The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) firmly believes that infringements of human rights can be better prevented when there is an internationally agreed binding standard implemented and protected by states. Therefore, in an opinion adopted at its December plenary session, the EESC supports the United Nations Human Rights Council initiative to adopt a binding UN treaty to regulate businesses activities, including sanctions in case of violation of international human rights law.
The coming years will see new prospects and challenges for European products and services, according to the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC). Providing innovative, highly specialised products and services with well-recognised and certified key characteristics can boost European competitiveness, says the EESC.
The EESC considers it crucial to improve implementation of the Environmental Crime Directive to ensure the best possible environmental protection in the EU.
Top proposals include full harmonisation of the new agenda with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and strengthened EU-level supervision of its application so as to ensure freedom from discrimination for people with disabilities and their acceptance as part of human diversity and humanity throughout the EU.
Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires more than political commitment, says the European Economic and Social Committee. Increased investment, especially by the private sector, is needed to address current economic, social and environmental challenges. The Committee therefore advises the EU and its Member States to adjust their investment and tax policies to enhance growth prospects, and thereby private sector contributions, to accomplishing the SDGs.
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is deeply concerned with the growing disconnect between the climate emergency and the political answers to the climate crisis at COP25. Without any clear signs of increased ambition by the major polluters despite the continuous rise of emissions, the EESC expects the EU to take the lead and deliver on its promise of a growth that gives back more than it takes away.
The benefits of digitalisation for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are multiple, allowing them to boost competitiveness, expand market access and improve customer relations. In an information report adopted at its December plenary session, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) considers it necessary to support the digital transformation of SMEs with measures adapted to the specific needs of different types of companies.
Representatives of European and Chilean civil society held a videoconference on 27 November, as it was impossible for them to hold the fourth meeting of their Joint Consultative Committee under present circumstances. In the videoconference, the members of the Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) adopted a statement in which they regretted the social and political situation in Chile.
On 22 November, participants in the 17th regional seminar of ACP-EU economic and social interest groups adopted a declaration highlighting the potential of the blue economy as a key factor for development in many eastern and southern African countries. The event, hosted by the EESC in Mauritius, was also an opportunity for civil society representatives to call for a greater role for civil society in the negotiation of Economic Partnership Agreements and bilateral Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreements (SFPAs) and to acknowledge the role played by African and EU economic and social groups in the development of infrastructure.
EESC debate takes stock and discusses steps to take