The heads of state or government of the European Union and the president of the European Commission will come together for an extraordinary informal meeting to discuss the current financial and economic crisis.
They will address the steps taken by the individual member states to protect themselves from the impacts of the financial crisis and to implement the recovery plan the European Council agreed in December 2008 and which provides a common framework for action at EU and national level.
The objective is to ensure coordination and solidarity within the EU in tackling the crisis. These informal discussions will also contribute to preparing the forthcoming regular Spring European Council meeting, dedicated mainly to economic and social questions, on 19 and 20 March 2009 in Brussels.
A further informal meeting of the European Union's heads of state or government, with a focus on employment issues, is already scheduled for May in Prague.