Progressive Europe ministers will fight to shield vulnerable citizens from energy price crisis

Iratxe Garcia, Tytti Tupurainen

Iratxe Garcia, Tytti Tupurainen

Europe ministers from the Party of European Socialists will push the Czech Presidency to make progress towards a more resilient EU which protects vulnerable households and companies from rising energy costs, and other challenges. This was the commitment of progressive ministers meeting in Brussels today to coordinate ahead of the EU General Affairs Council.

On the PES meeting agenda, action to combat the energy crisis and other socialist priorities for the upcoming Czech Presidency, preparations for the upcoming European Council, and the Rule of Law.

Meeting Chair, Finnish Minister for European Affairs and Ownership Steering Tytti Tuppurainen, said:

“We should expect significant change under this Presidency. We know the war in Ukraine, the energy crisis, the current economic issues, and EU external relations all demand attention. As socialists, we are working for a more resilient EU where citizens do not bear the burden of these challenging times alone, especially the most vulnerable. That is why we are pushing for measures to protect households and companies from rising energy prices, and why we have already pushed for much needed programmes like SURE, stimulus packages and energy reforms.

“We begin the Czech Presidency in a Europe changed forever, compared to where we started the French Presidency. As a Union, with our active support, we have adopted sanctions to respond to Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine and helped refugees under the guidance of Commissioner Johansson. At the same time, good progress has been made on core socialist business, like the Climate Package and the Directive on adequate minimum wages.”

PES Europe ministers also exchanged on the current state of the rule of law in Europe and expressed concerns about deterioration in some member states. Alongside longstanding issues over fundamental rights in Hungary and Poland, the meeting noted worrying developments in Greece.

Earlier this year, journalists and politicians – including Nikos Androulakis, a member of the European Parliament and the leader PASOK, a full member party of the PES – were subject to a spyware attack. The PES has called for full transparency from the Greek government over the issue.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Tytti Tuppurainen, meeting Chair, Minister for European Affairs and Ownership Steering, Finland
  • Tiago Antunes, Secretary of State for the European Union, Portugal
  • Pascual Navarro, Secretary of State for the European Union, Spain
  • Hans Dahlgren, Minister for European Affairs, Sweden
  • Iratxe García Pérez, President of the S&D Group in the European Parliament, S&D Group
  • Yonnec Polet, Deputy Secretary General, PES