The EESC issues between 160 and 190 opinions and information reports a year.
It also organises several annual initiatives and events with a focus on civil society and citizens’ participation such as the Civil Society Prize, the Civil Society Days, the Your Europe, Your Say youth plenary and the ECI Day.
The EESC brings together representatives from all areas of organised civil society, who give their independent advice on EU policies and legislation. The EESC's326 Members are organised into three groups: Employers, Workers and Various Interests.
The EESC has six sections, specialising in concrete topics of relevance to the citizens of the European Union, ranging from social to economic affairs, energy, environment, external relations or the internal market.
strongly rejects the Commission's proposal to cut the EU's budget by 10% in real terms and urges the Member States (MS) to find solutions that allow this budget to be kept at the same level as the 2014-2020 programming period;
finds that the economic circumstances set up by the CPR (macro-economic conditionalities, decreased co-financing etc.) could harm investment and therefore:
rejects macro-economic conditionality for penalising regions and citizens;
invites the Commission to maintain the decommitment rule at N+3;
asks the Commission to reconsider increasing the co-financing rates;
appreciates the efforts regarding simplification, flexibility and effectiveness. It is however unfortunate that the new rulebook is not a single set of rules;
finds the rules related to thematic concentration too strict. It proposes that one of the policy objectives should be chosen by the MS;
recommends that the Commission develop the required tools that allow areas with structural and permanent disadvantages (islands, mountain regions etc.) to effectively tackle their specific and complex challenges;
recommends that ad-hoc solutions be found for those countries or regions which were classified as convergence regions during the 2007-2013 programme benefitting from an 80% co-financing rate during the 2014-2020 period and which will now be classified as transition regions during the 2021-2027 period benefitting from a 55% co-financing rate;
believes that the Commission should further reinforce synergies by finding a way to reintegrate the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development into the rulebook and also by strengthening ties with the European Social Fund Plus (ESF+);
takes note of the dissatisfaction of the European Social Partners concerning the Code of Conduct, and asks that it be revised and updated in direct consultation with them. It also asks that the Code of Conduct be made binding;
rejects the removal from the new CRP proposal of the principles of promotion of equality between men and women, non-discrimination, accessibility of persons with disabilities, as well as of sustainable development.