OPP Meeting Summary: EP LIBE Committee – Structured dialogue with Ms Vĕra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality (5 March 2018)

A summary of the Committee’s exchange of views with a focus on digital and transport policy is now available.

EP LIBE Committee – 5 March 2018
Structured dialogue with Ms Vĕra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality
– Exchange of views

Commissioner Jourová made the following opening remarks:

  • the Commissioner’s opening remarks to the Committee are available here.

The Chair Claude Moraes (S&D, UK)

  • on the forthcoming e-evidence proposal, he stated that a number of concerns were beginning to be raised. He mentioned delays and the Treaty basis.

Birgit Sippel (S&D, DE)

  • regarding the Privacy Shield, she stated that there had been many criticisms from stakeholders regarding the appointment of the Ombudsperson. She asked what steps the Commission had taken on this issue;
  • on the issue of the FISA Section 702, she asked the Commissioner’s view on the legality of the Privacy Shield vis-a-vis the reauthorisation of FISA 702;
  • she also raised the issue of the EU-Canada PNR;
  • regarding the GDPR, she asked whether the Commission was prepared to move to infringement procedures immediately if the GDPR was not properly implemented in the Member States (MS).

The Chair Claude Moraes (S&D, UK)

  • regarding the question on GDPR, he requested that the Commissioner’s response also takes into consideration SMEs and individuals.

Sophie in’t Veld (ALDE, NL)

  • she welcomed the Commissioner’s tough stance regarding the Privacy Shield.

Cornelia Ernst (GUE/NGL, DE)

  • she stated that the situation regarding the Privacy Shield was highly unsatisfactory;
  • the GDPR was supposed to come into force at the same time with the ePrivacy Regulation and the Regulation regarding the EU institutions. However there were many blockages in the Council and she asked how the Commission would deal with this.

Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (EPP, SE)

  • she thanked the Commissioner for the Recommendation on tackling illegal content online, as it was in line with the Parliament’s own recommendations;
  • she raised her concerns about the ePrivacy Regulation. She hoped that the Commission would ensure that the final outcome would be balanced. She stressed the need to create a legal framework that would ensure rights but would not undermine innovation.

Birgit Sippel (S&D, DE)

  • she asked if the Commissioner knew anything about the Council issuing legal corrigenda to the GDPR.

Commissioner Jourová made the following remarks:

  • regarding e-evidence, she stated that the Commission would be adopting the proposal in April. It had been postponed several times due to the controversial and sensitive provisions it contained;
  • in response to Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), she stated that the Treaty basis would most likely be Article 82 on judicial cooperation in criminal matters;
  • the proposal on e-evidence had to respect the principle of proportionality, and she stated that discussions on the scope were still ongoing;
  • safeguards when there were doubts about the legality of law enforcement asking IT companies for access were also still under discussion;
  • IT companies themselves were calling for clearer rules and guidelines on how to act when they would be asked by law enforcement for e-evidence;
  • regarding PNR, she stated that in light of the judgement from the Court of Justice it was clear that the EU would have to redefine its approach to global PNR agreements before resuming and starting negotiations with third countries. She stated that Japan was “strongly seeking” a PNR agreement because of the upcoming Olympic games;
  • regarding the Privacy Shield, she stated that although the US had implemented some recommendations, the Ombudsperson was still missing. She would make it clear that this was a “tough condition” for the EU;
  • she stated that her “patience was coming to an end” regarding the Privacy Shield. She would be well equipped with the legal analysis regarding FISA 702. The EU now needed to be a lot tougher;
  • regarding the GDPR, she stated that the Regulation would be directly applicable but there was relevant legislation in the MS which needed updating. The Commission was helping MS on this issue to ensure that they did not deviate and create legal loopholes;
  • she stated that many businesses were needlessly worried about the GDPR, and it was the responsibility of the MS and data protection authorities to provide them with adequate information;
  • responding to Cornelia Ernst (GUE/NGL, DE), she stated that the Commission was intensely working on unblocking the proposal on data protection in the EU institutions in the Council because it was highly needed. Workable solutions had been found regarding law enforcement agencies.

Source: One Policy Place

The simultaneous interpretation of debates provided by the European Parliament serves only to facilitate communication amongst the participants in the meeting. It does not constitute an authentic record of proceedings. One Policy Place uses these translations so this text is only a guide and should not be relied on as an official account of the meeting. Only the original speech or the revised written translation of that speech is authentic.

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