​Together with its trio partners (The Netherlands and Slovakia), Malta participated in setting out the Council’s programme identifying the main areas of its work over the 18-month period between January 2016 and June 2017. On the basis of this programme, each trio member then prepares a 6-month detailed programme highlighting a set of key issues to be given priority during this period. 

In drafting the trio programme, the three presidencies have primarily been guided by the five priorities of the Strategic Agenda adopted by the European Council. The objective of these five priorities is for the EU to become a Union of jobs, growth and competitiveness while empowering and protecting its citizens by confronting issues such as poverty and social exclusion. They also aim to build a Union with a forward-looking climate policy that also upholds freedom, security and justice while playing an important role on the global scene.