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EU Crisis Moves for Young Jobless

  • July 6th, 2013
  • Posted by EU Australia

Youth Jobs europaA summit on jobs for young people at Berlin this week (3.7.13) agreed to expand and speed up spending on special assistance, boosting it 25% to €8-billion (A$11.3-billion; xe.com, 6.7.13)..

BAD NUMBERS

Youth jobs FacebookIt was expected to go far, if not far enough towards relieving the social problem of an employment rate across the European Union for youth, at 23.3%, against the adult rate of 9.3%.

The problem is twice as bad, in the percentages, in regions hardest hit by the financial and economic crisis, like Greece and Spain; with everywhere weak chances for younger applicants seeing a job, and many on register as having given up trying.

MAKING A PLAN

The summit at Berlin approved bringing forward the use of €6-billion (A$8.49-billion) of the special finds so it could be spent over two years from January; to be planned out at a follow-up meeting convened by the French government, late this year.

The gathering brought together Labour Ministers from the 28 European Union states, industrialists, central bank officials, and 20 of the heads of government including the host, Chancellor Angela Merkel, and the French President, Francois Hollande.

It followed up earlier wide-ranging consultations which included trade unions, and determined to build on EU programs worked up over the last two years.

These commenced with a Youth Guarantee scheme, on a German model, to be run by each member state, which would pick up young workers soon after becoming unemployed, offering apprenticeship training and education, language skills for being able to work in another country, and support for related costs including transport.

The project came within a general package of measures which saw both a special dedication of funds and the diversion of other EU program money, e.g. for social initiatives.

The focus is being put on regions where youth joblessness is 25% or over, taking in measures like assistance to small business employers, and EU-level information clearing houses on removing obstacles to taking on young workers, and helping to improve their mobility in the workforce.

OTHER TIMES

Deeply discouraging times for young job seekers are not new in Europe, recalling the Great Depression of the 1930s, and the problem revisited on a large scale during recession in the 1970s.

It is a prime demonstration of the short-fall in projected outcomes of the Lisbon Process, the plan for “jobs and growth” developed after a European Council meeting in Lisbon at the start of the new Century.

It was a policy framework for the EU emphasising the “smart” economy exploiting information technology, education and skills-based learning, sustainable production  and innovation.

If the shape of economic development fitted the plan, realization was stunted, especially, by the impacts of the financial crisis, and recession, after 2008.

Reference

Euractiv.com, Brussels, EU leaders to agree faster spending on youth jobless fight, 27.6.13. http://www.euractiv.com/priorities/eu-leaders-agree-faster-spending-news-528906, (6.7.13).

European Commission, Brussels, Youth Employment. http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=1036,(6.7.13).

Valentina Pop, EU leaders pledge €2bn extra for youth scheme, EUobserver.com, Brussels, 4.7.13. http://euobserver.com/social/120751,(6.7.13).

Pictures EU, Facebook

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