NGOs demand Portuguese EU Presidency puts public interest centre stage

EU Council Portuguese Presidency

ALTER-EU has joined other 60+ civil society organisations from Portugal and across the EU in a letter to the upcoming Portuguese Presidency to request that it is based on the values of prioritising the public interest over corporate interests, alongside delivering transparency and accountability for parliamentarians and the public. 

The letter can be found here in English and Portuguese.

Specifically, the organisations request that the Presidency:

  • Ensures that the EU Presidency is not used to champion big business interests over the public interest. 

  • Commits to keeping all dealings with fossil fuel lobbyists to an absolute minimum.

  • Recognises that the public has a right to know who is lobbying and attempting to influence the Portuguese Government, including during the Presidency, and proactively publishes information accordingly.

  • Rejects all forms of sponsorship for its Presidency and any of its activities, and urges fellow EU member states to do likewise in the future.

  • Leads by example by publishing minutes of trilogues and Council preparatory body meetings which include details of member state positions, and further develops the wider Council legislative transparency reform agenda.

  • Opens up its own EU decision-making by publishing its proposed positions on new EU laws and policies before they are discussed at Council meetings, to enable scrutiny by citizens and MPs.