Weekly European Agenda 7-13 March

Day-by-day

Monday 7 March

  • EU-Turkey Summit
  • Eurogroup
  • Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council
  • EP: Plenary Session
  • EP: AGRI
  • EC: Timmermans meets Schäuble
  • EC: Mogherini meets Yemen Foreign Affairs Minister Al Mekhlafi
  • EC: Georgieva receives an EIB Vice-President and former World Bank Vice-President
  • Presidency: Bologna Follow-up Group
  • PACE: Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights

Tuesday 8 March

  • Economic and Financial Affairs Council
  • EP: Plenary Session
  • EC: College of Commissioner in Strasbourg
  • EC: Juncker visits Portugal
  • EESC: Study Groups; Conference ‘The UK in the EU – What Matters to You’
  • FRA: at the Council fundamental rights working party
  • EIB: Seminar on the Role of Public Banks
  • CoE: Supervision of execution of judgments of the ECHR
  • PACE: Political Affairs Committee meeting
  • ECHR: 6 judgments

Wednesday 9 March

  • EP: Plenary Session
  • EC: Mogherini visits Argentina
  • EC: Mimica visits Cuba
  • EESC: Study Groups; Civil Society meeting on EU-Japan Cooperation
  • Presidency: Conference on the future of higher education; European Student Convention
  • PACE: Monitoring Committee
  • CoE Congress: Workshops in Armenia

Thursday 10 March

  • Justice and Home Affairs Council
  • EP: Plenary Session
  • EC: Juncker meets NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg
  • EC: Dombrovskis as the ECB Governing Council
  • EC: Malmström and Ansip in the USA
  • EESC: Study Groups; European Consumer Day 2016
  • Presidency: Launch of the ESFRI roadmap 2016
  • FRA: EU agencies’ communication heads meeting
  • ECHR: 9 judgments and/or decisions

Friday 11 March

  • Justice and Home Affairs Council
  • EC: Moscovici meets with Irina Bokova
  • EC: Commissioners in Slovenia, Lithuania, Poland.
  • EESC: Study Groups; Hearing on a sustainable European food system
  • PACE: Committee on Equality and Non-discrimination
  • Venice Commission: 106th Plenary Session

Sunday 13 March

  • Regional Elections in Germany

 

European Union

European Parliament

Monday 7 March

Plenary Session
Debate: aid scheme for the supply of fruit and vegetables, bananas and milk in the educational establishments, Animal health, market access to port services and financial transparency of ports, Annual report 2014 on the Protection of the EU’s financial interests-Fight against fraud
Oral question: Towards a thriving data-driven economy.

Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI)
Exchange of views with Commissioner Phil Hogan, responsible for Agriculture and Rural Development, on the state of play of the situation on the agricultural markets.

Tuesday 8 March

Plenary Session
Commission statement and debate on the situation of women refugees and asylum seekers in the EU
Address by UN High Commissioner for refugees Filippo Grandi
Votes followed by explanations of votes: animal health; Aid scheme for the supply of fruit and vegetables, bananas and milk in the educational establishments; Market access to port services and financial transparency of ports; Harmonised indices of consumer prices; Annual report 2014 on the Protection of the EU’s financial interests – Fight against fraud; Gender mainstreaming in the work of the European Parliament; The situation of women refugees and asylum seekers in the EU
Debate: Situation in Syria; Communication on implementing the European agenda on migration; Interinstitutional agreement on Better law-making; Posting of workers; What is a ‘social triple-A’ rating?; Procedural safeguards for children suspected or accused in criminal proceedings; Guidelines for the 2017 Budget – Section III.

Wednesday 9 March

Plenary Session
Key Debate: Preparation of the European Council meeting of 17 and 18 March 2016 and outcome of the EU-Turkey summit
Votes followed by explanations of votes: Reduction in the sulphur content of certain liquid fuels; Trade diversion into the European Union of certain key medicines; EU-Andorra agreement on the automatic exchange of financial account information; Appointment of a new Executive Director of the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA); Procedural safeguards for children suspected or accused in criminal proceedings; Guidelines for the 2017 Budget – Section III; Interinstitutional agreement on Better law-making; Tobacco agreement (PMI agreement)
Debate: The current situation in the European Union with Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden; Situation in Eritrea; 2015 Report on the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; 2015 Report on Montenegro; International protection of whistle-blowers
Joint Debate: Veterinary medicinal products
Oral Question: Thalidomide.

