During its 2022 cycle, the European Semester resumes its broad economic and employment policy coordination, while further adapting in line with the implementation requirements of the Recovery and Resilience Facility.
The publication of the Annual Sustainable Growth Survey (ASGS) within the European Semester Autumn package launched this year's cycle. The ASGS confirmed the on-going gradual shift of economic policy coordination from dealing with the COVID crisis to laying the foundations for a transformational and inclusive recovery and stronger resilience, in line with the EU’s strategy of competitive sustainability.
The 2022 European Semester and Recovery and Resilience Facility integrated processes
The 2022 European Semester cycle in a nutshell:
- National reform programmes and stability/convergence programmes: Member States are expected to submit these documents, setting out their economic and fiscal policy plans, as in previous European Semester cycles, next April. The main novelty in the 2022 cycle will be that the national reform programme (NRP) will play a dual role. Besides its role for the European Semester, the NRP will also fulfil one of the two bi-annual reporting requirements of Member States under the Recovery and Resilience Facility.
- Publication of streamlined country reports: In May 2022, the country reports will provide an overview of the economic and social developments and challenges that Member States are facing, as well as a forward-looking analysis of their resilience. The overview will include an assessment of progress on the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights. Based on this analysis, the country reports will identify those challenges which have not been sufficiently addressed by the recovery and resilience plans. Where applicable, the reports will also include a summary of the findings of the in-depth reviews under the Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure.
- Proposals for country-specific recommendations: Together with the country reports in May 2022, the Commission will propose to the Council to adopt country-specific recommendations (CSRs). The CSRs will address the key issues identified in the country reports, and where relevant the in-depth reviews, for which policy action will be required. The CSRs will also include recommendations on the budgetary situation of the Member States as envisaged under the Stability and Growth Pact. The country reports, the in-depth reviews and the proposals for CSRs will form part of the 2022 European Semester Spring package.
- Continued integration of the Sustainable Development Goals into the European Semester: As called for by President von der Leyen in her Political Guidelines, the Commission is pursuing its work on integrating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into the European Semester. The 2022 European Semester cycle will provide fully updated and consistent SDG reporting across all Member States. The annual SDG monitor report will be published as part of the European Semester Spring package. Moreover, country reports will include a dedicated section discussing the country’s status and progress in each SDG area. A combination of these two elements and additional indicators that monitor Member States’ performance in view of key EU policy targets (i.e. European Green Deal, Digital Decade, EU 2030 headline targets on employment, skills and poverty reduction) will inform the country reports and underpin country-specific recommendations.