Zelensky, Better Jobs and the Future of the Economy – Euractive DE

EU leaders are expected to agree on the distribution of the EU’s top posts during a two-day EU summit. Geostrategic and political priorities for the coming years will also be discussed.

Traditionally, heads of state and government arrive in Brussels several hours before the start of the summit to meet with their political groups at various locations.

The conservative EPP, Social Democrats and Renewal Europe’s liberal groups held closed meetings to give leaders a chance to agree on a common position and hear expectations.

Much of the discussion at the two-day summit on Thursday and Friday (June 27-28) is expected to revolve around the appointment of the EU’s top three:

Ursula van der Leyen (EPP) is reappointed as Commission President, Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Liberals) is elected as the EU’s chief diplomat and Portugal’s former Prime Minister Antonio Costa (Social Democrats) is elected President. The Council of Europe did trade.

The hardest question they will have to answer is how to account for Giorgia Meloni, an emboldened Italian prime minister and icon of the right-wing conservatives (ECR). Also to consider is the controversial Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who has been an outspoken critic of Van der Leyen.

Theoretically, the deadline for the meeting is tomorrow. In practice, the European Parliament expects the official name of the Commission President-designate to be announced by July 11.

Time to negotiate

From noon, the red carpet is rolled out for heads of state and government in the Europa building, where the European Council meets, so that the first opening statements begin.

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They are the perfect moment for the 27 heads of state and government to publicly announce their position before the gathering, thereby setting the tone for the negotiations that follow.

Important keywords are high posts, EU priorities, support for Ukraine, migration and defense funding.

But it is not about the top positions. Today’s most important guest, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, is expected to sign the EU’s long-awaited security pledge for Ukraine at around 2pm.

Then, the real EU debate begins with a regular debate with the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metzola (EPP), who is expected to seek a second term in office.

At 3 p.m., the leaders will be ready to discuss several thorny issues: the future of support for Ukraine, complicated by anti-Hungarianism, Defense Department funding, the proposed “Eastern Defense Line” and the conflict in the Near East.

They can also address external migration management, after van der Leyen promised in a letter that it was his priority.

The top positions of the three major companies are expected to be discussed during the dinner which starts at 7pm. A preliminary agreement has already been reached between some of the heads of state and the government that will take the talks forward.

During the long dinner, the leaders are expected to outline what they see as priorities for the coming years. Nothing new is expected, but it is a good opportunity for all leaders to reiterate their intentions and explain what they expect from the new trio sitting at the same table.

The two topics can be combined and the discussions can continue into the night.

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The “strategic agenda” document that Euractive has already reported will not be a topic of discussion, as it has already been agreed upon in advance and is not controversial.

The most anticipated part will take place after the summit. Heads of State and Government will announce whether they will support the nominations and give informal voting recommendations to their parties in the EU Parliament. Parliament itself must confirm the chairman of the Nominating Commission by mid-July.

Finance and economics of breakfast

How long Thursday’s debates last will determine how soon – or late – heads of state and government meet again on Friday. Then they will move on to another important topic: economics and finance.

The working session is currently scheduled to begin at 9:30 am.

As usual at summits on Fridays, the economy, particularly the EU’s competitiveness, will be at the center of the agenda.

In the economic area, the European Council will reaffirm the priorities set at the Special Competitiveness Summit and intensify its commitment to strengthening the EU’s competitiveness and Capital Markets Union (CMU).

These include measures to reduce barriers to investment and measures to reduce regulatory obligations in areas such as reporting and capital requirements.

In particular, Member States will call on the Commission to accelerate the work of the Capital Markets Union based on the April proposals. They will reaffirm the central role of private financial flows in meeting the EU’s critical financing needs in the coming years.

Member states will call for a new competitiveness agreement by the end of the year.

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Hungarian diplomats, who will take over the council’s rotating presidency next month, outlined their intention earlier this week to hold member state talks on the deal between September and November. This should coincide with the contribution of former ECB president Mario Draghi, which is expected before September.

[Bearbeitet von Zoran Radosavljevic/Kjeld Neubert]

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