Weekly European Agenda – 20 March 2017

Welcome to the Weekly European Agenda!  Thanks to our colleagues at European Movement International, each Monday we bring you a breakdown of the agendas of European Institutions for the upcoming week.

European Movement International

Saturday 25 March 

European Movement International in Rome
European Movement International will be marking the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome and using it as an opportunity to renew support and craft a way forward for our Union.  We will hold a political forum together with our members , gathering personalities from politics, civil society and culture and academia.  We want to create an open space where our members can share ideas about the future of Europe.  The debate will be followed by the March for Europe at 13.00 CET.

 

European Union

European Parliament

Monday 20 March

Joint Committee meeting (AFET, INTA)
In association with the Delegation for relations with the Maghreb countries and the Arab Maghreb Union; Impact and implementation of the European Court of Justice ruling Council vs Front Polisario on EU trade relations and cooperation with Morocco; Exchange of views with Jerzy Pomianowski, European Endowment For Democracy (EED) Executive Director on the presentation of the EED Annual Report; Exchange of views with Marwan Tashani, Founder of the Libyan Judge Association, on the current situation in Libya; Macro-financial assistance to the Republic of Moldova; Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council providing macro-financial assistance to the Republic of Moldova.

Committee on Development (DEVE)
Hearing on Aid Conditionality; Resilience as a strategic priority of the external action of the EU.

Committee on International Trade (INTA)
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the introduction of temporary autonomous trade measures for Ukraine supplementing the trade concessions available under the Association Agreement; Working document on Impact of international trade and the EU’s trade policies on global value chains.

Committee on Budgets (BUDG)
Draft opinion on the assessment of Horizon 2020 implementation in view of its interim evaluation and the Framework Programme 9 proposal; Estimates of revenue and expenditure for the financial year 2018 – Section I – European Parliament; Amending Regulation (EU, Euratom) laying down the multiannual financial framework for the years 2014-2020; Mobilisation of the Contingency Margin amending Decision; Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and the Council amending Decision on the mobilisation of the Contingency Margin.
 
Joint Committee meeting (BUDG, ECON)
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulations (EU) as regards the extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments as well as the introduction of technical enhancements for that Fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub.

Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)
Exchange of views with Jyrki Katainen, European Commission Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, on the Commission Ecodesign Working Plan 2016-2019;  Regulation on medical devices, and amending Directive, Regulations; Proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion on behalf of the EU of the Minamata Convention on Mercury; Objection pursuant to Rule 106: GM Maize products; Objection pursuant to Rule 106: Triton X-100; Inclusion of greenhouse gas emissions and removals from land use, land use change and forestry into the 2030 climate and energy framework and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and other information relevant to climate change.

Joint Committee meeting (ITRE, IMCO)
Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Online Platforms and the Digital Single Market – Opportunities and Challenges for Europe.

Committee on internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO)
Update on Trilogues and Events; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on cross-border parcel delivery services; Draft report/Draft recommendation – A longer lifetime for products: benefits for consumers and companies; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: EU eGovernment Action Plan 2016-2020 – Accelerating the digital transformation of government; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: A new skills agenda for Europe – Working together to strengthen human capital, employability and competitiveness; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down rules on the exercise of copyright and related rights applicable to certain online transmissions of broadcasting organisations and retransmissions of television and radio programmes; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States as regards the accessibility requirements for products and services.

Committee on regional Development (REGI)
Promoting cohesion and development in the Outermost Regions of the EU: the implementation of Article 349 TFEU; Exchange of views with Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President of the European Commission for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness.

Committee on Agricultural and Rural Development (AGRI)
Hearing on programme of the Public Hearing on Sustainable Plant Protection; Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Next steps for a sustainable European future European action for sustainability; Presentation by the Rapporteur on the state of play of the on-going trilogue negotiations; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on organic production and labelling of organic products, amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council and repealing Council Regulation (EC).

Committee on Constitutional Affairs (AFCO)
Hearing on “The development of a European Demos”.  Workshop on “Democratic Complementarity: Implementing the Treaty Provisions on National Parliaments”.  Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending in order to establish a European Deposit Insurance Scheme.

Tuesday 21 March

Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET)
Votes: Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and the Council amending Decision granting an EU guarantee to the European Investment Bank against losses under financing operations supporting investment projects outside the Union; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and  the Council amending Regulation establishing a Guarantee Fund for external actions; Conclusion of the Protocol to the Framework Agreement on Partnership and Cooperation between the EU & its Member States and Mongolia, to take account of the accession of the Republic of Croatia to the EU.
Exchange of views with Adam Shub, Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Mission to the EU.
Hearing on “EU-Latin American and Caribbean Relations.
Recommendation to the Council on the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing a Union Resettlement Framework and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation (EU) of the European Parliament and the Council of 11 March 2014 establishing an instrument contributing to stability and peace.

