EESC members come from different organisations in EU Member States. As is the case in the French Council, while remaining actively involved in our organisations in our home countries, we travel regularly to Brussels to attend meetings. Internally the EESC is divided into six sections, each of which deals with a major EU policy area: economic and monetary union, the internal market, agricultural policy and the environment, employment and social affairs, transport and energy, and external relations.
In 2006 the EU's sustainability strategy was given a new impetus. In the EESC we decided to reflect the cross-cutting nature of sustainability in a separate body able to work in a cross-cutting way. We therefore set up a Sustainable Development Observatory with members from all sections, with a view to achieving a cross-cutting approach to the subject. As far as I can see, this is an unprecedented development in the EU institutional set-up.