European Council: call for immediate implementation of the Compact for Growth and Jobs
President Barroso stressed that the Compact for Growth and Jobs agreed in June must not stay only on paper. When asking our citizens to make major sacrifices, we need to provide them with hope, a realistic prospect of growth and assurance for the most vulnerable, he said.
"The reality is that the crisis is still with us … I am painfully aware of the difficult situation in which many European citizens find themselves, and this is precisely the reason why we have asked heads of state and government today to immediately implement the Compact for Growth and Jobs," said President Barroso at the final press conference of the October European Council.
While some progress has been made, it is not yet enough: "The reality is that this Growth Compact, an important investment package worth €120 billion, has not yet been fully implemented." The President then gave concrete examples of areas where the implementation must be sped up in such as tax on savings, energy taxation, public procurement reform or boost for venture capital. (Read more in his report to the heads of state and government).
He stressed that the financial sector must also make a fair contribution to the recovery: "Next week the Commission will take the first step towards launching enhanced cooperation on a Financial Transactions Tax and we will present an action plan on tax fraud and tax evasion before the end of the year."
"Next month's special European Council we need to provide the union with a budget for growth and jobs. I cannot promise we will have more sleep at the next European Council, I think it is going to be a long European Council, but I hope heads of state and government will be able to find consensus as they have at this summit," concluded President Barroso.
"We need to deliver on our commitments"
"We have agreed to have legislative decisions on the Single Supervisory Mechanism by the end of the year" said President Barroso following the first evening of the European Council.
President Barroso also welcomed the clear commitment to a long term vision for economic and monetary union: "The Commission will set out its thinking in a few weeks' time in a Blueprint for economic and monetary union". He then went on to add that "the Commission is a strong advocate of deeper integration, in particular for the Euro area". On Greece, President Barroso underlined the importance of the commitments set out in the euro area statement issued today.