venerdì 13 marzo 2015

European Commission - PRESS RELEASES - Press release - EU social dialogue: Questions and Answers

Why is there a need for a 'new start for social dialogue'?

At EU level, social dialogue was launched in 1985 at Val Duchesse by former Commission President Jacques Delors with the leaders of the social partners at European level. Developing and fostering social dialogue is an essential element of the European social model and anchored in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (articles 152-155). Over the last 30 years, European social dialogue has produced joint positions between the social partners which have led on several occasions to new European legislation in the employment and social fields.

However, in recent years the economic crisis has put national industrial relations systems under severe strain. At European level, divergences have become apparent between the social partners, especially regarding the causes of the crisis and the economic policy responses. This has led to a situation where social dialogue at EU level is performing below its potential and not contributing as much as it could to EU policy making.

As EU economic governance was strengthened in the immediate aftermath of the financial and economic crisis, a greater role for social dialogue is needed to contribute to national reform programmes and to accompany the implementation of reforms in the Member States.

Taking account of these circumstances, President Juncker during his intervention in front of the European Parliament last July committed to give a fresh impetus to social dialogue. Vice-President Dombrovskis and Commissioner Thyssen have been made responsible for the promotion and strengthening of social dialogue at all levels. They met with the leaders of the EU cross-industry social partners on 17 November 2014 and announced the organisation of a high level conference to give a new start to social dialogue 30 years after the foundations of social dialogue at European level were laid. (...)

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