The European Commission has declared 2023 to
be the Year of Skills. In October last year the European Commission announced that it will be
introducing measures to counter the shortage of skilled workers throughout
Everyone pulls together
The European Union is facing a declining number of skilled
workers in almost all industries. Many companies are experiencing delivery
problems due to the lack of workers. Staff shortages in the health sector are
especially evident when it comes to care and there are no replacements for many
retirees in the administrative sector. More importance will now be given to
lifelong learning as part of the European Year of Skills and this will be
implemented in collaboration with the European Parliament, the member states,
the social partners and various interest groups.
Promoting investment in
training, improving the skills relevant to the labour
market and considering the workers' wishes and skills as well as effective
recruitment of third-country nationals with the skills needed in the EU will
all be expanded.
Skills as the answer for stable social and labour market policies
Currently, around three
quarters of companies in the EU are having difficulties in finding qualified
workers. The European Commission is taking this alarming figure as its reason to focus more on
training and acquiring skills and to invest in them. Member states want to
achieve a social policy target of having at least 60 per cent of adults
participating in advanced training by 2030. Access to public services,
transport and public areas for vulnerable groups such as people with disabilities
and older people, should be improved.
What is planned?
Promoting investment in
training and advanced training should be strengthened in order to realise the
full potential of Europe's workforce and to support workers if they change
their jobs. The European Commission proposes investing in skills relevant to the labour market
and this will be in collaboration with companies and social partners.
Ecological and digital transitions should also be taken into consideration. A
special focus here should be on getting more people, especially women and young
people, well trained to become a valuable asset to the labour market.
The next steps
EU funds and technical
assistance will be made available to help member states invest in training and
retraining. EU funding will be supported by the "European Social Fund
Plus" (ESF+) with a budget of 99 billion euros until 2027. 20 per cent of social spending is planned for "employment and
skills” under the EU "Recovery and Resilience Facility". The European Parliament and the Council of the European Union will
now discuss the proposal.