Croatian EU Council Presidency and the next 18-month Trio Presidency Programme
On 16 June, Germany, Portugal and Slovenia presented the 18-month Programme of the EU Council Presidency. The so-called Trio Presidency Programme steps into action on 1 July when Germany takes over the Presidency from Croatia.

The publication of the EU Forest Strategy post-2020 is planned to take place during the first quarter of 2021. Regarding to the work towards the Strategy the Trio Presidency Programme presents that “The three Presidencies will promote …. sustainable forest management in line with a strengthened EU Forest Strategy post 2020 covering the whole forest cycle and promoting the many services that forests provide as well as a sustainable bioeconomy, ….”. CEPF welcomes the Programme’s objective which is in line with the European forest owners’ call for a holistic, multi-dimensional and inclusive EU Forest Strategy, with the principles of sustainable forest management at its core.

The Croatian EU Council Presidency ends on 30 June and was highly affected by the Covid-19 situation. During this Presidency, CEPF participated to the Informal Meeting of the EU Forest Directors-Generals on 27 May and on to the Meeting of EU Nature and Biodiversity Directors on 4 June. The main focus of both meetings was the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030. The participants of the meetings welcomed the objective of the Strategy but pointed out several questions and further need for clarification. These included, among others, the definition of old-growth and primary forests, designation of the highly protected areas, the announced guidelines related to sustainable forest management, and the role of the EU Forest Strategy.

The discussion on the EU Biodiversity Strategy will continue in the next the Informal meeting of the EU Forest Directors-Generals organised under the German Presidency and in the next Meeting of EU Nature and Biodiversity Directors taking place on 27 – 28 August.