Press Summaries

  • Reference number
    REX/572

    Key points

    The EESC:

    • welcomes the EU's decision to promote the principle of the EU's open strategic autonomy, and therefore the launch of the Global Gateway initiative at the end of 2021;
    • argues that the Global Gateway will strengthen economic and political ties with the EU's partner countries, enabling the EU to compete effectively on a global level in the provision of infrastructure;
    • regrets the lack of real involvement of local European stakeholders in the overall process of development. The EESC would like to play a more active role in the key stages of the decision-making process for development projects associated with the BRI and the Global Gateway.
  • Reference number
    REX/571

    Key points

    • Civil society and social partners urge the EU to commit more than ever to strengthening the UN through fundamental reform;
    • To enhance the UN's ability to react efficiently to current global challenges, UN Member States in breach of the UN Charter or commitments under UN agreements or conventions should not be allowed to exercise full participation and voting rights;
    • To stabilise consensus on shared values and norms, UN governance has to become more representative, inclusive and effective;
    • The UN should further develop its integrated Civil Society Organizations System;
    • Better coordination within the EU is needed so that it speaks with a single voice and acts accordingly in all UN bodies and related institutions.
  • Reference number
    REX/569

    Key points: 

    • calls on EU to spearhead and develop infrastructure, finance, and governance pathways by mobilizing public and private financial sources to assist partner and neighbouring countries to manage the impacts of the European Green Deal;
    • encourages the EU to adopt a comprehensive strategy of climate diplomacy with short-and long-term priorities;
    • urges Member States to ensure a better coordination in order to align their foreign policy with climate imperatives and the EU Green Deal goals.
  • Reference number
    TEN/822

    The EESC:

    • calls on the European Commission and the European Labour Authority (ELA) to assist the Member States and the road transport sector with coordinated interpretation of the Mobility Package and control methodology;
    • highlights that safety considerations, including the prevention of accidents and the protection of drivers and other road users, should be at the forefront of any regulatory and operational decisions;
  • The EESC recommends:

     

    • improving the functioning of the EU single market in data. The free movement of data will help ensure that people and businesses can fully exercise the EU's other four freedoms;
    • further harmonising digital financial services across the EU and increasing funding for innovative digital solutions to boost FinTech applications;
    • developing and scaling up EU digitalisation initiatives, especially in the field of social security and labour mobility, and introducing schemes such as the European Social Security Pass;
    • putting the withdrawn Commission proposal for a "services e-card", aimed at helping service providers operate across borders, back on the EU agenda.
  • The EESC:

     

    • recommends that the EU institutions and the Member States promote tax systems that support the social economy, simplify the administrative requirements involved and consider introducing tax measures that recognise its public interest role;
    • calls for socially responsible and innovative solutions to help remove obstacles that make it difficult for social economy enterprises to participate in the public procurement market;
    • invites the Commission and the Member States to make use of the expertise of national statistics offices and Eurostat to establish a database on the size and distribution of social economy entities.
  • Reference number
    SOC/769

    The EESC:

    • believes that tackling the skills-related challenges will require significant political efforts and systemic reforms in education and training, as well as smart investments in human capital from both public and private sources;
    • points out the importance of improving EU and Member State initiatives regarding employee training in the workplace and creating the right incentives for employers to continue investing in training their workforce, with the involvement of social partners;
    • reiterates that the role and profile of vocational education and training should continue to be strengthened to further develop dual systems to also train people in basic, transversal and STEM skills.
  • Reference number
    SOC/774

    The EESC:

    • backs the commitment made by the Commission and the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU to ensure digital inclusion for all, highlighting the importance of lifelong learning and access to quality education throughout one's career and life;
    • recommends that the Commission  supports Member States in launching large-scale information campaigns on digital learning opportunities for all, and provides funding and resources to support the digitalisation of VET and adult learning;
    • recommends that the Commission encourages Member States to focus on equal access to digital education and tools, thereby also ensuring accessibility for learners and teachers with disabilities, addressing urban-rural gaps and bias in algorithms.
  • The EESC advises as follows:

     

    • Industrial policy has a twofold approach: from the EU and from each Member State. Coordinated governance is needed to avoid mismatches between countries. The EU institutions must take the lead, taking a practical and realistic approach.
    • Nothing can be done without a highly skilled, digital public administration, and without good regulations. We have many examples of useless laws in every layer of activity. Better regulation will mean less regulation: reducing bureaucracy, simplifying processes, tackling corruption and setting new product and market standards.

    ...

  • The EESC:

     

    • welcomes the explicit Commission statements that there are potential conflicts of interest in the sales and distribution models for investment products, and that therefore most consumers only have access to advisors who advise on the products that they sell;
    • recommends developing "basic" products for the retail investment sector, along the lines of basic bank accounts and compulsory motor vehicle liability insurance;
    • suggests establishing a minimum training requirement for sales intermediaries, including on sustainability, of at least 35 hours per year.

    ...