The Committee of the Regions adopted today a resolution on its priorities for the European Commission Work Programme 2018, which takes on board a series of key PES requests. The CoR's resolution should now feed the European Parliament's input to the Commission Work Programme which will be presented in the autumn.
An adopted PES amendment stresses that the CoR opposes any scenario for the EU27 – such as those presented in the Commission's White Paper on the Future of Europe - which would scale down the EU's efforts in relation to cohesion policy.
The CoR expects that the proposal on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) post-2020, which the Commission is due to present before the end of 2017, includes a reform of the EU's own resources.
The CoR also calls on the Commission to present a refined Connecting Europe Facility(CEF) post-2020 proposal, which would encourage initiatives to implement the comprehensive network and link up the TEN-T network in border regions (draft opinion by PES member Ximo Puig, Spain).
In the field of social policy, the resolution reiterates the CoR's call for strengthening the social dimension of the EU and of the Economic and Monetary Union and takes up the call for a European agenda on housing (draft CoR opinion by PES member Hicham Imane, Belgium).
It also advocates further simplification of state aid rules, specifically regarding Services of General Economic Interest (SGEI) through a substantial review of the relevant Decision and Framework ("Almunia package"). Likewise, an adopted PES amendment stresses the need for the Commission to assess the impact of the ESA 2010 rules on the ability of local and regional authorities to invest and to provide clarification over the treatment of public-private partnerships under Eurostat rules.
Moreover, the CoR urges the Commission to come up with proposals aimed at safeguarding the rights of service providers and consumers in new forms of employment specific to the sharing/collaborative economy (CoR opinion by PES member Benedetta Brighenti, Italy).
Finally, in the field of migration and asylum policy, the CoR calls for legislative measures which put in place additional legal pathways for people to come to the EU - whether to seek international protection, humanitarian shelter or work, education, research or investment opportunities.