The informal meeting of ministers responsible for labour, employment and social affairs will take place in Bordeaux on 15 February 2022. The meeting will focus on the challenge posed by the major digital and climate transitions to the labour market, and the way in which the European Union can support these transitions within the framework of the construction of a new European model of growth.
The digital and climate transitions are bringing about a profound and lasting change in the labour market, including: new technologies attracting massive investments or being discarded because of climate change, accelerated rhythm of skill evolution, territories being affected at European level, certain jobs being cut and others created, etc.
These changes are vectors of opportunity, but they also bring about risks for employment.
The EU has already implemented initiatives to accompany these transformations, especially as part of the European Skills Agenda presented by the European Commission in July 2020, and set out ambitious objectives in the fields of training and employment for 2030.
Better support in transitions
In this context, the informal Council of the ministers responsible for labour, employment and social affairs will focus on the challenges of investing in skills, supporting employment transitions and strengthening social dialogue in the face of these changes.
With this is mind, it will not only bring together the 27 ministers and the European Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, Nicolas Schmit, but also European social partners, representatives of the European Parliament and civil society, the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) as well as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the International Labour Organization (ILO).
The participants will discuss the implications of these transitions on the design and structure of employment and training policies. The debate will be organised around three themes:
- Anticipating and investing in skills especially with a view to better identify needs and invest in skills to provide training for professions of the future, in terms of both initial training for young people and retraining adults
- Supporting and facilitating secure employment transitions, so as to better mobilise the measures implemented at national and EU level to enable workers to evolve and be retrained in the context of the transitions
- Strengthening social dialogue, both European and national, to enable the labour market to adapt to these transitions