SME Chamber

50 Years of EESC: look into the past for future inspiration

 50 years after the creation of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), current EU leaders, former EESC presidents and young Europeans from different European countries, gathered up in Brussels for a commemorative plenary session to celebrate its birthday. This special plenary session included a discussion of young Europeans and EESC members on the challenges facing the European Union and the EESC.


The plenary session was opened by EESC President Dimitris Dimitriadis, who stressed that in the past 50 years, the EESC has played an important role of the bridge between European institutions and organised civil society providing a visible and tangible contribution to the European Union's legislative process. He ensured that the EESC will continue to work closer with the EU institutions and European citizens.  One of the main EESC challenges is to reinforce the Committee's presence in the debate on the future of Europe regarding the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon and to make the EESC works more transparent and more available for citizens.

In his key address, Mr Hans-Gert Pöttering, President of the European Parliament highlighted the great added value of the EESC opinions and a major repository of expertise of the EESC members based on the local experience. He underlined the importance of the solidarity in achieving European goals and the social dialogue at the European level. 'Common task is to build common future', stressed Mr Pöttering.

Youth Declaration: "The EESC and the future of the EU project: the youth perspective"

In the second part of the plenary session, EESC members and young Europeans (members of the European Youth Forum and EESC trainees) discussed the Youth Declaration, document containing a vision for the future of the EU and the EESC projects. Young people called for the EU and the EESC to concentrate on a number of issues. These include: globalization, population ageing, climate changes, sustainable development, and gender equality. They also called for reinforcing participatory democracy in a stronger partnership between all stakeholders in European governance. 'It is only by fostering synergies between stakeholders and political bodies that we can respond to the perceived democratic deficit and thus help to encourage Europeans to take ownership of the EU project', concludes the document.

GRTU would like to congratulate EESC on this important occasion. GRTU is a very active member of EESC through our energetic and capable representative  Sylvia Gauci, who sits on the INT, REX and NAT Sections, and has an important her role in INSULAIR and drafted an important paper on WEEE directive.





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