01.01.2018 – The Bulgarian Presidency (First Half 2018)

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The Bulgarian presidency of the Council of the EU, part of the Presidency Trio Programme  with Estonia and Austria, is taking over the Estonian Presidency for the first time ever and will run from 1 January until 30 June 2018.

Its slogan "United We Stand Strong” reflects its country history and the will to work towards a united and solidary Europe.

With the European elections scheduled for June 2019, Bulgaria will focus its program on the EU policy cycle, which is gradually coming to its end, based on four key areas: the future of Europe and young people, with a focus on economic growth and social cohesion; the European Perspective and Connectivity of the Western Balkans; Security and Stability and Digital Economy and Skills for the future. 

The Bulgarian Presidency will focus on three main principles:

–         Consensus with regards to sensitive political issues such as security, migration, justice, the future of the Western Balkans in the EU, and a sustainable integrated approach to the Danube and Black Sea regions;

–         Competitiveness with the aim to develop a more competitive single market;

–         Cohesion focusing on the future EU cohesion policy, the reformed Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), and the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), and cultural heritage.

As FOUR PAWS plays a major role in Bulgaria in the field of Animal Welfare, our European Policy Office wishes Bulgaria all the best for its Presidency and welcomes any future initiatives regarding Animal Welfare. Indeed, the country holds a significant position in terms of live transport, due to its geographical situation. Bulgaria has much to promote in Europe, in particular with its legislation on the keeping of wild animals. We hope that Bulgaria will use the Presidency to promote its best examples in Europe.


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Welcome to the Estonian Presidency of the EU


Estonia is taking over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the next six months, with the motto 'Unity through balance'. As from July1st, Estonia, part of the Presidency Trio with Bulgaria and Austria, is taking over the Maltese Presidency. First meetings will take place in July in Tallinn. 

The Estonian Presidency will focus on preserving the common values of prosperity, security, peace and stability in Europe, based on four key areas, aiming to be ‘knowledgeable, efficient, open and transparent’ and ensuring that the EU remains united.

Program of the Estonian Presidency:

1.     Digital solutions based on an open and innovative European economy

2.     Ensuring a safe and secure Europe

3.     Digital Europe and Free movement of data

4.     Inclusive and sustainable Europe preserving a clean environment

The Estonian presidency will also look at the future and the simplification of the future of the Common Agricultural Policy and the close monitoring of the agricultural goods market situation, strengthening the producers position in the food supply chain and will focus on an open trade policy and trade agreements, taking into account the interests of agriculture. It will also focus on antimicrobial resistance by implementing human, animal and environmental ‘One Health’ policy based, and on veterinary medicine and medicated feed regulations.

FOUR PAWS European Policy Office wishes Estonia all the best for its presidency of the Council and hopes that the Estonian presidency will include animal welfare initiatives.

Information regarding the priorities of the Estonian Presidency can be found here

Information about the Estonian EU Council Presidency can be found here