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Employment

Startup Europe Roadshow

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The European Commission and the European Young Innovators Forum (EYIF) are proud to announce the launch of the Startup Europe Roadshow across 10 European cities over the next eight months. The roadshow will allow young aspiring ICT entrepreneurs to interact, learn and be mentored by 'role-models' - young ICT entrepreneurs who will share their success stories, as part of efforts to make Europe’s start-up environment more dynamic and less risk averse.

The Roadshow consists of a series of ten workshops in Poznan, Paris, Berlin, Olomouc, Athens, London, Madrid, Bucharest, Lisbon, and Budapest that will be organized in collaboration with the EYIF’s hubs in the respective countries. The outcomes will be discussed at the final event in Brussels in September.

The workshop participants will be students and aspiring entrepreneurs between 16- and 30-years-old who have a business idea or plan to undertake an entrepreneurial career in the future. The participants will benefit from first-hand mentoring by exchanging ideas with their role-models. Each workshop will also include a special session focusing on funding opportunities for young digital entrepreneurs and startups in Europe as part of the Horizon 2020 programme.

The opening workshop will be held on 27 February in Poznan, where students, young and aspiring entrepreneurs will join us to share their vision of the future. The Roadshow's pan-European communication campaign will engage EYIF’s community of young innovators, the European Commission and others to raise awareness by sharing the knowledge gathered during the workshops and advocate for greater ICT-led entrepreneurship in Europe. The experience of the participants and speakers will be constantly updated on our website, our Facebook page and Twitter under #StartUpShow.  The full calendar, photos, videos, and success stories will also be available online.

European Commission Vice President and Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: “Politicians don’t create jobs, entrepreneurs do. We’re going to support that mindset in Europe through Horizon 2020 funding. It is crucial for aspiring entrepreneurs to see that success is possible! They need to take a risk and just dive into the opportunities created through ICT enabled entrepreneurship. I believe that Europe is about to witness innovation blossoming. So if you want to change something, have fun, engage, innovate and start up your future, then learn from your local entrepreneurial role-models and just get started.”

Hop on, the journey is about to start!

Startup Europe

Startup Europe is the Digital Agenda initiative advocating for ICT and web entrepreneurship in Europe. Presented by the Vice-president of the European Commission in charge of the Digital Agenda, Neelie Kroes, Startup Manifesto has received a broad public support. Startup Europe calls for entrepreneurs to start their digital businesses in Europe and to be bold by taking a path of entrepreneurship.

Startup Europe is the umbrella terms for five initiatives under the Commission’s Digital Agenda: The Accelerator Assembly, the European Crowd funding Network, The Web Investors Forum, the Leaders Club, the Startup Europe Partnership.

European Young innovators Forum (EYIF)

The European Young Innovators Forum is an independent, non-profit, pan-European, bottom-up association dedicated to promoting youth innovation. EYIF has rapidly become the leading foundation for youth innovation in Europe reaching more than 500 000 participants across all EU member states. EYIF gives a voice to a community of young innovators and experts who believe in taking risks, changing mindsets for innovation and valuing shared ideas and professional mentorship.

EYIF has announced 2014 as #InnoYear Europe, a year devoted to youth innovation and entrepreneurship that will stimulate new growth and jobs, driving economic recovery. It is time for decisive action and significant new opportunities to empower young people to be more innovative and entrepreneurial and to start their ICT businesses helping Europe to become a flourishing startup continent. The StartUp Europe Roadshow is one of the initiatives of #InnoYear Europe.

Further information is available here.

Follow on Twitter @EYIF

Employment

#COVID-19 - How the EU fights youth unemployment  

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A youth craftswoman is checking dimensions of finished plastic window using measuring tape ©JackF/AdobeStock  

Youth unemployment remains a key concern in the wake of the coronavirus crisis. Find out more about an EU initiative to help young people find work. COVID-19 could lead to the emergence of a "lockdown generation", as the crisis hits young people’s job prospects. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO) the pandemic is having a "devastating and disproportionate" impact on youth employment, while the most recent figures show that young people face major obstacles in continuing training and education, moving between jobs and entering the labour market.

Reducing youth unemployment in coronavirus times

Before the pandemic, EU youth unemployment (15-24) was 14.9%, down from its peak of 24.4% in 2013. In April 2020, it rose to 15.7%. The European Commission’s summer 2020 economic forecast predicts that the EU economy will shrink 8.3% in 2020, the deepest recession in the EU's history. To offset the impact on young people, the Commission has proposed a new initiative: Youth Employment Support.

Check out the timeline of EU measures to tackle the COVID-19 crisis.

