Fabian Demicoli

Vince Farrugia at the Social Dialogue Conference – Warsaw – 24-25 November

 "As we celebrate 20 years of structured social dialogue in Europe is it worth emphasising during this time of euro crisis that while the ship Europe hit the iceberg it did not go down, and will not go down as a result of the strong social dialogue fabric of which the European Union is made".


Vince Farrugia as delegate from UEAPME, the European Federation of SME's, was speaking in the first session of this Special Polish Presidency led initiative by the EU Commission to celebrate 2O years from the Amsterdam Pact establishing the concept of structured social dialogue agreements. Other delegates came from Business Europe, CEEP, ETUC and EuroCommerce among others.

"The widespread system of social dialogue agreements at European, National, regional, sectoral and company level has provided a large network of support that made it possible for the system not to collapse under the pressure of the financial markets due to the undisciplined disregard of politicians in a number of countries and of the EU Council's disregard of the terms, conditions and obligations of member states under the Stability and Growth Pact. It is important now, as the two main political leaders in Europe today deliberate on action to be taken to safeguard all that we achieved in these last 20 years, that we highlight again the importance of social dialogue in opposition to imposition and intervention in the domestic democratic choices in individual Member States by those who perceive themselves bigger and stronger in the democratic than the free choices of the peoples of Europe. Democracy and social dialogue are the distinctive features of the European model. Even in times of the crisis, indeed even more so, this has to be emphasised, as unfortunately  some people who ought to know better are today sounding as if the means justify the end. There are never any undemocratic means that are justified" warned Vince Farrugia, GRTU representative in the Board of Administration of UEAPME.

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