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ECOFIN Council adopts conclusions on European 2020 Strategy

09.06.2010 - The Economic and Financial Affairs Council adopted a series of conclusions related to the European 2020 Strategy on 8 June 2010.

On 8 June 2010 the Economic and Financial Affairs Council adopted a series of conclusions related to the European 2020 Strategy as the most appropriate framework for implementing strategies for exiting from short-term crisis support. Among the main conclusions were that:

  • the Commission should work closely with Member States to create realistic but ambitious national headline targets. Member States should retain full ownership of the targets but there should be broad coherence between targets, at the EU level as well as at the Member State level.
  • the report on the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines was adopted and the Council confirmed that the BEPGs constitute the legal basis for country specific recommendations under Article 121(2) and are therefore of particular relevance in strengthening EU economic policy co-ordination.
  • the Council endorsed the work already done to remove macro-structural bottlenecks by the Commission with Member States and the Economic Policy Committee and the Economic and Financial Committee. It also endorsed the EFC and EPC report on identifying national macro-structural bottlenecks to growth and invited Member States to take them into account when setting out the bottlenecks in their National Reform Programmes
  • the Council welcomed the Commission's Communication on reinforcing economic policy co-ordination for the EU as a whole and for the euro area in particular.
  • Stability and Convergence Programmes and the National Reform Programmes should be better aligned; however, these instruments should be kept clearly separate. Surveillance should be broader, deeper and more effective, and it should feed into policymaking
  • an improved framework needs to be set in place to co-ordinate policy development in Member States, providing broader, more tightly integrated country surveillance covering all major macroeconomic and structural policies. It would allow exit strategies to be launched quickly, easing fiscal consolidation over the short and medium term but removing bottlenecks to growth in the longer term.
  • the timing of such reporting and policy guidance should be improved to allow for Member States to be better prepared and allow the best possible timing for assessments; however, the reporting burden on Member States should be kept to a minimum.
  • In dialogue with the Member States, the Commission should provide an overview of all EU-level bottlenecks to ultimately provide policy recommendations to Member States.

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