The Youth Employment Support Package consists of: 
  • A reinforced Youth Guarantee;
  • improved vocational education and training;
  • renewed impetus for apprenticeships, and;
  • additional measures to support youth employment.

The Commission wants EU countries to increase their support for the young through the ambitious NextGenerationEU recovery plan and the future EU budget. Member states should invest at least €22 billion for youth employment. Parliament and EU governments will discuss the proposals in the framework of negotiations on the EU's next long-term budget.

What is the Youth Guarantee?

Launched at the peak of the youth employment crisis in 2013, the Youth Guarantee aims to ensure people under the age of 25 get a good-quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within four months of becoming unemployed or leaving formal education.

A reinforced Youth Guarantee 

  • Covers young people aged 15 - 29 (previously the upper limit was 25).
  • Reaches out to vulnerable groups, such as minorities and young people with disabilities. 
  • Provides tailored counselling, guidance and mentoring.
  • Reflects the needs of companies, providing the skills required and short preparatory courses.

In a resolution on EU Employment Guidelines adopted on 10 July, MEPs called for a revision of the forthcoming guidelines in light of the Covid-19 outbreak, underlining the need to tackle youth unemployment through a reinforced Youth Guarantee.

In July Parliament also backed an increase in the budget for the Youth Employment Initiative, the main budgetary instrument for Youth Guarantee schemes in EU countries, to €145 million for 2020.

Parliament called for a significant increase in funding for the implementation of the Youth Employment Initiative in a resolution on the EU's next long-term budget adopted in 2018. MEPs liked how the initiative has supported young people, but said improvements are needed, including an extension of the age limit and the setting of clear quality criteria and labour standards.

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Conservative Party

Sunak pledges 30 billion pounds to stem unemployment crisis

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Britain’s finance minister has promised an additional £30 billion to head off an unemployment crisis, funnelling money to employers, homebuyers and beleaguered hospitality firms to drive a recovery, write Andy Bruce and David Milliken.

Rishi Sunak (pictured), who was already on course to take state borrowing to World War Two levels with £133bn of initial coronavirus emergency measures, said he would return the public finances to a sustainable footing over the medium term.

But the former Goldman Sachs analyst promised to press on with using the power of the state to shore up the economy, which has forced his Conservative Party to suspend its traditional pro-market instincts.

“I want every person in this House and in the country to know that I will never accept unemployment as an unavoidable outcome,” Sunak told parliament on Wednesday.

The world’s sixth-biggest economy shrank by 25% in March and April and could be heading for its biggest fall in 300 years in 2020, with the unemployment rate on course to more than double to about 10%, according to official projections.

Under a new bonus plan, employers will be paid 1,000 pounds ($1,256) after the furlough scheme expires at the end of October for every worker who returns to their job, provided they are kept on through to the end of January.

With more than 9 million jobs covered by the scheme, the cost of the bonuses could be as much as £9.4 billion pounds.

To help hospitality and tourism, hampered by social distancing rules, Sunak announced a cut in value-added tax for the sector to 5% from 20% for six months.

People eating out in August between Monday and Wednesday will receive a 50% discount of up to 10 pounds each, paid for by the government.

Shares in pubs and restaurant firms rose.

With close to 45,000 confirmed coronavirus-linked deaths, Britain has been hit harder by the pandemic than any other European country, leaving many people reluctant to return to life as before.

Sunak’s plan includes a £2bn ($2.5bn) fund to create six-month work placement jobs for unemployed 16-24 year-olds and more government-funded apprenticeships.

A further £3bn will be spent on improving the energy efficiency of homes and public buildings, which would support more than 100,000 jobs.

The £30bn cost of the plan includes around £5.6bn in accelerated infrastructure spending announced last week by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Some employers had urged Sunak to go further by cutting the social security contributions they must pay for their workers.

In a bid to breathe life into the housing market and the broader economy, Sunak raised the lower threshold for a tax on property purchases to £500,000, four times its current level, with immediate effect until 31 March.

Economists said the plan was unlikely to accelerate Britain’s recovery from the crisis.

“Overall this wasn’t a massive fiscal package, with other countries like Germany announcing much larger fiscal packages,” Jing Teow, an economist at PwC, said.

As well the uncertainties about how the pandemic will proceed, Sunak has to contend with the possibility London and Brussels fail to agree a post-Brexit trade deal by the end of this year.

“The chancellor is likely keeping his powder dry until the autumn,” Teow said, referring to a formal budget statement Sunak is due to deliver in late 2020.

