In a new plan to be unveiled today (3 October), the Commission will propose that member states and EU institutions put an end to the “Brussels blame game” and join forces around a common communications strategy in order to win back support from citizens for the 2009 European elections.
A new plan to “Communicate Europe in partnership”, to be unveiled on 3 October by the Commission, proposes an “inter-institutional agreement” to align communication priorities among EU institutions and member states.
Priorities are to be laid down in “management partnership” agreements negotiated with each national government, in order to try to get the message across at the local level.
Climate change and energy, the EU’s new ‘Reform Treaty’, growth and jobs and mobilising voters in the run-up to the 2009 European elections should all be among the common priorities for such an inter-institutional agreement, said Margot Wallström, Commission Vice-President in charge of institutional relations and communications strategy.
It is also the Commission’s wish that member states do more explanatory work at an early age with the inclusion of basic education about European integration in school curricula.
“It has to start with the civic competences and the civic education. EU citizens have a right to know and to be heard,” Wallström told a group of Brussels journalists on 2 October.
The new initiative will not be equipped with extra financial resources, she said, but is intended to be included in the Commission’s annual work plan and could then receive funding from the existing community budget.
EURACTIV has seen a recent copy of the draft plan, which is outlined in more detail in a previous story (EURACTIV 1/10/07).