21/01/2017 Politics Europe


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS


21/01/2017

Andrew Neil with the latest news from Europe, including interviews with MEPs, reports from the European Parliament and a guide to the inner workings of the European Union.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 21/01/2017. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello, and welcome to Politics Europe. On today's programme.

:00:00.:00:49.

Theresa May spells out her Brexit plant, confirming the UK will leave

:00:50.:00:54.

the single market, warning EU leaders that no deal is better than

:00:55.:00:59.

a bad deal. We will look at reaction across Europe and examine the likely

:01:00.:01:03.

negotiating strategy of the of the EU. We report from Strasbourg where

:01:04.:01:11.

MEPs have voted for this man, Antonio, as the new president of the

:01:12.:01:15.

European Parliament. And as Donald Trump enters the White House, how

:01:16.:01:20.

are the residents of Melania Trump's hometown in Slovenia celebrating the

:01:21.:01:27.

success of their most famous ex-resident. I put white chocolate

:01:28.:01:34.

because of the White House, she is always dressed in white. So I put

:01:35.:01:44.

white chocolate. So, all that to come and more in the next half-hour.

:01:45.:01:48.

First, though, here is our guide to the latest from Europe in just 60

:01:49.:01:57.

seconds. After much anticipation, on Tuesday, Prime Minister Theresa May

:01:58.:02:01.

delivered her speech on Brexit. She said the UK would lay the single

:02:02.:02:05.

market, and had a strong message to European neighbours. No deal is

:02:06.:02:10.

better than a bad deal. There were mixed reactions from European

:02:11.:02:14.

leaders, some accusing her of cherry picking from the EU. Others were

:02:15.:02:20.

more kind. We want a fair deal with Britain and for Britain. Also on

:02:21.:02:23.

Tuesday, the European Parliament elected its new president, Antonio,

:02:24.:02:32.

from the centre-right EPP. On Thursday, MEPs called for emergency

:02:33.:02:36.

aid for refugees again, specifically to help them with freezing

:02:37.:02:41.

temperatures and snow across Europe. And also this week, a report from

:02:42.:02:45.

top officials calls for the EU to raise its own taxes. Standby for a

:02:46.:02:51.

European VAT, a bank levy, or corporate tax. Actually, don't hold

:02:52.:02:59.

your breath. With me for the next few minutes is the right and left

:03:00.:03:08.

MEPs. And also we are joined from Brussels by our political chief

:03:09.:03:13.

correspondent, David. Let me come to you first. When will we get the

:03:14.:03:21.

combined or collective European negotiating position Theresa May has

:03:22.:03:30.

outlined with her speech this week what Britain wants. Will we get

:03:31.:03:34.

something similar from the European Union side? Certainly not before the

:03:35.:03:40.

formal triggering of Article 50. The EU has been very clear about this.

:03:41.:03:45.

It is not their job to help the EU a long. So you know the steps we need

:03:46.:03:51.

to take. We are still waiting for a court decision for Parliament to

:03:52.:03:54.

act. Once that happens in the formal notification is received from

:03:55.:03:59.

Brussels, we will see Michel Barnier kicked into action with a more

:04:00.:04:04.

cohesive message coming out of Russells at that point. -- Brussels.

:04:05.:04:13.

In London, how much hostility is there to Britain building up to

:04:14.:04:17.

these negotiations? There is resignation and disappointment with

:04:18.:04:21.

the way we are going. I would also say there is almost a feeling of

:04:22.:04:26.

abdication of political leadership in terms of we keep talking about

:04:27.:04:32.

immigration and only immigration and not discussing important issues like

:04:33.:04:36.

the economy and jobs. And what that means... And the speech hasn't

:04:37.:04:39.

really, other than clarifying we will not be in the single market,

:04:40.:04:44.

which I am personally really devastated by, because I do think it

:04:45.:04:47.

is important for our economy and jobs, and for our income, to

:04:48.:04:52.

safeguard NHS, education, and services, but I think the main

:04:53.:04:56.

concern is that we seem to have thrown in the towel before we have

:04:57.:05:00.

actually started negotiations. What do you say to that? I disagree. I

:05:01.:05:07.

happen to be in the more detailed discussions that are happening

:05:08.:05:11.

between the Parliament's it is. What I have noticed is a change of tone

:05:12.:05:17.

over the Christmas period. -- committees. As the committees looked

:05:18.:05:21.

after the more detailed negotiations. We had a long

:05:22.:05:26.

