This content was published in the period between 21 January 2019 and 8 July 2021.

COVID-19 and the climate at EU Summit


Prime Minister Stefan Löfven will meet his head of state and government colleagues at the European Council in Brussels on 10-11 December. The EU leaders’ agenda includes climate targets, coordination of the COVID-19 response and foreign policy issues. They will also discuss the EU’s long-term budget and the EU’s future relations with the UK.

The Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven at a press conference.
Prime Minister Stefan Löfven will represent Sweden at the meeting. Photo: Ninni Andersson/Government Offices of Sweden

Coordination of the COVID-19 response

The EU leaders will hold a general discussion about the COVID-19 situation in Member States. Various testing methods and work to produce and distribute a vaccine, as well as how it will be deployed, are issues that will be raised at the meeting.

EU climate targets for 2030

The EU must review its climate targets for the next few years to become climate-neutral by 2050. At the Summit, the heads of state and government will decide on tighter climate targets for 2030. The objective of the EU is net-zero emissions by 2050, and to achieve that the Government wants to see a more ambitious EU target for 2030.

The long-term EU budget

At the end of July, EU heads of state and government agreed on a proposal for a new long-term budget for the EU, as well as on a recovery package. Since the summer, negotiations on the long-term budget have been ongoing and have been concluded with the European Parliament. Some EU Member States are now having difficulty approving the agreement as payments from the EU budget are to be linked to the rule of law for the first time.

Future relations with the UK

Negotiations between the EU and the UK have been intense in recent weeks. Outstanding issues include the formulation of regulations for a level playing field and agreement on fishing, as well as the formulation of regulations for dispute settlement.

When the UK left the EU at midnight on 31 January, a transition period began that runs until the end of 2020. During the transition period, the EU and the UK are negotiating on the future relationship between the EU and the UK. High-level negotiations are now under way and the heads of state and government are likely to address the issue.

Euro Summit

On Friday, a Euro Summit will take place in an extended format. This means that EU Member States outside the euro area are welcome. The heads of state and government will discuss the banking union and the capital markets union during the Summit.

More about the EU summit 10-11 December