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Economy

Commission launches #YouthEmploymentSupport - A bridge to jobs for the next generation

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The Commission is using this opportunity to ingrain the green and digital transitions in the DNA of the EU's youth and employment policies. With NextGenerationEU and the future EU budget, the Commission already proposed significant EU financing opportunities for youth employment. It is now for the Member States to prioritise these investments. At least €22 billion should be spent on youth employment support.

An Economy that Works for People Executive Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis said: “It is more important than ever that we help the next generation of Europeans to thrive and get on the jobs ladder, especially at this time of crisis. We are proposing clear and specific ways forward for our young people to get the professional chances that they deserve. Today's proposals also set out what EU funding is available to support Member States in boosting youth employment. By investing in the youth of today, we will help to create a competitive, resilient and inclusive labour market for tomorrow.”

Jobs and Social Rights Commissioner Nicolas Schmit said: “Now is the time to carry out much-needed reforms of the support measures we offer to young people. We owe it to the millions of graduates and those taking their early steps on the labour market to mobilise all the support we can. Our youth deserve the very best opportunities possible to develop their full potential.”

Youth Employment Support: A bridge to jobs for the next generation

The Youth Employment Support package is built around four strands that together provide a bridge to jobs for the next generation:

  • The EU created the Youth Guarantee in 2013 and has since built bridges to the labour market for some 24 million young people. The Commission's proposal for a Council Recommendation on a Bridge to Jobs reinforces theYouth Guarantee and steps up the outreach to vulnerable young people across the EU, now covering people aged 15 - 29. The Recommendation keeps the pledge that if you sign up to the Youth Guarantee, you will receive an offer of employment, education, apprenticeship or training within four months. Bridge to Jobs will be more inclusive to avoid any forms of discrimination, with a wider outreach to more vulnerable groups, such as youth of racial and ethnic minorities, young people with disabilities, or young people living in some rural, remote or disadvantaged urban areas. It will link in with the needs of companies, providing the skills required - in particular those for the green and digital transitions - and short preparatory courses; and it will provide tailored counselling, guidance and mentoring.
  •  The Commission's proposal for a Council Recommendation on vocational education and training aims to make systems more modern, attractive, flexible and fit for the digital and green economy. More agile, learner-centred vocational education and training will prepare young people for their first jobs and gives more adults opportunities to enhance or change their careers. It will help vocational education and training providers to become centres of vocational excellence, while supporting diversity and inclusiveness.
  •  A renewed impetus for apprenticeships will benefit both employers and young people, adding a skilled labour force to a wide range of sectors. The European Alliance for Apprenticeships has made available more than 900,000 opportunities. The renewed Alliance will promote national coalitions, support SMEs and reinforce the involvement of social partners: trade unions and employers' organizations. The goal is to sustain the apprenticeship offers now, as apprentices we train now will be highly skilled workers in a few years' time.
  •  Additional measures to support youth employment include employment and start-up incentives in the short term, and capacity building, young entrepreneur networks and inter-company training centres in the medium term.

More details on each of these measures can be found in the accompanying Q&A.

The Commission urges member states to step up youth employment support by making use of the significant funding available under NextGenerationEU and the future EU budget. For example, the EU can help fund:

  • Start-up grants and loans for young entrepreneurs, mentoring schemes and business incubators.
  • Bonuses for SMEs hiring apprentices.
  • Training sessions to acquire new skills needed on the labour market.
  • Capacity-building of public employment services.
  • Career management training in formal education.
  • Investments in digital learning infrastructure and technology.

Background

During the aftermath of the global 2008 financial crisis, youth unemployment went up from 16.0% in 2008 to a peak of 24.4% in 2013. The figures went down since, with record lows of 14.9%, just before the pandemic hit. Nevertheless, youth unemployment has always remained more than twice as high as general unemployment. The latest figures show that youth unemployment stood at 15.4% across the EU in April 2020. Many fear that a spike is just in front of us.

Significant EU funding is available for Member States to implement reforms spearheaded by the initiatives presented today. The European Social Fund Plus will be a key EU financial resource to support the implementation of the youth employment support measures. As part of the Recovery Plan for Europe, the Recovery and Resilience Facility and REACT-EU will provide additional financial support for youth employment.

More information

Q&A on Youth Employment Support: a bridge to jobs for the next generation

Factsheet on Youth Employment Support

Communication “Youth Employment Support: a bridge to jobs for the next generation”

Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation on a Bridge to Jobs - reinforcing the Youth Guarantee

Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation on Vocational Education and Training

Factsheet on Vocational Education and Training

Follow Valdis Dombrovskis and Nicolas Schmit on Twitter

Subscribe to the European Commission's free e-mail newsletter on employment, social affairs and inclusion

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