On Tuesday June 29th, MEP Tomasz Frankowski, who is taking the lead on the European Parliament report on the future of EU sport policy, invited stakeholders from across the sport movement to provide input for the report during an online consultation meeting.
Following the introduction by Mr Frankoswki, the representative of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU, Luka Živić, presented the presidency programme which will be implemented during the second half of the year, starting on July 1st. Mr Živić mentioned that one of the priorities of the programme will be the promotion of lifelong physical activity.
Subsequently, Floor Van Houdt, head of the European Commission’s sport unit, expanded on the current and future priorities of the Commission in the area of sport and physical activity, while she also highlighted the severe impact that the pandemic has had on the sector. She emphasised that the pandemic has again demonstrated the importance of physical activity for people’s health and wellbeing and that the Commission is ready to launch the ‘Healthy Lifestyles for All’ flagship initiative in September this year to further promote physical activity.
In the final part of the meeting, the other stakeholders were invited to give their views on the best way forward, using the findings of the recently published ‘EU sports policy: assessment and possible ways forward’ research report, which will form the basis of Mr Frankowski’s report.
Representing EuropeActive, Lukas Declercq, praised the quality of the research report and its recommendations and emphasised the need to have physical activity, health and education as central pillars going forward. He mentioned that the research report and the ongoing pandemic clearly show the need to make physical activity promotion an absolute priority, keeping in mind that the tools and services people use to be physically active are continuously changing. Finally, he stressed the need for better coordination in terms of data collection on physical activity levels, as well as on the economic impact of physical (in)activity.
In his closing remarks, Mr Frankowski thanked the participants and informed them that the final report is expected in September.