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Employment Committee

The Employment Committee is an advisory committee set up to implement the European Employment Strategy and to promote coordination between Member States on employment and labour market policies. It replaces the Employment and Labour Market Committee created in 1997.

ACT

Council Decision (EC) No 98/2000 of 24 January 2000 establishing the Employment Committee.

SUMMARY

In order to promote coordination on employment and labour market policies, the Tripartite Social Summit for Growth and Employment was established in 2003. It institutionalises the informal summits held since December 2000.

Likewise, the Employment and the Labour Market Committee (ELMC) was set up in 1997. Its objective was to assist the Council in the employment field. This Committee basically fulfilled the functions associated with the European Employment Strategy (" Luxembourg process "), i.e.:

  • collective examination of the national employment reports;
  • preparation of the joint employment report by the Commission and the Council;
  • drafting of an opinion on the employment guidelines.

Following the entry into effect of the Treaty establishing the European Communities (Article 130), as amended by the Treaty of Amsterdam, the ELMC was replaced by the Employment Committee. The new Committee takes over from the ELMC and has been modified with a view to making it work more smoothly.

Mission

The mission of the Employment Committee is to:

  • promote the taking into account of the objective of a high level of employment in preparing and implementing Community policies and measures. It formulates opinions at the request of the Council of Ministers, the European Commission or on its own initiative, and prepares the discussions of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Protection Council at the request of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union;
  • contribute to the procedure of adopting the major economic policy guidelines in order to ensure that they are consistent with the employment guidelines and contribute to synergy between the European strategy for employment, the coordination of macro-economic policies and the economic reform process;
  • promote exchanges of information and experience between Member States and with the Commission in these fields;
  • participate in the dialogue on macro-economic policies at Community level.

Membership

The Member States and the Commission each appoint two members of the Committee and they may also appoint two alternates. With a view to strengthening the Committee's political clout, the members of the Committee and the alternates are selected from among senior experts possessing outstanding competence in the field of employment and labour market policy in the Member States. The Committee may call on external experts where appropriate to its agenda.

Operations

The Committee elects its chairperson from among its members for a non-renewable term of two years. The Chairperson is assisted by three vice-chairpersons. Meetings are convened by the Chairperson, either on his own initiative or at the request of at least half of the members of the Committee.

The Commission provides the analytical and organisational support for the Committee.

The Committee establishes its own rules of procedure.

The Committee may entrust the study of specific questions to its alternate members or to working groups. In such cases, the presidency is assumed by either the Commission, a member or an alternate member of the Committee, appointed by the Committee. The working groups may call up experts to assist them.

Liaison with other bodies

The ELMC consulted management and labour on an informal basis. The draft decision provides that the Committee shall consult management and labour and leaves a certain margin for manoeuvre as regards the mechanisms of this consultation, which must be established by the Committee.

The Employment Committee has been established to achieve improved coordination and to consolidate relations between the committees. Hence the draft decision provides that the Committee will work as appropriate in cooperation with other relevant bodies and committees dealing with economic policy matters, i.e. the Economic and Financial Committee (provided for in the Treaty) and the Economic Policy Committee (established by a Council Decision), the Social Protection Committee and the Education Committee.

Council Decision 97/16/EC establishing the Employment and Labour Market Committee ceases to exist.

REFERENCES

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Decision (EC) No 98/2000 24.01.2000 - OJ L 29 of 04.02.2000
Last updated: 23.03.2005
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