Europe 2020 strategy is the follow-up to the Lisbon Strategy and the European Union's (EU) development strategy for the 2010-2020 period. This new strategy was adopted by the European Council on 17th of June 2010 in a Europe's effort to overcome the crisis, creating the conditions for a more competitive, more job-rich economy, aiming for growth: smart, with more effective investment in education, research and innovation, sustained by a decisive transition to a low-carbon economy and a more competitive and inclusive industry, with particular emphasis on job creation and poverty reduction.
In order to achieve the objectives of the Strategy, the following five key European objectives (which are then transformed by Member States into national targets) are set to be achieved by the end of the decade:
· 75% of the population aged 20-64 must be employed
· 3% of EU GDP should be invested in R & D
· The "20/20/20" greenhouse gas emissions/energy/energy efficiency targets must be met (including a 30% increase in the rate of emission reduction if conditions permit)
· The proportion of early school leavers should be less than 10% and at least 40% of young people should have a tertiary degree
· The number of people at risk of poverty should be reduced by 20 million.
The objectives set by Cyprus and degree of implementation is shown in the related Table below in the related documents.
In addition, the Europe 2020 Strategy includes 7 "flagship initiatives" which provide a framework through which the EU and national authorities mutually reinforce their efforts in areas supporting the Europe 2020 Strategy priorities.
European Semester - Governance of the Europe 2020 Strategy
To ensure the success of the Europe 2020 Strategy, an effective system of economic governance has been established to coordinate policy actions between the EU and the Member States. The European Commission has established an annual economic policy co-ordination process, the so-called "European Semester". This process coordinates the budgetary, macro-economic and structural policies of the Member States.
The European Semester starts in November with the Annual Growth Survey published by the Commission (here is the latest published edition) setting out the EU's priorities for next year to boost growth and employment. At the same time, , the Commission publishes the Alert Mechanism Report (here you will find the latest published report), which provides a first reading of Member States' economic policies (with the exception of those included in an EU-IMF program) based on a scoreboard. This table identifies countries potentially affected by macroeconomic imbalances and for which the Commission should carry out further in-depth reviews.
In February, the Commission publishes country reports on the overall economic and social developments of each country, covering all areas of macroeconomic and social importance, and analyzing the country's fiscal situation. They assess progress in addressing the issues identified in last year's EU recommendations. For the countries identified in the alert mechanism report, these reports include an in-depth overview.
In April, Member States submit their plans for sound public finances (Stability and Growth Pact), as well as reforms and measures aimed at smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in areas such as employment, research, innovation, energy and social inclusion (National Reform Programs).
In May - June, the Commission assesses these programs and provides country-by-country recommendations. In this way, policy advice is given to Member States before finalizing their budgets for next year.
In the period August - October, national governments have the opportunity to incorporate the recommendations set to them in their reform plans / programs and national budgets for the coming year.
More information on the European Semester can be found on the European Commission's website here.
Here you can find the Country Report Cyprus for 2019 and here the Country Specific Recommendations for Cyprus for the year 2019
National Reform Program
The National Reform Programs (NRP) is the key tool for implementing the Europe 2020 Strategy at national level, prepared by national governments and submitted around mid-April each year, together with the Stability and Convergence Programs.
The NRP includes national targets in relation to the EU's key objectives, progress in their implementation and measures taken to achieve them.
The Directorate for Competitiveness and Growth of DG EPCD is responsible for coordinating at national level and monitoring the European Semester process for achieving the Europe 2020 Strategy objectives by preparing and monitoring the implementation of the NRP on a yearly basis.
You can locate the NRPs submitted to the European Commission so far here