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Fighting criminal economy

Extraordinary meeting of the Workers' Group EESC, room JDE 62, Brussels, Belgium

The Workers' Group organised an extraordinary meeting that was partly devoted to a discussion on the fight against the criminal economy.

The activities of organised crime are a particularly serious phenomenon because of their financial and social consequences for the European Union's economy. Research projects undertaken by the European Parliament, Europol and various European research centres have shown that mafia organisations have made such a big quality leap that they are now able to operate in almost all Member States and economic sectors.

The Workers' Group examined this problem in the presence of personalities combating the phenomenon concretely on the ground, including Renato Natale, mayor of Casal di Principe (a municipality in southern Italy sadly known for being the stronghold of one of the most powerful Camorra clans), Daniele Sanzone, writer and musician, Claudio Metallo, film director, and Umberto di Maggio, regional coordinator of the association Libera.

A press conference was organised in the EESC premises at the end of the discussion.

The second part of the meeting was devoted to a debate on "The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)", a commercial agreement under negotiation between the EU and the United States. Very controversial, it has dominated the news for several months drawing criticism from many sectors such as agriculture, the protection of personal data, the protection of investors, etc. Trade unions and other civil society organisations on their part are worried about the enormous implications of the Treaty for workers on both sides of the Atlantic with regard to the employment policy, social security, protection of the environment,… Participants took stock of the latest developments in the sector in the presence, inter alia, of Tom Jenkins, principal ETUC advisor.