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.
is pleased with the Commission's commitment to allot financial and human resources from EU funds to address wildlife trafficking;
highlights the significance of implementing effective and discouraging measures against wildlife trafficking, suggesting that the current level of sanctions proposed by the Council under the Environmental Crime Directive is insufficient and must be increased;
recommends the establishment of consistent structures in all Member States;
EESC plenary provides European platform for successful European Citizens' Initiatives.
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) gave the floor to the ''End the Cage Age'' European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) at its 23 January plenary, held in Brussels, providing a European level platform for it to express its goals and concerns about the welfare of farming animals.
Wildlife trafficking has become one of the most profitable criminal activities in the world due to strong demand and a low risk of detection. In spite of this, it still gets less attention than other types of crime and far fewer resources are invested in combating it. Therefore, in its opinion adopted at the July plenary, the EESC welcomes the Commission's proposal for an EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking. This crime is closely connected to other illegal activities of international criminal organisations, including money laundering and corruption. It also has a huge negative impact on the environment (loss of biodiversity, deforestation, potential extinction of several species, fish stock reduction) and health (contagion from new pathogens, infectious diseases).