The EESC is currently working on an opinion on the proposal on extending EFSI. In the framework of the elaboration of the opinion, the Section for Economic and Monetary Union and Economic and Social Cohesion (ECO) organised on 10 November 2016 from 10 a.m. a public hearing on The extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI 2.0).
The first Cork Declaration, adopted on 9 November 1996, forthrightly requested "a fairer balance" of public spending and investments between rural and urban areas. In the new Cork 2.0 Declaration adopted on 6 September 2016, there is only one concrete proposal with the potential to have a meaningful impact: the so called "rural proofing" whose aim would be to "systematically review other macro and sectorial policies through a rural lens".
The European Economic and Social Committee, the International Confederation of Popular Banks, the European Association of Co-operative Banks, the UNICO Banking Group, and the European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises will organize the conference “Co-operative Banks and innovation in SME Financing” in Brussels on 9 November 2016.
The conference will bring to the forefront the raise of technology players in financial services. The focus will be on the SMEs' financing and on the interaction between these new players and the cooperative and popular banks.
The 3rd meeting of the EU-Ukraine Civil Society Platform will take place on 8-9 November 2016 in Kyiv. During the meeting, a debate will be held assessing the state of play in the implementation of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, and two reports, prepared by both sides, will be discussed and adopted – on labour market regulation with a focus on the adaptation of Ukrainian labour legislation to the EU legislation, and on anti-discrimination legislation and practice with regard to the rights of vulnerable groups in the context of the Association Agreement. A Joint Declaration will beadopted at the end of the meeting to be forwarded to the EU-Ukraine Association Council, the Association Committee, the Parliamentary Association Committee and other relevant bodies both in Ukraine as well as in the EU.
For the 8th time, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and Montenegro held the Civil Society Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) in Budva, Montenegro.
This meeting tackled following issues: Assessment of the state of play in Montenegro accession negotiations to the EU, Chapter 28 of the accession negotiations – with focus on Consumer protection and Debate on the situation of young people on the labour market.
The round-table is organized by the EESC's Consultative Commission on Industrial Change (CCMI) in partnership with the European Commission as well as with relevant European – Euromines, Euracoal, IndustriAll Europe – and national organisations.
The aim of the conference was to obtain a better grasp of the role civil society has to play in energy security and the transition to renewable energy at both national and regional levels. The challenge is to channel civil society involvement and expertise towards creating more links, partnerships and dialogue between local, national and regional players.
The EESC Employers' Group is organising a seminar on "Strengthening European Growth and Competitiveness: Proactive Trade Agenda – NOW!" taking place on 26 October in Helsinki and jointly organized with the Confederation of Finnish Industries and the International Chamber of Commerce, ICC Finland.
Trade and Investment are hugely important for the EU: 1 in 7 EU jobs depend on exports. The EU cannot risk falling behind in the global race to build a wide and ambitious network of free trade agreements. The signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement (involving 12 countries and 40% of world GDP) is a timely reminder of this. This seminar, which will be attended by many of our Members together with Finnish employers and entrepreneurs, politicians and academics aims to examine how to best contribute positively to the debate as trade agreements (TTIP - TISA - CETA - EU-JAPAN) increasingly become a top political issue.
Since 1992, the LIFE programme (L'Instrument Financier pour l'Environnement) has been the main European funding source for the protection of nature, resource efficiency and awareness-raising actions around the environment. In 2017, the European Commission will issue a mid-term evaluation of the LIFE programme over the 2014-2020 period. One of the objectives is in particular to start discussing the first perspectives for LIFE after 2020. This evaluation will particularly look at the impact, effectiveness and relevance of the programme's investment, taking into account the new features introduced in 2014. The EESC, along with the European Committee of the Regions, are closely involved in this process: the EESC will contribute with an exploratory opinion.
During the meeting, the representatives of the European External Action Service (EEAS) will present information about the EU relations and cooperation with Colombia and Peru. The EU DAG Chair will inform the Group about the outcomes of the civil society meeting organized in Bogota on 6 October 2016 with a view of establishing the Colombian DAG. Moreover, the Commission representative will provide information about the Ecuador's accession to the Agreement, as well as about preparations for the next meeting with Colombia and Peru under the Trade and Sustainable Development Title planned for 7-8 December in Brussels. The Group will hold then an internal debate to choose topics for the meeting with Colombia and Peru and to organize cooperation with civil society in both countries