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.
Traditionally based on the common values of democracy and the rule of law, the relations with our North-American partners are strategic for the European Union.
Some basic dossiers the EU is dealing with are also a matter of international cooperation, which is easier to attain with like-minded allies like the United States of America and Canada, with whom we share a common vision of the world.
The urgency of limiting global warming and of creating a new economic order to help post-covid-19 recovery rank high in both the European and the American agendas, and can be efficiently promoted only if we take a common position that will set an example for other global players.
This is particularly true now that the US is back in the international arena, with on the one hand its return to the Paris Agreement and the decision to re-join UNESCO, on the other hand recent initiatives like the retreat from Afghanistan that have raised some perplexity on the European side. It is important to step-up dialogue and collaboration, from the Western role in the world to the solution of technological and trade disputes for the benefit of our economies.
The External Relations section of the EESC has put the strengthening of transatlantic cooperation at the centre of its meeting of 17 November 2021. The section will:
Discuss an own-initiative opinion on A strong transatlantic partnership based on the common values of democracy and the rule of law, key in tackling global challenges and preserving the international order (REX/534)
Hold a debate in two panels, with the following topics:
Strengthening transatlantic cooperation ahead of the Summit for Democracy on 9-10 December 2021 - main theme will be the importance of the Summit for the renewal of a strong transatlantic partnership in a global context;
Transatlantic dialogue in the framework of the EU-US Trade and Technology Council (TTC) - main theme will be the EU-US Trade and Technology Council and the role of the civil society in its work.
The REX members will discuss these issues with prominent members of civil society and also important institutional guests like Ms Uzra Zeya, United States Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, MEP Benoît Lutgen, member of the Delegation for relations with the United States, and MEP Danuta Maria Hübner, shadow rapporteur on US relations.