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Commission adopts 2012 Work Programme for European Renewal

The European Commission has yesterday adopted a Work Programme for the coming year, "Delivering European renewal". The Programme sets out how the Commission will build on the ambitious set of proposals to respond to the economic crisis already on the table with further measures next year. It translates the political priorities identified by President Barroso in the State of the Union address1 into concrete actions for the next year.

The Programme underlines that significant attention will have to be given next year to taking forward proposals already adopted or in the pipeline for the coming weeks. These include measures on the economy, the Single Market, and the wide range of proposals now coming forward on spending programmes to drive reform and renewal. New proposals will build on this programme to reinforce the drive to job-creating growth.

President Barroso said, "In my State of the Union Address I called for a European renewal. The top priority is to adopt and swiftly implement the ambitious package of proposals to restore confidence in the European economy. The Commission work programme goes even further and concentrates on measures that will support all possibilities to counter the current difficult economic prospects".

The main priorities over the next 12 months include:

Building a Europe of stability and responsibility

The completion of the financial sector reform in 2012 is one of the main aims of the programme, with a focus on investor protection. The Commission will also take steps to protect public revenues in areas like tax havens and VAT fraud.

Building a Union of growth and solidarity

As the Single Market approaches its 20th birthday, it remains the most important vehicle for growth and job creation. Next year will see a particular emphasis on making the digital single market work better, giving consumers and operators confidence in online transactions. A comprehensive Consumer Agenda will further set out more steps to help consumers to use the Single Market to best effect.

Other measures will focus on encouraging a jobs-rich recovery, and continuing to shape the sustainable economy vital for the long term. This will include measures on pensions, on vehicle emissions, and on water supplies.

Giving the EU an effective voice in the wider world

The EU's economic recovery and its political reach depend on a united EU as the best platform to protect and promote our interests and values. As well as promoting a wide range of trade agreements, the EU will continue to offer support for the peaceful and prosperous development in the Southern Mediterranean.

In all these areas, the Work Programmes underlines the need for the EU to be united, and to work together to ensure that proposals and ideas are translated into laws and practical implementation on the ground.


The President's State of the Union address end of September 2011 launched a debate on the priorities of the Union for the year to come. The Commission Work Programme takes account of these exchanges and suggests concrete actions for 2012 and beyond.

The Commission Work Programme is accompanied by three annexes:

  • a list of 129 initiatives2 which the Commission intends to deliver in 2012, and other possible initiatives which it will consider until the end of the mandate (annex 1).

  • a list of simplification and administrative burden reduction initiatives (annex II) and a list of proposed withdrawals of pending initiatives (annex III).

The Commission will now work closely with the European Parliament and the Council, as well as stakeholders, including national Parliaments to ensure a broad ownership of the political priorities as well as on individual initiatives.

The Commission Work Programme 2012 can be found at:

Contacts :

Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen (+32 2 295 30 70)

Mark Gray (+32 2 298 86 44)

1 :

2 :

Roadmaps for the individual initiatives foreseen for 2012 can be found at: