Extracts from the press conference by László Andor, on the Annual Report on Economic and Social Development in Europe
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 21/01/2014 First transmission: 21/01/2014
On 21 January 2014, László Andor, Member of the EC in charge of Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, presented the key findings of the 2013 Report on Economic and Social Development in Europe, during a press conference organised in Brussels.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior view of the Berlaymont building in Brussels
||Arrival of László Andor, Member of the EC in charge of Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, at the press conference
||Soundbite by László Andor (in ENGLISH): A significant increase in the risk of poverty among the working age population is one of the most tangible social consequences of the economic crisis in Europe.
Even if unemployment is gradually reduced as currently projected, this may not be enough to reverse rising poverty, especially if wage polarisation continues, notably due to a rise in part-time work.
||Cutaway of the audience
||Soundbite by László Andor (in ENGLISH): In 2013 we have seen some tentative signs of economic recovery from the double-dip recession: GDP grew in the second and third quarters of the year, unemployment stopped rising and employment stopped falling.
However, this recovery is still very modest and rather fragile. We have not yet begun to make up for the job losses of the past five years. Long-term unemployment is still on the rise in most Member States, as well as precarious jobs.
||Cutaway of a cameraman
||Soundbite by László Andor (in ENGLISH): Analysis shows that getting a job is a way out of poverty in only half of the cases.
Much depends on the type of job found, the level of pay and the number of hours worked. It also depends on the composition of the household and the working situation of the partner. Unfortunately we cannot say that having a job necessarily equates with a decent standard of living.
||Cutaway of the audience
||Soundbite by László Andor (in ENGLISH): Poverty is especially likely to remain a growing problem if polarisation between high and low wages continues, and if more and more people are obliged to work only part-time.
Therefore, policy-makers need to aim not only to create jobs, but also to ensure inclusive labour markets and decent working conditions.
Moreover, governments must continue to provide income support and other social expenditure, including for households whose members do have a job, if people are to exit poverty.
||General view of the press conference
||Soundbite by László Andor (in ENGLISH): The Review also show that, contrary to many commonly held views, job seekers receiving unemployment benefits are more likely to get a job than those who don't receive benefits.
Why is that? Because well-designed unemployment benefit systems, such as those that reduce the generosity of the benefits over time, require unemployed people receiving benefits to actively look for a job.
Moreover, these unemployed receive advice from job centres and have better access to training.
||Departure of László Andor