On October 18, the European Commission presented to the Members of the European Parliament sitting in plenary session in Strasbourg its Work Programme for 2023, which contains 43 new strategic legislative and non-legislative initiatives covering the six ambitions set out in the political guidelines of the von der Leyen Presidency:
- 1. A Green Deal for Europe;
- 2. A Europe fit for the digital age;
- 3. An economy at the service of people;
- 4. A stronger Europe on the international scene;
- 5. Promotion of our European way of life;
- 6. A new impetus for European democracy.
It should be noted that the Commission has re-emphasized, in line with the Better Regulation principles, its commitment to the “one in, one out” approach, which is meant to offset any new burden on businesses resulting from the Commission’s proposals by removing an equivalent existing burden in the same policy area. We welcome the Commission’s intentions. However, so far, the reduction of administrative burdens and the “one in, one out” approach did not reveal as effective as expected. We therefore call for more attention to an effective application of the “one in, one out” approach in law-making.
Equally positive would be the acknowledgement in the Commission’s Work programme for 2023 that “this unique set of crises, which is being felt so acutely in the everyday lives of Europeans, cannot be met with a business-as-usual approach”.1 We welcome the need to adapt the Work Programme to the current critic situation. However, the vast corpus of “pending priority proposals” seems to confirm, on the other hand, this “business-as-usual” approach in times of crisis, imposing many additional burdens on companies.
On this point Markus J. Beyrer, Director General of BusinessEurope, the umbrella federation of representing national federations in 35 European countries, of which FEDIL is member, stated: “It is the very wrong moment for putting further administrative and financial burden on companies. This can be detrimental in these difficult circumstances. We therefore ask law-makers to create breathing space for our companies, be it regarding new, pending or existing legislation. This can be achieved by the Commission carrying out an inventory of proposals which hamper our recovery. The proof of the pudding will as always be in the eating. We will carefully assess relevant new proposals once they are published and hold the Commission accountable to the promise of not doing business as usual.”2 (see full press release HERE)
1 See page 2 of the Work Programme.