In order to reshape the European economy and in line with the objectives stated by the European Commission for a more sustainable, greener and digitalised economy, investments must support environmental goals and remove obstacles to corporate dividend policymaking and payments. Among many other factors, the debt-equity bias in the corporate tax systems affects both the leverage of firms and corporate governance. The EESC welcomes the recent public consultation on a new initiative to mitigate the debt-equity bias in corporate taxation launched by the European Commission and shares the Commission's view that companies should contribute to the achievement of a greener, sustainable and digitalised economy.
In the context of the own-initiative opinion on Volunteers – Citizens building the future of Europe, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is organising a remote public hearing on Monday 20 September 2021. The aim of the hearing is to gather the points of view of social partners and other civil society organisations, experts and coordinators of projects related to volunteering, on the topic, and to hold a discussion on the impact of civil society trends for volunteering and the current state of play of volunteering at European level.
The EESC is organising this online public hearing to discuss the impacts of the environmental degradation on the fulfilment of the fundamental human rights. It will explore how recent shifts in the legal systems, the regulatory frameworks as well as the recent developments in climate litigation can leverage an achievement of environmental protection for citizens.
With the European Green Deal and the objective to achieve climate neutrality by 2050, the EU and its Member States have assumed a leading role in global climate action. The Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) is one step in the process. As part of the "Fit for 55" legislative package, it sets a carbon price on certain goods that are imported from non-EU countries.
To feed into the EESC opinion, this remote public hearing will bring together speakers and participants from organised civil society, business associations, think tanks, as well as EU institutions to discuss the future design and implementation of CBAM.
The EESC is organising an online public hearing to gather stakeholders' and civil society's views on the new EU Forest Strategy for 2030, which will feed into the preparation of the EESC opinion on this topic.
Since 1984, the European Parliament has called for a Statute for a European association. EU institutions are increasingly recognising the social, economic and civic impact of European association networks and national NGOs in the current difficult context with rising social tensions and polarisation. In addition, the EU institutions are also concerned about the shrinking civic space in Europe.
To feed into the opinion, a remote public hearing will gather the institutional and civil society views on the proposal and possibly collect ideas to make it stronger.
In the framework of the additional opinion on "The Annual Sustainable Growth Strategy 2021", the European Semester Group of the ECO section will organise a public hearing to discuss semester related developments since the original opinion was adopted in February 2021. The event will focus on the implementation of the National Recovery and Resilience Plans (NRRPs) and collect views of various organisations, national Economic and Social Councils, EU bodies and think tanks on the topic. With this opinion the EESC aspires to contribute to the 2022 European Semester cycle and this hearing is part of a stock taking and forward looking exercise from a civil society perspective.
On 6 September 2021, the EESC's Labour Market Observatory will hold a remote public hearing on collective bargaining practices in Member States with a low labour union participation rate.
To prepare its own-initiative opinion "Emergency measures to support employment and income during the pandemic crisis", the EESC is organising a public hearing on 15 July 2021 am. to gather input from other EU institutions, national authorities, social partners, civil society and experts.
We will debate the following questions:
- What lessons can be drawn from the implementation of SURE and other emergency measures in recent months?
- To what extend are SURE and other emergency measures to support unemployment benefit schemes part of the RRP in the short and medium term and which groups have benefited from them?
- Are there any best practices to be shared and what challenges should be addressed?
The EESC and the European Rural Parliament (“the voice of rural people in Europe”) are organising this public hearing to explore ways to achieve sustainability and prosperity through new ways of cooperation between rural and urban areas.