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The Justice, Rights and Values Fund is a much-needed instrument for the promotion of EU values, fundamental rights, democracy, the rule of law, and in support of a vibrant and diverse civil society. Overall funding should be increased to EUR 1.4 billion, and innovative funding tools be used to reinforce civil society participation and capacity. 50% of the different strands should be earmarked for civil society organisations, and funding for litigation in support of civil society organisations defending fundamental rights be supported. Synergies should be found with programmes supporting media freedom.
The EESC welcomes the new funds, very different to each other, that will give continuity to the work undertaken, and approves of the increase in their financial allocation. Equal treatment and anti-discrimination policies represent the pillars of European policies, including those concerning the integration of third-country nationals. The removal of the word "integration" from the title is worrying, as this could be seen as reflecting diminishing concern for this aspect. The Committee welcomes the importance given to flexibility in both funds, as this entails acknowledging the importance of better reflecting the needs of each Member States within the framework of joint action.
The EESC welcomes the proposal for economic corrective measures regarding Member States that commit serious violations of the rule of law in Europe, and recommends that the interdependence between democracy, fundamental rights and the rule of law is better reflected. The Commission should develop further channels for debate on Article 2 TEU values, and should include the EESC in this work. The EESC reiterates its call for the creation of a system of regular and independent monitoring of the implementation of these values in the Member States.
Composition of the study group.
Administrator in charge: Ms. Sara Nanino | Assistant in charge: Ms. Carlotta Isabella Iapichino
On the basis of an analysis of the main trends in world trade, the opinion will explore what developments would be desirable in the WTO's organisation and mission.
This opinion would fit in with the objective of "addressing the challenges of globalisation" and provide civil society's contribution to an appropriate reform of the WTO: proposals concerning governance, the decision-making process, the DSB, consideration of investments, trade in services, data protection and intellectual property.
The EESC welcomes the Third Mobility Package, however, it notes that the Commission's proposal is limited almost exclusively to road transport. In order to develop effectively sustainable and safe mobility, a more ambitious project needs to be developed, taking all available forms of transport into consideration, with a particular focus on intermodality in freight and passenger transport.
The opinion pleads for an holistic approach to reconcile growth, climate, environmental challenges and societal problems in a fair transition design.
It underlines that Europe's renaissance ( rEUnaissance) means a fully fledged master plan for European industry, mainstreaming industrial policy across all EU policies, enabling industry to transform and generating industrial added value through creativity and smart design, social innovation and fostering new sustainable and inclusive industrial models.