Fabian Demicoli

Gzech Presidency Priorities

 GRTU participated to the presentation of the Priorities and work programme of the new Czech Presidency. High on the Agenda was the financial crises which the Czech Presidency seems committed to find a solution. This item fell under one of the tree ‘E's outlined by the Presidency as Priorities: Economy, Energy, EU in the World.

Under Economy what was also mentioned was reinforcing competitiveness, applying internal market freedoms and improving the regulatory environment.

Their commitment on Energy reflects the trend evolving into a time bomb which if not addressed immediately will explode. The Presidency mentioned ensuring secure and competitive energy, the development of an internal electricity and gas market and climate protection.

Under the third priority the development of cooperation and enforcement relations with Eastern countries, the accession to the European Union of Croatia while the negotiations of Turkey are to continue and emphasis on the transatlantic relations.

The questions directed from the floor were quite similar mostly focusing on environment and illegal immigration. On both subjects the spokesman of the Ambassador of the Czech Republic explained that they will be continuing the very good work done by the French Presidency.

He was not however certain on how to answer to the Director General of GRTU's comment. Vincent Farrugia concentrated on the case of small economies. He said he is please the Presidency is held by a small economy so maybe small economies will start to be given priority. Mr Farrugia mentioned the new Stimulus Package, which like the Stability and Growth Pact is a good initiative however fell short of addressing the specificities of a small economy.

Small economies, Mr Farrugia explained, are effected more drastically then larger ones in economic change. Mr Farrugia asked whether, being themselves a small economy, they have in their priorities programmes that will give small economies a front seat when drafting legislation and packages.

The Czech representative admitted he was not prepared for this question and he would have to discuss it before giving an answer.

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