On 1 July 2012, Cyprus will begin its Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the second half of 2012. It is the first time that Cyprus will hold the EU Presidency since joining the European Union in 2004. Cyprus is the third Member State of the current Trio, along with Poland and Denmark which will conclude on December 31, 2012. During its Presidency, Cyprus aims to work towards a better, more relevant Europe for its citizens and to the world, meaning a more effective Europe. The Presidency has also prioritised growth and job creation, promoting social cohesion and providing hope to its citizens.

Concerning the Cypriot health priorities, the Presidency will focus on addressing serious cross border health threats by developing activities through close collaboration with both EU and non-EU countries as well as with international organisations. Apart from health security and capacity building, the Presidency will focus on healthy ageing in relation to the European Health Strategy 2008-2013. This issue has also been dealt with by previous Presidencies, achieving various findings, one of which demonstrates that healthy ageing is closely related to the implementation of preventive and health promotion in early years of life. Within the framework of the year 2012 as the European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between generations, the Cypriot Presidency will also take into consideration the current economic crisis and the ageing of population, with the aim of underlining the need to review the structure of health care services and redirect investments for cost reduction in the healthcare sector. In addition, the Cypriot Presidency will be dealing with a proposal for a revised legislation that regulates clinical trials, based on a public consultation launched in February 2010. Lastly, the Cypriot Presidency plans to adopt Council Conclusions, which will further invite the Member States, the European Commission and other EU institutions to undertake concrete actions in ensuring public awareness on the importance of organ donation and transplantation and securing EU funds for the development of programmes in this field.