Friday 26 May 2017

Monitoring the European Commission’s progress

The member states, who own the European Union, have designed a structural underachiever, including in the area hailed as the greatest success story of the EU: the internal market (single market). Se the blog entry Sisyphean internal market.  

Perhaps no Celestial City is in sight, but it is still important to see the strategically based progress of the Juncker Commission.

Call for action 2016

A year ago, the Commission called for swift action regarding various proposals pertaining to the Single Market Strategy, the Action Plan on Building the Capital Markets Union (CMU) and the Digital Single Market Strategy:

Delivering the Single Market Agenda for Jobs, Growth and Investment; Brussels, 1.6.2016 COM(2016) 361 final

Annexes [to the Communication]; Brussels, 1.6.2016 COM(2016) 361 final ANNEXES 1 to 2

A year on, I wanted to highlight this communication as a clearly written document on two of the Commission’s priority areas and the important CMU project.

Legislative priorities 2017

In addition to building the Single Market, the Capital Markets Union and the Digital Single Market, the Energy Union and the Economic and Monetary Union are among the priorities worth watching, if we are interested in the agenda for jobs, growth and investment.

The Joint Declaration on the EU’s legislative priorities 2017, the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission decided to give priority treatment to legislative proposals under six headings:

  1. Giving a new boost to jobs, growth and investment
  2. Addressing the social dimension of the European Union
  3. Better protecting the security of our citizens
  4. Reforming our migration policy in a spirit of responsibility and solidarity
  5. Delivering on our commitment to implement a connected Digital Single Market
  6. Delivering on our objective of an ambitious Energy Union and a forward looking climate change policy

The individual and clearly referenced proposals are on offer in the Working document to facilitate the the monitoring and tracking of the follow-up annexed to the Joint Declaration on the EU’s legislative priorities for 2017 (both documents dated 13 December 2016).

Legislative Train Schedule update

The European Parliament offers a monitoring tool, for some metaphorical reason called the Legislative Train Schedule, built around the ten political guidelines (priorities) of the Juncker Commission (2014). Last updated in March 2017, the schedule offers general information about a priority area, as well as more detail about individual initiatives or proposals.

In addition to the screen version (with links and further links), there is also a  print version (pdf) to read or download for each of the ten Commission priorities, generally. Each offers something in the range of a hundred pages.

However, the fourth policy priority, a deeper and fairer internal market with a strengthened industrial base, has been divided in a corresponding manner into five sub-groups, each with its own print version: products, services including transport, financial services, labour and taxation.  
In other words, we find the proposals sorted under the headlines of the priorities of the European Commission, with the internal market modification mentioned:

1. A New Boost for Jobs, Growth and Investment
2. A Connected Digital Single Market
3. A Resilient Energy Union with a Forward-Looking Climate Change Policy
4. A Deeper and Fairer Internal Market with a Strengthened Industrial Base
4 A. Products
4 B. Services including Transport
4 C. Financial services
4 D. Labour
4 E. Taxation
5. A Deeper and Fairer Economic and Monetary Union
6. A Reasonable and Balanced Free Trade Agreement with the U.S.
7. An Area of Justice and Fundamental Rights Based on Mutual Trust
8. Towards a New Policy on Migration
9. A Stronger Global Actor
10. A Union of Democratic Change  

Mid-term reviews

The Juncker Commission, appointed for the period from 1 November 2014 to 31 October 2019, is at mid-term right now. Midway invites everyone to evaluate progress and the Commission to set the sights for the remainder of the mandate.

This means that in various policy areas conducive to investment, economic growth and new jobs, assessments and reviews are taking place.

In addition to the Single Market, the Capital Markets Union and the Digital Single Market, the Energy Union and the Economic and Monetary Union are among Commission priorities to watch.

Ralf Grahn

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