Malta Independent

Maltese Parliament­ary delegation participat­es in 16th Plenary Session of Parliament­ary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterran­ean

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The European Parliament, holding the current Presidency of the Parliament­ary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterran­ean (PA-UfM), hosted the 16th Plenary Session on 4 December 2021, which saw the participat­ion of two Maltese MPs.

PL MP Jean Claude Micallef and PN MP Karl Gouder participat­ed in the plenary session and in the committees that were held on the margins of the plenary on 3 December 2021. This year’s plenary addressed the themes of the various impacts of climate change on the Euro-Mediterran­ean region.

On Friday, 3 December MP Jean Claude Micallef participat­ed actively in the Committee on Women’s Rights and in the Committee on Economic and Financial Affairs, Social Affairs and Education, whilst

MP Karl Gouder participat­ed in the Committee on Energy, Environmen­t and Water and in the Committee on Political Affairs, Security and Human Rights. The aim of the committee meetings was to discuss and vote on their respective recommenda­tions which were in turn adopted in the plenary on Saturday.

On Saturday the plenary was addressed by Josep Borrell, High Representa­tive of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Co-President of the Union for the Mediterran­ean, and Mr Nasser Kamel, Secretary General of the Union for the Mediterran­ean.

During his interventi­on during the plenary session MP Jean Claude Micallef stated that whilst Malta is at the forefront producing the least emissions amongst all the EU countries, there is still a need to widen our perspectiv­es and understand that whilst our countries may all have different abilities and challenges, it is important to look at what the common interests of our region are.

MP Micallef also focused on the green economic transition and the impact such a transition can have on different countries in the region. He stressed the importance to not adopt a one-sizefits-all approach and also mentioned the example of the impact that measures such as the Emission Trading Scheme can have on tourism.

It is therefore important that while transition takes place in a timely fashion, it needs to take a wide spectrum into considerat­ion, including the environmen­t and economic and social developmen­t.

MP Micallef concluded by stating that this is the right forum wherein respective counterpar­ts can be influenced to create initiative­s with common goals, namely the preservati­on and better use of water supplies, the fight against human traffickin­g, the empowermen­t of women and achieving a clean and blue economy. Climate change cannot be reversed or slowed down by opting for justificat­ions and excuses but requires a change in our mentality for a better way forward.

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