News archive - Trio-presidency programme of the Council has been published

Germany, Portugal and Slovenia presented their joint EU presidency programme for the next 18 months on Tuesday (16 June), seeking to focus primarily on social recovery in the wake of the pandemic.

Research and innovation are also covered in this document.

The three Presidencies welcome the Commission white paper on Artificial Intelligence and look forward to following-up on it in all dimensions, including research and innovation, applications in education, ethical and human-centric aspects, their global governance, risk-based regulatory framework and the aspect of liability for artificial intelligence. Furthermore, the Trio will work towards better protecting our societies from malicious cyber activities, hybrid threats and disinformation. Transparent, timely and fact-based communication will be pursued in order to reinforce the resilience of our societies.The forthcoming act on operational and cyber resilience of financial services and the review of the NIS Directive will be useful steps in this regard. The Trio will step up efforts at European level for a mandatory minimum level of IT security for devices that are connected to the internet.

As SMEs play a crucial role for sustainable economic growth, employment, and social cohesion in our societies, they require reliable and stable framework conditions that constitute an integrated, coherent and future-oriented approachand a systematic and consistent implementation of the “think small first” principle. To ensure this, the three Presidencies stand ready to follow up and to further develop on the Commission's SME strategy to strengthen the EU policy for small and medium-sized businesses.

The strengthening of SMEs and industrial competitiveness in Europe is an essential aim of the Trio, as it serves European economic sovereignty and helps its resilience. The EU's recovery strategy from the COVID-19-crisis and the long-term strategy for sustainable growth also requires an ambitious EU industrial policy strategy, including addressing competition, state-aid regulations and overall framework conditions, and the strengthening of key technologies, also through aligning science, research, and innovation policy and promoting the EU’s technological autonomy. The identification of strategic value chains, the new framing of industrial eco-systems and further work on the identification of industrial alliances and Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEIs) will be important components. The Trio will build on the Commission’s EU Industrial Strategy and propose next steps for implementation and monitoring. Moreover, the Trio will follow the ongoing European Commission's evaluation of competition rules and,after the results of the assessment,will promote the results,potential changes and the modernisation of the European competition framework against the backdrop of global developments and the digital transformation. It also intends to enhance the efficiency, innovation orientation and sustainability of public procurement while taking into account the lessons learned during the COVID-19 crisis and the need tore-boost the EU economy.

The three Presidencies are convinced that the digital transformation is something that will shape the everyday life in Europe, but also something that Europe can shape. Digitalisation has far-reaching effects and therefore needs to be addressed coherently across the Union's internal and external policies.

European research, health and education systems must be ready to fully take on the challenge of technological and societal changes, also linked to digitalisation, fostering innovation for growth and jobs, by promoting research and innovation, improved performance in health and investments in people's skills and education; and seeking synergies within the European scientific, research and innovation communities so as to maximise –also in order to overcome the COVID-19 crisis -the full potential of research and innovation across the Union. In this respect the Trio welcomes the Commission Communication on the Future of Research and Innovation and the European Research Area, the updated Digital Education Action Plan, further development of European Education Area and new strategic framework for cooperation in the field of education and training and the updated Skills Agenda, and looks forward to advancing their follow-up in the Council. Experience of the challenges faced during the COVID-19 outbreak demonstrates that the areas of education, skills and research must be sufficiently flexible and resistant to interruptions in their regular cycles. Exploiting the potential of education, research and innovation for transformative solutions and achieving the SDGs will require a multilevel approach that will strategically focus the efforts of these policy areas at all levels within each sectoral initiative and integrate them at EU level into a common approach. At the same time, a re-conceptualisation of the European Research Area will be required to fulfil the Treaty obligation of setting up an area in which researchers can pursue a truly European career and, like knowledge and technologies, circulate freely across borders and systems. Special attention will be also given to the ethical aspects of the renewed ERA and to the citizen science where the three Presidencies will implement some joint activities. As a response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Presidencies will encourage the work on the establishment of the joint EU laboratories through the JRC for the development of medicines and vaccines.The three Presidencies will strive for the timely adoption of the legislative proposals of the Horizon Europe programme and Erasmus+ in order to start the implementation of the new policy cycle without delay, including the Regulation on the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) recast and the Decision on the EIT Strategic InnovationAgenda for 2021-2027. The same holds true for other EU-programmes, such as Digital Europe,Creative Europeand European Solidarity Corps.

The appearance of the COVID-19 virus has shown the relevance of Global Health cooperation and a transparent crisis reaction. Against this backdrop the Trio is committed to work together to give the EU and its Member States a stronger and more strategic voice in international fora dealing with Global Health, such as e.g. the WHO. The EU and its Member States shall support partner countries in strengthening their comprehensive health systems and in mitigating the severe socioeconomic consequences of the pandemic. Team Europe is the tangible expression of the European resolve to express our global solidarity. At the global level, working with the research and innovation sector on a vaccine will allow accessibility to partner countries in order to fight the expansion of the pandemic.

For full document, please see the attached Taking forward the Strategic Agenda - 18-month Programme of the Council (1 July 2020 -31 December 2021).

Geographical focus
  • Europe
  • European Union (EU 27)
  • Western Balkans
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Cross-thematic/Interdisciplinary

Entry created by Admin on June 22, 2020
Modified on June 22, 2020