Spanish presidency of the EU Council concludes its six-month term


At the end of December 2023, the NSI handed over the "baton" to the Belgian presidency, so that as of January 1, 2024, the Council Working Group on Statistics is chaired by the Statistical Office of Belgium (Statbel).

The official handover ceremony took place in Alcalá de Henares (Madrid), and brought together representatives of the current trio of presidencies (Spain-Belgium-Hungary), as well as a representative of the previous presidency (Sweden) and Eurostat.

During the "handover" meeting, the status of the statistical dossiers was discussed in order to facilitate the continuity of negotiations with Belgian colleagues in the Council and the European Parliament.

The representatives of the Swedish and Spanish presidencies also presented the main results of their mandates and some of the lessons learned from their experiences.

The incoming Belgian and Hungarian presidencies presented their projects, which are in line with the program of the trio presidencies, and Eurostat provided some information on the collaboration with the current presidency and presented the programs of the planned future proposals.

Main achievements

INE is very pleased with the important work carried out and the results obtained, especially for having reached an agreement in the Permanent Representatives Committee of the European Union (COREPER) on the proposal to amend Regulation 223 on European statistics.

For the Spanish presidency, this dossier was a top priority due to its importance in the European Statistical System (ESS) and the need to take advantage of the current moment in which a multitude of new data sources are emerging.

Significant progress was also made during the mandate of the Spanish presidency in relation to the proposal for the Regulation on European population and housing statistics and the proposal to amend the Regulation on the introduction of new modules for environmental economic accounts. In addition, discussions began on the proposal for a regulation on labor market statistics in companies.

Meetings held

Negotiations of the aforementioned dossiers were conducted through written consultations, bilateral contacts and face-to-face and online meetings. Specifically, six meetings of the Council Working Group on Statistics, four political trilogues and 10 inter-institutional technical meetings (European Council, Parliament and Commission) were held.

In addition, as part of the activities planned under the Spanish Presidency of the EU, INE organized a high-level meeting in Seville on November 27 and 28 on "Integration and Interoperability Strategies to modernize official statistics", with the participation of the presidents and directors general of the national statistical institutes of the European Union, as well as the director general of Eurostat.

During this forum, ESS members exchanged experiences on integration and interoperability. They also had the opportunity to discuss how to further advance the modernization of the ESS, taking advantage of data spaces and the benefits of having common standards.

Coinciding also with the Spanish presidency, the INE and the Institute of Economics, Geography and Demography of the CSIC (IEGD-CSIC) organized the European Data Users Conference on October 30, with the aim of analyzing the situation of social and demographic statistics in the European Union.