European Commission adopts its work programme for year 2009

The European Commission has adopted its 2009 Legislative and Work Programme, which announces the main initiatives it intends to present next year. In 2009, the Commission will follow up on the initiatives launched in recent weeks to address the financial crisis and to set out a European framework to address the economic downturn. At the same time, the Commission will use the final year of its mandate to complete the work already under way.

The 2009 Commission's Work Programme needs to respond to different challenges: on the one hand, 2009 will be a special year marked by the European elections in June, as well as the last year of this Commission's mandate, with the emphasis on implementing the vision set out earlier by the Commission in areas like energy, climate change, migration and social policy.

At the same time, the Commission is at the forefront of work to address the financial and crisis and the economic downturn. The result is a focused and balanced Work programme with 12 strategic initiatives, 37 priority initiatives, 33 simplification proposals and 20 withdrawals.

As Commission President José Manuel Barroso highlighted, the Commission is “proposing an ambitious calendar of work for 2009. We will seek to consolidate the achievements of the last four years by maintaining the focus on delivering results for European citizens and businesses. The Commission will prioritise its work to lead the response to the financial crisis and tackle the issues of concern to citizens like climate change, migration and development so that Europe can continue to shape the effects of globalisation”.

A major highlight in 2009 will be the presentation of the Budget Review, an important contribution to the debate on the shape of the future priorities of the Union and their financing. This will be a key part of the legacy of this Commission.

Promoting a simpler and better regulatory environment without unnecessary administrative burdens remains a key priority of the Commission's legislative work in 2009, and the programme sets out specific measures on simplification, covering areas from agriculture to environment and from accounting to transport, as well as on the withdrawal of pending proposals.

2009 will be the first year that inter-institutional communication priorities will be agreed by the Council of Ministers, the European Parliament and the Commission under the joint declaration on Communicating Europe in Partnership.

2009 Commission Legislative and Work Programme priorities

  1. On Growth and Jobs, the Commission will focus on economic reform and specific measures aiming at rebuilding confidence to help Europe deal with the economic and financial crisis, through the work of the renewed Lisbon Strategy and the framework for recovery presented last week. Proposals will be made in the area of financial markets and financial supervision, including a response to the experts group chaired by Jacques de Larosière.
  2. On Climate Change and Sustainable Europe, getting a successful agreement at the Copenhagen meeting will be a major global challenge. The foundation stone for EU leadership is agreement on the energy and climate change package: with agreement in December, in 2009 the emphasis can shift to implementation. Public consultation was recently run by the Commission on this issue, asking stakeholders about the main their views on the different building blocks of the Bali Road Map, in view to seek the relevant informations to shape the way for the replace of Kyoto Protocol.
  3. Many measures will continue the work of the Commission to target action directly on citizens. This will include specific action to help citizens as consumers, and a major new direction for policies on freedom, security and justice. In this area, the fight against terrorism and organised crime will be a particular focus.
  4. Internationally, the Commission will face up to challenges from support for Georgia's reconstruction and reform efforts to adapting transatlantic relations to the new administration. Enlargement, the neighbourhood, and world trade will remain key priorities.