This opinion welcomes the Spanish Presidency's initiative of setting the goal to eliminate HIV related stigma and discrimination in Europe by 2030. It underlines that, in order to overcome stigma, discrimination and stereotypes, it essential to promote awareness-raising, training and information actions, involving organised civil society, youth and student organisations. The opinion also recommends a more ambitious new target for all countries to be achieved by 2030, improving coverage levels to as high as 95% for testing, treatment and virological suppression. Finally, it calls for new and innovative strategies to improve early diagnosis and make more people aware of their infection by expanding diversified and user-friendly approaches to more widely available HIV testing.
This initiative will require companies to substantiate claims they make about the environmental footprint of their products/services by using standard methods for quantifying them. The aim is to make the claims reliable, comparable and verifiable across the EU – reducing ‘greenwashing’.
The main objective of this initiative is to encourage consumers to use consumer goods for a longer time, by repairing defective goods and by purchasing more second-hand and refurbished goods. It will entail the adoption of a proposal for an amendment of the Sale of Goods Directive and possibly a separate new legislative proposal on the right to repair.
The EESC emphasises that the designing of proposals for new sources of own revenues should be done in context of the budgetary pressures faced by Member States following the pandemic and the ongoing international tensions. This has become all the more important in the current higher interest rate environment. The EESC also emphasises that the second set of own resources measures should be in line with the proportionality and social fairness principles. An EU-wide tax on digital transactions could be potentially considered to increase own resources in case the agreed rules of the OECD/G20 Inclusive Framework are not respected by other major trading partners.