interview with Michel Barnier. One of the people heading up the

:05:27.:05:32.

negotiations. He is a detailed person, talking about the need for a

:05:33.:05:36.

new partnership and relationship, one that recognises the close

:05:37.:05:42.

economic ties between Europe... I... What I have noticed. Sorry. As they

:05:43.:05:48.

look at the details, the more practical and pragmatic approach,

:05:49.:05:52.

not wanting to damage the economy on either side of the Channel, I am

:05:53.:05:57.

just beginning to feel that, in that negotiation... I would say that in

:05:58.:06:01.

response to Theresa May's speech this week, it has undone some of

:06:02.:06:06.

that work. I have said this... No, my colleagues are also involved in

:06:07.:06:11.

those negotiations with Michel Barnier. And there is a plan to move

:06:12.:06:17.

these things forward, he said. But the speech, the way things have gone

:06:18.:06:21.

down now, people are saying, well, you are not really interested in

:06:22.:06:25.

closing a deal. You have stated you want out. Let me go back to...

:06:26.:06:32.

David, let me ask you this again, because, on this side of the

:06:33.:06:35.

Channel, we are still a little unclear. Assume Article 50 is

:06:36.:06:42.

triggered by the vote in Parliament and that is the way it has gone.

:06:43.:06:49.

What then? How does Europe come to its collective view? Does that have

:06:50.:06:55.

to be determined by the Council of Ministers by 27? Do they give it a

:06:56.:07:00.

bunny abroad negotiating mandate? -- Michel Barnier a broad. We get the

:07:01.:07:09.

idea that it is already taking shape, that mandate. Let me go back

:07:10.:07:14.

to the previous question. There is a lot of lip service being paid to the

:07:15.:07:18.

continued importance and relevance of British officials in Brussels and

:07:19.:07:24.

the EU. But what we are seeing is that it is quickly apparent they are

:07:25.:07:28.

being marginalised. Even in the Parliament they are saying everyone

:07:29.:07:32.

is a full member until Brexit happens. It is quite clear that

:07:33.:07:35.

relevance is disappearing very fast to be that is very important for the

:07:36.:07:40.

UK, which will be part of the EU for many years. In terms of the mandate

:07:41.:07:44.

that Michel Barnier has, there has been reaction to the Prime

:07:45.:07:47.

Minister's speech. Looking back to the very first bite simple things

:07:48.:07:52.

that Angela Merkel was seen after the referendum. -- Politics Europe

:07:53.:07:57.

the four fundamental freedoms of the EU are not up for negotiation. And

:07:58.:08:03.

in Paris and Berlin, the does not seem to be significant recognition

:08:04.:08:06.

of that in London. They have not got the message. These things are not

:08:07.:08:13.

negotiable. And... It is not like an American Express ad. Mentorship has

:08:14.:08:21.

its responsibilities. The Prime Minister recognised the importance

:08:22.:08:25.

of the four freedoms to the rest of the EU. She went back to talking

:08:26.:08:29.

about a close economic partnership. From the side of the EU we want to

:08:30.:08:34.

keep open as much of trade as possible. And put it back to the

:08:35.:08:37.

practical co-operation we have on economic issues like trade in goods,

:08:38.:08:43.

she mentioned cars and financial services as well. Practical

:08:44.:08:49.

cooperation. They want to keep... Can I ask you... And I ask you a

:08:50.:08:56.

question. No, we have not got time. If the government is now ruling out

:08:57.:09:00.

membership of the single market, why are the four freedoms relevant? They

:09:01.:09:05.

do not need to be up for negotiation. Because if we are not

:09:06.:09:10.

going to be a member of the single market then the four freedoms do not

:09:11.:09:14.

apply. They are not for us. I agree. No, I am asking here in London. I

:09:15.:09:21.

assume it is one of the reasons she has decided... That is my

:09:22.:09:24.

understanding as well. It clears these issues. I think it is wrong

:09:25.:09:29.

that we put immigration above jobs and the economy. And that is what I

:09:30.:09:34.

am hearing from manufacturers in the West Midlands. They need access to

:09:35.:09:38.

the single market... When you look at the referendum... Hang on, do you

:09:39.:09:46.

accept? Let me finish. You are talking about the referendum and I

:09:47.:09:50.

do not want to do that. Do you accept that if we are not part of

:09:51.:09:54.

the single market then the four freedoms that are part of the single

:09:55.:09:59.

market do not need to be part of the negotiations? We have had some

:10:00.:10:02.

