The European Commission, the European Central Bank and the Member States have a shared interest in communicating with European citizens on the euro and Economic and Monetary Union. Communication is therefore closely coordinated at the European level to make sure that citizens are adequately informed about the single currency and the working of the euro area.
Coordination is particularly close with Member States which are preparing to introduce the euro. The central goal of communication is to enable citizens in those countries to embrace the currency change with full confidence.
To ensure the public get comprehensive and tailor-made information about the euro with the most efficient use of resources, the Commission has entered into a number of partnership agreements with those Member States. Under a partnership agreement, the Member State in question and the European Commission agree on common objectives, a joint communication plan, the respective roles of each party, the financial aspects, the campaign branding (logos, slogans, etc.) and the monitoring and evaluation mechanisms.
Administratively, such partnerships can take different forms, of which the following have been used so far:
Partnership agreements are concluded with those countries which are approaching their target date to introduce the euro, and have approved a national communication strategy. The first partnerships agreements were signed in November 2005 with Estonia, Lithuania and Slovenia. Under the Slovenian partnership, the Commission took charge of the printing of a number of publications, and their distribution to all Slovenian households. It also organised conferences and seminars for stakeholders and journalists, and co-financed the national changeover website, a euro infoline, and the media campaign developed by the Slovenian authorities.
New partnership agreements were concluded with Cyprus and Malta in May 2006, and another one should follow with Slovakia by the end of 2007.