Role and activities of the European economic and Social Committee within the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership
The EESC is invited by the 1995 Barcelona Declaration to take initiatives in “establishing links with its Mediterranean counterparts and equivalent bodies”. In the firm belief that involvement of the socio-economic players and other civil society representatives is vital for the overall success of this policy , the EESC has fully committed itself to the Euro-Mediterranean partnership.
It has drawn up a number of opinions and reports offering specific recommendations to the partnership authorities. In cooperation with other ESCs and similar institutions, it has also built up a network of relations with civil society organisations in the Euro-Mediterranean countries and helped to develop consultative activities in several partner countries.
The EESC helps to organize the Euro-Mediterranean Summits of Economic and Social Councils and similar institutions by drawing up an annual report on a specific aspect of the Euro-Mediterranean partnership; this report is worked out in cooperation with the Economic and Social Councils of the EU Member States and the Mediterranean partners, providing a contribution to the annual Euro-Mediterranean Summit of Economic and Social Councils and similar institutions.
This innovative way of working fosters mutual understanding and produces joint declarations endorsed by representatives of both southern and northern countries. Hearings are also held in partner countries during the drafting of these reports.