Member States must continue to produce structural reforms and, as far as possible, invest in strategic priorities leading to a new phase of economic growth and job creation.
Economic growth is defined, and finding practical expression, as a goal, but desire and action are two very different things. There are, to that extent, a wide range of growth-related and job-creating measures that need to be laid down urgently.
The Commission has been putting forward a series of initiatives aimed at boosting growth, for example the possible increase in the capital of the European Investment Bank (EIB), the reorganisation of structural funding, involving a total of EUR 82 000 million, or ‘project bonds’ to encourage investment in energy, ICT, and transport infrastructure.
Addressing Parliament at its sitting of 13 June 2012, the Commission President said that the forthcoming European Council on 28 and 29 June 2012 was to discuss the ‘building-blocks’ with a view to stimulating economic growth and job creation.
José Manuel Barroso added that there is a large measure of agreement between the Commission and Parliament, but negotiations with the Council will not be easy.
It is vital to restore hope and confidence to the 500 million European citizens and the 23 000 SMEs so as to set Europe on a path of progress and wealth creation.
1. What ‘building-block’ proposals will be submitted to the Council meeting on 28 and 29 June 2012?
2. Does the Commission believe that Member States are now more willing to discuss measures aimed at taking the EU’s development into the next era by reconciling fiscal austerity with a new phase of economic growth and job creation?