Fabian Demicoli

European Council agrees on comprehensive approach to combat youth unemployment


In consultation with social partners, EU leaders have agreed
on a comprehensive approach to combat youth unemployment. They will speed up
implementation of the "Youth Employment Initiative", which should be fully
operational by January 2014, and concentrate spending in its first two years.

They will also speed up implementation of the "Youth Guarantee", which is
designed to get young people who are not in education, employment or training
back to work or into education or training within four months. In addition,
unspent funds from the EU budget will be reallocated to support employment,
especially for youth, as well as innovation and research. This is made possible
by the flexibility of the EU budget, or Multi-annual Financial Framework, for
the next seven years. EU leaders therefore welcomed its final approval at the
same occasion. The European Council also agreed on measures to promote
cross-border mobility, including for vocational training. The "Your First EURES
Job" programme will be strengthened and the "Erasmus +" programme should be
fully operational from January 2014. High-quality apprenticeships will be
promoted via the European Alliance for Apprenticeships to be launched in July.

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