Commissioners for budget, the internal market, crisis management, and democracy
and demography to address assembly during its first hybrid plenary session.
Johannes Hahn, the European Commissioner for the EU Budget, will discuss the European Union's recovery plan and emerging long-term budget with local and regional leaders on 2 July, at a plenary session of the European Committee of the Regions shaped by the economic and health problems created by the pandemic. Three other European Commissioners will also discuss the EU's political and policy responses to the crisis, with Vice-President Dubravka Šuica addressing issues of democracy and demography, Commissioner Thierry Breton responding to questions about the internal market, and Commissioner Janez Lenarčič reviewing some of the EU's crisis-management actions.
Local and regional leaders will vote on a resolution on the EU's long-term budget – the Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-27 – MFF and the Sustainable Europe Investment Plan, the investment pillar of the Green Deal developed by the European Commission to lead the EU to carbon-neutrality by 2050.
Members of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), which has six political groups, will also decide on the assembly's political priorities for 2020-25. On his election to the presidency of the Committee in February, Apostolos Tzitzikostas (EL/EPP), the Governor of the region of Central Macedonia, said he would champion a "modernised" European democracy, efforts to respond to the "profound transformations" entailed by the "current green, digital and demographic revolutions", and EU polices – such as cohesion policy – that have the "greatest regional and local relevance" in their impact.
The Green Deal – and the need to place it at the heart of recovery plans for local and regional economies – will be the subject of a separate debate.
Members of the European Committee of the Regions will also vote on eight reports containing recommendations from local and regional governments to the EU's decision-making institutions. Several of the opinions were originally scheduled for adoption in May at a plenary session that was cancelled because of the EU-wide lockdown.
Health-related constraints mean that only a limited number of members will be able to attend in person. Others will participate online. The move to a hybrid format will also entail a move to electronic voting. The plenary session will be spread over three days, rather than the usual two.
The plenary session will be preceded, on 29 June, by a meeting of the CoR's bureau, at which the next three presidencies of the Council of the European Union will present their common agenda. Ambassador Michael Clauss will represent Germany, which will hold the rotating presidency in the second half of 2020, Ambassador Nuno Brito will set out Portugal's priorities for January-July 2021, while Ambassodor Iztok Jarc will discuss Slovenia's aims during its six-month presidency in the second half of 2021.
- Tuesday, 30 June (15:00-16:00): COVID 19 Crisis Management and the Recovery Plan, with Janez Lenarčič, Commissioner in charge of the Crisis Management
- Tuesday, 30 June (16-16.30): The Green Deal at the Heart of Local and Regional COVID-19 Recovery
- Wednesday, 1 July (12.15 – 13.30): Demography, with Dubravka Šuica, Commissioner in charge of Democracy and Demography
- Thursday, 2 July (10.15-12:00): The Future MFF in Light of the COVID-19 Crisis Recovery, with Johannes Hahn, Commissioner in charge of Budget and Administration
- Thursday, 2 July (12.45-14:15): Economic Aspects of the COVID-19 Recovery, with Thierry Breton, Commissioner in charge of Internal Market
- Towards a Roadmap for Clean Hydrogen – the contribution of local and regional authorities to a climate-neutral Europe. Rapporteur: Birgit Honé (DE/PES), Minister for Federal and European Affairs and Regional Development (Lower Saxony).
- Fitness check of the Water Framework Directive, Groundwater Directive, Environmental Quality Standards Directive and Floods Directive. Rapporteur: Piotr Całbecki (PL/EPP), President of the Kujawsko-Pomorskie Region.
- The Future of EU Clean Air policy in the framework of the zero-pollution ambition. Rapporteur: János Ádám Karácsony (HU/EPP), Tahitótfalu Council.
- Implementation of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs): The regional and local perspective. Rapporteur: Michael Murphy (IE/EPP), Tipperary County Council.
- The services package: An updated view from Europe's local and regional authorities. Rapporteur: Jean-Luc Vanraes (BE/Renew Europe), Uccle Municipal Council.
- Just Transition Fund. Rapporteur: Vojko Obersnel (HR/PES), Member of Local Executive: City of Rijeka.
- European Climate Law: enshrining the 2050 climate neutrality objective. Rapporteur: Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla (ES/EPP), president of the region of Andalucía.
- Stepping up EU Action to protect and restore the world's forests. Rapporteur: Roby Biwer (LU/PES), Member of Bettembourg Municipal Council.
Location: European Parliament – Paul Henri Spaak building, Hemicycle.
Date: Tuesday, 30 June – Thursday, 2 July 2020.
Background material: The plenary agenda and documents.
The plenary will be webstreamed and accessible afterwards in VOD:
The main debates will also be broadcasted on EBS:
EBS schedule 30 June
EBS schedule 1 July
EBS schedule 2 July