The Secretariat-General is at the heart of the European Commission as an institution and of its civil service. Under the authority of the President, it serves the College, oversees the implementation of the Commission’s political priorities, and ensures the collegiality, consistency, efficiency and regularity of the Commission’s action. To this end, the Secretariat-General is tasked with a range of policy development, steering and coordination functions, upstream and downstream of the decisions of the Commission, internally and externally.
The Secretariat-General is the service of the President and closely coordinates its work with the other presidential and central services, which together ensure the smooth functioning of the institution. In particular, the Secretariat-General:
- designs the Commission’s strategic objectives and operational priorities and shapes crosscutting policies;
- coordinates, facilitates, advises and arbitrates, so as to ensure the coherence, quality and timely delivery of policy, legislation and operations across policy areas and departments, in line with the principles of better regulation and evidence-based policy making;
- coordinates the control of application of EU law by Commission departments;
- facilitates the smooth running of the Commission’s decision-making processes through the operation of an efficient and modern registry;
- acts, together with the Cabinet of the President, as the guardian of fairness, objectivity, transparency and efficiency in the relationship between all members of the College;
- supports the Vice-Presidents in their coordination tasks, including the management of the Groups of Commissioners and Project Teams;
- acts as the interface between the Commission and the other European institutions, bodies, national Parliaments and non-governmental organisations and entities;
- supports the President of the Commission as member of the European Council and participant in Leaders’ meetings and other informal summits;
- coordinates the Commission’s work on policies with an external or international dimension, including the Union’s external representation as provided for in the Treaties, and supports the President for all Summits with third countries, contacts with international partners and participation in international organisations and fora, notably the United Nations, the G7 and the G20; and acts as the Commission’s interface with the European External Action Service;
- fosters the Commission’s institutional competences, good governance and the development of a modern, service-oriented, transparent and responsible EU administration that works to the highest standards of ethics and integrity.
- through the Recovery and Resilience Task Force is responsible for steering the implementation of the Recovery and Resilience Facility and for coordinating the European Semester (the EU framework for the governance of economic and social policies). RECOVER works in close cooperation with the Commission’s Directorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs to support the Member States in the elaboration of their recovery and resilience plans, engage with the Member States to ensure that the notified plans comply with the objectives of the Recovery and Resilience Facility, prepare the necessary implementing acts for the approval of the plans and assess progress in their implementation’’
- through the UKTF coordinates all the Commission's work on all strategic, operational, legal and financial issues related to the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. This includes the negotiations on the future relationship with the UK, the implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement, as well as the Commission’s ‘no-deal’ preparedness work.