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.
The EESC welcomes the debate initiated by the Commission in its Green Paper in view of a modernisation of EU public procurement policy with a higher degree of efficiency in the context of a better functioning Single Market that is more innovative, greener, and more social. Unnecessary bureaucracy has to be reduced. Complicated legislation and widespread "gold plating" in Member States must be avoided.
The EESC emphasises that the principles of openness and transparency as well as efficiency, legal certainty, value for money, competition, accessibility to the market for SMEs and liberal professions, proportionality, increasing cross-border contracts, avoidance of discrimination and corruption, and the need for professionalism remain as valid as before.
The EESC underlines the impact and importance of innovative, environmental and social aspects of Europe 2020 also for public procurement.
The EESC is in favour of maintaining the difference between A and B Services under the condition of legal certainty and the possible extension of cross-border contracts of B Services. It recommends a periodic review of the list of B Services by the Commission to examine whether some B Services could, with advantage, be shifted to A Services.
The Committee considers that advertising all public contracts through an e-Tendering process would help to prevent abuses and to combat favouritism, fraud and corruption.
The EESC recommends an analysis of (best) practices and examples in Member States followed by measures to open up markets.