As a member of the European Parliament I am constantly approached by people who want to talk about how the legislation we are working on will influence their interests. They are both lobbyists working for specific companies, but also organisations, experts, researchers, specialists and interested citizens. My colleagues and I regularly meet with lobbyists from both human rights organisations and businesses and the vast majority are strongly committed to their varying goals. The meetings take place in Brussels, Sweden and the rest of Europe and they range from participation in conferences, seminars or individual discussions and deliberations.
It is a positive indication that people are interested in the political process and the work of the European Parliament. Their contribution is often important, but obviously it is important to be aware of the fact that most people approaching an MEP with information have an interest in defending their business or to emphasise a particular point of view. It is crucial that we as politically elected representatives are aware of how the legislation we are forming may affect the society we live in. As politicians we are first and foremost representing the public interest and not private interests and in the end it is always our responsibility to test and evaluate the arguments and to weigh conflicting positions against each other.
For me it is important to meet and speak with people from different groups representing different interests, to get a breadth of views and insights. This facilitates and helps me to take reasonable decisions in complex matters.
1.1 How we work – records of visitors
It is fundamental for Cecilia Wikström to be open to the citizens and voters with whom she meets. That is why she has decided to take the initiative to establish a public register of meetings that she and her policy advisors are having with lobbyists. This register is being continuously updated and if you are interests in a copy of the latest version, please contact Cecilia Wikström’s office.
1.2 Public records
The EU institutions also have a transparency register in which it is possible to search for information about the organisations and companies that are lobbying in Brussels. Please find more information about the register here.
1.3 The Code of Conduct
Cecilia Wikström is the liberal group’s representative in the European Parliament’s ethics committee. During the period of March-September 2013 Cecilia Wikström chairs the committee. More information about the code of conduct for MEPs and the work of the committee can be found on the website of the European Parliament.
1.4 Additional information
If wanting to book a meeting with Cecilia Wikström or her policy advisors, you are welcome to e-mail us.