The Report on Competition Policy for 2021 presents the key policy developments and legislative initiatives undertaken last year, as well as a selection of enforcement actions. In 2021, the Commission carried out its review of key competition regulations, guidelines and notices, as set out in its Communication on a competition policy fit for new challenges, which frames the role of competition policy for Europe's path towards recovery, the green and digital transitions, and for a resilient Single Market.
The Cyber Resilience Act seeks to establish cybersecurity requirements for connected products and software (embedded and non-embedded). This initiative aims to address market needs and protect consumers from insecure products by introducing common cybersecurity rules for manufacturers and vendors of tangible and intangible digital products and ancillary services.
In its opinion, the EESC insists on the need to invest in peoples' digital and financial literacy in order to enable consumers to correctly understand their rights and duties relating to financial contracts concluded at a distance, particularly the right to withdrawal from a contract and the right to obtain more information in a pre-contractual phase. The EESC also states that a balanced approach between the digital and the "brick and mortar" experience is crucial. In this respect, the EESC calls for the right to ask for "human intervention" in financial services at a distance to be guaranteed.
The Commission is proposing an initiative which will aim to enhancing the Single Market’s resilience, by providing adequate information, coordination and communication mechanisms between EU institutions, Member States and stakeholders adapted to different phases of a crisis; providing the means to ensure such resilience including availability of products and services relevant for a certain type of crisis and guaranteeing as much as possible the free circulation of goods, services and persons.
This opinion presents the EESC's contribution to the European Commission's strategy to promote decent work not only within the EU but throughout the world. Decent work is unfortunately beyond reach for millions of workers across the globe. The Committee welcomes the Commission's initiative to promote decent work in all sectors and fields on the local and national level, within the EU and beyond. The EESC underlines that the EU must use all its policies, both internal and external, to promote and ensure decent work worldwide.
The own-initiative opinion (OIO) is part of an EESC umbrella opinion “A strategic vision on energy transition to enable sustainable development”covering various aspects of the energy transition. Once all opinions by the different EESC Sections have been gathered, the respective recommendations will constitute the EESC's overarching political message to the EU Institutions.
The objective of the proposed opinion is to enlarge the debate around the concept of cultural diplomacy by providing concrete recommendations and proposing actions to strengthen and optimise this innovative area of policy. We plan to focus on the reinforcement of the coherence of EU external policies and instruments; on the complementarity between the tangible and intangible heritage; on the link with climate change as a source of crisis; on the inclusion and empowerment of local actors, women and youth; on possibilities to develop concrete cooperation and partnerships between EU cultural Institutions and Civil Society Organisations (CSO) and their counterparts in third countries.