In a strong declaration, the Presidency of the Party of the European Socialist highlighted the success of the EU, calling it “one of the most successful historical achievements for promoting democracy, cohesion, diversity and equality”.But they also warned that Europe needs to be revived and reoriented to tackle today’s challenges, including fighting populism and ensuring that globalisation does not lead to greater inequality.

The Presidency met to prepare for the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome later this month, and to discuss both upcoming national elections and the referendum in Turkey. The meeting was held in Berlin and was attended by Martin Schulz, leader of the SPD and Socialist candidate for Chancellor of Germany.

PES president Sergei Stanishev said:

“For many Europeans, the EU has become the face of austerity, and it has become an easy target for scapegoating. So it must reinvent itself or face the risk of disintegration.

“The Party of European Socialists is determined that the EU should again play its role as the best tool to bring prosperity and equality for its 500 million citizens. We fight for a Europe that is fair, brings progress and protection, and helps citizens to face the challenges of this century.

“That’s why we want 25 March to mark a return to the social roots of the European Union.”

PES high level Working group was established during the Presidency meeting in Berlin. Initiated by Sergei Stanishev this Group is aiming to shape the PES position on the furure of Europe after the Junkers’s White paper.

“We, the European Socialist, would like to cathegorically point out – we are for Europe on one direction. The direction towards social Europe, equal opportunities for everybody, protection to all those who are living in a risk of poverty and social exclusion, equal working conditions and chances for education to all the European citisens”, stressed Stanishev.