the requirements of the new Energy policies as otherwise the cost to the consumer will be tremendous but whatever else happens, oil remains important and Libya is vital for the European continent.

President Buzek in reply to Vince Farrugia's intervention said that he was very conscious of the issues in the Mediterranean and especially how these affect Malta. He stated that he is also very supportive of Malta's burden sharing demands on the refugee issue and on the importance of highlighting the importance of good relationships with the Mediterranean North African Nations and of the need to give stronger support to the democratisation process and strengthening of economic links. Libya definitely deserves high priority. He supported Vince Farrugia's appeal for the EU to have a stronger technical presence to ensure that the oil industry in Libya is geared as fast as possible to full productive capacity for the benefit of the Libyan people and the European community. Mr Buzek commented that the experience of Poland and the other East European countries who have gone through the revolutionary process to obtain democratic stability shows conclusively how important and urgent it is for the EU to act speedily as the developments in the early stages of change are fundamental for the strengthening of the whole democratisation process.

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