The Week Ahead 25 – 31 January 2021

C-BY-4.0: © European Union 2020 – Source: EPC-BY-4.0: © European Union 2020 – Source: EP

COVID-19 vaccines. European Medicine Agency (EMA) Director Emer Cooke will be quizzed by members of the Environment, Public Health and Food Security Committee on vaccine authorisation, availability and deployment (Tuesday).

Migration/Greek islands.
 The situation of migrants and refugees on the Greek islands will be debated by the Civil Liberties Committee with the Commission and NGO representatives. The Commission will present a pilot project to MEPs that involves the EU Asylum Office (EASO), FRONTEX, Europol, the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) as well as the Greek government, to establish and operate a new reception and identification centre on Lesvos (Wednesday).

The Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee will hold two separate debates, first with Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe and then with ECOFIN Chair and Portuguese Minister of State for Finance João Leão. During the meetings, MEPs are likely to discuss economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic, the reform of the Stability and Growth Pact, as well as the priorities of the Portuguese presidency (Monday).

Circular economy. 
The Environment, Public Health and Food Security Committee will vote on its response to the EU Circular Economy Action Plan. It aims to increase the production of sustainable goods in order to reduce waste and ensure that the EU has a well-functioning internal market for high-quality secondary raw materials. Currently, the production of materials we use every day is responsible for 45% of CO2 emissions (Wednesday).

Corporate due diligence
. Ahead of legislative proposals on new due diligence and corporate accountability rules for EU firms arriving later this year, the Legal Affairs Committee will vote on a draft resolution calling for mandatory requirements to address and remedy human rights, environmental and governance failures. Calls to strengthen supply chain traceability are also included in the draft text (Wednesday).

Farm to Fork Strategy. 
The Agriculture and Rural Development Committee together with the Environment, Public Health and Food Security Committee will hold a first joint debate on the EU ‘Farm to Fork’ Strategy that aims to offer healthy, sustainable, high-quality and affordable diets to European consumers (Monday).

Portuguese Presidency.
 In a first set of meetings, ministers will present Portuguese priorities in specific policy areas, in a series of parliamentary committee hearings. Portugal will hold the Presidency of the Council until July 2021 (Monday to Thursday).

President’s diary.
 On Tuesday, EP President David Sassoli will deliver the opening speech at the “Article 17 TFEU” seminar on “Children in Migration: The situation of unaccompanied minors”. The EP President will open the ceremony for the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and have a video meeting with Austria’s Parliament Speaker Wolfgang Sobotka. On Thursday, President Sassoli will deliver a speech at the “High Level Interdisciplinary Conference on the Future of Europe”, at the College of Europe in Bruges.