In an interview with New Europe’s Editor Alexandros Koronakis, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker expressed his frustration with the lack of transparency in the European Parliament and Council.
President Juncker wants both institutions to publish the records of meetings between politicians and top-level civil servants with lobbyists. “All these meetings have to be published,” he insisted. “The Parliament doesn’t do that, and the Council is refusing that.”
In the European Commission, lobbyists must join the EU’s Transparency Register in order to meet with any high-ranking member of the Commission. The Transparency Register is a database of organizations that aim to influence policy-making and decisions – essentially a list of all official lobbyists. During Juncker’s term as president, that list doubled in size, to 12,000 entries. “We [the European Commission] are often accused of having put in place a system which is lacking transparency,” Juncker said. “The opposite is true. I would have liked the other institutions to take the same direction.”