“The European Commission and I do not believe that the European social model is dead,” European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso told the European Parliament on 18 April. The same day the Commission adopted a package of documents dedicated to creating jobs and achieving higher employment in the EU. The Commission proposes specific measures to the member states, building on the guidelines in the Annual Growth Survey 2012 and aimed to achieve the objective of 75% employment by 2020 as set in the Europe 2020 strategy. “If the target is to be met, employment in the EU will have to increase by 17.6 million additional jobs from its current level”, the document reads. During the crisis, employment has fallen to 68.9%, 6 million jobs have been lost and the unemployment is climbing to 10.2% mark in February 2012.
In its communication “Towards a job-rich recovery” the EC identifies three areas of measures that countries can undertake.
Promotion of job creation and labour demand,
for example through employment subsidies, shifting taxation from labour to environmental, consumption or property taxes and support for self employment. The Commission recommends the countries to focus their efforts on areas with high potential for future jobs like the green economy, the health sector and information and communication technologies (ICT), where 20 million jobs could be created by 2020.
Reform of labour markets
to achieve greater flexibility and inclusion of more people, especially young people; to match the demand and supply of jobs through greater investment in skills and easier recognition of skills and qualifications within the EU. The Commission calls for removal of legal and practical obstacles to free movement of workers and specifically for removal of the restrictions on free labour market access for workers from Bulgaria and Romania.
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