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Extra funds for education, youth and creativity will boost jobs, says Commission

As part of its strategy for boosting employment, the European Commission is aiming to nearly double the number of young people, teachers and researchers who get EU grants for study and training abroad, from 400 000 recipients per year now to almost 800 000 in future. This is one of the key objectives behind the significant increase in EU investment for education, youth and creativity proposed by the Commission in its budget plan for 2014-2020. Improving education and training and helping people acquire the right skills is crucial for meeting future job needs and fighting poverty.

As part of the Commission's proposal, a new programme for education, training and youth would allocate €15.2 billion (+ 73%) over seven years. As well as increasing study and training grants, it will target support at modernising education systems, more cross-border cooperation between education institutions and policy reforms. This is the highest increase in the proposed budget, underlining the priority given to investing in knowledge for the future in Europe.

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology and the Marie Curie Actions, which support skills, training and career development of researchers, will be part of the EU's new 'Horizon 2020' strategy for research and innovation, which would receive €80 billion (+46%) under the budget proposal. The aim is to boost Europe's global competitiveness and help create jobs and ideas of tomorrow.

Commissioner Vassiliou, speaking at the launch of a new report on literacy policy ('Teaching Reading in Europe'), commented: "This budget is excellent news for people and organisations active in education, creativity and innovation. Investing in these areas is one of the best business and employment plans for the future of Europe. We want to encourage more people to seize the opportunity to study, work or volunteer abroad because this experience is invaluable for skills development and job prospects. Our focus is on measures that achieve added value and contribute to the Europe 2020 objectives for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth."

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