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Employment and Social Policy Council

14/10/2013 Employment and Social Policy Council

The EU's Council of Employment and Social Policy Ministers will meet on 15 October in Luxembourg.

Key issues under discussions are the posting of workers enforcement directive, implementation of measures to tackle youth unemployment and the social dimension of the EMU.

The Council will be chaired by Ms Algimanta Pabedinskienė, Minister of Social Security and Labour of Lithuania. The European Commission will be represented by Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion László Andor.

Posting of workers

The Council is due to start with a discussion on the proposed Directive on the enforcement of EU rules on the posting of workers. The Commission presented its proposal in March 2012.

Commissioner Andor will urge the Council to reach an agreement on a so called "general approach", which would constitute a basis for negotiations with the European Parliament.

Social dimension of the EMU

The Council is due to hold a policy debate on the Commission Communication on the Social Dimension of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), presented on 2 October. In its Communication, the Commission proposed to create a scoreboard to follow key employment and social developments.

Commissioner Andor will call on the Council to endorse the principle of this scoreboard. The Ministers' discussion will serve to prepare the input of the Employment and Social Affairs' Council to the October European Council. The Tripartite Social Summit taking place in Brussels on 24 October will also discuss next steps towards a social dimension of the EMU, and will contribute to enhance the involvement of the social partners.

Youth employment

The Council is due to discuss the state of implementation of the Youth Guarantee and the Youth Employment Initiative. Commissioner Andor is due to call on Member States to submit their national implementation plans as soon as possible.

The Council is expected to adopt a Declaration on the European Alliance for Apprenticeships, following the Joint Declaration signed with the Commission and employees' and employers' representatives on 2 July. The Alliance aims to fight youth unemployment by improving the quality and supply of apprenticeships across the EU through a broad partnership of employment and education stakeholders. The Commission will welcome the Declaration, while indicating it would have preferred a more ambitious text, and will call on Member States to come forward with concrete pledges under the Alliance.

Commissioner Andor will also recall that the Commission will propose two other initiatives to fight youth unemployment before the end of the year:

  • A Quality Framework for Traineeships, which would enable young people to acquire high-quality work experience under safe conditions and to guard against traineeships being exploited by companies as a source of cheap labour.

  • New legislation to strengthen EURES, the European job search network. The objective is to offer more jobs and to better match employers seeking to recruit people with particular skills with jobseekers that have those skills in other EU countries

Also on the agenda

The Council will discuss the evaluation of the 2013 European Semester as regards employment and social policies. It is also due to adopt without discussion conclusions on the European Court of Auditors' Special report: "Has the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund delivered EU added value in re-integrating redundant workers?".

The Presidency will inform the Council on on-going legislative proposals on:

  • The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF)
  • The Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD)
  • Free Movement of Workers
  • Classification, labelling and packaging of chemicals