The European Committee of the Regions adopted today a resolution on its priorities on the European Commission Work Programme 2020, which contains a clear PES footprint.
PES Group President Christophe Rouillon said: “We are glad to see that some key priorities of our political family are reflected in the European Commission’s work programme. Thanks to progressive proposals like the European Green Deal, we are on good track towards a fairer and more sustainable Europe. However, we expect the Commission to be more ambitious and make sure that everybody can benefit from the social, ecological and digital transitions.”
The resolution calls for an urgent agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), to ensure the timely launch of new cohesion policy programmes and to secure a budget of 1.3% GNI that allows delivering on the needs, expectations and concerns of the EU citizens.
The European Green Deal must be built on multi-level governance and ensure that no person or region is left behind. Cities and regions should therefore be involved in all European Green Deal legislation and initiatives, including the European Climate Law, the Circular Economy Action Plan, the Just Transition Mechanism and the Just Transition Fund.
Regarding the review of the EU economic governance, the resolution calls for improved fiscal rules by introducing a Golden rule for sustainable investments, including the funding earmarked with the Structural and Investment Funds needed to implement the Green Deal.
A stronger Social Europe is another key priority of the PES Group. In this respect, the resolution calls for swiftly implementing the Pillar of Social Rights, including establishing a fair minimum wages and a European Unemployment Reinsurance Scheme, reinforcing the Youth Guarantee and implementing the Child Guarantee.
Echoing the European Citizen's Initiative ‟Housing for All”, which is strongly supported by the PES Group, the resolution calls for a European agenda on housing, which should also cover aspects of state aid reform, the issue of rent regulation mechanisms and the crowding effect on the housing markets by digital platforms.
The PES Group also pushes for new initiatives to ensure a fair digital transition for all, including a more effective form of protection for platform workers, a Social Economy Action Plan, and a sustainable industry policy.
In the field of taxation, along the lines of the European Citizens' Initiative 'Fairosene', the resolution calls for a proposal for a revised energy taxation that removes subsidies for fossil fuels.
Regarding the greening of the Common Agriculture Policy, the resolution calls for more ambitious quantitative objectives on the reduction of chemical pesticides of at least 30% by 2030.
Finally yet importantly, in the area of migration and integration, the resolution calls for a new Migration and Asylum Pact as well as an Action Plan on Integration and Inclusion.
Photo credit: Unsplash/ Markus Spiske