The Member States behind the next three Presidencies of the Council of the European Union, namely, the Netherlands, Slovakia, and Malta, have applied what has been called the ‘Trio programme’, a mutual plan which each country will implement during their six-monthly tenures. Four priority areas have been agreed by them, and these are: migration and international security, Europe as an innovator and job creator, sound finances and a robust Eurozone, and a forward-looking climate and energy policy. The Netherlands, began its turn as the rotating Presidency of the Council, on the 1st of January, and will be primarily concerned with economic growth and jobs through innovation, with a Union that connects with civil society. “What matters to Europe’s citizens and businesses”, is the underlying message behind their plans. Guided by the priorities of the Strategic Agenda (June 2014), and the recent conclusions of the European Council, the ‘Trio’ has put particular emphasis on the first pillar of that document, as inclusive, smart and sustainable growth, jobs and competitiveness remain the top priorities over the next 18 months. It rightly states that the EU’s economy is showing signs of recovery, but that it “also faces unprecedented challenges, notably to its security and as a result of migration”. Better regulation and a reduction in regulatory burdens, which echo the desired EU reform demands of the UK’s David Cameron, are seen as important drivers for economic growth and competitiveness, and are a recurring feature of the Trio’s 24-page programme outline. Many other factors are highlighted as being crucial to the EU’s development: international trade, for instance, is seen as ‘a lever for [...]
On the 21st of November, the European Policy Centre organised its traditional Breakfast Policy Briefing before the holding of a new Member State Presidency in the European Council. Following on from Italy- from the 1st of January, 2015, Latvia will hold the Presidential rudders as the EU flagship until the 1st of July, 2015, steering the course of the European Union. It also marks an important exam for Latvia, because it will be the first time, since its accession to the EU in 2004, it has taken up the Presidential reins. This will also be practically the first Presidency, after elections of the new EU Parliament and Commission with which they will cooperate for next six months. The main Brussels responsibilities for this time will be in the hands of Ms. Ilze Juhansone, as an Ambassador and Head of the Permanent Representative of Latvia to the EU. She was the main speaker at the event. She had made a statement to clarify the plans of the Latvian Presidency. As Ms. Juhansone stated, the Latvian Presidency has already announced that it will concentrate on three broad areas, aiming towards a competitive, digital, and engaged Europe. [Tweet "The Presidency would like to focus on a more competitive Europe"]Latvians are planning to deal with a number of dossiers, including the need to foster investments and economic reforms; revision of the Europe 2020 strategy; the creation of a digital single market; developing transatlantic relationships via the TTIP, neighbourhood policy, especially in terms of the Eastern Partnership; and issues related to migration and security policy. The Ambassador underlined that due to the actual economic situation, [...]
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We represent the widely understood Central Europe energy sector (electricity generation, distribution and transmission, renewables, gas, oil, heat generation and distribution, chemical industries, etc.), universities and scientific institutions.