Considerations on COM(2011)608 - European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (2014 - 2020)

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dossier COM(2011)608 - European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (2014 - 2020).
document COM(2011)608 EN
date December 17, 2013
table>(1)On 26 March 2010, the European Council agreed to the Commission's proposal to launch a new strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth (the 'Europe 2020 strategy'). One of the three priorities of the Europe 2020 strategy is inclusive growth by empowering people through high levels of employment, investing in skills, fighting poverty and modernising labour markets, training and social protection systems so as to help people anticipate and manage change, and build an inclusive, cohesive society. Overcoming the adverse effects of globalisation also calls for the creation of jobs throughout the Union and a resolute policy on supporting growth.
(2)The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) was established by Regulation (EC) No 1927/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council (3) for the duration of the Multiannual Financial Framework from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2013. The EGF enables the Union to show solidarity towards workers made redundant as a result of major structural changes in world trade patterns due to globalisation and global financial and economic crises, and can also support beneficiaries in small labour markets or in exceptional circumstances, in particular with regard to collective applications involving small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), even if the number of redundancies is below the normal threshold for mobilisation of the EGF.

(3)In its Communication of 29 June 2011 entitled A Budget for Europe 2020, the Commission recognises the role of the EGF as a flexible fund to support workers who lose their jobs and to help them to find another job as rapidly as possible. The Union should continue to provide, for the duration of the Multiannual Financial Framework from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2020, specific, one-off support to facilitate the re-integration into employment of redundant workers in areas, sectors, territories or labour markets suffering the shock of serious economic disruption. Given its purpose, which is to provide support in situations of urgency and unexpected circumstances, the EGF should remain outside the Multiannual Financial Framework.

(4)The scope of Regulation (EC) No 1927/2006 was broadened in 2009 by Regulation (EC) No 546/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council (4) as part of the European Economic Recovery Plan to include workers made redundant as a direct result of the global financial and economic crisis. In order to enable the EGF to intervene in ongoing or future crisis situations, its scope should cover redundancies resulting from a serious economic disruption caused by a continuation of the global financial and economic crisis addressed in Regulation (EC) No 546/2009, or by a new global financial and economic crisis.

(5)The European Monitoring Centre on Change, based in the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) in Dublin, assists the Commission and the Member States with qualitative and quantitative analyses in order to help in the evaluation of trends of globalisation and use of the EGF.

(6)In order to maintain the European nature of the EGF, an application for support should be triggered when the number of redundancies reaches a minimum threshold. Nevertheless, in small labour markets, such as small Member States or remote regions, or in exceptional circumstances, applications may be submitted for a lower number of redundancies.

(7)Workers made redundant and self-employed persons whose activity has ceased should have equal access to the EGF independently of their type of employment contract or employment relationship. Therefore, workers made redundant as well as self-employed persons whose activity has ceased should be regarded as EGF beneficiaries for the purposes of this Regulation.

(8)The EGF should temporarily provide assistance to young people not in employment, education or training (NEETs) who reside in regions eligible under the Youth Employment Initiative, since those regions are disproportionately impacted by major redundancies.

(9)Financial contributions from the EGF should be primarily directed at active labour market measures aimed at reintegrating beneficiaries rapidly into sustainable employment, either within or outside their initial sector of activity. The inclusion of pecuniary allowances in a coordinated package of personalised services should therefore be restricted. Companies could be encouraged to provide co-funding for the EGF-supported measures.

(10)When drawing up the coordinated package of active labour market policy measures, Member States should favour measures that will significantly contribute to the employability of the beneficiaries. Member States should strive towards the reintegration into sustainable employment of the largest possible number of beneficiaries participating in these measures as soon as possible within the six-month period before the final report on the implementation of the financial contribution is due.

(11)Member States should pay particular attention to disadvantaged beneficiaries, including young and older unemployed persons and those at risk of poverty, when designing the coordinated package of active labour market policy measures, given that those groups experience particular problems in re-entering the labour market due to the global financial and economic crisis and globalisation.

(12)The principles of gender equality and of non-discrimination, which are among the Union's core values and are enshrined in the Europe 2020 strategy, should be respected and promoted when implementing the EGF.

(13)In order to support beneficiaries effectively and rapidly, Member States should do their utmost to submit complete applications for a financial contribution from the EGF. Provision of additional information should be limited in time.

(14)In the interest of beneficiaries and bodies responsible for implementation of the measures, the applicant Member State should keep all actors involved in the application process informed of the progress of the application.

(15)In compliance with the principle of sound financial management, financial contributions from the EGF should not replace but should, where possible, complement support measures which are available for beneficiaries within the Union funds or other Union policies or programmes.

(16)Special provisions should be included for information and communication activities on EGF cases and outcomes.

(17)In order to express Union solidarity with workers made redundant and self-employed persons whose activity has ceased, the co-funding rate should be set at 60 % of the cost of the package and its implementation.

(18)To facilitate the implementation of this Regulation, expenditure should be eligible either from the date on which a Member State starts to provide personalised services or from the date on which a Member State incurs administrative expenditure for implementing the EGF.

(19)In order to cover the needs arising especially during the first months of each year, when the possibilities for transfers from other budget lines are particularly difficult, an adequate amount of payment appropriations should be made available on the EGF budget line in the annual budgetary procedure.

(20)The Interinstitutional Agreement between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission of 2 December 2013 on budgetary discipline, on cooperation in budgetary matters and on sound financial management (5) ("the Interinstitutional Agreement") determines the budgetary framework of the EGF.

(21)In the interest of the beneficiaries, assistance should be made available as quickly and efficiently as possible. The Member States and the Union institutions involved in the EGF decision-making process should do their utmost to reduce processing time and simplify procedures so as to ensure the smooth and rapid adoption of decisions on the mobilisation of the EGF.

(22)In the event of an enterprise closing down, workers made redundant by that enterprise may be helped to take over some or all of its activities and the Member State in which the enterprise is located may advance the funds that are required urgently to make this possible.

(23)In order to enable political scrutiny by the European Parliament and continuous monitoring by the Commission of results obtained with EGF assistance, Member States should submit a final report on the implementation of the EGF.

(24)The Member States should remain responsible for the implementation of the financial contribution and for the management and control of the actions supported by Union funding, in accordance with the relevant provisions of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council (the 'Financial Regulation') (6). The Member States should justify the use made of the financial contribution received from the EGF. In view of the short implementation period of EGF operations, reporting obligations should reflect the particular nature of the EGF interventions. It is therefore necessary to derogate from the Financial Regulation in respect of reporting obligations.

(25)Since the objectives of this Regulation cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States, but can rather, by reason of their scale and effects, be better achieved at Union level, the Union may adopt measures, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty on European Union. In accordance with the principle of proportionality as set out in that Article, this Regulation does not go beyond what is necessary in order to achieve those objectives,