Extracts from the press conference by José Manuel Barroso on the country-specific recommendations
On 30 May 2012, the European Commission adopted its second annual set of policy recommendations to the 27 Member States, and to the euro area as a whole.
On this occasion, José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, gave a speech at the European Commission in Brussels to present those recommendations which are based on a detailed assessment of the economic, employment and budgetary situation and policies in each country.
Where required, the Commission will spell out further budgetary steps, structural reforms and growth-enhancing measures which Member States should adopt over the following 12 months. The recommendations are to be endorsed by the European Council on 28-29 June 2012 and formally adopted by the Council in July 2012.
The presentation of the Country-Specific Recommendations is a key moment in the "European Semester" of economic policy coordination., Taking the EU's growth strategy as a starting point, the Commission sets out every year Europe's economic policy priorities in the so-called "Annual Growth Survey". The priorities presented in the 2012 Annual Growth Survey, adopted on 23 November 2011, were endorsed by the European Council on 1 March 2012. On that basis, the Member States submitted in April their medium-term budgetary plans and the structural reform measures planned for the following 12 months. The Country-Specific Recommendations are the Commission's response to these. The presentation of the results of the in-depth reviews of 12 Member States is the next step in the Macroeconomic Imbalances Procedure, following the Alert Mechanism report on 14 February. The Alert Mechanism Report concluded that the macroeconomic situation in Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Hungary, Slovenia, Spain,
Sweden and the UK merited further investigation with a view to assessing the presence of specific imbalances. Where necessary, the Commission will also issue recommendations to take appropriate preventive or corrective action to address these. SHOTLIST