GAC prepares the way for June European Council to discuss next stage of European economic integration
At the last General Affairs Council (GAC) of the Danish EU Presidency on Tuesday, Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič took part in the debate on the preparation for this week's June European Summit, which will adopt the Commission's country-specific recommendations on actions to create economic growth and discuss ambitious proposals for closer economic union.
The Commission's proposed multi-annual financial framework (MFF) – the next long-term EU budget – was also discussed by ministers ahead of the meeting of heads of state and government on Thursday and Friday in Brussels, and VP Šefčovič once again defended the Commission's position, particularly on key areas such as financing for the European Social Fund and climate action.
At a lunch debate with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy following the GAC, V-P Šefčovič also discussed ambitious proposals for the future of economic union, including a Europe-wide banking union. The Commissioner said that proposals for a banking union could be drawn up by the end of the year, paving the way for a stronger financial stability.
Among the other proposals drawn up by a quartet of Presidents – of Council, Commission, eurogroup and European Central Bank – are boosting the regulatory powers of the ECB and the creation of so-called 'eurobonds'. V-P Šefčovič stressed that while not all EU governments were in favour of such a deep level of integration at the current time, closer economic and monetary union must nonetheless be open to and inclusive for all Member States.