statements from the Prime Minister saying we will have customs

:10:03.:10:05.

arrangements. We do not know the details of that? We do not know what

:10:06.:10:11.

that means. Let me go back to David. David, if we are going... If it is

:10:12.:10:15.

the government's position to go for a Free Trade Agreement, why are the

:10:16.:10:19.

four freedoms of the single market relevant? What I think is that to

:10:20.:10:24.

understand if there has been compromising on that side, if the UK

:10:25.:10:28.

is not willing to live up to those standards, then, in fact, there will

:10:29.:10:32.

be a cost to leaving membership of the EU. That any trade deal will not

:10:33.:10:39.

be as preferential, will not have as good an arrangement as the current

:10:40.:10:43.

arrangement. If they understand that it will not happen for some time. In

:10:44.:10:48.

any Free Trade Agreement, there is always a clause about movement or

:10:49.:10:53.

free access with no visa. The Canadian free-trade deal which is

:10:54.:10:58.

the most recent one does not involve free movement. Let us be very

:10:59.:11:04.

clear... Can I come back in? What I have heard the chief negotiator for

:11:05.:11:08.

the European Commission say is not a special deal for the UK, but a deal

:11:09.:11:12.

that is very this effect, that recognises our economic links, that

:11:13.:11:16.

wants to form a new partnership, and that is what the Prime Minister has

:11:17.:11:21.

set out. She has set out her willingness to not put up new

:11:22.:11:24.

barriers to free trade and manage the economies on both sides to be we

:11:25.:11:28.

need to start working on the detail of that. That is the tone I have had

:11:29.:11:33.

out of Brussels. We need to work on that. Let me go back to David. How

:11:34.:11:37.

much concern is there from Brussels, or do they not think it is a

:11:38.:11:41.

concern, that the kind of antiestablishment insurgency we have

:11:42.:11:45.

seen with Brexit and then Donald Trump's election, could well

:11:46.:11:49.

dominate the important elections in Holland, in France, in Austria,

:11:50.:11:52.

perhaps in Italy, and almost certainly, elections are taking

:11:53.:11:57.

place in Germany this year. And that could be the backdrop with worrying

:11:58.:12:00.

about what is happening on the ground in Europe. There is no

:12:01.:12:05.

question these political forces, this anti- establishment forces, are

:12:06.:12:10.

concerned. But interestingly, Donald Trump may be a force that serves to

:12:11.:12:14.

unify the EU. That if the EU saw some reason to stay unified because

:12:15.:12:17.

of the upcoming Brexit negotiations, then Donald Trump seems to be giving

:12:18.:12:22.

even greater urgency or the EU 27 to stick together. I think people are

:12:23.:12:29.

feeling fairly confident. And so, in fact, I think there is confidence

:12:30.:12:33.

growing in Brussels that they will make it through these elections OK.

:12:34.:12:38.

And in a funny way, Donald Trump is creating a unifying force. All

:12:39.:12:42.

rights. Confidence in the Republican establishment was there that he

:12:43.:12:45.

would win the primary races as well. We will see whether the Brussels

:12:46.:12:50.

bureaucrats are better at predicting band the politicians on the other

:12:51.:12:55.

side of the Atlantic. Thank you for being without. We need to move on.

:12:56.:12:59.

There has an election in Europe. It was in Strasbourg this week. MEPs

:13:00.:13:04.

vote for the next president of the European Parliament, an important

:13:05.:13:07.

position, because he is the Parliament's top dog, which brings

:13:08.:13:11.

considerable influence behind the scenes. Here is our report. The

:13:12.:13:18.

moment when Antonio Tajani from the centre-right European people's party

:13:19.:13:23.

became the new man in charge. Congratulating him, his predecessor,

:13:24.:13:29.

Martin Schulz, the German Socialists, who is leaving after

:13:30.:13:33.

five years at the helm, even though his party's candidate, Gianni, was

:13:34.:13:36.

defeated, in what was a bruising contest. As Martin Schulz exited

:13:37.:13:42.

stage left, the changing of the guard at European Parliament is

:13:43.:13:48.

completed. This election was really a battle between two Italians, but

:13:49.:13:52.

it started off as a contest divided up between six candidates. After

:13:53.:13:59.

three rounds of voting, it was down to Gianni Patella on the left and

:14:00.:14:07.

