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.
The EESC is of the opinion that persisting imbalances as well as the creation of trust and confidence across Europe require more effective and democratic economic governance, notably in the Eurozone.
The EESC realises that decisive steps cannot be taken overnight, but at the same time Europe cannot afford to put decisions off for years. To that end concrete steps can be undertaken within the framework of the current Treaty and rules. In the medium-long term a revision of the Treaty should bring the institutional provisions in line with the indispensable requirements of a real economic and political Union.
It has become clear that the current system of rules underpinning the EU, and particularly the euro area, has created confusion on the legal, institutional and democratic fronts. A new approach is therefore needed. The Committee deems it essential to deepen the process of integrating the euro area.
With this in mind, the Committee would like to present a roadmap comprising the following steps:
Stable Eurogroup president;
Making the Interparliamentary Conference operational;
euro area (EP Grand Committee).
EMU Legislative Affairs Council;
Voting by euro area parliamentarians on matters of EMU competence;
An EMU executive;
Strengthening the powers and remit of the Interparliamentary Conference.
Strengthening the powers of the EP with regard to EMU and the creation of real European political parties;
Chamber of the States;
Separation between legislative and executive powers;
Abolition of unanimous voting.
The following initiatives should be taken to prepare for and implement the steps set out above:
Civil society conference;
EP proposals for action without Treaty change and for a revision of the Lisbon Treaty;
Potential evaluation of option of pan-European referendum.
(See tables in the text of the opinion.)
Preparing for Next Steps on Better Economic Governance in the Euro Area - presentation by Baudouin Regout (European commission)
Completing Political Union: How the Euro-Union could work - presentation by Ulrike Guérot (The European Democracy Lab, European School of Governance, Berlin)