The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) endorses the priorities set out in the European Commission's 2017 Annual Growth Survey.
The European Semester is seen as a good instrument for further progress in policies and reform, leading to recovery and employment. The AGS 2017 outlines the most pressing economic and social priorities, accompanied by specific recommendations, however the EESC takes very seriously the negative aspects of the rules of the Stability and Growth Pact and Country-Specific Recommendations applied at national level to set the euro area fiscal stance.
The EESC welcomes, in principle, the missions set out in the 2017 growth survey, as well as the distribution of tasks between the Commission and the Member States. It repeats its proposal – made previously, in its analysis of the 2016 growth survey – to supplement the European Semester. As well as increasing investment, structural reforms and strengthening macroeconomic balance, the main objectives should also include progress to be made in terms of "beyond GDP" indicators (social, environmental and sustainability targets).
EESC opinion: Opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee on the "Annual Growth Survey 2017" accompaning the Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Central Bank, the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions and the European Investment Bank on the Annual Growth Survey 2017 [COM(2016) 725 final]