Breakfast with Michaela Noll


(31.05.18) On Thursday 31 May, members of the European Parliamentary Association had the honor to welcome Ms Michaela Noll, newly elected President of the German Parliamentary Association, for an informal breakfast debate. Throughout the debate, our members engaged in a fruitful discussion about the political challenges that Europe is facing and on how to strengthen cooperation between our two associations.

The APE sends Ms Noll its best wishes for her new function and hopes to continue the excellent collaboration that it has developed during the years with its German partner.

 

Boat trip to the port of Strasbourg


(30.05.2018) On Wednesday 30 May, the European Parliamentary Association and Ms Catherine Trautmann, president of the Port of Strasbourg and member of our association, invited the Members of the European Parliament for a boat trip to visit the port of Strasbourg.

Around 200 MEPs and their assistants, as well as members of the diplomatic and consular corps of Strasbourg, took part in the event.

After a very instructive guided tour, which allowed us to discover and admire the city from a completely new perspective, we were warmly welcomed in the prestigious Palais Rohan by Mr Roland Ries, Mayor of Strasbourg. Here we had the opportunity to enjoy a cocktail offered by the City of Strasbourg and a tasting of European wines, presented by Christophe Lasvigne, sommelier of the Théâtre du vin.

The APE thanks Catherine Trautmann, Roland Ries, all their staff, Christophe Lasvigne and every participant who alltogether made this evening an unforgettable experience.

BREAKFAST DEBATES/2

Breakfast with Daniel J. Costello

(24.11.16) On 24 November 2016, our members had the pleasure to meet Daniel Costello, Ambassador of Canada to the EU, and to debate with him the newest developments of CETA, the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.


Breakfast with Bernd Wichterich

(6.10.16) On 6 October 2016, our members had the pleasure to meet the executive director of the German Parliamentary Association of Berlin, Bernd Wichterich. With more than 1000 members, the German Parliamentary Association promotes the dialogue among German parliamentarians of different political groups. The breakfast was an occasion to renew the dialogue and the collaboration among our two associations.


Breakfast with Jean-Paul Costa

(15.09.16) On Thursday 15 September 2016, we had the pleasure to welcome Jean-Paul Costa, former President of the European Court of Human Rights, for our traditional breakfast debate. He presented the activity of the Court to our members and discussed with them the challenges facing human rights defenders in Europe and in the neighbouring countries.


Breakfast with Anthony Gardner

(9.06.16) On Thursday 9 June 2016, our members had the pleasure to meet Anthony Gardner, US Ambassador to the European Union, and discuss with him the future of the relations between the US and the EU.


Breakfast with Bernard Kirch

(12.05.16) On Tuesday the 12 May 2016, the members of the APE welcomed Bernard Kirch, Head of Operation Department of the European Agency for the operational managment of the large-scale IT systems in the area of freedom, security and justice (eu-LISA), to discuss with him about the Schengen information system.


Breakfast with Frédéric Bierry

(4.02.16) On Thursday 4 February 2016, the members of our association had the pleasure to meet and discuss with Frédéric Bierry, President of the Conseil Départemental du Bas-Rhin.


Breakfast debate with Frédérique Berrod

(21.01.16) On Thursday 2 January, the members of the APE had the chance to discuss with Frédérique Berrod, Professor at the University of Strasbourg and at the European College Bruges, about a the future of European energy policies.

 

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Days of Bulgaria


(16-19.04.2018) One decade after its accession to the EU, on January 1 2018, Bulgaria took over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. For the months ahead, it will be chairing the meetings of the Council and be the main driver of the Union’s agenda.

The European Parliamentary Association took the opportunity to shed light not only on the country’s political priorities, but also on its history, culture and people, by organising a series of events in collaboration with the Permanent Representation of Bulgaria to the Council of Europe.

On Monday 16 April, the Permanent Representative of Bulgaria to the Council of Europe, Katya Todorova, and the President of the European Parliamentary Association, Herbert Dorfmann, welcomed 100 guests to the Villa Schutzenberger for an initiative aimed at celebrating the country’s cultural richness. As guest of honour, the APE was especially pleased to welcome Her Excellency Liljana Pawlowa, Bulgarian Minister for European Affairs.

After an introductory speech of the Minister, the audience had the opportunity to appreciate the beauty and diversity of Bulgarian landscapes and cultural heritage through the projection of several short films. To this contributed also a performance of the pupils of the school “Petit Prince” from Varna, Bulgaria, who made all the way to Strasbourg to exhibit in an impressive demonstration of popular dance and singing.

Subsequently, guests were invited to visit an exhibition of a collection of paintings that the pupils realised to illustrate their understanding of the European project and, then, to discover several Bulgarian food and drink specialties during a reception in the association’s cellar.

On Wednesday 18 April, the APE took up on one particular priority of the Bulgarian Presidency i.e. the Western Balkans, and organised a debate on the topic “A European Perspective for the Western Balkans: The way ahead”. Guest speakers of the evening were David McAllister, German MEP and chair of the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Andrey Kovatchev, Bulgarian MEP, quaestor and member of the same committee and Ivan Boev, lecturer of EU law at the University of Strasbourg.

