New lobby register consultation: Will the Commission finally grasp the lobbying bull by the horns?

As the European Commission launches its public consultation on the future EU lobby transparency regime, the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) issued the following media reaction.

Vicky Cann, from Corporate Europe Observatory, a steering committee member of ALTER-EU said:

“ALTER-EU is a veteran of EU lobby register reform processes and up to now, change has been glacially slow. For this new consultation to be genuinely different, the Commission must seek views from far and wide across Europe and crucially, must be prepared to grasp the lobbying bull by the horns.

"A legally-binding register – which goes further than a de facto mandatory register - is the only way to ensure that citizens can properly see who is influencing EU decision-making, on which issues, on whose behalf, and with what budgets.”

Fabian Flues, from Friends of the Earth Europe, another ALTER-EU steering committee member says:

“At the moment half of all entries in the register are incomplete or inaccurate, which makes a mockery of transparency. We need a much improved monitoring system, with real sanctions on lobbyists who mislead the public, to deliver greater transparency on who is influencing EU decisions.”

Nina Katzemich, from LobbyControl, a steering committee member of ALTER-EU, says:

“It is scandalous that the Commission still meets with lobbyists not on the transparency register after President Juncker made increased transparency one of the priorities of his Commission. As a minimum, the Commission must urgently restrict all its meetings to registered lobbyists – anything else would encourage shadowy practices to continue.”

During the consultation process, and as part of its Full lobby transparency now! campaign, ALTER-EU will submit a full response and will also work with our members across the EU to share national-level experiences on lobby transparency. We will highlight our experiences of the poor data quality within the present register, illustrate the problems with the current complaint system, and share our detailed ideas for reform.

For more information contact:

Vicky Cann, Corporate Europe Observatory, 0044 (0)1494 864649

Fabian Flues, Friends of the Earth Europe, 0032 (0)2893 1024

Nina Katzemich, LobbyControl, 0049 (0)179 5093022

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