The COVID-19 pandemic breakout caused both a health and socio-economic crisis that caught the world and its leaders by surprise. As part of national responses, member states granted tax facilities to companies and citizens. The recovery should be based on a just taxation system, and it is also an opportunity to close tax loopholes and continue the fight against tax evasion and tax avoidance.
A more mature and contemporary Africa-EU partnership can help us address the global challenges we face. Together we can strengthen democracy and human rights, and foster sustainable economic and human development in our societies. Good co-ordination of the EU's external policies is vital if we want to make the most of the global opportunities we are presented with and be a responsible actor on the international stage.
Equality between women and men is a fundamental right recognised in the Treaty of Rome of 1957 and in the Charter of Fundamental Rights. Although the EU has adopted many texts to promote equal opportunities, ensure fair treatment for men and women, and combat all forms of discrimination, nowhere near enough progress has been made and women still face many daily inequalities. The S&D Group wants an inclusive and equal Europe for everyone. There is still a long way to go.
Europe must rise to the challenge of a new era. Faced with growing inequalities and many changes, from globalisation and economic uncertainty to digitisation and new technologies, we must embrace new opportunities but defend our values. This means securing and updating fundamental social standards for everyone. The S&Ds have always fought for this and we’re leading the fight in the European Parliament to make it real – through a ‘European pillar of social rights’. We want to make sure this pillar is solid, with enforceable rights, fairer economic policies and properly funded public investments.
An inclusive Digital Union for Europe. Europe is undergoing a digital revolution. We can see its impact on our daily lives: from online voting to faster broadband, from better ways to communicate to online shopping, and from useful digital tools to new hi-tech industries and jobs. We welcome the opportunities this revolution offers for all European citizens and want to tackle potential challenges head on.
Today, over 50 million Europeans are forced to live their lives in energy poverty. This means that they are not able to pay for the electricity and gas they need, which can have serious effects on their health and wellbeing. Clean and affordable energy is a basic right for every European citizen – no one should be left in the cold! The Socialists and Democrats Group in the European Parliament has written a manifesto on this topic, which you can read here.