Industrial Renaissance Neglects Industrial Workers

Brussels, 22/01/2014

Unfortunately, the Commission fails to put forward a proposal on how this potential for growth could be translated into job creation and states that it expects EU unemployment to remain at 11%, an all-time high, for at least two more years.

“The Commission blames low demand and low investment for the lingering crisis but neglects to point out the root of both: the EU’s crisis management policy, with its failure to reregulate the banking system, where austerity is the overriding rule of the day and where increased competitiveness is seen in terms of cutting wages” says ETUC Deputy General Secretary Józef Niemiec.

Moreover, the Commission still seems to believe that product market or labour market reforms and deregulation can provide a solution. These policies have been applied for years without any tangible results. The deregulation programme (REFIT) is more than controversial, especially as it undermines health and safety standards.

The ETUC and industriAll Europe regard an industrial policy strategy that falls short of delivering quality employment for Europe’s workers, and which does not address the pressing problem of youth unemployment, as largely insufficient.

“The social dimension in this proposal that should underpin a productive industry and deliver education, training, social security and workers’ participation is barely touched upon. Any so-called recovery would be a jobless recovery and not the jolt required to jumpstart Europe’s economy. A strong legal framework for anticipation and management of economic change is absolutely necessary”, said industriAll Europe General Secretary Ulrich Eckelmann.