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ESF programme for England adopted


Map showing England
© European Union

Programme will provide support to over 2,3 million persons, with particular attention to disadvantaged groups and young people

The European Commission has adopted the England Operational Programme for 2014-2020, worth 6.4 billion euro with 3.5 billion euro coming from the ESF and the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI). Investment will focus on increasing the employment rate in a socially inclusive way, improving the skills of the workforce and creating chances for young people.

The programme addresses the following priorities:

  • An inclusive labour market. Almost 60 % of the total allocation will be dedicated to help people into jobs, with a particular focus on disadvantaged groups like the low-skilled, older workers or people from ethnic minorities. Initiatives financed under this programme will also tackle youth unemployment in areas where it is relatively high. It will prepare young people for working life, in particular by reducing the number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) or at risk of becoming NEET. Other measures will support efforts to reduce the gender employment gap. It is expected that the programme will help over 217,000 participants into work and get 78,000 young people into work, education or training.
  • Skills for Growth. Projects contributing to the development of a skilled and adaptable workforce and to increasing productivity will be supported. These projects will help people address their basic skills needs and develop the intermediate and higher level skills required by employers. As a result, an expected 140,000 participants will improve their basic skills and more than 300,000 participants will gain qualifications at level 2 or above. 12.600 SME and micro businesses will be supported in their business growth.