Antonio Tajani on the right. In the end, Mr Antonio Tajani came out on

:14:08.:14:12.

top. This is a clean sweep for the centre-right on the EU. The

:14:13.:14:21.

commission is headed up by Juncker and Tusk, all in the EEP. We were

:14:22.:14:32.

not able to win. But we fought strongly in case the knobbly... And

:14:33.:14:41.

we will fight again and again and again. -- monopoly. Is Antonio

:14:42.:14:49.

Tajani? He is a familiar face. But he cut his teeth as a spokesman for

:14:50.:14:54.

the former Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi. He is a coalition

:14:55.:15:00.

builder. He is a very honest person. He keeps his word. You can feel it,

:15:01.:15:07.

all the different groupings in the European Parliament, if you ask

:15:08.:15:10.

them, in particular, members of Parliament, what they would say

:15:11.:15:14.

about him, it is that he is a man that keeps his word.

:15:15.:15:20.

It is this approach that won in the support of other conservative

:15:21.:15:26.

groups. I think it would be a better chairman for us in the Parliament.

:15:27.:15:32.

He has promised to be more of a speaker than a Prime Minister. We

:15:33.:15:35.

need a neutral conductor of business. And the other thing is

:15:36.:15:40.

that it is better to have someone from the centre-right in the chair

:15:41.:15:45.

than a leftist. For those reasons, we came to support Antonio Tajani's

:15:46.:15:53.

campaign. His in tray is full. Countering the rise of

:15:54.:15:57.

euroscepticism ahead of elections, coping with new waves of migrants

:15:58.:16:02.

and wrecks that, although he will not be the man leading the

:16:03.:16:04.

negotiations on behalf of Parliament. That will be done by a

:16:05.:16:11.

Liberal MP. How do you think Antonio Tajani will respond in terms of

:16:12.:16:18.

Brexit? He will say that they are opposed to Brexit and they will

:16:19.:16:23.

oppose it. They will punish us and expect to see us perform badly. That

:16:24.:16:27.

is what he will say. Actually, he is far more measured and pragmatic. So

:16:28.:16:33.

Antonio Tajani will be the man in post you in Parliament in just over

:16:34.:16:39.

two years time when the sun sets on the UK's negotiations with the EU

:16:40.:16:46.

over its exit. And Novo Mestos from the remaining states will have a

:16:47.:16:49.

vote to ratify any deal that has been agreed. So the president of the

:16:50.:17:02.

commission and another conservative president, Donald task, now a

:17:03.:17:06.

centre-right Italian MEP, president of the Parliament. Is the right to

:17:07.:17:12.

taking over the institutions of the EU? I am disappointed that our

:17:13.:17:16.

candidate, who put up a good fight and was not successful... I think it

:17:17.:17:20.

is wrong because it EU governments... And who were you

:17:21.:17:30.

supporting? Patella. It is of concern that all three institutions

:17:31.:17:36.

are on the centre-right. I do not think it bodes well but more

:17:37.:17:39.

importantly what concerns me, and I get along quite well with Antonio

:17:40.:17:46.

Tajani, but I think he is not really a strong candidate in terms of the

:17:47.:17:50.

challenges that the EU faces this year. Martin Shields has really

:17:51.:17:56.

increased Parliament role and visibility. Is there not an irony

:17:57.:18:02.

that a conservative government is taking us out of the EU institutions

:18:03.:18:09.

just as Conservatives are dominating European Union institutions? In

:18:10.:18:16.

response, the reason we have a centre-right politician now is

:18:17.:18:20.

because the centre-right have more votes because the centre-right got

:18:21.:18:26.

more votes from the public... You mean in Parliament? Yes. They won

:18:27.:18:29.

more votes in the European elections. That is why he won. I am

:18:30.:18:34.

pleased to see someone who has said they will be more of a speaker and

:18:35.:18:38.

list of a Prime Minister. We found Martin Shields very dictatorial. He

:18:39.:18:44.

overruled many decisions of the committees so the back benches...

:18:45.:18:51.

Will the new Minister be helpful or unhelpful on Brexit? I voted for him

:18:52.:18:59.

in the last round because he promised to listen to all of the

:19:00.:19:02.

Parliament, especially to the conservative performance group and

:19:03.:19:09.

he promised to play a neutral tone on Brexit, to allow the

:19:10.:19:18.

negotiation... Part of the deal is that riposte that stays as a chief

:19:19.:19:21.

negotiator and he has been strengthened. And what Capello was

:19:22.:19:29.

offering... He was saying that he would take a hostile offer

:19:30.:19:33.

negotiation. In terms of British interest it would have been better,

:19:34.:19:39.

given the cost to's position on the UK... That is the Belgian

:19:40.:19:45.

federalist? He is the leader of one of the groups. He has an agreement

:19:46.:19:52.

now with the centre-right grouping to change the direction of the EU.

