Malta took over the EU Council Presidency
Since the 1st of January 2017, for the 1st time since its accesion in 2004, Malta has the presidency of the EU Council. The current trio included the presidencies of the Netherlands and Slovakia and finally passed it on to Malta.
Based on presidency priorities, as seen in Maltaeu2017, we can identify various hot topics to be discussed.
Within the Priorities, we highlight the Migration and also Social Inclusion.
As described in each,
- Strengthening and
s treamliningthe Common European Asylum System will be important in order to distribute the migration load among Member Statesmore fairly;
- Within this, attempts to revise the Dublin Regulation which delineates Member States'
responsabilitiesfor examining asylum applications, will be key;
- Transforming the European Asylum Support Office into a fully-fledged European agency is an important element of the Reform of the Common European Asylum System;
- As the two-year period for the relocation of 160,000 people in need of international protection gets closer, we are conscious of the need to ensure better implementation;
- Malta wants to push for a holistic approach to migration, including both the internal and external aspect. In this
spiritwe will follow up on what was agreed upon at the Valletta Summit on Migration. We will work to complete the work in relation to the European External Investment Plan to promote sustainable investment in Africa and the Neighbourhood and to tackle the root causes of migration.
Social policy is something that the Maltese Government holds dear. This is an area where we hope our experiences can rub off on our European partners. Work here will be guided by close consultation with social partners, civil society and citizens in order to advance gender equality and rights of minorities and vulnerable groups.
- Improving participation of women in the labour market. The Maltese Presidency will aim to achieve progress on issues relating to gender balance including the Proposal for a Directive on improving gender balance among directors of companies listed on stock exchanges;
- Malta will continue to combat gender-based violence, in particular by promoting the sharing of best practices and exchanging information on existing legislation, policies and strategies, as well as statistical data and studies;
- Malta will hold a Ministerial-Level Conference on LGBTIQ issues in order to further explore the Commission’s roadmap on this area."
We wish the best to the Maltese presidency and we state that YEU, as an active international NGO, will be monitoring the processes and work and will advocate next to the side of all partners in order to lead discussios and resutls closest to the youth perspective and to the benefit of young people.