Dear President, Dear Mr Michel,
I would like to congratulate you on your appointment as the President of the European Council. This is an essential position in the European institutional system for which, I am convinced, you will demonstrate the fullness of your talent, animated by your unwavering European spirit.
Your appointment is excellent news for Belgium, a founding member of the EU that has given a lot to Europe but also for Europe and for those who believe, more than ever, in the European project, in the wake of the latest European elections.
The European Union faces complex and crucial issues. It is, therefore, crucial that a post of this nature should belong to a personality of your stature, particularly in view of your experience as Prime Minister.
As President of the European Economic and Social Committee, I would like to inform you of the opinion that the Committee has adopted for the Extraordinary Summit in Sibiu on 9 May and also for the future European Commission and the new European Parliament.
You will notice that in our opinion, adopted by a very large majority, we strongly insist on sustainable development, because we are convinced that this is the strategy that the European Union must resolutely put forward during the next decade. It perfectly combines economic prosperity, environmental dimension and social inclusion.
When I was elected President of the EESC in April 2018, I built my mandate around the key idea of reviving the European project, highlighting the need to focus on a new Renaissance with three priorities: sustainable development, culture and peace.
I note that both, the Strategic Agenda 2019-2024, recently adopted by the European Council, and the programme of the Finnish Presidency, converge on these main lines.
In renewing my heartfelt wishes for your mandate, I inform you that I would be pleased to meet you at your earliest convenience.
It is, I believe, essential that the EESC, the house of European civil society, can consolidate its institutional relations with the European Council.