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Saturday, 20 May 2017

EU Commission: Council conclusions on sustainable garment value chains

Council conclusions on sustainable garment value chains

The Council supports the promotion of responsible supply chains in the textile and clothing sector. It adopted conclusions recognising the potential of this sector as a driver of development and emancipation, but also acknowledging the economic, social and environmental challenges posed by the garment value chains. Deadly accidents such as the collapse of the factory in Rana Plaza in Bangladesh in 2013 underline the importance of preventing human rights violations and of promoting corporate social responsibility in the garment sector.

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Waste package: Council agrees its negotiating stance

On 19 May 2017, the Permanent Representatives Committee (Coreper) agreed on a negotiating mandate to start negotiations with the European Parliament on all four legislative proposals on waste, which are part of the Circular economy package submitted by the Commission on 3 December 2015. 

The four legislative proposals introduce additional measures to reduce waste generation, control waste management, boost recycling and cut resource use. They aim at bringing benefits to our economy, environment and health.  

These new proposals amend six waste related legislation as follows: 

  • Waste framework directive
  • Packaging waste directive
  • Landfill directive
  • Directive on electrical and electronic waste, on end-of-life vehicles; and on batteries and accumulators and waste batteries and accumulators

Today's Council mandate is the result of intensive work and discussions on all four proposals during three Council Presidencies (NL, SK and MT). The Maltese Presidency has now obtained support to initiate talks with the European Parliament with a view to a possible first reading agreement. A first trilogue meeting is scheduled on 30 May.

Negotiations are expected to focus on a number of outstanding elements, including the definitions, the setting of binding targets and their calculation rules, end-of-waste criteria, extended producer responsibility schemes and waste prevention. 

Background 

The European Commission presented a new revised circular economy package on 3 December 2015. It consists of four waste legislative proposals and an Action Plan in the form of a Commission Communication. 

The action plan was discussed during the Competitiveness Council on 29 February 2016 and the Environment Council on 4 March 2016. Taking into account both discussions from an economic and environmental perspective, and following further discussions in the working group, the Council adopted conclusions on the plan in the Environment Council of 20 June 2016. 

The Council has been intensively discussing the legislative proposals since the revised package was submitted with the aim of reaching a balanced compromise text.

At its plenary session last 14 March 2017, the European Parliament voted on a mandate to open negotiations with the Council. 

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Indicative programme - Economic and Financial Affairs Council meeting of 23 May 2017

Place:        Justus Lipsius building, Brussels
Chair:        Edward Scicluna, Minister for Finance of Malta

All times are approximate and subject to change.

from 07.00
Arrivals (live streaming)

+/- 07.45 (time to be confirmed)
Doorstep by Minister Scicluna

08.00
Annual EIB governors meeting  (Roundtable)

10.00
Beginning of the Council meeting
Adoption of the agenda
Adoption of legislative A items (public session)

Dispute Resolution Mechanisms (public session)

Common Corporate Tax Base (public session)

Any other business
-   Current financial services legislative proposals (public session)

Approval of non-legislative A items

Movement of capital:
-   2016 EFC Report on the movement of capital and the freedom of payments
-   Report from the Commission - accelerating the Capitals Markets Union: Addressing national barriers to capital flows

European Semester 2017
- Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure (MIP)

Follow-up to the G20 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on 20-21 April 2017 and of the IMF and World Bank Spring meetings on 21-23 April 2017 in Washington

At the end of the meeting
Press conference
(live streaming)

*           *           *

In the margins of the Council:

22 May - Eurogroup meeting

15.00
Roundtable

At the end of the meeting
Press conference

23 May

08.00
Annual EIB governors meeting (Roundtable)

09.00
Ministerial breakfast

14.00
Economic and Financial Dialogue between the EU and the Western Balkans and Turkey  (Roundtable)

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The Council adopts a new European consensus on development
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Statement by the Spokesperson on the situation in Guinea Bissau

Statement by the Spokesperson on the situation in Guinea Bissau

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