The Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU)  welcomes Jean-Claude Juncker's commitment to a mandatory lobby register and to provide proactive transparency about EU decision-making, a promise made during his confirmation hearing as Commission President in the European parliament this morning. This should help to ensure that EU institutions are far more open and transparent in the way that they work.
Max Bank of LobbyControl, a member of the steering committee of ALTER-EU, said: “We welcome Mr Juncker's commitment for the Commission to introduce an inter-institutional agreement to Parliament and Council to create a mandatory lobby register covering all three institutions. This step is long overdue and the proposal needs to follow quickly, by the end of 2015 at the latest. We will closely monitor developments on this issue to ensure Mr Juncker sticks to his promise.”
Erik Wesselius of Corporate Europe Observatory, a member of the steering committee of ALTER-EU, said: “Mr Juncker's commitment to proactive transparency is something that we have long called-for. And his statement that 'the commission will lead by example' is important, especially if it proves tricky to secure a final agreement with the Council. As Mr Juncker himself says, citizens have a right to know about EU decision-makers' meetings with lobbyists. The Commission should put the meat on the bones of this commitment by immediately starting to publish, in real-time, an online list of all meetings held, per department.”
Jean-Claude Juncker's written statement to MEPs says: “I am also committed to enhanced transparency when it comes to contact with stakeholders and lobbyists. Our citizens have the right to know with whom Commissioners and Commission staff, Members of the European Parliament or representatives of the Council meet in the context of the legislative process. I will therefore propose an Inter-institutional Agreement to Parliament and Council to create a mandatory lobby register covering all three institutions. The Commission will lead by example in this process.” 
During the recent EU elections, ALTER-EU's Politics for People campaign called on MEPs to pledge to “stand-up for citizens and democracy against the excessive lobbying influence of banks and big business”; 177 MEPs have now signed the pledge.  A full explanation of ALTER-EU's policy priorities is available on our website. 
Erik Wesselius, Corporate Europe Observatory, email: email@example.com tel: +31 302 364 422
Notes for editors:
 ALTER-EU is a coalition of over 200 civil society groups and trade unions concerned with the increasing influence exerted by corporate lobbyists on the political agenda in Europe.
 More information about ALTER-EU's Politics for People campaign can be found here: http://www.alter-eu.org/politics-for-people-2014-eu-election-campaign
 A full explanation of ALTER-EU's policy priorities is available here: http://www.alter-eu.org/about/demands