Joint Committee meeting (AFET, DEVE, BUDG)
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD) and establishing the EFSD Guarantee and the EFSD Guarantee Fund.

Committee on Development (DEVE)
Votes: Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation establishing a Guarantee Fund for external actions; EU guarantee to the European Investment Bank against losses under financing operations supporting investment projects outside the Union.
Draft report/recommendation – EU flagship initiative on the garment sector; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and  the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and amending Regulations of the European Parliament and the Council and Decision of the European Parliament and the Council; Addressing shrinking civil society space in developing countries; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending Directive as regards disclosure of income tax information by certain undertakings and branches; Possible impacts of Brexit on EU development and humanitarian aid policies; EU political relations with Latin America.

Committee on International Trade (INTA)
Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council providing macro-financial assistance to the Republic of Moldova.  Exchange of views on granting GSP+ to Sri Lanka.
Votes: Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation (EC, Euratom) establishing a Guarantee Fund for external actions.
Draft report/recommendation on the evaluation of external aspects of the customs performance and management as a tool to facilitate trade and fight illicit trade; Implementation of the Free Trade Agreement between the EU and the Republic of Korea;
Towards a new trade framework between the EU and Turkey and the modernisation of the Customs Union; Conclusion of the Agreement between the EU, Iceland, the Principality of Liechtenstein and the Kingdom of Norway on an EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021, the Agreement between the Kingdom of Norway and the EU on a Norwegian Financial Mechanism for the period 2014-2021, the Additional Protocol to the Agreement between the European Economic Community and the Kingdom of Norway and the Additional Protocol to the Agreement between the European Economic Community and Iceland.
Monitoring Groups Activities; Proposal for a Council decision on the accession of the European Union to the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC); State of Play of International Trade Negotiations.
Public hearing on dual-use reform: How to ‘future-proof’ EU export controls?

Committee on Budgets (BUDG)
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation (EC, Euratom) establishing a Guarantee Fund for external actions; Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and the Council amending Decision granting an EU guarantee to the European Investment Bank against losses under financing operations supporting investment projects outside the European Union; Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council providing macro-financial assistance to the Republic of Moldova; Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council on the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing a Union Resettlement Framework and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council; 2017 Budget: Other Sections Rapporteur: Indrek Tarand (Greens/EFA) – CoR: Establishment plan – Any other transfer request.

Joint Committee meeting (BUDG, CONT)
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and amending Regulations of the European Parliament and the Council and Decision of the European Parliament and the Council; Workshop on the Revision of the Financial Regulation – Towards an efficient and effective budget cycle.

Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON)
Economic Dialogue and exchange of views with Jeroen Dijsselbloem, President of the Eurogroup.

Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)
Votes: Objection pursuant to Rule 106: GM Maize products; Objection pursuant to Rule 106: Triton X-100; Position of the Council at first reading with a view to the adoption of a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on in vitro diagnostic medical devices and repealing Directive and European Commission Decision; Proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion on behalf of the EU of the Minamata Convention on Mercury; Draft report/recommendation – Implementation of the Mining Waste Directive; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council laying down management, conservation and control measures applicable in the Convention Area of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) and amending Council Regulations; Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and the Council amending Decision granting an EU guarantee to the European Investment Bank against losses under financing operations supporting investment projects outside the Union.
Presentation by the European Court of Auditors of the Special Report ‘Combating Food Waste: an opportunity for the EU to improve the resource-efficiency of the food supply chain’.
Exchange of views with the European Commission on REFIT of the Birds & Habitats Directives.
Draft opinion on the application of Directive of the European Parliament and the Council of 21 April 2004 on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage (the ‘ELD’).

Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO)
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council laying down rules on the making available on the market of CE marked fertilising products and amending Regulations (EC). 
Votes: Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on cooperation between national authorities responsible for the enforcement of consumer protection laws (Text with EEA relevance); Draft opinion – Fin Tech: the influence of technology on the future of the financial sector; Internet connectivity for growth, competitiveness and cohesion: European gigabit society and 5G.
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on addressing geo-blocking and other forms of discrimination based on customers’ nationality, place of residence or place of establishment within the internal market and amending Regulation and Directive; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: A European agenda for the collaborative economy.
Draft report/recommendation – The functioning of franchising in the retail sector; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on certain aspects concerning contracts for the online and other distance sales of goods.
Public hearing on proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Electronic Communications Code (Recast); Draft report/recommendation – European standards for the 21st Century; Amendment – European standards – implementation of Regulation.

