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Addressing the challenges of economic recovery and the social dimension of Economic and Monetary Union, including the important role of workers' and employers' representatives, were the main issues discussed at the Tripartite Social Summit ahead of the European Council meeting.
The Summit brought together the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy and Irish Prime Minister, Enda Kenny – for the Presidency of the EU's Council of Ministers– with workers' and employers' representatives from the European and national level.
László Andor, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, Algimanta Pabedinskiene, Lithuania's Minister for Social Security and Labour, and Ioannis Vroutsis, Minister for Employment and Social security and welfare of Greece also contributed to the debate.
Against the background of persistently high unemployment, the Summit focused on collective efforts to ensure a sustainable recovery to restore jobs and growth and possible initiatives to strengthen the social dimension of Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). They also discussed how to better involve workers' and employers' representatives in the governance of the EU and in particular, the EMU.
The European workers' and employers' representatives (European Trade Union Confederation - ETUC, BUSINESSEUROPE, European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public services - CEEP and European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises - UEAPME) presented their progress in implementing their joint work programme for 2012-2014 including joint work on youth employment, lifelong learning and the economic and social governance of the EU.