Portugal ends EU Council presidency

European Council President Charles Michel chairs the EU summit in Brussels, Belgium, Dec. 10, 2020. (European Union/Handout via Xinhua/ians)

Lisbon, July 1 (IANS) Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa said the country has concluded its presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU), honouring the motto of “time to act, for a fair, green and digital recovery”.

“Today we conclude the Portuguese presidency fulfilling our three priorities: economic and social recovery, the development of the European pillar of social rights, and the strategic autonomy of an EU open to the world,” he said in a post on Twitter on Wednesday.

According to Costa, the Portuguese presidency of the EU prioritised “coordination of the response to the pandemic and vaccination”, reports Xinhua news agency

The Portuguese presidency also worked, according to him, to ensure a “fair recovery with a social commitment between social partners, civil society, and European institutions”.

He highlighted the advances achieved during the presidency towards “a green and digital recovery, with the approval of the first Climate Law, the Digital Certificate (for free transit in the EU during the Covid-19) and the ‘EllaLink’,” the submarine internet cable linking Europe to Latin America.

The Portuguese presidency ends, according to the Prime Minister, to make Europe more “open to the world, unfreezing the negotiations of trade and investment agreements”.

Slovenia will take over the rotating presidency on Thursday for the next six months.

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