Thursday 10 March

Plenary Session
Oral question: Zika virus outbreak
Debate: Banking Union – Annual report 2015; cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law (Rule 135)-Freedom of expression in Kazakhstan, Egypt, notably the case of Giulio Regeni and Democratic Republic of the Congo
Votes followed by explanation of votes: Motions for resolutions concerning debates on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law (Rule 135); Veterinary medicinal products; Authorisation and supervision of veterinary medicinal products; Towards a thriving data-driven economy; Situation in Eritrea; 2015 Report on the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; 2015 Report on Montenegro; Banking Union – Annual report 2015
Oral Question: Price crisis in Europe’s pig meat sector.

Find the full plenary agenda here. Find an overview of committees here.

 

European Council

Monday 7 March

Meeting of the European Council on Migration with Turkey
At the European Council of 18-19 February, leaders agreed to organise a special meeting with Turkey. The full and speedy implementation of the EU-Turkey action plan remains a priority, in order to stem migration flows and tackle networks of traffickers and smugglers.

The meeting page can be found here

 

Council of Ministers

Monday 7 March

Eurogroup
Ministers will exchange views on the ongoing implementation of Greece’s economic adjustment programme, focusing on the reforms required for the successful completion of the first review; discuss the Cyprus programme and look into the status of outstanding actions («prior actions»); hold a follow-up debate on the implementation of the draft budgetary plans for 2016; discuss the budgetary situation in the euro area as a whole; explore the possibility of making further use of benchmarking in the context of its regular thematic discussions; continue the discussion on the transparency of Eurogroup meetings.

Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council
The Council will hold a policy debate on the 2016 European Semester exercise; adopt the joint employment report as well as conclusions dealing with this report and the annual growth survey; reach a general approach on a decision on the employment guidelines of the member states; debate the new skills agenda; endorse key messages on the implementation of the youth guarantee; be informed on the latest developments on relaunching the social dialogue at European level; and to adopt the following conclusions on equality: «Response to the Commission’s strategic engagement for gender equality», «Response to the Commission’s list of actions to advance LGBTI equality».

Tuesday 8 March

Economic and Financial Affairs Council
Ministers will aim to reach a political agreement on the proposed amendment to the directive on mandatory exchange of information in the field of taxation; adopt conclusions on the future of the Code of Conduct in the area of business taxation; adopt conclusions on the fiscal sustainability report for 2015; be briefed by the Presidency and the European Commission on the state of play of the implementation of the banking union legislation; be briefed on the G20 meetings of finance ministers and central bank governors on 26-27 February in Shanghai; ask the Economic and Financial Committee to complete the preparations for the April G20 and IMF meetings; exchange views on the implementation of the country-specific recommendations from the 2015 European Semester; and discuss the steps to be taken under the excessive deficit procedure and under the excessive imbalances procedure.

Thursday 10 – Friday 11 March

Justice and Home Affairs Council 
Ministers will discuss the current situation concerning migration and consider possible future actions; take note of the progress on the proposal for a European border and coast guard; discuss counter-terrorism, following up on the implementation of the Council Conclusions of 20 November 2015, discuss the proposal for a directive on control of the acquisition and possession of weapons, and adopt a general approach on a proposal for a directive on combatting terrorism; on Friday, justice ministers will discuss the proposal for a regulation establishing an European public prosecutor’s office; the Council will also take note of progress on two related directives, which are part of the digital single market strategy for Europe.

An overview of planned Council meetings can be found here.

 

European Commission and High Representative

Monday 7 March

Frans Timmermans receives Dr Wolfgang Schäuble, Federal Minister of Finance of Germany.

Federica Mogherini receives Abdlulmalek Al Mekhlafi, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Yemen.

Kristalina Georgieva receives Ambroise Fayolle, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), and Ian Goldin, former Vice-President of the World Bank, Professor of Globalization and Development and Director of the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford.

Tuesday 8 March

Meeting of the College of Commissioners in Strasbourg

President Jean-Claude Juncker in Lisbon, Portugal on 8 and 9 March. He will meet with Mr Marcelo de Sousa, President-elect of the Portuguese Republic; with Mr António Costa, Prime Minsiter of the Portuguese Republic; and attend the official inauguration ceremony of Mr Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of the Portuguese Republic.

Wednesday 9 March

Federica Mogherini travels to Argentina: meets with Mr Mauricio Macri, President of the Argentine Republic; meets with Ms Susana Malcorra, Foreign Relations Minister of the Argentine Republic, and with other members of the government.

