The Commission proposal amends Regulation (EU) 2017/746 as regards transitional provisions for certain in vitro diagnostic medical devices and deferred application of requirements for in-house devices.
Recent years have been marked by a persistent global decline in democratic values and the rule of law. While many differences remain and have to be acknowledged, North America has unquestionably been our closest historical ally in championing democracy and its values across the world. The arrival of the new administration in the US has provided a new momentum and a unique opportunity to build the new transatlantic partnership and jointly manage not only the internal, but also global challenges, especially with regard to powers which do not share the same values, such as China or Russia. President Biden's initiative to organise a Summit for Democracy at a time when autocracies are on the offensive is only the first step in building a strong international democratic alliance.
The EESC strongly supports the goal of redirecting investments in such a way that they contribute to the EU's transition to a sustainable economy but calls for the social partners and civil society to be brought better on board in the design and implementation of sustainable finance. The EU green bond standard has the potential to yield significant economic benefits for both issuers and investors alike and help the green transition.
During the COVID-19 crisis, the EU developed a wide range of health policy responses and initiatives, while also tackling the economic fallout of the pandemic. Many difficulties were encountered, but while some of them have been addressed, longer-term solutions are needed for mitigating future health crises.
In this opinion, the EESC comments on the Commission's evaluation of the measures taken so far to fight the pandemic and on the ten lessons learnt and proposes various recommendations in the field of crisis management, health protection, social and societal aspects, economy and finance, society and technology, international relations and democratic standards.