24 Jun 2016
RESULTS GENERAL AFFAIRS COUNCIL – 24 JUNEBrussels Daily
Main results – read full results here
The Council exchanged views on the outcome of the UK referendum as part of the preparations for the June European Council. “We regret but respect the decision of the UK. At the same time the EU has to show resolve. The integrity of the European Union and our solidarity are important. What we have to do is not continue with business as usual but rather look at the real concerns of citizens, such as jobs, security and migration”, said Bert Koenders, the Netherlands Minister for Foreign Affairs and President of the Council.
The Council also finalised preparations for the other items on the agenda of the European Council by examining draft conclusions. At that meeting on 28 and 29 June EU leaders will revert to the issue of migration, focusing on the external aspects and on the new partnership framework with origin and transit countries. They will also discuss how to inject new political momentum into the single market as well as take stock of the first results of the European fund for strategic investments and of on-going action to tackle tax fraud and tax evasion. EU leaders are also expected to have a presentation of the European Global Strategy on Foreign and Security Policy and discuss EU-NATO cooperation.
Legislative EU priorities for 2017 and transparency
Ministers launched the annual circle of legislative programming by exchanging views on the EU’s legislative priorities for 2017. This provides early input into the Commission’s work programme for next year. As part of the new agreement on better law-making, the Commission consults the Council and the European Parliament before adopting its annual work programme and takes their views into account. Ministers also discussed progress in improving transparency in the EU’s legislative work, such as through a database on the state of play of legislative files.
Ministers approved the country specific recommendations and transmitted them to the European Council for endorsement. “It is important that the country specific recommendations are fully implemented by the member states. High-quality public administrations also have an important role to play in this process, which aims in particular at inclusive growth and high public integrity. The General Affairs Council should continue to discuss the quality of public administrations as a cross cutting issue in order to achieve better governance in the EU and its member states”, said Bert Koenders.