Neven Mimica travels to Cuba from 9 to 12 March.

Thursday 10 March

President Jean-Claude Juncker receives Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General of NATO.

Valdis Dombrovskis attends a meeting of Governing Council of the European Central Bank, in Frankfurt.

Cecilia Malmström in Washington DC, Andrus Ansip in Boston, on 10 and 11 March.

Friday 11 March

Pierre Moscovici meets with Irina Bokova, Director-General of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, in Paris.

Karmenu Vella in Slovenia; Vytenis Andriukaitis in Lithuania; Phil Hogan in Jasionka, Rzeszów, Poland; Violeta Bulc in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

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

 

Dutch Presidency

Monday 7 – Tuesday 8 March

Bologna Follow-up Group
The Bologna Follow-up Group, organized by the Dutch Presidency and Moldova, brings together representatives of all member states, the European Commission and organisations like EURASHE, the Council of Europe, UNESCO, Education International and BusinessEurope. The BFUG is the most important follow-up mechanism in the Bologna process.

Wednesday 9 March

Conference The future of higher education
The main purpose of the conference is to showcase best practices and bring together people who work in industry, innovation and education. During the conference, participants will discuss the main challenges and chances for European higher education and will formulate recommendations for the European Commission. There will be keynotes by speakers from various European countries, a roundtable as well as six parallel sessions around the themes ‘linking higher education to the outside world’, ‘preparing engaged citizens’ and ‘the potential of digital technologies’. There will be plenty of room for discussion on the future of higher education, which the Dutch presidency will use to generate recommendations for the review of the modernization agenda for higher education of the European Commission.

Wednesday 9 – Friday 11 March

European Student Convention Amsterdam
During the convention around 150 students from across Europe will gather to discuss the modernisation of higher education. How do students see the future of higher education? And how can their ideas be put into practice? Questions like these will be addressed in a range of workshops and short lectures. The subthemes of this three-day conference are digitisation, internationalisation and curriculum design. On the first day topics will be discussed like blended learning, quality control in digital learning and massive open online courses (MOOCs). Topics of discussion on the second day will include EU values, recognition of credits and the Bologna process. On the final day the topics discussed on the previous days will be integrated, and students will consider how their findings could be reflected in the curriculum.

Thursday 10 March

Launch of the ESFRI roadmap 2016
The European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) will present the 2016 ESFRI Roadmap on Large Scale Research Infrastructures during a one-day conference. ESFRI Chair John Womersley will present the 2016 ESFRI Roadmap. EU Commissioner of Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas and Dutch State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science Sander Dekker will then comment on the new edition. In the afternoon, the focus will shift to the implementation and sustainability of research infrastructures.

The agenda of the Dutch Presidency can be found here.

 

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Tuesday 8 March

FRA joins EU Council fundamental rights working party discussions
On 8 March in Brussels, FRA will take part in discussions during the Council of the EU’s Working Party on Fundamental Rights, Citizens’ Rights and Free Movement of Persons (FREMP).
During the meeting representatives of the 28 EU Member States will discuss various items that are of importance to fundamental rights, including the EU’s accession to the European Convention on Human Rights, Serbia and Albania becoming FRA observers in its Management Board, and the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. There will also be an exchange of views with the FRA Director. FRA will also provide input during the session that will discuss coherence and consistency between internal and external EU human rights policies.

Thursday 10 – Friday 11 March

EU agencies’ communication heads meet
The network is a subnetwork of the EU Agencies network and aims to exchange knowledge in the area of communication and stakeholder cooperation among the various EU agencies and to increase the reputation and visibility of EU agencies. This year’s meeting is organised and hosted the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM), the current chairing of the EU Agencies network.
The meeting aims to discuss how to successfully implement the priorities as defined in the ‘Strategy Agenda for the Network of EU decentralised Agencies’ adopted by the Heads of EU Agencies in November 2015. These include: increasing the visibility of the EU Agencies both towards the EU citizen and towards other key actors at EU institutional and national level;  promoting the EU Agencies’ added value; and promoting the network as a ‘relay or multiplier’ of EU Agencies within the EU architecture, bearing in mind the principle of subsidiarity.

Information on upcoming FRA events can be found here. 

