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CECOP’s position on the EU 2020 mid-term review: last chance for a sustainable, smart and inclusive growth in Europe by 2020?

31 October 2014 [ English ] français ]

Four years after launching the EU 2020 strategy characterised by strong objectives and targets supposed to foster growth and jobs, the European Commission is doing a mid-term review and organising a public consultation for that purpose. Where do we stand right now? The amount of people facing poverty has increased, the employment rate seems to be a far cry from reaching the objective of having 75% of the population in work, the R&D investment target seems unlikely to be met by 2020 as well.

Barely a few months after the EU 2020 strategy was launched, a new EU instrument of guidance and surveillance over Member States’ fiscal and economic policies, called the European Semester, was created as a response to the public debt crisis. In addition to putting aside the EU 2020 goals, some of the priorities of the European Semester are actually diminishing Member States’ capacity to achieve those goals. For example, austerity programs, as a tool to achieve fiscal consolidation, are having damaging effects on EU 2020 targets such as employment, poverty alleviation, R&D, training and education, which on the contrary need public intervention and investment and are key for the EU to recover and achieve growth!

CECOP calls upon the new European Commission to rectify this contradiction among those instruments and to give a central place to the EU 2020 strategy. The EU 2020 social and employment goals can no longer be subordinated to the economic goals of the European Semester if we want to get close to a smart, sustainable and inclusive growth by 2020.

Read the full CECOP position and the recommendations for the 2015-2020 period here.