Blue bioeconomy (Exploratory opinion at the request of the Finnish Presidency) - Related Opinions
In October 2018, the European Commission launched the updated European Bio-economy Strategy. The purpose of this update to the 2012 Bio-economy Strategy was to address the challenges of living in a world of limited resources.
The bioeconomy encompasses the production of renewable biological resources and their conversion into food, feed, bio-based products and bioenergy. This includes agriculture, forestry, fisheries, food, pulp and paper production, as well as parts of chemical, biotechnological and energy industries. For the purpose of this opinion, research on genomes, cell processes and bioinformatics is not specifically considered.
The future Austrian Presidency of the Council has requested the EESC to draw up an exploratory opinion on the Bioeconomy, and how it can contribute to achieving the EU's climate, energy goals and the UN's sustainable development goals.
The European maritime technology industry is an important sector in terms of employment, directly providing more than 500 000 jobs. Shipyards and firms manufacturing marine equipment make a significant contribution to the economic development of the regions where they are located, and across the entire supply chain, which is particularly important to SMEs. Each direct job in a European shipyard means, on average, seven jobs created in the region.
The Commission proposal is technically amending the existing Council Regulation (EU) No 560/2014 establishing the Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU).
BBI JU is a body entrusted with the implementation of a public-private partnership whose members are the European Union represented by the Commission and the Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC).
Due to difficulty of BIC to deliver its financial contribution as foreseen by the current Council Regulation, the European Commission proposes to adjust the initial text of the Council Regulation by introducing the possibility of delivering financial contributions at project level, in addition to the existent mode of delivery at programme level.
Impact assessments of any legislative proposals must be integrated and accorded due importance to the economic, social and environmental dimensions, including for SMEs. The Committee has called for the Parliament, the Council and the European Commission to agree on a common methodology on impact assessments and evaluations, which could also serve as a prompt for the Committee. It is extremely concerned by the findings on the shortcomings of social and environmental impact assessments and the follow-up to consultations. It calls on the Commission to be more transparent and to give fully documented reasons why a particular measure or proposal is or is not to be submitted for impact assessment and/or an ex-post analysis.