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Strategic initiatives

The Ombudsman can address potential systemic problems with the EU’s administration without necessarily opening an inquiry, such as by seeking clarifications about or raising an issue directly with the institution concerned.

Showing 1 - 10 of 172 results

Decision on strategic initiative SI/3/2018/JN: effective complaint mechanisms for matters concerning European Structural and Investment Funds - follow-up to OI/8/2014/AN

Thursday | 18 July 2019

Mr Jean-Claude Juncker President of the European Commission Strasbourg, 18/07/2019 Dear Mr President, I refer to my letter of 25 September 2018 on effective complaint mechanisms for matters concerning European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI funds) and how Article 74(3) of Regulation 1303/2013[1] is implemented. I have now examined the Commission’s reply, as well as the information provided b...

Closing note on the Strategic Initiative with the European Commission to improve the Transparency Register (SI/7/2016/KR)

Thursday | 27 June 2019

The Transparency Register was set up by the European Commission and Parliament in 2011 to allow the public to monitor the activities of interest representatives (or “lobbyists”) who seek to influence the formulation and implementation of EU legislation and policy. Overall, the Register has been successful and while there are gaps, it is improving over time.

In 2016, the Commission organised a public consultation on several proposed reforms aimed at improving the Transparency Register.

In this context, the Ombudsman opened a ‘strategic initiative’, to contribute to this important debate and to monitor developments by writing to the Commission on the issue.

In January 2018, inter-institutional negotiations began between the Parliament, the Council of the EU and the Commission on the Commission’s proposal to revise and improve the Transparency Register. These negotiations have not yet led to a successful outcome.

The Ombudsman encourages the incoming Parliament, the Council and the incoming Commission to renew their efforts to improve the Transparency Register given the importance of this matter for public trust in the EU.

Closing note on the Strategic Initiative with the European Commission on the revision of the European citizens’ initiative (ECI) regulation (SI/6/2017/KR)

Thursday | 23 May 2019

The European citizens’ initiative (ECI) constitutes one important example of how citizens can participate in the democratic life of the European Union. In this strategic initiative with the European Commission, the Ombudsman suggested ways of improving the ECI procedure.

These suggestions for improvements preceded the Commission’s public consultation on the revision of the regulation on the citizens’ initiative. The purpose of this revision is to make it easier for European citizens to participate in the democratic decision-making process of the EU, and to make the ECI procedure more user-friendly. The Ombudsman’s suggestions on how to achieve this were inspired by the principles of independence, transparency, and meaningful engagement with stakeholders and the wider public.

The Ombudsman is pleased that her suggestions were largely taken on board in the Commission’s proposal for the revision of the ECI regulation, and that all are reflected in the agreement between the co-legislators on the outcome of this revision.

The Ombudsman stresses however that continued public engagement and engagement with the organisers and potential organisers is the key to making a success of the ECI tool.

When the new rules are applied, the Ombudsman will be looking critically at how they are followed in practice. Meanwhile, the Ombudsman will deal with any complaint concerning the ECI procedure that is submitted and is admissible.

 

Request for information in Strategic initiative SI/2/2019/EA on transparency of the Eurogroup Working Group

Monday | 13 May 2019

Mr Mário Centeno President of the Eurogroup Strasbourg, 13/05/2019 Re: Transparency of the Eurogroup Working Group (SI/2/2019/EA) Dear Mr President, I was encouraged to learn about your recent decision to look into the Eurogroup’s transparency practices to see if there is room for further improvement. In 2016, I welcomed the proactive transparency measures adopted by the Eurogroup, notably the pub...

Transparency of the bodies involved in preparing Eurogroup meetings

Monday | 13 May 2019

Transparency of the bodies involved in preparing Eurogroup meetings.

Letter to the President of the European Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Juncker, concerning the leave rights of certain staff members and the best interests of the child

Wednesday | 08 May 2019

Mr Jean-Claude Juncker President European Commission Strasbourg, 10/05/2019 Re: SI/1/2019/AMF on the leave rights of certain staff members and the best interests of the child Dear Mr President, The EU institutions have rightly set out the need to avoid discrimination in staffing issues, including based on sexual orientation. The issue of maternity and paternity leave for EU civil servants in the c...

Letter to the President of the European Parliament, Mr Antonio Tajani, concerning the leave rights of certain staff members and the best interests of the child

Wednesday | 08 May 2019

Mr Antonio Tajani President European Parliament Strasbourg, 10/05/2019 Re: SI/1/2019/AMF on the leave rights of certain staff members and the best interests of the child Dear Mr President, The EU institutions have rightly set out the need to avoid discrimination in staffing issues, including based on sexual orientation. The issue of maternity and paternity leave for EU civil servants in the contex...