Committee on Regional Development (REGI)
Votes: Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation as regards specific measures to provide additional assistance to Member States affected by natural disasters; Draft report/recommendation – The right funding mix for Europe’s regions: balancing financial instruments and grants in EU cohesion policy; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulations as regards the extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments as well as the introduction of technical enhancements for that Fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub; Draft opinion – Assessment of Horizon 2020 implementation in view of its interim evaluation and the Framework Programme 9 proposal; Draft opinion – Internet connectivity for growth, competitiveness and cohesion: European gigabit society and 5G; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Regulations as regards the promotion of Internet connectivity in local communities.
Building blocks for a post-2020 EU cohesion policy.
Draft report/recommendation – Building blocks for a post-2020 EU cohesion policy; Draft report/recommendation – Future perspectives for Technical Assistance in Cohesion Policy; Increasing engagement of partners and visibility in the performance of European Structural and Investment Funds; Approval of coordinators’ decisions.

Committee on Agricultural and Rural Development (AGRI)
Votes: Initiative on resource efficiency: reducing food waste, improving food safety; State of play of farmland concentration in the EU: how to facilitate the access to land for farmers; European Commission Delegated Regulation amending Delegated Regulation as regards the control measures relating to the cultivation of hemp, certain provisions on the greening payment, the payment for young farmers in control of a legal person, the calculation of the per unit amount in the framework of voluntary coupled support, the fractions of payment entitlements and certain notification requirements relating to the single area payment scheme and the voluntary coupled support of the European Parliament and the Council.
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the inclusion of greenhouse gas emissions and removals from land use, land use change and forestry into the 2030 climate and energy framework and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and other information relevant to climate change; Coordinators’ meeting.
 Study requested by the AGRI Committee, commissioned and managed by the Policy Department – ‘The EU Cattle Sector: Challenges and Opportunities – Milk and Meat’ – Presentation by Prof. Rico Ihle and Dr. Roel Jongeneel, Wageningen University, The Netherlands; Presentation by a European Commission representative (DG AGRI) on the agricultural component of ongoing and forthcoming trade negotiations; Approval of recommendations issued by AGRI Coordinators.

Committee on Constitutional Affairs (AFCO)
Workshop on the constitutional relationship of the UK with the EU: the consequences of the results of the Brexit referendum.
Votes: Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation in order to establish a European Deposit Insurance Scheme.
Draft report/recommendation – Transparency, accountability and integrity in the EU Institutions.

Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender equality (FEMM)
With the Council and European Commission; Programme Workshop – ‘Grassroots of the Istanbul Convention: experiences shared on collection of data on violence against women’; Malta mission report 2017; Visit of Laurence Rossignol, French Minister for Families, Children and Women’s Rights.

Wednesday 22 March

Joint Committee meeting (AFET, CULT)
Draft report/recommendation on joint communication to the European Parliament and the Council: Towards an EU strategy for international cultural relations.

Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON)
Public Hearing on Framework for the recovery and resolution of central counterparties.
Exchange of views with Werner Hoyer, President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Chairman of its Board of Directors.
Structured Dialogue with Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition.
Votes: Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on establishing a programme to support specific activities enhancing the involvement of consumers and other financial services end-users in EU policy making in the field of financial services 2017-2020; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation establishing a programme to support specific activities in the field of financial reporting and auditing 2014-20; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation on European venture capital funds and Regulation on European social entrepreneurship funds: Draft report/recommendation – Annual Report on the Financial Activities of the EIB.
Public Hearing with Elke König, Chairperson of the Single Resolution Board (SRB).

Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL)
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing a European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) and repealing Regulation (EEC); Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), and repealing Council Regulation (EC); Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Foundation for the improvement of living and working conditions (Eurofound), and repealing Council Regulation; Draft report/recommendation – Working conditions and precarious employment; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly skilled employment; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council laying down standards for the reception of applicants for international protection; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on standards for the qualification of third-country nationals or stateless persons as beneficiaries of international protection, for a uniform status for refugees or for persons eligible for subsidiary protection and for the content of the protection granted and amending Council Directive of 25 November 2003 concerning the status of third-country nationals who are long-term residents.
Votes: Adoption of opinion(s) in letter form on EGF application(s); European Solidarity Corps Initiative; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States as regards the accessibility requirements for products and services; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: A European agenda for the collaborative economy; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the European Council amending Regulation  of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European statistical programme 2013-17, by extending it to 2018-2020; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the European Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Digitising European Industry – Reaping the full benefits of a Digital Single Market.
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and amending Regulations of the European Parliament and the Council and Decision of the European Parliament and the Council.

Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE)
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the inclusion of greenhouse gas emissions and removals from land use, land use change and forestry into the 2030 climate and energy framework and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and other information relevant to climate change; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on copyright in the Digital Single Market.
Votes: Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council on the participation of the EU in the Partnership for Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area (PRIMA) jointly undertaken by several Member States; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on binding annual greenhouse gas emission reductions by Member States from 2021 to 2030 for a resilient Energy Union and to meet commitments under the Paris Agreement and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and other information relevant to climate change; Draft opinion – European standards – implementation of Regulation; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: A European agenda for the collaborative economy.
Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Electronic Communications Code (Recast); Draft report/recommendation – Internet connectivity for growth, competitiveness and cohesion: European gigabit society and 5G; ITRE mission to the 11th Meeting of Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Mexico (6-8 December 2016).
Public hearing on ‘Clean energy for all Europeans’.

Joint Committee meeting (IMCO, JURI)
Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on certain aspects concerning contracts for the supply of digital content.

Committee on Transport and Tourism (TRAN)
Scrutiny: Presentation by DG MOVE of Proposal for a Council decision on the position to be taken by the EU within the EU-ICAO Joint Committee on Air Traffic Management.
Joint debate: Draft opinion on Implementation of the European Fund for Strategic Investments; Extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments as well as the introduction of technical enhancements for that Fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub; Tourism Task Force; Presentation by the European Commission, EUROSTAT: Report on European statistics on tourism; Discussion on European Visa and Tourism.
Hearing on ‘A European strategy for low-emission mobility’ – Programme of the hearing on ‘A European strategy for low-emission mobility’; Approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States as regards the accessibility requirements for products and services; Feedback on trilogues (in camera).

Committee on Fisheries (PECH)
Votes: The management of the fishing fleets in the Outermost Regions; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and amending regulations of the European Parliament and the Council and Decision of the European Parliament and the Council.
Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on establishing a multi-annual plan for demersal stocks in the North Sea and the fisheries exploiting those stocks and repealing Council Regulation and Council Regulation; Adopted opinion – The role of fisheries-related tourism in the diversification of fisheries.
Hearing – Hearing on Natura 2000; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Space Strategy for Europe.

Committee on Culture and Education (CULT)
Votes: European Solidarity Corps; The implementation of the European Fund for Strategic Investments.
Proposal for a Council Directive amending Directive as regards rates of VAT applied to books, newspapers and periodicals; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Next steps for a sustainable European future European action for sustainability; Legitimate measures to protect whistle-blowers acting in the public interest when disclosing the confidential information of companies and public bodies.
Exchange of views on PISA 2015 and education evaluation – Draft programme; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Electronic Communications Code (Recast); Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications.

Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI)
Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on certain aspects concerning contracts for the online and other distance sales of goods; Proposal for a Council Regulation on jurisdiction, the recognition and enforcement of decisions in matrimonial matters and the matters of parental responsibility, and on international child abduction (recast); The implementation of the Treaty provisions concerning national Parliaments; Cross border mergers and divisions; Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Online Platforms and the Digital Single Market – Opportunities and Challenges for Europe; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council laying down rules on the exercise of copyright and related rights applicable to certain online transmissions of broadcasting organisations and re-transmissions of television and radio programmes.
Verification of credentials (Rule 3); Disputes involving Parliament (Rule 141); Request for waiver of the immunity of António Marinho e Pinto; Request for waiver of the parliamentary immunity of Jean-Marie Le Pen; Presentation of the European Added Value Assessment on ‘Common minimum standards of civil procedure’, by Dr. T Evas, European Parliament Research Service, European Added Value Unit.
Study – Common minimum standards of civil procedure; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on copyright in the Digital Single Market; Proposal for a European Council decision on the conclusion, by the EU, of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence; Scrutiny of delegated acts and implementing measures; European Commission implementing regulation laying down detailed rules for implementing certain provisions of Council Regulation on the EU trade mark.

Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE)
EU agency for law enforcement training (Cepol).
Joint debate: FRONTEX – the European Border and Coast Guard Agency; Report from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council and the Council on the operationalisation of the European Border and Coast Guard; LIBE mission to Frontex (20-21 February 2017); Debate on democracy and justice in Romania further to the plenary decision of 1 February 2017.
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing a European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) and amending Regulations.
Modernisation of the Council of Europe Convention 108 (Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data).
Joint debate: Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulation as regards information exchange, early warning system and risk assessment procedure on new psychoactive substances: Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending Council Framework Decision of 25 October 2004 laying down minimum provisions on the constituent elements of criminal acts and penalties in the field of illicit drug trafficking, as regards the definition of the term ‘drug’; The Swiss Referendum and Freedom of Movement; Rule of Law in Poland – State of Play.

