As European trade unions battle with falling membership, the EU proposes to set a minimum threshold for the percentage of work contracts that have to be concluded by collective bargaining. Welcomed by the unions, the proposal has, however, been met with criticism by employers.
The hearing organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) highlighted the need for a reform of the EU budgetary rules applicable in the Member States in order to ensure a sustainable post-COVID-19 recovery and to secure the public investments required for the green and digital transition.
A hearing organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) discussed opportunities and challenges in the implementation of the National Recovery and Resilience Plans in the various Member States, revealing that civil society is still far from being effectively involved in the process. There were calls for improved consultations in the upcoming implementing phase, following the shortcomings at the drafting stage.
The new EU Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change is a crucial step towards achieving climate neutrality and resilience by 2050. European civil society strongly supports the Commission's commitment to strengthening efforts on climate proofing, resilience building, prevention and preparedness. The floods occurring in Western Europe, just weeks after a record-breaking heatwave in the US and Canada, are fresh reminders of the pace of change.
Building talent partnerships with countries of origin and transit is a key policy in addressing migration. Europe has to shift the focus of migration policy's external dimension and make it part of a broader geopolitical and geo-economic agenda that will be given its rightful place other policies. Otherwise, the new pact will be too weak to deal with the rising numbers of migration flows.
The Commission's initiatives on a European child guarantee and an EU Strategy on the rights of the child call on European and national policy-makers to work toward the common good of all children growing up in the EU. Ambitious and bold in their approach to ensuring a life free from any discrimination for each and every child, both initiatives have won the EESC's approval.
Rapidly developed to cushion the severe effects the pandemic was expected to have on businesses and workers, SURE has helped Member States to protect employment and keep EU economies afloat. With an evaluation of the scheme underway, there is an ongoing debate as to whether SURE should be here to stay as an ad hoc system of protection to help prevent job losses and provide income support during future serious crises
According to a Deloitte study, there are conflicting opinions on the new 5G technology. Further study is therefore needed, and the debate held at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) addressed civil society organisations' concerns surrounding the issue.
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) welcomes the proposed EU Action Plan on Synergies between the civil, defence and space industries. The Action plan can enhance Europe's strategic autonomy and technological sovereignty, improve the security of citizens and boost competitiveness, economic growth and employment. Therefore, the EESC calls for rapid, forceful and ambitious implementation of the 11 actions set out in the Plan.
The new trade strategy launched by the Commission in February brings engaging principles to the table that will support the EU in achieving its domestic and external policy objectives. The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) welcomes this trade strategy as a way of improving market access and levelling the playing field. Alongside this, the modernisation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) will be the key to delivering for future generations.