News Date: Saturday 6th June 2009
Loughton: a new voice in Europe
Commenting on the formation of a new, non-federalist centre-right alliance in the European Parliament, Tim Loughton, MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, said:
‘This new group is a victory for all those who think we should be in Europe but not run by Europe.
‘Most people in the UK believe that the EU should be a union of nation states, not a bureaucratic superstate: these people will now have a much stronger voice at the heart of the Union.’
The Conservatives have formed a new grouping in the European Parliament, which is likely to become the fourth largest.
All of the parties in the new grouping have signed a declaration, which argues for reform and a non-federalist future for the EU.
Mark Francois, the Shadow Minister for Europe, said:
"We are very excited about this important new development in European politics. Our European Conservatives and Reformists Group, which already has fifty-five MEPs, will make a strong case for a centre/centre-right but non-federalist future for the EU."
And he added, "We already have participants from eight countries but talks are still continuing and we believe that more will be attracted to join our ranks in the near future."
The parties, from across the EU, which now comprise the core of the European Conservatives and Reformist Group, are:
Czech Republic: Civic Democratic Party (ODS), with 9 MEPs
Poland: Law & Justice (PiS) with 15 MEPs
United Kingdom: The Conservative Party, with 26 MEPs in the New Group.
Belgium: Lijst Dedecker (LDD), with 1 MEP in the New Group
Finland: The Centre Party (Keskusta) sits in the Liberal (ALDE) group but one of its MEPs is now joining the New Group.
Hungary: Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF) with 1 MEP
Latvia: Latvian National Independence Movement (TB/LNNK) with 1 MEP
The Netherlands: ChristianUnion (ChristenUnie) with 1 MEP