The Week Ahead 21 – 27 May 2018

Mark Zuckerberg/privacy. Parliament’s Conference of Presidents (President and political group leaders) will meet Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday at 17.45 to discuss the use of personal data of millions of Facebook EU users. After the meeting, EP President Antonio Tajani will brief media on the discussions. The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) enters into force on Friday 25 May. (Tuesday)

2019 European elections – One Year To Go. A special press event with EP President Antonio Tajani will take place on Wednesday at 10:30. Mr Tajani will mark the start of the 365-day countdown to the next European elections, taking place 23-26 May 2019, and comment on the latest Eurobarometer opinion polls to be released the same day. (Wednesday at 10:30)

Eurobarometer 2018. The results of a Eurobarometer public opinion survey, measuring citizens’ support for the European Union and particularly the European Parliament, will be disclosed on Wednesday. The poll also covers, inter alia, electoral campaign topics, and views on voting and new and emerging political parties. (Wednesday)

Road charging in the EU. Updated EU-wide principles for road charging, aiming to boost cleaner road transport and ensure fair treatment of road users, will be up for a vote in the Transport Committee. They include a proposal to progressively introduce only distance-based tolls, instead of time-based ones. These rules will apply when an EU country already has, or decides to introduce, charges for road transport. (Thursday)

2019 EU budget. Budgets Commissioner Günther Oettinger will present the draft annual EU budget for 2019 to the Budgets Committee. MEPs’  priorities,set out in March, are  growth, innovation, competitiveness, security, fighting climate change, the transition to renewable energy and migration. (Wednesday)

Plenary preparations. Political groups will prepare for the May Strasbourg plenary debates and votes, inter alia on protection against dumped and subsidised imports from non-EU countries, the reintegration of workers recovering from injury and illness, the functioning of the Schengen area and the impact of delocalisation on workers and regions. MEPs will also continue their discussions with EU heads of state or government on the future of Europe, this time with Luxembourg Prime Minister, Xavier Bettel. Finally, Guinea’s  President Alpha Condé and Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos Calderón will address the plenary.

President’s agenda. EP President Antonio Tajani will open a media seminar (see below) on 2019 EU elections, on Tuesday, and open the “One Year To Go” event on Wednesday. The EP President will also meet Gambia President Adama Barrow on Wednesday. On the following day, he will participate in the event for the 60th anniversary of the European Economic and Social Committee.

2019 European elections/Media seminar. A seminar for senior staff of television outlets, entitled “#EUElections2019 – one year to go”, will address issues facing Europe now and in the future, including the procedure for electing the EU Commission President (the so-called Spitzenkandidaten process), Brexit and the future of Europe, as well as the latest Eurobarometer results and Parliament’s institutional campaign. (Tuesday and Wednesday)