On 9 September 2020, the European Commission adopted its first annual Strategic Foresight Report, presenting Commission’s strategy to integrate strategic foresight into EU policy-making. Strategic foresight aims to identify emerging challenges and opportunities to better steer the European Union's strategic choices and to inform major policy initiatives. It will support the Commission in designing future-proof policies and legislation that serves both the current needs and longer-term aspirations of European citizens.
On 23 March, the European Economic and Social Committee adopted two opinions on the Commission's latest proposals to further develop the EU's Capital Markets Union. Regarding the Listing Act, the Committee recommends that the full listing documentation be published in the national languages to empower local retail investors and help the development of a national retail investment base.
At its plenary session on 24 February, the EESC adopted an opinion on the Commission's Communication outlining orientations for a reform of the economic governance framework. While the EESC agrees on the need for a swift agreement ahead of the Member States' budgetary processes for 2024, it also stresses that many details are yet to be finalised.
In an opinion adopted on 23 February, the EESC commented on the Commission's Communication on the 2023 Annual Sustainable Growth Survey, which outlines the economic and employment policy priorities for the EU for the coming 12 to 18 months.
The EESC held a conference on the future of European strategic autonomy. The event was organised jointly by three Committee bodies; the Digital Transition and Single Market Observatory, the Labour Market Observatory and the Sustainable Development Observatory. Policy-makers, experts from organised civil society and academia, as well as youth representatives, gathered to discuss how to overcome current and future obstacles to a self-sufficient EU in times of great geopolitical tensions and multiple crises.
The EESC held a debate on gender-based investments in the Member States' national Recovery and Resilience Plans (RRPs). Following on from the European Gender Equality Week, the event gathered policy-makers, experts from organised civil society and academia to discuss, among other things, how EU countries can improve the impact of the measures proposed in their RRPs on gender equality during implementation and monitoring.
In two newly adopted opinions, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) gives updated views on the Commission's Annual Sustainable Growth Survey 2022, which outlines the upcoming economic and employment policy priorities for the EU, as well as on the Recommendations on euro area economic policy for 2022. The EESC calls for a balanced approach that does not jeopardise the EU's social and environmental goals.
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls on the European Commission to publish an overdue report to consider extending the EU's sustainability taxonomy's scope to social objectives.
Cohesion policy is key to overcoming the COVID-19 crisis, to achieving climate neutrality by 2050 and to reducing disparities in Europe. Its most serious challenge for the foreseeable future, however, is the war in Ukraine, the EESC cautions in a recent opinion. Rapid action is needed to help refugees and ensure the country's European integration.