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The Civil Society Forum under the EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) held its sixth meeting in Seoul on 11 April, co-chaired by Mr Lee Ho-Geun and Mr Georgi Stoev. In their joint statement the co-chairs emphasized that the uncertain geopolitical environment posed new challenges to the EU-Korea relations. It called for promoting shared values and interests in the region and for making the partnership Korea and the EU more relevant to the request of the citizens.


The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) urges the Commission to be more rigorous in facilitating consumers' access to new, cleaner and affordable forms of mobility, and to introduce stronger financial support for public transport. The opinion on "Achieving low emission targets", which was adopted during last week's plenary session, discussed the Commission's proposal on how to effectively reduce gas emissions produced by road transport.


The EESC strongly supports the objectives of the Energy Union and encourages EU society to take full ownership of this project. The Energy Union is not only relevant to sectoral policies such as energy, transport and climate but offers a number of opportunities to make Europe more democratic, cohesive, competitive and just. To this end, an effective energy dialogue with organised civil society at EU, national, regional and local levels is fundamental.


Stronger, interconnected European energy grids are a prerequisite for the European Energy Union. Only if Europe's energy networks are well developed and integrated can the continent's energy systems achieve their purpose: to provide the people of Europe with affordable, secure, sustainable energy in a competitive way.


The EU-Ukraine Civil Society Platform (CSP) urges Kiev to implement more consistent reforms in various sectors and to give the issue of low wages and poverty the highest priority. These issues were addressed at the 6th CSP meeting in Brussels, where members of the platform discussed progress in the implementation of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, as well as the role of pay in poverty reduction and its impact on labour migration, and climate change.