Warsaw is hosting a meeting of the European People’s Party, centre-right, which is launching its campaign for this June’s EU elections. The EPP forms the main part of the dominant group in the European Parliament. Polish former prime minister Jerzy Buzek wants to be the assembly’s next president. He sees energy and climate policy swiftly grabbing the new parliament’s attention.
Buzek said: “We must wait until international agreement in Copenhagen. It is a very important point for the EU, because we are leaders in fighting climate change, but we need help from China, the USA, Russia, India, Brazil and Japan. Without an international agreement we must re-think our energy package once again.” In friendly internal party competition, Italian former national education official Mario Mauro also wants to head the parliament. He stresses the importance of the European social model. Mauro said: “The strength of the European experience is the cooperation among its different players. We won’t be changing this approach, as long as there are common visions. I mean that we want the social market economy principles applied. So far these have been the EPP’s main features, and they are also an opportunity for the next legislature.” More than two and a half thousand members were expected for the two-day congress. The EPP is projected to come out ahead in the elections, Germany still its biggest delegation, with Italy and Poland next.