Slovenia hosted consultations between the trio of Germany, Portugal and Slovenia in light of their joint 18-month presidency of the Council of the EU on Tuesday (7 December), with the importance of economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic being emphasised.
The meeting, hosted by Barbara Sušnik, the head of the EU affairs directorate at the Slovenian Foreign Ministry, also featured Axel Dittmann representing Germany and Nuno Lucio representing Portugal.
The consultations were aimed at assessing the implementation of the joint 18-month programme of the EU presidency, reviewing the achievements of the ongoing Slovenian presidency and plans for the end of the year, the ministry said.
“In addition to the effective tackling of COVID-19 … great progress has been made in building a European Health Union. Based on this experience, the Slovenian presidency has made a major contribution to strengthening the EU’s resilience to crises.”
The ministry added that “the adoption of the Council resolutions on improving preparedness, response capacity and resilience to crises has provided for a solid foundation for this important topic to remain high on the agenda of EU decision-makers.”
Sušnik noted, in particular, the economic recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic, adding that the Council had started approving and confirming 22 recovery and resilience plans, allowing investments and reforms to be launched in EU member states.
She highlighted as an important achievement the agreements on a proposal for a directive on adequate minimum wages and a proposal for a directive on pay transparency, which aims to ensure fair work conditions in the EU.
Slovenia has also launched negotiations on the Fit for 55 climate and energy package, a progress report for which will be prepared in December to enable a final agreement between the member states, the ministry said.
The Portuguese and German representatives agreed that the 18-month programme had been primarily implemented and congratulated the Slovenian presidency on successfully performing the release adds.