Wednesday 22 March-Friday 24 March

Interparliamentary meeting of the Chairpersons of the Committees on Social Affairs in Valetta, Malta
Introductory remarks by Hon. Anthony Agius Decelis, Chairman of the Social Affairs Committee; Speech by Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility.
Debate: Poverty and Social Exclusion: Working towards a more inclusive Europe; What makes an individual socially excluded? Different perspectives and exchange of best practices; Taking stock of the policies of Europe 2020 and the way forward.

Thursday 23 March

Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON)
Public Hearing with Danièle Nouy, Chair of the Supervisory Board of the European Central Bank.
Proposal for a Council Directive on Double Taxation Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in the EU.

Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL)
Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending Directive of the European Parliament and the Council of 16 December 1996 concerning the posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services.
Exchange of views with Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility.
Stocktaking of the Youth Guarantee and the Youth Employment Initiative.

Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (INTRE)
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the Governance of the Energy Union, amending Directives and Regulations; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending Directive on energy efficiency; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulations as regards the promotion of Internet connectivity in local communities; Assessment of Horizon 2020 implementation in view of its interim evaluation and the Framework Programme 9 proposal; Feedback from ongoing negotiations (SoS/Buzek).

Committee on Transport and Tourism (TRAN)
Votes: Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on binding annual greenhouse gas emission reductions by Member States from 2021 to 2030 for a resilient Energy Union and to meet commitments under the Paris Agreement and amending Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and other information relevant to climate change; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council amending Regulations as regards the extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments as well as the introduction of technical enhancements for that Fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub; Draft opinion on Implementation of the European Fund for Strategic Investments; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States as regards the accessibility requirements for products and services.
Scrutiny: Presentation by European Commission DG for Mobility and Transport of Report on the application of Regulation concerning rights of passengers in bus and coach transport; Exchange of views with TEN-T Coordinators Pat Cox, Carlo Secchi and Kurt Bodewig on ‘Boosting intelligent transport systems and innovative financing; facing decarbonisation’.

Committee on Fisheries (PECH)
Exchange of views with Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, on structured dialogue; Exchange of views with European Commission on Snow Crab Fisheries in the Svalbard Islands; Exchange of views with the European Commission on Western Baltic cod.  

Joint Committee meeting (CULT, EMPL)
Proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and the Council on a common framework for the provision of better services for skills and qualifications (Europass); Communication from the European Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: A new skills agenda for Europe – Working together to strengthen human capital, employability and competitiveness.

Committee on Culture and Education (CULT)
Exchange of views with the European Court of Auditors: Special report on EU education objectives; Special report on Youth Action Teams.
‘Minority Languages and Education: Best Practices and Pitfalls’ – presentation by the Policy Department and exchange of views.

Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI)
Hearing on the Unitary Patent: state of play.
Votes: Proposal for a Council decision on the ratification and accession by Member States, in the interest of the EU, to the Protocol of 2010 to the International Convention on Liability and Compensation for Damage in Connection with the Carriage of Hazardous and Noxious Substances by Sea, with the exception of the aspects related to judicial cooperation in civil matters; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on ensuring the cross-border portability of online content services in the internal market; Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the cross-border exchange between the EU and third countries of accessible format copies of certain works and other subject-matter protected by copyright and related rights for the benefit of persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on certain permitted uses of works and other subject-matter protected by copyright and related rights for the benefit of persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled and amending on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society; Draft report/recommendation – Protection of vulnerable adults; Report from the European Commission – Annual report 2014 on subsidiarity and proportionality; Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on addressing geo-blocking and other forms of discrimination based on customers’ nationality, place of residence or place of establishment within the internal market and amending Regulation and Directive; Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council relating to certain aspects of company law (codification); Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council setting up a regime for the control of exports, transfer, brokering, technical assistance and transit of dual-use items (recast).
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council adapting a number of legal acts in the area of Justice providing for the use of the regulatory procedure with scrutiny to Article 290 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union; Certain aspects of mediation in civil and commercial matters (The Mediation Directive); Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending of Directive of the European Parliament and the Council of 16 December 1996 concerning the posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services; Draft report/recommendation – Monitoring the application of EU law 2015; Draft report/recommendation – Limitation periods for traffic accidents; Presentation of the IP perception study by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).

Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE)
New Europol Regulation – Agreement regarding Denmark’s association with Europol after 1 May 2017; Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council laying down standards for the reception of applicants for international protection (recast); Europol’s European Migrant Smuggling Centre (EMSC) First year activity report (January 2016-January 2017); Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly skilled employment.
Votes: Adequacy of the protection afforded by the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield; Proposal for a Council decision on the application of the provisions of the Schengen acquis in the area of the Schengen Information System in the Republic of Croatia; Proposal for a Council implementing decision on the automated data exchange with regard to dactyloscopic data in Latvia, and replacing Decision; Proposal for a Council implementing decision on the automated data exchange with regard to DNA data in Slovakia, Portugal, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Cyprus, Poland, Sweden, Malta and Belgium.
First LIBE Security dialogue: Fifth progress report towards an effective and genuine Security Union.
Joint debate: Report from the European Commission to the European Parliament and the Council on the joint review of the implementation of the Agreement between the EU and the USA on the processing and transfer of Financial Messaging Data for the purposes of the Terrorist Finance Tracking Program; Report from the European Commission to the European Parliament and the Council on the joint review of the implementation of the Agreement between the EU and the USA on the processing and transfer of passenger name records.

Find the full Plenary agenda here. Find an overview of Committee agendas here

 

Council of Ministers

Monday 20 March

Informal meeting of Health Ministers
The Informal meeting will be an opportunity for Health Ministers to further shape the future health agenda on the prevention of childhood obesity, structured co-operation between health systems and HIV/AIDS for the benefit of EU citizens.

Eurogroup
Ministers will discuss implementation of euro area Member States’ draft budgetary plans for 2017 and the budgetary situation in the euro area as a whole, taking into account the economic outlook presented by the European Commission in its 2017 Winter Forecast, published on 13 February.  The Eurogroup will continue its thematic discussion on the euro area Member States’ pension systems.  Ministers will look into the possibility of introducing benchmarking in this policy area, and will discuss the choice of indicators and the frequency of reporting.  The discussion will be based on a recent analysis by the European Commission.  The Eurogroup will discuss developments regarding the second review of Greece’s macroeconomic adjustment programme since the last Eurogroup meeting in February.  The institutions (European Commission, European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund and European Stability Mechanism) and the Greek Minister for Finance, Euclid Tsakalotos, are expected to report on the progress achieved towards concluding a staff-level agreement on the required policy reforms.  The Eurogroup will exchange views on the euro area Member States’ reporting on their annual debt issuance plans.

Tuesday 21 March

Economic and Financial Affairs Council
Agenda: The Council will debate a proposal to amend the EU VAT directive in order to allow electronic publications, such as electronic books, newspapers and periodicals, to benefit from reduced VAT rates, along the same lines as physical publications.  The Council will debate a proposal for a VAT reverse charge mechanism which aims to contribute to the prevention of VAT fraud.  The Council will discuss the country reports, which present an analysis of each Member State’s economic situation, the necessary structural reforms and progress achieved in implementing the recommendations made by the Council in 2016.  The Council will adopt, without discussion, a recommendation on the economic policies of the euro area for 2017.  The Council will discuss the outcomes of a G20 meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors which takes place in Baden-Baden (Germany) on 17-18 March 2017.  The Council Presidency will inform Ministers about current legislative proposals on financial services, and the European Commission will brief them on the implementation of financial services legislation and on the defence action plan, with a particular focus on the European defence fund.

Saturday 25 March

60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome
EU leaders will meet in Rome, Italy on 25 March, for the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome.  On this occasion they are expected to adopt a Rome Declaration.
Agenda: Audience of EU leaders with Pope Francis; Celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Romes; Ceremony of the signature of the Rome Declaration; Press conference of Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission and Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament, Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni and Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat; March for Europe 2017.

An overview of planned Council meetings can be found here.

 

European Commission

Monday 20 March

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, receives Pierre-René Lemas, Director-General of the Caisse des dépôts et consignations (CDC) and Dacian Cioloș, former Prime Minister of Romania and former European Commissioner.

Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition, receives Jeroen Dijsselbloem, President of the Eurogroup.

Tuesday 21 March

President Juncker and Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, receive Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, and Shinzō Abe, Prime Minister of Japan.

Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President responsible for Better Regulation, Inter-Institutional Relations, Rule of Law and Charter for Fundamental Rights, is in Berlin, Germany: meets Sigmar Gabriel, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany.

Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, is in Washington DC, the United States: meets members of the US administration and Congress.

Wednesday 22 March

College of Commissioners meeting
Single Market Strategy: Empowering the national competition authorities to be more effective enforcers; Capital Markets Union: Action Plan on retail financial services.

President Juncker participates in the inauguration of the monument in memory of the victims of the terrorist attacks in presence of Their Majesties King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of the Belgians, in Brussels.

President Juncker and Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, receive Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of Portugal.

Vice-President Timmermans receives Espen Barth Eide, Special Adviser of the United Nations Secretary-General on Cyprus.

