IN THE SPOTLIGHT
The Steering Committee of the Civil Society Forum of the Eastern Partnership met in Brussels on the 14th and 15th of July 2011
The Steering Committee of the Civil Society Forum of the Eastern Partnership met in Brussels on the 14th and 15th of July 2011 and had also a meeting with Commissioner Stefan Fuele (Enlargement and Neighbouring Policy Commissioner) to decide about further steps for cooperation.
The 17 members of the Steering Committee also finalized the short list for the participants of the next Forum, which will be held on the 28th and 29th of November 2011, in Poznan. The NGOs selected are 250 and they come from the six Eastern Partnership Countries and from the European Union. The selection is the result of a call for interest launch this year and the shortlist proposed by the National Platforms and by the Working groups and European Commision.
The SC members met on the 15th the Commissioner Fuele in order to decide about the further steps of the Civil Society Forum for Eastern Partnership, which is now widely recognised as one of the very active tools of the EaP multilateral track. The Commissioner Fuele confirmed his support to the work of civil society and the interest in establishing a permanent Secretariat of the CSF in order to increase its impact.
A strong emphasis has been given to the role of the National Platforms, which could became a channel of information and cooperation for the EU policy in the EaP countries. To this respect, the European Commission could launch and support consultation meetings between civil society National Platform, the national institutions and the EC Delegation in the second part of the year.
Several meetings were organised these days, in particular with the Member of the Parliament, Mr. Werner Schulz, who has been actively promoting the cause of the Civil Society Forum for Eastern Partnership at the European Parliament. The members of the SC met also Mr. Sandy Boyle, President of the External Relations of the European Economic and Social Committee and Mr. Adrian Klecynsk, of the Polish Delegation to the European Union, in the context of the Polish Presidency of the European Union.
The Steering Committee also discussed the steps to be undertaken to finalize the new Concept Paper for the upcoming Civil Society Forum for Eastern Partnership as well a as a Position Paper for the future Summit of the Heads of States, which will take place in Warsaw at the end of September. During these days, a side event for Civil Society will be organised with the cooperation of the CSF.