EESC: The rule of law and its impact on economic growth

The European Economic and Social Committee:

  • underlines that the weakening of the rule of law affects the functioning of society, fundamental rights, civil society, as well as the economy;
  • calls on the European Commission to make efforts to measure the economic impact of the rule of law, taking into account both the substantive and the procedural part of the rule of law;
  • welcomes the efforts of the European Commission and other institutions to develop appropriate tools to defend EU values and promote a rule of law culture;
  • considers that the effectiveness of existing tools could still be improved and should be complemented by measures focused on the rule of law, but geared more effectively towards economic considerations;
  • calls on the Commission to accelerate highlighting the relevance of the rule of law in the European Semester as one of the key elements underpinning a competitive and sustainable economy;
  • recommends that national follow-up review processes be created, which include representatives from civil society and the social partners;
  •  reiterates its call for an annual forum of civil society organisations, which would contribute to the annual rule of law review cycle with its diverse representation;
  • calls for increased financial and substantive support for organisations involved in defending and promoting the rule of law and fundamental rights;
  • underlines the importance of sanctioning non-compliance with the rule of law, otherwise, the value of EU membership for all complying members is reduced;
  • calls for a permanent awareness-raising strategy to alert EU citizens to just how crucial the rule of law is.

Read the full report here: EESC-2020-01261-00-01-AC-TRA-EN