State of the European Union (SOTEU) 2020

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Publication Date 2020
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The President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen delivered her first State of the Union address to the European Parliament on 16 September 2020.

Further information:

Ms von der Leyen presented her vision for the European Union concerning the following twelve months, focusing on the socioeconomic recovery in the aftermath of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic and on lessons learnt from the sanitary crisis. The European Commission vowed to focus on:

  • Protecting lives and livelihoods in Europe, the health of citizens and the stability of the economy;
  • Reinforcing the building blocks of the European Green Deal and raising ambitions;
  • Leading the digital transformation, particularly on data, technology and infrastructure;
  • Making the most of the EU's single market;
  • Continuing to rally global response as the world awaits an accessible, affordable and safe vaccine against COVID-19;
  • Responding more assertively to global events and deepening relations with EU’s closest neighbours and global partners;
  • Taking a new approach to migration, remaining vigilant on the rule of law and building a union where racism and discrimination have no place.

The Commission's President also sent a Letter of Intent to the President of the European Parliament and to the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, in which she detailed the actions the Commission intended to take in the following year by means of legislation and other initiatives.

Related Links
Commentary and Analysis
EPRS: Briefing, September 2020: The State of the Union debate in the European Parliament, 2020
Politico, 16/09/2020: Ursula von der Leyen’s State of the Union speech — compared
IIEA: The State of The European Union 2020 Panel Discussion, 16 September 2020 (via Youtube)
Euronews, 16/09/2020: State of the Union: What are the key takeaways from Ursula von der Leyen's speech?
Politico, 16/09/2020: Ursula von der Leyen’s speech shows English still dominates
BBC News, 16/09/2020: Five things from EU chief’s first State of the Union speech
EEB: META, 16/09/2020: State of the European Union: Brave vision must be matched with bold action
The Brussels Times, 16/09/2020: Ambitious first State of the Union speech in the European Parliament
European Confederation of Independent Trade Unions (CESI), 16/09/2020: State of the European Union Debate 2020
EUObserver, 17/09/2020: The State of the Union speech - digested
The Conversation, 18/09/2020: The EU is on a collision course with Poland over hate crime
ETUI: Editorial, 22/09/2020: What’s green inside the latest State of the European Union
GCD: Blog, 23/09/2020: Von Der Leyen’s State of The Union Speech Falls Short of Europe’s Global Responsibilities

Politico, 16/09/2020: Von der Leyen challenges EU capitals to step up
France24, 16/09/2020: EU’s von der Leyen unveils blueprint for recovery in ‘state of the union’ address
Deutsche Welle, 16/09/2020: 'This is the moment for the EU to lead the way,' says EU chief Ursula von der Leyen
RFI News, 16/09/2020: EU chief gives first 'State of the Union' speech

European Commission: State of the Union 2020
European Parliament: Press Release, 11/09/2020: State of the European Union: EC president von der Leyen to address the House
European Commission: State of the Union Address by President von der Leyen at the European Parliament Plenary (16 September 2020)
European Commission: Press Release, 16/09/2020: President von der Leyen's State of the Union Address: charting the course out of the coronavirus crisis and into the future

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