Thursday 23 March

Digital Day 
Celebrating the Treaty of Rome and looking into our common digital future, the Digital Day will put Europe’s digital challenges and future in the spotlight.  It will explore the increasing role of digital in the daily life of Europeans.  Digital Day is the digital part of the official celebrations marking the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome.  The event is organised by the European Commission and the EC Representation in Italy – in cooperation with the Italian government and under the auspices of the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

President Juncker and Johannes Hahn, European Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, receive  Espen Barth Eide, Special Adviser of the United Nations Secretary-General on Cyprus.

Phil Hogan, European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, is in Zagreb, Croatia: meets Andrej Plenković, Prime Minister of Croatia.

Friday 24 March

President Juncker is in Rome, Italy: participates in a meeting with EU social partners; has an audience with Pope Francis in Vatican City together with EU leaders.

Vice-President Katainen is in Helsinki, Finland: is received by Sauli Niinistö, President of Finland; meets Mika Lintilä, Minister for Economic Affairs of Finland.

Saturday 25 March

President Juncker and High Representative Mogherini are in Rome, Italy: participate in the Summit of the EU27 in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Romes; and, together with EU27 EU leaders, attend a working lunch hosted Mr Sergio Mattarella, President of Italy.

A full list with meetings of Commissioners can be found here; Commission events can be found here.

 

European Economic and Social Committee

Tuesday 21 March

European Consumer Day 2017: The Digital Single Market: How does it benefit consumers? 
This annual event brings together consumers, policy-makers and IT experts not only to weigh in on the issues affecting digital consumers but also to shape the European dialogue about the Digital Single Market.  Recognising the importance of inclusiveness in today’s world, the conference will discuss the aspect of digital equality: is the internet in fact accessible to ALL European consumers?  The last panel will talk about geo-blocking – can a consumer in Rome buy the same products online as a consumer in Athens? – roaming charges – when I am on holiday in Europe will my calls cost the same as when I am home? – and Fintech – do emerging brand challengers in finance mean cheaper borrowing costs for consumers?

Wednesday 22 March

Balkan Employers Network Seminar in Ljubljana, Slovenia
The role of business and employers’ organisations in Europe, the process of EU accession for the Balkan countries and the place of social dialogue in those countries – these will be the topics discussed at the Balkan Employers Round Table.  It will be a unique opportunity for employers’ organisation representatives from the Balkan countries and EU Member States to engage in open discussion, exchange views and network to forge relations for the future.  The event is being held jointly by the Association of Employers of Slovenia and the European Economic and Social Committee’s Employers’ Group.

Thursday 23 March

Extraordinary Meeting Group III in Valetta, Malta
Group III will meet in St. Julian’s under the auspices of the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union to discuss the role and capacity of civil society organisations to voice citizens’ concerns and ensure that they are better supported by public authorities.  In the morning, the Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg will welcome the EESC members and representatives of Maltese civil society organisations, who will gather together to take stock of Malta’s major achievements during its membership of the European Union and pave the way for the challenges ahead. 

High-level conference on Improving the Regional Air Connectivity for Europe – a Precondition for Sustainable Economic Growth in Brussels, Belgium
The European Economic and Social Committee together with the Committee of Regions and the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union will jointly hold a high-level conference on ‘Improving Regional Air Connectivity for Europe – a Pre-condition for Sustainable Economic Growth’.  While in major hub airports connectivity is usually dependant mainly on increasing capacity, further development of regional connectivity in the EU depends on a number of factors such as airport infrastructure, airline business models, regulatory and economic frameworks and geography.  Conference participants will attempt to address these factors and provide concrete solutions to what should be done to improve regional air connectivity in a sustainable manner. This event is part of a series of follow up activities that the EESC has been undertaking in support of the implementation of the Aviation Strategy.

More information about EESC events can be found here.  The agendas of the different EESC meetings can be found here.

 

Committee of the Regions

Tuesday 21 March

Meeting of the Conference of Presidents of the European Committee of the Regions
Communication by the Markku Markkula, President of the European Committee of the Regions; Preparation of the March Bureau meeting and Plenary Session: Draft 2018 estimates of CoR revenue and expenditure (for debate); Reflecting on Europe (for debate).

Wednesday 22 March-Thursday 23 March

Plenary Session
Statement by the President; Statement by Vytenis Andriukaitis, European Commissioner for Health and Food Security; Debate with members; Towards a sustainable EU food policy that creates jobs and growth in Europe’s Regions and Cities; Integration, cooperation and performance of health systems; Statement by Michel Barnier, European Commission Chief Negotiator of the Task Force for the Preparation and Conduct of the Negotiations with the United Kingdom under Article 50 of the TEU; Debate with members; Reflecting on Europe; Smart Specialisation Strategies (RIS3): impact for regions and inter-regional cooperation; Resolution on the priorities of the Committee of the Regions for the 2018 Work Programme of the European Commission; Draft 2018 estimates of Committee of the Regions revenue and expenditure (for decision); Statement by Christos Stylianides, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid & Crisis Management; Debate with members; Action Plan on the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk.
Legislative proposals for an Effort-Sharing Regulation and a Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry Regulation (LULUCF); Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council; Resolution on the Rule of Law in the EU from a local and regional perspective; Resolution on the Implications for Local and Regional Government of the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU.