Are Western Balkan countries ready to join the European Union? What restrictions are there? Which challenges lie ahead? These were some of the questions discussed throughout the debate. MEPs McAllister and Kovatchev clarified during their interventions that the criteria set out by the European Commission must be complied with and that there can be no short cuts to EU-membership. 2025 is hence an „indicative date“ and not an automatism. However, both sides, i.e. Western Balkan countries as well as the EU, have to foster a durable dialogue – despite any existing conflict –  because such dialogue is of crucial importance to the stability of the region and the stability of Europe as a whole.

The closing event of the “Days of Bulgaria” was the breakfast on Thursday 19 April. Bulgarian MEP Andrey Novakov, expert on budgetary policy, focused on the “EU Budget after Brexit: a Bulgarian perspective”. “The EU budget is like a family budget. We should not leave unpaid bills and we just cannot afford to neglect the financial needs of our family members”, this was the message of MEP Novakov. The members of the APE then took the opportunity to engage in discussions about how and where to use EU funding effectively.

EU budget after Brexit: a Bulgarian perspective


BREAKFAST with MEP Novakov. 19.04.18 (2)Dear members of the APE,

The European Parliamentary Association is glad to invite you to its next breakfast discussion, which will be on the topic “EU budget after Brexit: a Bulgarian perspective” and take place on Thursday 19 April, starting at 8 am, in our villa, at 76 allée de la Robertsau.

For this occasion, our guest speaker will be MEP Andrey Novakov. His work is mainly focused on the future of EU funding and simplification, the “Juncker” plan, EU budget, Regional development, Transport infrastructure and Tourism.

He was working actively on topics such as the Multiannual Financial Framework revision and the 7th Framework Programme. For two consecutive years, Mr Novakov has been part of the negotiating team on the EU budget, stating for more funding for Horizon 2020, Erasmus+ and youth employment. Moreover, he is a laureate of the Forbes magazine ranking “30 under 30” for most successful young people in section “Politics”.

This event is part of the Days of Bulgaria, a joint initiative of our association and the Permanent Representation of Bulgaria to the Council of Europe, to promote the cultural and political activity of the country that is currently holding the Presidency of the Council of the EU.

To register, please write at: contact@ape-europa.eu.

We hope to see you there.

A European perspective for the Western Balkans. The Way Ahead


DEBATE a European perspective for the Western BalkansDear friends of the APE,

The European Parliamentary Association is delighted to invite you to the debateA European perspective for the Western Balkans. The Way Ahead”, which will take place on Wednesday 18 April, starting at 7:30 pm, in our villa (76 allée de la Robertsau, Strasbourg).

Western Balkans need a clear European perspective and connectivity between them and with the member states.  The ambition of the Bulgarian Presidency is to achieve a clear action plan with each of the countries, without creating unrealistic expectations, but with concrete steps”, says the program of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU.

Which are the concrete steps that the Bulgarian Presidency wants to achieve? What strategy will it adopt? We will discuss about it with three prestigious guest speakers. They are MEP David McAllister, chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament, MEP Andrey Kovatchev, quaestor and member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the EP, and Mr Ivan Boev, lecturer of EU law at the University of Strasbourg.

The debate promises plenty of opportunity for discussion set in our traditional informal atmosphere. In this sense, after the presentations of the speakers, the floor will be open to the audience for a question and answers session.

At the end of the debate, you will have the possibility to continue to discuss during the dinner cocktail that will be offered in our cellar.

This event is part of the Days of Bulgaria, a joint initiative of the European Parliamentary Association and the Permanent Representation of Bulgaria to the Council of Europe, to promote the cultural and political engagement of the country that is currently holding the presidency of the Council of the European Union.

To register, please write at: contact@ape-europa.eu

We hope to see you there.

Opening ceremony of the Days of Bulgaria


DAYS OF BULGARIA opening ceremony 16.04.18, 7 30 pmDear friends of the APE,

We are delighted to invite you to the opening ceremony of the Days of Bulgaria, a three day initiative organised with the Permanent Representation of Bulgaria to the Council of Europe to promote the history, the culture and the political engagement of the country which is currently holding the presidency of the Council of the European Union.

The opening ceremony will take place on Monday 16 April at 7:30 pm in the villa of the European Parliamentary Association, at 76 allée de la Robertsau in Strasbourg (5 minutes’ walk from the EP building).

The evening will begin with the screening of short films about Bulgarian culture and traditions, which will last around 30 minutes.

This will be followed by a musical performance by the Bulgarian students of the school “Petit France”, who will also present a collection of paintings that they realised to illustrate their understanding of the European project.

The event will end with a dinner reception that will allow you to discover several Bulgarian food and drink specialties.

To register, please write at contact@ape-europa.eu

We hope to see you there.