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    • Council Meeting · Press releases
    • General Affairs
    Better law-making - Council approves agreement with the European Parliament and the Commission

    The European Union will improve the way it legislates to ensure that EU laws better serve citizens and businesses. That is the main purpose of an agreement on better law-making between the Council, Parliament and the Commission, which the Council endorsed on 15 December 2015. "The agreement on better law-making reflects the joint commitment of the EU institutions to make the life of citizens and companies easier. Laws need to be simple to understand and to implement, and that's precisely what the agreement seeks to ensure", said Nicolas Schmit, Minister for Labour, Employment and Social and Solidary Economy.

    • Council Meeting · Press releases
    • General Affairs
    Jean Asselborn will chair the

    The Luxembourg Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn, will chair the European Union's "General Affairs" Council (GAC) on 15 December 2015 in Brussels. The GAC will start by preparing the European Council on 17 and 18 December. In this context, the Ministers will examine draft conclusions and will review the Five Presidents' Report on completing the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). The Ministers will also exchange views on the subjects of migration, the fight against terrorism, the single market and climate policy, as well as the role of the United Kingdom within the EU. The Council will then examine the negotiations with the European Parliament and the European Commission on the interinstitutional agreement on better regulation ("IIA").

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • General Affairs
    General Affairs Council – Ministers approve the interinstitutional agreement on better regulation and prepare the European Council in December

    The EU ministers responsible for European affairs met in Brussels on 15 December 2015, during the EU General Affairs (GAC) chaired by the Luxembourg Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn. During the meeting, the European ministers first of all wound up preparations for the European Council of 17 and 18 December. The Council also approved the text for a new interinstitutional agreement, entitled 'Better regulation', which had been the subject of a temporary agreement with the European Parliament and the Commission of 8 December 2015. This was after three months of negotiations led by the Luxembourg Presidency, which were 'difficult', but 'always held in a positive and cooperative atmosphere'. Finally, the GAC approved the programme of works for the Council for the forthcoming eighteen months, drawn up by the trio of successive Presidencies of the Netherlands, Slovakia and Malta.

    • Council Meeting · Press releases
    • General Affairs
    Court of Justice of the EU - Council adopts reform of General Court

    On 3 December 2015, the Council adopted a regulation reforming the General Court. The aim of the reform is to enable the General Court to face an increasing workload and to ensure that legal redress in the EU is guaranteed within a reasonable time. "The reform of the General Court reinforces an institution that has provided significant impetus to European integration", said Félix Braz, Minister for Justice of Luxembourg and President of the Council.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • Education, Youth, Culture, Sport
    Culture Council – Culture in EU external policy and the fight against the destruction of cultural heritage and the illicit trafficking of cultural goods take centre stage in debates

    Three major topics were high on the agenda of European Culture Ministers who met on 24 November 2015 as part of the 'Education, Youth, Culture and Sport' Council chaired by the Luxembourg Minister for Culture,Maggy Nagel: the conclusions to be adopted on culture in EU external relations, in particular as part of development cooperation, the modification of the work plan (2015–2018) for culture with the priority on intercultural dialogue, and a public debate on the destruction of cultural heritage and the illicit trafficking of cultural goods. Minister Nagel said this last debate was particularly marked by 'current events dominated by the acts of barbarism in Paris'.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • Education, Youth, Culture, Sport
    Sport Council – Debate on the educational potential of sport for young people, including young migrants

    The European Ministers for Sport met in Brussels on 24 November 2015 during the second day of the 'Education, Youth, Culture and Sport' Council. The Ministers adopted conclusions on the promotion of motor skills, physical and sport activities for children as well as conclusions aimed at strengthening the EU's position in the World Anti-Doping Agency. The Ministers also held a debate on the educational potential of sport for young people, including young migrants. Romain Schneider, who chaired the Council, described sport as a 'very important pillar' and a 'springboard' that can provide opportunities for young people.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • Education, Youth, Culture, Sport
    Education and Youth Council – The prevention of radicalisation dominated ministerial debates

    Ministers of Youth and Education for EU Member States met on 23 November 2015 in Brussels for the first part of the 'Education, Youth, Culture and Sports' Council. Following the tragic events in Paris on 13 November 2015, the Ministers discussed the need to prevent radicalisation by reinforcing social inclusion and preventing the marginalisation of young people. Claude Meisch, Minister for National Education, Childhood and Youth, chaired the Council. During the press conference, he remarked that the Ministers examined how education, schools, childcare facilities and youth initiatives could contribute towards preventing such 'barbaric acts'.

    • Council Meeting · Background notes
    • Education, Youth, Culture, Sport

    Education, Youth, Culture and Sports Council - Background brief Presidency discussion paper: The role of youth policy and youth work with regards to migration - supporting intercultural awareness and the integration of migrants Acting together against the destruction and illicit

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • General Affairs, Territorial Cooperation
    A General Affairs Council dedicated to cohesion policy

    On 18 November 2015, Camille Gira, Secretary of State for Sustainable Development chaired the General Affairs Council dedicated to issues related to EU cohesion policy. The Council adopted three sets of conclusions: simplification of the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF); 25 years of European Territorial Cooperation (Interreg); and the contribution of the ESIF to the shift towards a low-carbon economy. The Council agreed on the possibility for Member States to make use of Interreg to respond to challenges due to the migration crisis.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • General Affairs
    A

    Luxembourg's Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn, chaired the 'General Affairs Council' (GAC) of the European Union which was held on 17 November 2015 in Brussels. Jean Asselborn said that the agenda for the meeting of the Council was "very busy". It included preparations for the European Council on 17 and 18 December 2015, the first dialogue on the rule of law in the European Union as well as the state of play of negotiations between the Council, the European Commission and the European Parliament on the inter-institutional agreement on improving regulations, called 'Better Legislation'. The Commission presented its work programme for 2016. Finally, the Luxembourg Presidency, in agreement with the future Dutch Presidency of the Council, presented a road map for the 2016 European Semester.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • General Affairs

    The EU Member State Ministers in charge for European affairs met in Luxembourg, on 13 October 2015, during the "General Affairs" Council (GAC), focused on preparations for the European Council on 15 and 16 October 2015. On this occasion, the Ministers also looked at the European Commission agenda and noted the progress on an interinstitutional agreement on better regulation. The meeting was chaired by the Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn.

    • Council Meeting · News articles
    • Justice and Home Affairs, General Affairs
    In a letter addressed to Donald Tusk, Jean Asselborn informs the President of the European Council about the progress made by the JHA Council in the management of the migrant and refugee crisis

    In view of the European Council to be held on 15 and 16 October 2015 in Brussels, Jean Asselborn, the Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Minister for Asylum and Immigration, who presides the "Justice and Home Affairs" Council (JHA), sent a letter to Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, to inform him on the progress made by the JHA Council in the management of the migrant and refugee crisis since the informal meeting of the European Council on 23 September 2015.

    • Council Meeting · Press releases
    • General Affairs
    Jean Asselborn to chair the

    The General Affairs Council (GAC) on 13 October 2015 will prepare for the meeting of the European Council of 15 and 16 October and will examine the draft conclusions drawn up in preparation for this meeting of Heads of State and government. The Ministers will then discuss the European Commission work programme for 2016. Finally, Jean Asselborn, Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, who will chair the meeting, will provide his counterparts with information on the status of progress on an interinstitutional agreement (IIA) to improve regulation.

  • Updated 15-07-2015