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An International Conference Titled “50 Years of European Parliament. Media Points of View.” Opens at the National Assembly
October 13, 2008

National Assembly held on October 13, 2008 the official opening of an International Conference titled “50 Years of European parliament. Media points of view”. The forum is taking place under the patronage of European Parliament President Hans-Gert Poettering and Bulgarian National Assembly Chairman Georgi Pirinski. The event is organized by the Bulgarian Telegraph Agency and the Bulgarian National Television. The conference in the plenary hall of the National Assembly is attended by heads of mass media from 12 countries in South East Europe and over 100 journalists and observers from the region.

Addressing the opening ceremony, National Assembly Chairman Georgi Pirinski said: "I am convinced that the parliamentarians and the media have the shared mission of making the prospect of living in united Europe tangible and real enough in the everyday lives of the citizens of Southeastern Europe. Behind sensation, the media has to uncover the substance, the ideas and judgments of every citizen, regarding the advantages and the challenges of European membership.
He stressed that the European Parliament is the place where Bulgarian representatives could work together with the Media in order to build an objective opinion about the EU.

The Speaker of Parliament noted that the upcoming 2009 elections to the European parliament will provide its representatives with the perspective to formulate complicated positions regarding such issues as the financial crisis and how Europe could preserve its social orientation in critical times.

In a video message to the conference, EP President Hans-Gert Poettering said: "Next year's elections to the European Parliament in June 2009 are of the greatest importance. We must raise public awareness, not only of the added value offered by the European Union but above all, of the added value of a high turnout and the importance of their vote. In March we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the European Parliament. Today the European Parliament is self confident and powerful. It is directly elected and shares the legislative authority on an equal footing with the Council in 75% of European legislation. With the Lisbon Treaty this co legislation power will increase up to almost 100%. This has an impact on the daily lives of citizens because the European Parliament uses its legislative powers to improve the everyday lives of citizens. I believe that it is the shared responsibility of politicians and the mass media to show all the achievements and the importance of the European Union in the daily life of each citizen”.

"The fact that we all have gathered here shows that the voice of the fourth power is not only heard but also important enough for the countries and the societies we live in," BTA Director General Maxim Minchev said at the opening.
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