Sustainable growth agenda
The Finnish Presidency has prepared a report on the sustainable growth agenda. The report introduces a new integrated approach to sustainable growth highlighting that contributions from different relevant policy areas with carefully chosen and well-targeted policy measures are more efficient together and offer more synergies than separately.
It is clear that the successful and just transition towards a research and innovation-led climate neutral, digital economy is a common objective for all sustainable growth policies. Moreover, a wisely chosen combination of different policy measures could better respond to citizens’ legitimate concerns about their prospects for the future, employment, safety and livelihood in general.
The main messages of the report
The report identifies the key policy objectives for the next Commission’s agenda and lists measures to deliver on them. These objectives and thereby the main messages of the report are:
- Accomplishing a just transition to climate neutral industries, manufacturing and service sectors, fostering the renewal and level of digitalisation of European industries and developing strong global and European industrial value chains
- Strengthening an innovation-friendly Single Market with a more favourable business environment, in particular for SMEs, scale-up companies and services and examining how businesses ensure that their conduct is environmentally and socially responsible
- Promoting innovation-led transitions with an ambitious policy mix emphasising investments in knowledge, uptake of research results and deployment of innovations recognising R&I as a key enabler and driver for productivity, policies and solutions for sustainable growth
- Making the EU a global leader in the digital economy and a globally attractive market for digitalisation and for digital services
- Enhancing the competitiveness and productivity of Europe by investing in education, continuous learning, reskilling, upskilling and new skills needed in a digital world, in the industrial transformation and in the transition to a climate neutral economy
- Strengthening the external dimension of the EU’s competitiveness and making better use of the opportunities of the Single Market in order to improve the global competitiveness of European industries.
The preparation of the Presidency report has been a participatory process and the Member States have expressed their views at several different phases and fora including at the political level. At the Informal Meeting of the Ministers responsible for Competitiveness in Helsinki on 4 and 5 July, the Ministers had an exchange of views on sustainable growth and the priorities of the work programme of the next Commission.
The preparation of the report took place in the Council Working Parties on Internal Market, Industry and Research. The High Level Working Group on Competitiveness and Growth has contributed to these discussions from the perspective of several different policy areas and priority topics.