PES Employment and Social Affairs Ministers agree on an ambitious social agenda for the period July 2015-June 2017



PES Ministers for Employment and Social Affairs met ahead of the EPSCO Council on 17 June in Luxembourg. The Ministers welcomed the programme of the Luxemburgish Presidency presented by Nicolas Schmit, Minister for Labour, Employment, Social and Solidarity Economy, who is also Chairman of the PES Social and Employment Ministers Network. The next four consecutive presidencies of the EPSCO Council from July 2015 to June 2017 will be held by PES Ministers from Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Slovakia and Malta. The ministers agreed to use the opportunity this presents to promote a common set of priorities and reinforce the social agenda of the EU.

With the crisis still having a devastating effect on Europe and too many European citizens facing poverty and social exclusion, PES ministers reiterated their commitment to promote jobs and growth and to putting Europe back on the path of equality and prosperity and to ending the vicious circle of austerity policies.

Minister Nicolas Schmit said: “We have the opportunity to lead the discussion and to ensure a real social dimension in European policies. As PES Social and Employment Ministers, we will use this opportunity to push social issues back to the centre of the European agenda. We will continue our fight for a fair Europe. Our common priorities, creating new jobs for young people, promoting decent jobs, ensuring a fair workers’ mobility, developing social economy and advancing the development of a social union, will effectively advance this goal. We want a concrete change in politics and policies that will deliver real results, and have a positive impact on peoples lives.”

List of participants

Nicolas Schmit - Minister for Labour, Employment, Social and Solidarity Economy, Chairperson, Luxembourg
Rudolf Hundstorfer - Minister for Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection, Austria
Rannar Vassiljev - Minister of Health and Labour, Estonia
François Rebsamen - Minister for Labour, Employment, Vocational Training and Social Dialogue, France
Andrea Nahles - Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Germany
Romain Schneider - Minister for Social Security, Luxembourg
Helena Dalli - Minister for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs, and Civil Liberties, Malta
Branislav Ondrus - State Secretary at the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and the Family, Slovakia
Peter Pogačar - State Secretary Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Slovenia
Rovana Plumb - Minister of Labour, Family, Social Protection and Elderly, Romania
Ylva Johansson - Minister for Employment, Sweden
Pernilla Baralt - State Secretary to the Minister for Children, the Elderly and Gender Equality, Sweden
Jutta Steinruck - S&D EMPL Coordinator
Marcel Mersch - Head of Unit Economic and Social Model Policy, S&D Secretariat
Yonnec Polet - Deputy Secretary General, PES