 

European Investment Bank

Tuesday 8 March

EIB Seminar: ‘The Entrepreneurial State and the Role of Public Banks’
The EIB is hosting a seminar by Professor Mariana Mazzucato from the University of Sussex to discuss ‘The Entrepreneurial State and the Role of Public Banks.’ Professor Mazzucato, who holds the RM Phillips Chair in the Economics of Innovation at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex, has undertaken extensive research into the role of public banks in fostering innovation. As a result she will be able to provide valuable insights into how the EIB can further enhance its impact in this area, with a particular focus on utilising EFSI resources.

More information about EIB events can be found here

 

Council of Europe

Tuesday 8 – Thursday 10 March

1250th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies on Human Rights: Supervision of execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights
In accordance with Article 46 of the Convention as amended by Protocol No. 11, the Committee of Ministers supervises the execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights. The Committee of Ministers’ essential function is to ensure that member states comply with the judgments and certain decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. The Committee completes each case by adopting a final resolution. In some cases, interim resolutions may prove appropriate. Both kinds of Resolutions are public.

Find an overview of Council of Europe events here.

 

Parliamentary Assembly

Monday 7 March

PACE Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights 
Hearing on the crash of the Polish Air Force Tu-154 transporting the Polish delegation on 10 April 2010 on the Russian Federation’s territory; hearing on the administrative detention; adoption of reports on transparency and openness in European institutions, and on human rights violations during peaceful protests.

Tuesday 8 March

PACE Political Affairs Committee meeting
Discussion on the state of democracy and the rule of law in Poland, with the Undersecretary of State for Legal and Treaty Affairs and Human Rights; a Senator from the Civic Platform; a member of the Ordo Iuris Institute for Legal Culture; a member of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights; the Vice-Chairperson of the Association of the Polish Journalists; and the Chief Editor of Gazeta Wyborcza. The committee members will also have an exchange of views on corruption as governance regime, and they will consider an information note by the rapporteur Michele Nicoletti on this issue, following his recent visit to Ukraine. The committee is also due to adopt the report by Jordi Xuclà on the evaluation of the partnership for democracy in respect of the Palestinian National Council.

Wednesday 9 – 10 March

PACE Monitoring Committee
Hearing on the recent developments in southeast Turkey and the resumption of the peace process with the participation of the members of the Turkish delegation, a leader of the pro-Kurdish HDP party and a representative of Amnesty international. The committee members will also consider an information note by Jordi Xuclà and Axel Fischer, co-rapporteurs for the monitoring of Ukraine, following their recent fact-finding visit to Kyiv.

Friday 11 March

PACE Committee on Equality and Non-discrimination
Adoption of reports on the impact of measures to improve women’s political representation and on the fight against antisemitism in Europe; hearing on “Women and radicalisation leading to terrorism”, with the testimony of Véronique Roy, mother of a young man who converted, became radicalised to make the Jihad and died in Syria. The Parliamentary Network Women Free from Violence will also hold an exchange of views with the President of the Group of Experts on Action against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (GREVIO), and members of GREVIO.

Find the PACE diary here and the diary of PACE President Anne Brasseur here.

 

Congress of Local and Regional Authorities

Wednesday 9 – Saturday 12 March

Workshops in Armenia
From 9 to 11 March: Workshop «Mayors, leaders for change» in Yerevan; From 10 to 12 March: Workshop «Local councillor: an everyday actor of local democracy» in Dilijan.

Find the Congress calendar of events here.

 

ECHR

Tuesday 8 March

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing 6 judgments concerning the Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Spain and Turkey.

Thursday 10 March

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing 9 judgments and/or decisions concerning Italy, the Netherlands, Russia, Serbia and Slovakia.

Information on forthcoming judgments can be found here.

 

European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice)

Friday 11 – Saturday 12 March

106th Plenary Session of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe
Opinions expected to be adopted analyse issues such as the controversial amendments to the law on the Constitutional Tribunal of Poland; amendments to the French Constitution on the state of emergency and on the deprivation of nationality; amendments to the law on the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation that concern ECtHR judgments that can be declared inapplicable by the Constitutional Court; and provisions of the Penal Code of Turkey, including articles on hate speech, on insults to the President, on insults to the Turkish nation and some state bodies, on membership in an armed organisation; draft constitutional amendments on the judiciary of Albania.

More information on upcoming events can be found here.

 

Elections

Sunday 13 March

Regional elections in Germany: Baden-Württemberg; Rheinland-Pfalz; and Sachsen-Anhalt.

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