More information about Committee of the Regions events can be found here.  The agendas of the different Committee of the Regions meetings can be found here.

 

Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union

Monday 20 March-Thursday 23 March

European Youth Conference
The Youth Conference during the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union will focus on the third and concluding phase of the V cycle of the Structured Dialogue process ‘Ready for life, ready for society – Enabling all young people to engage in a diverse, connected and inclusive Europe’.  The Youth Conference will discuss and develop practical measures for implementing the recommendations resulting from the consultation of young people conducted during the Slovak Presidency of the Council of the EU and will also propose an implementation toolbox. 

The agenda of the Maltese Presidency can be found here.

 

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Tuesday 21 March-Wednesday 22 March

Conference explores societal security in Vienna, Austria
To explore the complex interplay between threats to European security, the measures put in place to address them, and changes in how society respond, SOURCE (link is external), the societal security network, is convening a conference in Vienna entitled Global Threats, Local Actors.  During the event, the Agency will deliver a keynote speech, drawing on findings from its research on surveillance by intelligence services and fundamental rights.  It will also give a presentation during a breakout session on harmonising security with human rights, and take part in a lunchtime policy meeting on biometrics and borders drawing on its research in this area.

Wednesday 22 March

Event on measuring the right to independent living in Geneva, Switzerland
The Agency is organising a public event on how to measure implementation of people with disabilities’ right to live independently.  The right is enshrined in the UN’s disability convention that has been ratified by the EU and 27 of its Member States.  The event will take place during the 17th session of the UN’s Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  During the event, the Agency will present preliminary results from its work on human rights indicators covering the right to live independently and be included in the community.  The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the European Disability Forum will also discuss different ways to measure rights implementation on the ground.

Information on upcoming FRA events can be found here. 

 

European Investment Bank

Monday 20 March

Conference on Investment and Investment Finance – The Austrian case
As part of a series of events organised to debate current trends in investment and investment finance at the national level in different EU Member States, the EIB is co-organising a half-day conference on ‘Investment and Investment Finance – The Austrian Case’ with the Austrian Central Bank.

Tuesday 21 March

Conference on Inclusive growth and competitiveness in Europe
The European Investment Bank together with Bruegel and the World Economic Forum are organising an event to launch the White Paper on inclusive growth and competitiveness in Europe.

Thursday 23 March

Conference on Infrastructure for the Human Touch
The European Investment Bank will host the conference Infrastructure for the Human Touch to discuss health and education sector issues with a special focus on infrastructure development and rehabilitation in Croatia and the neighbouring countries.

More information about EIB events can be found here

 

Council of Europe 

Monday 20 March-Tuesday 21 March

Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination in Paris, France
Protecting refugee women from gender-based violence; International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (21 March); Follow-up given to the resolutions adopted by the Assembly; Communication by Françoise Hetto-Gaasch (Luxembourg, EPP/CD) on the follow-up given to her
report on ‘Equality and shared parental responsibility: the role of fathers’; Appointment of representatives.
Meeting of the Sub-Committee on Gender Equality; Putting an end to sexual violence and harassment of women in the public space; Promoting diversity and equality in politics; Exchange of views on the replies received to the questionnaire sent by the rapporteur.
Promoting the human rights of and eliminating discrimination against intersex people; Current threats to women’s rights.

Wednesday 22 March – Thursday 23 March

Committee on Culture, Science, Education and Media in Paris, France
Technological convergence, artificial intelligence and human rights; The protection and promotion of Regional or Minority Languages in Europe; Cooperation between the Committee and the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe; Deliberate destruction and illegal trafficking of cultural heritage; Draft Convention of the Council of Europe on Offences relating to Cultural Property; References to the committee and appointment of rapporteurs; Replies from the Committee of Ministers.
Political influence over independent media and journalists; Media freedom as a condition for democratic elections.

Friday 24 March

Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development in Paris, France
Increased income inequalities are a threat to social cohesion; The need for a citizenship income; A European social commitment guaranteeing the rights of older people and their comprehensive care; The use of new genetic technologies in human beings; The employment rights of female workers from Eastern Europe; Changes in the Sub-Committees.

Find an overview of Council of Europe events here.  The Chairmanship agenda is here.

 

EU Member State Elections

Sunday 26 March

Bulgarian Parliamentary elections

 

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