On January 1st, France started its six-month Presidency of the Council of the European Union, which will last till June 30th. It will focus on three ambitions: a more sovereign Europe and strengthening the Schengen area and developing stability in the region; a new European model for growth to strengthen economic development; and a humane Europe defending the Future of Europe and European values. Overall, it aims to address the public health and climate crises, the digital revolution, and migration challenges. 
 
As with previous Presidencies, the French presidency will be impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. It will therefore seek to continue the coordination of European efforts on the matter as well as responsiveness, coordination and solidarity. Environmental policies will also be high on the priority list in the coming months, more specifically the French Presidency will focus on accelerating the transition to a decarbonized economy, bolstering measures to preserve biodiversity, promoting a more circular and sustainable economy, and achieving the transition towards a healthier environment.  
 
In line with these ambitions, the Sport chapter of the Programme will put emphasis on the role of sport for sustainable development and how to encourage sport organisations to give more consideration to sustainability and social responsibility. A conference on Green Sport will therefore be organized. It will also continue the work started by the Slovenian Presidency on the European Sport Model, and a conference on sports in childhood will be take place in February to promote the importance of physical activity for younger generations. 
 
The full Programme is available here.  
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Jan 13, 2022 By Pauline Joskin