Much achieved, so much more still to do
After a busy seven months and the completion of several important administrative dossiers, the summer holidays will be an opportunity for rest and reflection before an equally busy autumn and the long run-up to the 2014 European elections.
For Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, much of the first half of 2013 was taken up with negotiations over the next long-term EU budget, the multi-annual financial framework or MFF. In his role as commissioner responsible for relations with the two legislators, the European Parliament and Council, V-P Šefčovič held regular discussions on the MFF with MEPs and ministers, focusing in particular on the administrative budget and the corresponding reform of the EU staff regulations.
A deal was finally reached just before the summer break, but a new round of negotiations has already begun on the individual budget for 2014, and V-P Šefčovič is likely to face more discussions with both Parliament and Council from September onwards.
Other ongoing dossiers include V-P Šefčovič's proposal to create new European political parties, which is currently also the subject of three-way negotiations with Council and Parliament, and the forthcoming review of the Transparency Register, which will be carried out jointly with the Parliament. Both will feature on the V-P's agenda after the summer break.
Also by the end of the year, the first European Citizens' Initiatives should complete their collection of signatures and, assuming they have collected more than one million names from across the EU and met other specific requirements per country, thus enter the next phase – assessment by the Commission. Several new ECIs could also be launched before the end of 2013.