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Invitation letter by President Herman Van Rompuy to the
It is my pleasure to invite you to the meeting of the European
Council on 22 May 2013 in Brussels.
The aim of this European Council is to set the direction for
future work on two issues of crucial importance for Europe's economy and social
cohesion: energy and taxation.
Indeed, I intend for the European Council to hold a number of
such thematic discussions, to ensure that all of our policies contribute fully
to improving competitiveness, employment and growth.
These debates will also feed into a wide-ranging discussion on
the Europe 2020 strategy in March next year.
After our traditional meeting with the President of the
European Parliament, we will begin our working lunch with an exchange of views
on energy, starting with an introduction by José Manuel Barroso.
Thanks to the work of the Council, we have draft conclusions
which strike the right balance and which provide useful guidelines for further
work by the ministers.
This gives us an opportunity to have a strategic discussion
amongst ourselves on the key issue of energy policy and competitiveness, rather
than going into detail on the wording of the conclusions.
To frame our debate, I should like to invite you to intervene
on one of the three following questions.
To foster EU competitiveness, growth and jobs, what should be
done at the level of the EU to further increase energy efficiency?
To further develop indigenous resources?
And to achieve a more predictable energy policy, as a
prerequisite to attract the necessary investments into a modern energy
I am confident that your intervention will contribute to
giving the necessary orientation to our future work.
We will then focus on the issue of taxation.
Last March we already stressed the need for renewed efforts to
improve the efficiency of tax collection and tackle tax evasion.
In times of tight budgetary constraints and expenditure cuts,
combating tax fraud and tax evasion is more than an issue of tax fairness.
It has become essential for the political and social
acceptability of fiscal consolidation.
Therefore, and following recent developments, both in Europe
and globally, I felt it was important to seize the current political momentum
and to provide further impetus to our European efforts to improve the efficiency
of our tax policies.
The discussions will also serve to prepare strong and
coordinated EU positions in international fora such as the G8, the G20 and the
OECD as well as in our relations with international partners.
We will finish our work at 5 pm.