:19:53.:20:00.

They want a European coastguard. A European defence force... Hold on.

:20:01.:20:06.

Hold on. And also a European intelligence and investigation

:20:07.:20:10.

capacity. So if that is the way that these two big groups in the European

:20:11.:20:14.

Parliament are going, even labour could not support most of that. No.

:20:15.:20:17.

We were not supporting these candidates. But is that the

:20:18.:20:27.

direction of Europe now? The eye could not have supported the

:20:28.:20:30.

Socialist candidate. You have a choice of two, both of whom are

:20:31.:20:34.

fundamentally federalist. Patella was not federalist. The offer from

:20:35.:20:42.

Antonio Tajani was to be more of a neutral speaker to allow the

:20:43.:20:47.

parliament to move on with its post. Just on the role of Gaya, he is not

:20:48.:20:58.

in the negotiation. He is the chief negotiator and... The two of you are

:20:59.:21:08.

confusing me here. You say he is not an negotiation and you say he is the

:21:09.:21:14.

chief negotiator. You can't both be right. Negotiations are conducted in

:21:15.:21:19.

the European Council and it was the Bonnie is that team. They were

:21:20.:21:23.

negotiation Parliament. Parliament as a whole has a vote. I am still

:21:24.:21:31.

not clear but I have run out of time to clarify. We have the latest now

:21:32.:21:37.

in the series of ROMs profiling EU member states. We have travelled to

:21:38.:21:55.

fellow of any hour. Where people in -- are getting used to the idea that

:21:56.:22:03.

their most famous export is now the first Lady of the world. I was born

:22:04.:22:08.

in Slovenia, a small then Communist country in central Europe. And here

:22:09.:22:17.

it is. This town had a population of 4.5 thousand. And here you find the

:22:18.:22:20.

biggest manufacturer of pants in Slovenia. She left and found fame

:22:21.:22:27.

fortune and a husband in the United States in the mid-19 90s. Since then

:22:28.:22:31.

her home country has joined Nato, the EU and the euro. I am armed with

:22:32.:22:41.

a magazine with Melania on the front cover. What do you think about

:22:42.:22:49.

Melania? A great woman. For me it is not interesting. Nothing was Mike

:22:50.:22:58.

yeah. Can you imagine that Donald Trump industry visiting that house?

:22:59.:23:05.

Here they are offering a first Lady tour where you can see her old

:23:06.:23:09.

school, have famous local salami for lunch. 32 euros per person. At the

:23:10.:23:14.

bakery they are selling a Trump themed cake. We put white chocolate

:23:15.:23:20.

colours of the White House. She always wears white so we put white

:23:21.:23:25.

chocolate and we put gold on the top because it is luxury. Also other

:23:26.:23:35.

speciality ingredients. It is not exactly Melania mania. Possibly

:23:36.:23:42.

because her Slovenian lawyers have issued a reminder that her name is a

:23:43.:23:49.

trademark. The biggest thing that Mrs Trump has done for us is to get

:23:50.:23:54.

us recognised. So we are respectful about using her name, partly because

:23:55.:24:00.

her family still live here. And that will continue to be the case in the

:24:01.:24:06.

future. But surely it is great material for Slovenian comedians? Do

:24:07.:24:12.

you have a good joke? That she is a Slovenian designed robot who

:24:13.:24:15.

infiltrates the White House and now we are in charge. We are such a

:24:16.:24:20.

small country and this was our secret plan because the president of

:24:21.:24:25.

UEFA is also Slovenian so we are putting people into positions and

:24:26.:24:28.

waiting to see what happens. Thank you for giving us the heads up.

:24:29.:24:35.

Celebrations of the inauguration are low-key. The main event is the

:24:36.:24:40.

annual pruning of the vineyards. And eating Melania cake. Adam Fleming

:24:41.:24:47.

who is not a robot that you should see his air miles from these

:24:48.:24:52.

reports. That was from Slovenia. Thank you to our guests for being

:24:53.:24:57.

with us today and that is it for us now. Thank you for watching and

:24:58.:24:58.

goodbye to you. Well, the temperatures

:24:59.:25:08.

through the night have been It has been down to minus seven

:25:09.:25:11.

degrees, at least in one or two areas, and I think scenes like this

:25:12.:25:15.

for some of us on Sunday morning.

:25:16.:25:20.