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Presidency of the Czech Republic in the Council of the EU

The Czech Republic takes over the Presidency of the Council of the EU. The Czech Republic is assuming the six-month rotating EU Presidency on 1 July, replacing France. The Czech Republic held its first Presidency from 1 January until 30 June 2009. Czechia will hold its second Presidency of the Council of the EU between 1 July and 31 December 2022.

What is the Presidency of the Czech Republic in the Council of the EU and its role?

  • The Presidency of the Council of the EU is one of the essential rights and demanding tasks resulting from EU membership.
  • The role of the presiding country is not only organisational but also mediating, political and representational.
  • Each Member State holds the Presidency of the Council of the European Union for six months on a rotational basis.
  • The task of the Presidency is to determine the agenda and priorities of the Council of the EU, preside over its meetings, broker compromises among the states, and represent the Union at meetings with the other EU institutions and external partners.
  • To ensure continuity, the member states form presidency trios that prepare a joint programme.

What is the Council of the European Union?

  • The Council of the European Union is a place where crucial decisions concerning the EU are adopted.
  • It discusses legislative acts submitted by the European Commission and adopts them, in most cases jointly with the European Parliament in line with the ordinary legislative procedure, the so-called co-decision procedure.
  • An important power of the Council of the EU is adopting the European Union budget in cooperation with the European Parliament. 
  • The Council of the EU gives the European Commission a mandate to negotiate agreements between the EU and non-member states or international organisations. 

Rotating Presidency and the presidency trio?

  • The Presidency of the Council of the European Union rotates among EU member states every six months.
  • Member states holding the Presidency work together closely in groups of three, called ‘trios’. 
  • The trio sets long-term goals and prepares a common agenda determining the topics and major issues the Council will address over 18 months.
  • The Czech Republic makes up the presidency trio with France, presiding over the EU in the first half of 2022, and Sweden, which will take up the presidency duties between 1 January and 30 June 2023.

During its Presidency, the Czech Republic will focus on five closely linked priority areas:

  1. Coping with the refugee crisis and the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine
  2. Energy security
  3. Strengthening European defence capabilities and cybersecurity
  4. Strategic resilience of the European economy
  5. Resilience of democratic institutions

Logo 

The visual identity of the Czech Presidency encompasses the main principles, values and priorities of the Czech Republic at the helm of the Council of the European Union.

The brand consists of a graphic character and a text part. The graphic symbol contains 27 elements representing the Member States of the European Union. Each element is based on the colours of the flag of a particular Member State. 

Motto

"Europe as a Task: Rethink, Rebuild, Repower"

When in 1996 Czech President Václav Havel considered the future of our continent in his speech at the Charlemagne Prize ceremonial, entitled Europe as a Task, he stressed that the tasks ahead of Europe deserve careful and thorough reflection. In the then international context, particularly favourable to Western democracies, Havel called on Europeans to rediscover their conscience and to take responsibility for global environmental, social and economic challenges. He did not want Europe to reclaim the position of a “global Head of orchestra” and to impose its cultural values on the rest of the world. What he had in mind was rather inspiring and leading by example.

We believe that a common reflection on European tasks must, in the current situation, first and foremost find the right recipe as quickly as possible  for a policy mix that will ensure security and peace on our continent, lead the EU towards reaching the long-term goals of the green and digital transitions, while at the same time making it possible to deal effectively with the present security, energy and humanitarian crisis, as well as with acute economic and social challenges that are partly due to the COVID pandemic and which are exacerbated by Russia’s aggression

Cultural and accompanying programme of events 

The Czech Presidency team has prepared many cultural and accompanying events for the period of the Czech Presidency of the EU Council from 1 July until the end of December 2022.

The events will take place not only in Prague but also in other places in the Czech Republic. In addition, many of the events will be held in the very heart of the European Union, in Brussels, and other European cities.

Additional detailed information related to the Presidency can be found at the following web addresses:

Author: Sean Hlomane, Trade and Industry Specialist of the Economic section