European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker will deliver his fourth State of the Union Address in the European Parliament in Strasbourg on September 12.
This year’s speech comes ahead of the 2019 European elections and in the context of the ongoing debate about the future of the European Union at 27 – one less member state after Brexit.
In last year’s speech, Juncker outlined his vision for how the EU could evolve by 2025 and presented a Roadmap for a ‘More United, Stronger and More Democratic Union’. His speech was accompanied by concrete initiatives on trade, investment screening, cybersecurity, industry and data.
According to a European Commission press release, this year’s speech will again be accompanied by new proposals, putting words immediately into action. The President will set out proposals that can deliver positive results for citizens by the time of the Sibiu Summit, and pave the way for a wide-ranging debate in the run-up to the European elections.
This will be Juncker’s last State of the Union address. In a statement, the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&Ds) group in the European Parliament noted that Juncker will have to outline the priorities for the remaining months of this term until the European elections in May 2019.
From the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), the group’s co-chairmen Syed Kamall and Ryzsard Legutko will argue that it is essential for the EU to win back the confidence and trust of its voters ahead of the 2019 European elections.