Brussels, 23 October 2014
Tripartite Social Summit: EU leaders and social partners stress need to stimulate investment to create more and better jobs
EU leaders and social partners have agreed this morning on the urgent need to stimulate investment and create more jobs in order to meet the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, the EU's long-term growth and jobs plan. During the twice-yearly Tripartite Social Summit ahead of the European Council today, workers' and employers' organisations (the social partners) joined the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso and the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, in agreeing on the need to pursue reforms to support a long-term recovery. They also discussed the EU's economic governance in general.
The Tripartite Social Summit discussed the Commission's recent stock-take of the Europe 2020 strategy (see MEMO/14/149) and the mid-term review of the European Semester. The talks also focused on promoting a job-rich recovery, namely on ways to foster youth employment, and the social partners’ key role in this (see MEMO/14/571), as well as their importance in designing and implementing reforms at European and national level. László Andor, EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, and Giuliano Poletti, Italian Minister of Labour and Social Security, also contributed to the debate.
President Barroso said: "Over the last 10 years, this Commission has helped to support investment in the EU – from negotiating the Multiannual Financial Framework, the EU's €1 trillion budget, to working with the European Investment Bank to get the most out of it. If we really want to boost growth and jobs, EU countries also need to reform their economies so they can compete with the rest of the world and attract companies willing to invest. If we are serious about reaching our 2020 growth and jobs targets, we need to get serious about reforms. The EU is here to help, but all EU countries must play their part."
Referring to the mid-term stock taking exercise of Europe 2020 and the role of employer and employee representatives at European level, Commissioner Andor underlined: "Investment in human capital is particularly important to support the European economy as a whole and to ensure its competitiveness. This needs to be reflected in the implementation of the Europe 2020 Strategy. Clearly the social partners both at EU and at national level must be fully involved in efforts to address the implementation gap, to pursue reforms and to increase national ownership of the Europe 2020 process."
The Tripartite Social Summit meets twice a year, ahead of the spring and autumn European Councils. It is an opportunity for an exchange of views between European employer and employee representatives (the social partners), the Commission, EU Heads of State and Government, and Employment Ministers from the countries holding the current and future Council Presidencies.
The EU-level employer and employee representatives are: the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC); BUSINESSEUROPE; the European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public services (CEEP); and the European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (UEAPME).
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