Piorities: Economic strategy and financial framework
By Eric van Puyvelde | Friday 22 June 2012
Growth measures, ongoing fiscal consolidation and the eurozone crisis will be at the centre of the economic policy discussions by the 27 heads of state and government at the European Council, on 28-29 June in Brussels.
The agenda presented by European Council President Herman Van Rompuy states that the European Council will set “orientations to boost growth and jobs in the short and medium term in the context of ongoing smart consolidation efforts”. As part of the ‘European semester’ exercise, the Council will approve the country-specific recommendations (structural reforms, employment and budgets). Based on the 23 June Ecofin Council debates, it is expected to agree on a “programme for growth”. Van Rompuy will also present his report on deepening Economic and Monetary Union, drawn up in cooperation with the presidents of the Commission, the Eurogroup and the European Central Bank.
Most importantly, though, the summit will adopt a “compact for growth and jobs,” which according to the draft conclusions encompasses “action to be taken at the level of the member states with the aim of relaunching growth, investment and employment as well as making Europe more competitive”.
In the section on action by member states, the compact, which is annexed to the conclusions, mentions fiscal consolidation, restructuring of the banking sector, reforms (opening up network industries, promoting the digital economy, etc), youth employment and combating poverty, as well as modernisation of pubic administrations.
The section on the EU’s contribution concerns deepening of the single market, the digital single market by 2015, reduction of the regulatory burden, completion of the internal energy market by 2014, innovation, the patent (the text needs to be finalised on this item), financing of the economy (through an EIB capital increase, project bonds, the Structural Funds and the European Investment Fund), the EU budget as a catalyst for growth, the contribution of tax policy, support for employment (especially for young people), the contribution of international trade and financial stability.
BUDGET, JHA AND EXTERNAL RELATIONS
The 27 will also take stock of progress achieved and the means by which the Union can enhance its trade and investment relations with its leading partners. The heads of state and government will also hold an in-depth discussion on the multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2014-2020, based on a negotiating box drawn up by the Presidency.
The Council will review the key justice and home affairs issues, including Schengen governance and asylum, as well as nuclear safety stress tests.
It will review the issues of the day in the field of foreign policy (including Syria and Iran).
The draft conclusions and the ‘growth compact’ are available at
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