EU-offensive against youth unemployment

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4 februari 2015 | The European Commission proposes to make €1 billion from the Youth Employment Initiative available as early as this year. This would help up to 650 000 young people and helping them get into work, faster. "Our young people need jobs and they need them now," Marinanne Thyssen says.

Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President for the Euro and Social Dialogue said: “With today’s proposal, the Commission sends a clear signal that youth employment continues to be high on our political agenda. We will advance around 1 billion euro to support the work of Member States in helping to get young people back into work, to return to education or get a traineeship. In doing so, they are not only able to contribute to the economy and society through their skills and dynamism, but they also regain their dignity.”

One out of five

Marianne Thyssen, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, added: “Our young people need jobs and they need them now. It is unacceptable that today more than one young person out of five on the labour market cannot find a job. By making more funding available sooner, we can get more young people back to work: I am determined to make this happen.”

The first priority of this Commission is to strengthen Europe’s competitiveness, stimulate investment and create jobs. The €315 billion Investment Plan can create millions of new jobs – not least for young people. But even when new jobs are created it is often very difficult for young people to successfully enter the job market. This is why the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) focuses particularly on getting young people back into work or training.

30 times more

All Member States have committed to the “Youth Guarantee”: to provide young people under 25 with a quality job offer, an apprenticeship or training within four months of leaving school or losing a job. Today’s announcement will help make that guarantee a reality, in line with the Commission’s commitment in its 2015 Work Programme.

Today’s proposal would increase the Youth Employment Initiative pre-financing rate in its 2015 budget allocation from 1-1.5% to up to 30%. Member States benefiting from this initiative could therefore receive a third of the €3.2 billion allocation immediately after the adoption of dedicated Operational Programmes. Member States are expected to make this funding available immediately to project beneficiaries through advance payments for projects, and this will be closely monitored.

The Commission estimates that this accelerated pre-financing could speed up immediate support and reach out to between 350 000 and 650 000 young people this year; at the current pre-financing rate, in contrast, this figure would be between just 14 000 and 22 000 young people. This legislative proposal will now be discussed by the European Parliament and the Council, who have to adopt it before it can enter into force.

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