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The 18 July plenary session of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) in Brussels played host to Finland's Minister of Social Affairs and Health, who presented the programme of the Finnish EU presidency. This includes a special focus on sustainability and the wellbeing of citizens. Minister Pekonen also listed enhancing the rule of law and EU values among its other priorities. 

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Corporate taxes could the the most harmful form of taxation to economic growth. Contrary to public perception, there has been no reduction in corporate tax revenues in relation to GDP in the last 40 years. Countries that have reduced their corporate tax rates in recent years have seen increases in investment in the following years. There is no race to the bottom, rather to a middle range of some 20% corporate tax rate and revenues are stable or even increasing.

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The fight against climate change and the promotion of sustainable energy were high on the agenda at the June plenary session of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC). At the end of the mandate of the current European Commission, Commissioner Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President responsible for the Energy Union and EESC President, Luca Jahier engaged in a fruitful discussion on the future of Europe and took a firm stand: citizens must continue to be involved and consulted in the decisions on the transition to a carbon-neutral society.

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Euroopan talous- ja sosiaalikomitean teettämän uuden tutkimuksen mukaan rajatylittävät palvelut luovat uusia työpaikkoja ja talouskasvua, ja niillä on myönteinen vaikutus kaikkien EU-maiden sekä erityyppisten – niin työvoima- kuin osaamisintensiivisten – työpaikkojen kannalta. Tutkimus osoittaa, että tiukan sääntelyn välttäminen rajatylittävien palvelujen sisämarkkinoilla hyödyttää EU:n taloutta. Rajatylittävien palvelujen osuuden pieneneminen yhdellä prosentilla supistaisi EU:n taloutta noin kahdeksalla miljardilla eurolla.

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Vuoden 2019 kilpailu on nyt avattu

Euroopan talous- ja sosiaalikomitea (ETSK) on käynnistänyt vuoden 2019 kansalaisyhteiskuntapalkintonsa hakumenettelyn. Tänä vuonna teemana on ”Enemmän naisia Euroopan yhteiskunta- ja talouselämään”, ja palkinnolla annetaan tunnustusta innovatiivisille aloitteille ja hankkeille, joilla pyritään edistämään naisten ja miesten yhtäläisiä mahdollisuuksia ja tasa-arvoista kohtelua kaikilla talous- ja yhteiskuntaelämän aloilla.

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The 25th anniversary of the European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement, in force since 1994, was the main topic of the EEA Consultative Committee meeting that took place on 23 and 24 May. This committee, which represents employers, workers and other civil society players of EEA member states, insisted on the importance of completing the internal market and taking into account its social dimension.

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On 10 May, candidates from the main parties running for the European Parliament (EP) elections took part in a round table debate organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) in Madrid. They were in favour of initiating a reform of the EU institutions with the aim, amongst other things, of enabling organised civil society to play a greater role in the building of Europe.