6 Jun 2016

Access Info defends citizens’ right to know as part of lobby transparency reforms

2018-11-13T10:04:10+01:00

Madrid, 6 June 2016 – Access Info Europe has called on the European Union and the Council of Europe to ensure that future lobby control rules that both are in the process of developing are fully in line with The International Standards for Lobbying Regulation. In submissions to separate public consultations held by the EU and Council of Europe, the pro-transparency organisation underscored the need for lobbying regulation to ensure that full information on the activity of lobbyists is both recorded and published. In response to the EU consultation Access Info proposed EU institutions keep better records of interactions with

Access Info defends citizens’ right to know as part of lobby transparency reforms2018-11-13T10:04:10+01:00
19 May 2016

Spain’s extortionate Sunshine Tax is “a final solution for renewable energy”: What do the documents tell us?

2018-11-13T10:04:11+01:00

Madrid, 19 May 2016 - On the day that the news is full of the fact that Portugal this month had four straight days of zero emissions energy production using renewable sources (full story here), documents obtained by Access Info Europe using Spain’s Transparency Law reveal the tense political battles behind a controversial 2015 law that imposes prohibitive taxes on use of home-produced energy (such as from solar power). Spain – a country replete with sunshine, wind and waves – could be breaking the same records as Portugal, but instead the renewables sector has been undermined and citizens who generate

Spain’s extortionate Sunshine Tax is “a final solution for renewable energy”: What do the documents tell us?2018-11-13T10:04:11+01:00
12 May 2016

Spain: NGOs go to court to obtain documents about lobbying on a controversial energy law

2018-11-13T10:10:41+01:00

Madrid 12 May 2016 – Two Spanish NGOs are challenging in court a decision by the Transparency Council granting only partial access to lobby documents submitted during elaboration of a controversial 2015 Law that imposes prohibitive taxes on use of home-produced energy (such as from solar power). Access Info Europe and the Platform for a New Energy Model in December 2015 had requested all documents submitted by third parties to the Ministry of Industry; the Ministry denied access on the grounds that the documents are “internal”, invoking one of the most problematic provisions of Spain’s 2013 Transparency Law. The Transparency

Spain: NGOs go to court to obtain documents about lobbying on a controversial energy law2018-11-13T10:10:41+01:00
18 Apr 2016

Will Timmermans really shed light on lobbying in Brussels?

2018-11-13T10:04:11+01:00

This article was originally published by ALTER-EU. Brussels, 18 April 2016 - Commission Vice-President Frans Timmermans' launch in March of a consultation to improve the EU lobby register came seven months late. Does it herald a genuine step forward towards improved lobby transparency in Brussels? A database of organisations working to influence EU legislation, the European transparency register was designed to boost the image and integrity of the institutions. The Commission's latest moves to reassess the tool are welcome, however campaigners and veterans of such processes would be forgiven for being a little weary at the thought of yet another

Will Timmermans really shed light on lobbying in Brussels?2018-11-13T10:04:11+01:00
22 Mar 2016

Member state offices in Brussels wide open to corporate lobbyists

2018-11-13T10:04:12+01:00

Brussels/Madrid, 22 March 2016 – Corporate lobbyists enjoy widespread access to member state representations by exploiting loopholes in EU transparency rules according to the first ever study on lobbying activities at national government offices in Brussels.[1] The study, ‘National representations in Brussels: open for corporate lobbyists’ by the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU), reveals how these government missions to EU institutions are a target for big business lobbyists looking to promote their agendas. Vicky Cann, Corporate Europe Observatory, said:“This report demonstrates that there is a worrying level of corporate lobbying directed at the EU's permanent representations. These

Member state offices in Brussels wide open to corporate lobbyists2018-11-13T10:04:12+01:00
17 Dec 2015

Civil society expose holes in EU lobby transparency rules

2018-11-13T10:04:24+01:00

This post was originally published by ALTER-EU. Madrid/Brussels, 17 December 2015 - Research by ALTER-EU member groups Corporate Europe Observatory, Access Info Europe and Friends of the Earth Europe shows that well over 90 per cent of meetings between DG FISMA (the Commission's department for financial regulation) officials not covered by transparency rules and lobbyists are with the corporate sector. Since the end of 2014, following an initiative by new European Commission President Juncker, the meetings of commissioners, their cabinets and directors-general with lobbyists are published online. This transparency initiative has enabled the public to see which lobbyists get most

Civil society expose holes in EU lobby transparency rules2018-11-13T10:04:24+01:00
26 Jun 2015

Lobbying Transparency via RTI Laws

2018-11-13T09:46:14+01:00

This document sets out the classes of information that should be made available by public bodies in order to get a full picture of the influence of interest groups, particularly lobbyists, on governmental and legislative decision making. You can download the report in PDF and in Word . If you have any comments about the contents of this report, we are happy to hear from you. For a member of the public to be able to follow how a particular decision is being or was taken, it is essential that there be full transparency about the influences which shaped that

Lobbying Transparency via RTI Laws2018-11-13T09:46:14+01:00
26 Jun 2015

New lobby transparency civic-tech tools reveal corporate dominance of the Brussels bubble

2020-01-29T11:07:19+01:00

Madrid, 25 June 2015 - The RTI community celebrated this week the launch of two groundbreaking online tools that enable citizens to monitor the interactions between high-level European Commission officials and lobbyists in the Brussels bubble: » LobbyFacts.eu, created by ALTER-EU's Corporate Europe's Observatory, Friends of the Earth Europe and LobbyControl, and relaunched last week, is a site that delivers easy access to data from the EU Transparency Register, allowing you to compare entries over time and to sort and rank the data contained in the EU's (still voluntary) Transparency Register; » IntegrityWatch.eu, created by the Transparency International EU office,

New lobby transparency civic-tech tools reveal corporate dominance of the Brussels bubble2020-01-29T11:07:19+01:00
11 May 2015

Over 100 NGOs urge EU Commission to make the lobby register legally binding

2020-01-29T11:07:28+01:00

Brussels, 11 May 2015 - The Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) [1] has urged European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans to take strong and urgent action to create a high-quality and legally-binding EU lobby transparency register in a letter sent to him today, signed by over one hundred non-governmental organisations and trade unions, and supported by the European Parliament Intergroup on Integrity [2]. The letter calls on the Commission to adopt measures to reduce opportunities for unethical lobbying, and to ensure a better balance between corporate and public interest groups in the access to, and influence they

Over 100 NGOs urge EU Commission to make the lobby register legally binding2020-01-29T11:07:28+01:00
29 Apr 2015

Full Lobby Transparency campaign launched with ALTER-EU debate at the Parliament

2018-11-13T09:46:33+01:00

This article was originally published on ALTER-EU.org: http://www.alter-eu.org/alter-eus-new-campaign-launched-with-transparency-debate-at-the-parliament Brussels, 29 April 2015 - ALTER-EU launched its new campaign Full lobby transparency now! with a high-profile debate. Held at the European Parliament, panellists included ALTER-EU members and officials from the Commission, Parliament and Council. Here, Commission Vice-President Frans Timmermans renewed the Commission's commitment to a mandatory lobby register but postponed submitting a proposal to the Autumn. Timmermans also rejected the possibility of trying to do so via legislation, instead choosing to implement a sanctions-based system for the unregistered and those who submit false information. Facing a fully packed house, the Vice-President

Full Lobby Transparency campaign launched with ALTER-EU debate at the Parliament2018-11-13T09:46:33+01:00