The Informal Competitiveness Council focuses on modernization of public administration

23 July 2013, Last updated at, 10:53 EEST
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author: Reuters/Scanpix

The Informal meeting of ministers of the EU Competitiveness Council (Internal Market and Industry) will be held in Vilnius on 22–23 July. The EU Internal Market and Industry ministers will discuss the modernization of public administration, efficient state-owned enterprises and the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises.

The meeting will be chaired by the Minister of Economy of Lithuania Evaldas Gustas. European Commission will be represented by the Vice-President and Commissioner in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship Antonio Tajani, and Commissioner for Internal Market and Services Michel Barnier.

‘The main topic of the Informal meeting of ministers is modernization of public administration. It is important to underline, that modernization of public administration is a tool to foster competitiveness in Europe. That’s why the ministers will focus on this topic in the Informal meeting of ministers’, – said Gustas.

According to the minister Gustas, during the plenary session the presentations will be held on the modernization and digitalizing of public administration, how efficient state-owned enterprises can contribute to growth and competitiveness, and, how public administration could be more responsive to the needs of SME’s.

During the break-out session the ministers will have discussions in three workshops. The first group will discuss the transparency and accountability of state-owned enterprises.

The second group of ministers will discuss the smart-procurement, which is the part of modern and efficient public administration. Therefore, we emphasize the importance of the transition to a fully electronic procurement and e-invoicing in the public procurement.

‘We need to rationalize public expenditure, simplify public procurement, improve business conditions, especially for SMEs, facilitate cross-border procurement, to ensure the efficiency of public administration in Europe’, – said Gustas.

The third group of ministers will discuss the measures to ensure that SMEs remain high on the political agenda, the application of “Think Small First” Principle. This implies in practice that SMEs’ needs should be taken into account when designing legislation, administrative rules and procedures to make them simple and user-friendly.

During the working lunch ministers are going to discuss the female entrepreneurship as an unexploited source of economic growth and new jobs. The ministers will share their views how member states could contribute to promotion of female entrepreneurship.

On 23-24 July ministers of education will continue the Competitiveness Council discussions in the area of research and innovation. This part of the meeting will be chaired by the minister of Education Dainius Pavalkis and the EU will be represented by European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science Máire Geoghegan-Quinn.

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