After six months of Croatian Presidency marked by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Germany took over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union on the 1st of July. The Presidency has established a political programme under the motto ‘Together for Europe’s recovery’. The programme has been drafted in close cooperation with Portugal and Slovenia which are together with Germany the members of the current European trio, i.e. the three countries that will preside the Council until December 2021.
The German Council Presidency will be structured around the following guiding principles:
- Overcoming the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and supporting the economic recovery
- A stronger and more innovative Europe
- A fair Europe
- A sustainable Europe
- A Europe of security and common values
- A strong Europe in the world
The German Presidency starts at a very crucial moment for the Union and one of its main objective is to find an agreement on the EU Recovery package to ensure that Europe ‘becomes stronger, fairer and more sustainable’.
When it comes to fisheries, the German presidency wants to ‘implement the SDGs through a modern and sustainable agricultural and fishing industry’. The programme also highlights the important role that digital technology can play for these sectors. Germany will also lead the negotiations on fishing opportunities for 2021 and it is expected to further advance on the Member States’ position on the revision of the control regulation. As the Presidency expressed its commitment for a more sustainable Europe, it plans to ‘launch Council conclusions on the new EU Biodiversity strategy in order to halt the advancing loss of biodiversity and preserve the benefits of the ecosystems that are so important for human life’.