28 February 2017

What kind of Europe do we want?

The 25th March 2017 will mark an important moment for Europe, with the 60th anniversary of the European Union. EU heads of state or government will meet in Rome to celebrate, but also as an opportunity to reflect, listen and forge a new path for Europe. On the occasion they are also expected to adopt a declaration.

Ahead of the Rome, the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker therefore released a White Paper on the Future of Europe, covering reflections on the main challenges and opportunities for Europe in the next decade. The White Paper sets out five possible scenarios for the European Union to move forward: (1) carrying on; (2) nothing but the Single Market; (3) those who want to do more; (4) doing less more efficiently; and (5) doing much more together. Here you can read a brief summary of the scenarios. 

 

But do these scenarios include the protection of the “European values” and focus on sustainable development for Europe? Check out various responses from European CSOs after the White Paper was released: 

  • The common statement drafted on the initiative of WWF, ETUC, CONCORD, European Movement International, European Women’s Lobby and European Youth Forum which calls the EU leaders to show vision and courage to set Europe on the path to a sustainable future which realises the rights of all people and respects planetary boundaries.
  • The Social Platform warns EU and national decision-makers against jeopardising social rights and presented its recommendations.
  • A number of international organizations invite others to co-sign an open letter to the Heads of State and Government to promote the role of Europe as the world’s SDGs frontrunner.
  • The International Conference “Europe Ambition 2030 - Make Europe the world leader of sustainable development: a unique opportunity to build a stronger European Union” which will take place on the 23rd March, just before the Rome Summit, aims to  discuss the launch of a new vision for Europe based on the values and objectives of the 2030 Agenda. Registration for the Conference is still open.