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.
This brochure presents the EESC's opinions, position papers, resolutions and statements calling for the necessary measures to be taken at EU level, or commenting on those that have already been put forward, in order to tackle the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. We pushed for a reconstruction and recovery plan that lives up to this unprecedented challenge.
The EESC Employers' Group strives for a business environment that contributes to sustainable development, while keeping the EU's economy resilient and resourceful in an ever-changing world. Our Political Priorities beyond 2020 explain how to achieve this goal by fostering EU values, strengthening the EU's economic foundation, bringing the EU to the digital forefront and seizing opportunities provided by proactive climate action.
The corona crisis is a huge human and societal tragedy for Europeans and for people throughout the world. Tackling its diverse impacts requires a series of measures, from coping with the emergency stage and proceeding via recovery and rebuilding towards long-term success and stability. Businesses that manage to recover well and succeed are key to the recovery of the EU economy as a whole.
The corona crisis is changing the global economy daily, with the results still being uncertain. The crisis has hit all sectors, from services to industries and agriculture. The most serious problems have been encountered by SMEs and micro-entrepreneurs who have had their businesses disappear and are in a very critical situation.
To limit the economic and social damage caused by this critical situation, a series of measures is needed, extending from coping with the emergency stage towards recovery and rebuilding.
After the financial crisis, it became clear that the fragmented environment in the EU made it difficult to deal decisively and effectively with problems, particularly in the financial system. A common and cross-border approach became essential/were needed. The challenge was to make the financial institutions and markets more stable, competitive, safe and resilient. From that perspective, the plans for a fully-fledged banking union and a capital markets union were the right response.
"Achieving sustainable growth in a competitive world is challenging. The challenge is even greater for the European Union, as the Old Continent faces a severe competitiveness deficit. Without entering into a health review, that could be delivered at a further stage, of each of the 28 Member States, the ambition of this study is to draw-up a comprehensive picture of EU economic growth.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of the EU economy. According to Commission estimates, the overall contribution of SMEs to EU-27 value added was more than 57% (EUR 3.4 trillion) in 2012. Although the role of SMEs in the EU economy is crucial and their well being should be a priority for European policymakers, they struggle with access to finance, especially in the countries severely hit by the crisis. The Greek experience can and should be taken as a case study and conclusions drawn on how to improve the system for the future.