With our eyes now on the major challenges of 2019, CEEP intends to build up on the achievements of the past 12 months in order to ensure that employers and providers of public services and SGIs are duly heard in the policy-making at EU level.
The debates and discussions held in 2017 on the Future of Europe have started to be translated into acts and decisions with the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) 2021-2027. Relying on the success of the past legislative term, such as the focus on investment, the MFF 2021-2027 should be the main tool to bring to life the political priorities of the EU, ensuring its continuity and further emphasising the EU added-value. Seen its successes over the past decades, securing funding of the Cohesion policy should remain one of the great priorities in these discussions. Another priority should be the reinforcement of the Social Window of the EU Invest, building up on CEEP and the High-Level Task Force ‘Investing in Social Infrastructure in Europe’ calls.
Important milestones are now awaiting us in 2019. The European elections, from 23 to 26 May 2019, will be the most followed by the EU. But the “Brexit cut-off date” (29 March 2019), the Sibiu Summit (on 9 May 2019) and the June meeting of the European Council (28 June 2019), where the Strategic Agenda highlighting the overarching priorities for the EU will be discussed, will also be important opportunities for CEEP to play its role, and make sure that providers of public services and SGIs are integral parts of the EU project.
Those moments will be perfect occasions for CEEP to highlight its key priorities and messages for the period 2019-2024. Approved by CEEP statutory bodies in June 2018, those priorities are compiled in a 4-pager booklet. Based on the importance role of our members in implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the digitalisation challenge, it highlights 5 specific calls, with a central role for setting up a fair and predictable level-playing field for SGIs.
Another pillar for CEEP in 2019 will be to bring to life the Social Partners’ Work Programme 2019-2021, which was approved by CEEP General Assembly on 12 December, and its focus on Digitalisation, performance of labour markets and social systems, psycho-social risks, skills, circular economy and capacity-building for social dialogue.
There is little doubt that 2019 will be a pivotal year for the future of the European project. The likely conclusion of the Brexit process, and the beginning of the project of the EU27, together with the entry into a new legislative cycle, will provide opportunities to positively contribute, both at European level and with the Member States.
In the meanwhile, enjoy your reading, and best wishes for the festive season!