Employment Summit offers solutions to reduce unemployment

Leaders of the current social Troika countries (the Czech Republic, Sweden and Spain), the European Commission and European social partners met in Prague today to discuss the impact of the current crisis on employment.

The countries representing the social Troika and the European Commission supported the general principles for measures in aid of employment in the individual countries and recommended concrete steps to solve the complicated situation on the labour markets in the EU. “Millions of Europeans are losing their jobs and we must do all we can to create new jobs in Europe to offer to the unemployed,” said European Council President Mirek Topolánek. “We must also keep the cost of all these measures in mind because, as I have already said several times, creating debt is no solution. We agreed that we need to modernise the social security system, which should work as a kind of trampoline to enable people to get back on the labour market quickly.”

The agreed principles and recommendations include:

  • improved coordination of economic, employment and social policies, respecting the rules of the internal market and rejecting protectionism - including systematic monitoring and evaluation of the effectiveness of the measures introduced,
  • allowing for a future economic recovery and preparing the labour markets for their future needs,
  • improving the business and investment environment as a means of creating new jobs; this can primarily be done by lowering the non-wage labour costs, reducing the administrative burden for enterprises, reducing unnecessary regulation and increasing labour market flexibility,
  • maintaining existing jobs, e.g. through temporary working time changes combined with training of employees,
  • support for disadvantaged groups of people on the labour market, investment in upgrading skills and adjusting skills to the needs of the labour market, an active employment policy, re-qualification, linking education and practical training and enhancing the efficiency of employment public services,
  • eliminating obstacles to labour mobility during transfers between professions and between Member States

“In this context the decision of Germany and Austria to keep their labour markets closed for workers of ten new Member States seems short-sighted,” stated Minister of Labour and Social Affairs Petr Nečas. “Studies of the European Commission clearly show that mobility of workers is an immense opportunity for the European economy. In times of economic crisis mobility can offer significant help in dealing with the needs of the labour market and contribute toward lowering unemployment,” he added.

Concrete measures for implementation of the initiative “New Skills for New Jobs”, which is aimed at anticipating the future needs of the labour market, should be initiated at European level. Innovative approaches to support entrepreneurship should also be developed and the exchange of information on anticipating and managing restructuralisation between the European Commission, Member States and the social partners should also be enhanced.

The main messages of the summit are of informal nature; partially because the platform of the summit included only the countries representing the current social Troika and not all Member States. The main messages of the summit should consequently be discussed at the June meeting of the EPSCO Council and of the ECOFIN Council. As a follow-up these messages should be presented at the June meeting of the European Council, whose conclusions could include the main outcomes of the summit in some specific form.

More information about the event find in events calendar.


Contacts:

  • Jiří František Potužník, Spokesman of the Prime Minister for the Czech EU Presidency
    Tel.: +420 224 002 497, GSM: +420 725 818 435, E-mail: potuznik.jiri.frantisek@vlada.cz
  • Jana Říhová, Spokeswoman of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
    Tel.: +420 221 922 249, GSM: +420 725 761 147, E-mail: jana.rihova@mpsv.cz

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Last update: 16.8.2011 15:23

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