NEWS

‘Voting is power,’ says EU competition commissioner

voting-is-power-says-eu-competition-commissioner

“The power to do something comes from you from us as individuals. And voting is power. Therefore, it is important to vote in this election – and to inspire people around you to vote. Because if you do not use your voice to get heard your chance to influence will be lost,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told Kathimerini ahead of Sunday's elections of European Parliament.

Encouraging citizens to turn out in numbers for the elections and have their voices heard, Vestager said “we are more than 500 million people in the EU, and when we work together, we can bring about enormous change. But to do that, we first need the confidence to try – and it’s our job, as leaders, to help build people’s confidence, that they have the power to achieve their goals.”

Speaking of the challenges that are facing the block, the European Union official said referred to climate change, technology and societies based on the rule of law, “where you can provide for yourself.”

Digital technology, she said, “is transforming our world, creating huge opportunities – but also threatening to undermine our way of life. We fear that our private information will be used without our knowledge; we worry that businesses will grow so powerful that consumers will be left at their mercy. So our job is to get together and concentrate our efforts for our society – legislators and enforcers, businesses and individuals – on developing the rules and the principles that we need, to keep that dark side of technology under control.”

On the issue of environmental protection, Vestager cited a recent survey which found that more than 90 percent of Europeans said that climate change is a serious problem. Tackling the problem, though, “will take a transformation in the way that we power our world of the sort that’s only happened once or twice before in all human history.”

However, she added, “the most important thing is that you are empowered to live the life you want to live in your community. That you are counted in and you have a fair chance of making it. You can influence that fair chance by voting today!”