HIGHLIGHTS-Barroso’s policy speech to the European Parliament

STRASBOURG, France, Sept 7 (BestGrowthStock) – Following are
highlights of European Commission President Jose Manuel
Barroso’s policy speech to the European Parliament on Tuesday.

“The economic outlook in the European Union today is better
than one year ago, not in the least as a result of our
determined action. The recovery is gathering pace, albeit
unevenly within the Union. Growth this year will be higher than
initially forecast. The unemployment rate, whilst still much too
high, has stopped increasing. Clearly, uncertainties and risks
remain, not least outside the European Union.”

“We must use the next 12 months to accelerate our reform
agenda. Now is the time to modernise our social market economy
so that it can compete globally and respond to the challenge of
demography. Now is the time to make the right investments for
our future.”

“And we need to tackle severe macro-economic imbalances,
especially in the Euro area. That is why we have made proposals
early on to detect asset bubbles, lack of competitiveness and
other sources of imbalances.”

“Sound government finances and responsible financial markets
give us the confidence and economic strength for sustainable
growth. We need to move beyond the debate between fiscal
consolidation and growth. We can have both.”

“We have proposed to protect people’s savings up to 100,000
euros. We will propose to ban abusive naked short selling. We
will tackle credit default swaps. The days of betting on someone
else’s house burning down are over. We continue to insist that
banks, not taxpayers, must pay up front to cover the costs of
their own risks of failure. We are legislating to outlaw bonuses
for quick-wins today that become big losses tomorrow. As part of
this approach, I am also defending taxes on financial activities
and we will come with proposals this autumn.”

“We will also go further on regulation. Initiatives on
derivatives, further measures on credit rating agencies and a
framework for bank resolution and crisis management will soon be
before you. Our goal is to have a reformed financial sector in
place by the end of 2011.”

“We should also explore new sources of financing for major
European infrastructure projects. For instance, I will propose
the establishment of EU project bonds, together with the
European Investment Bank. We will also further develop Public
Private Partnerships.”

“Where we are already punching our weight is the G20, the
forum where the key economic global players address common
challenges. When President Van Rompuy and I go to Seoul in
November and represent the European Union, we want to see
concrete results: Further progress in global economic
coordination. More stable and responsible financial markets and
agreement on reform of international financial institutions.
More effective global financial safety nets. More progress on a
G20 development agenda.”

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(reporting by David Brunnstrom)

HIGHLIGHTS-Barroso’s policy speech to the European Parliament