Conservative MEPs today urged the EU to strive for a flexible labour market, improved skills-training and greater focus on entrepreneurship and business leadership.
A motion tabled by the European Conservatives and Reformists Group on youth employment stressed the importance of cutting red tape and boosting responsiveness to the needs of job-creators as key measures to tackle Europe’s joblessness crisis.
In parts of Mediterranean Europe youth unemployment has rocketed past 50 per cent during the EU’s desperate struggle to hold the common currency together.
The Conservative motion, drawn up as a coherent blueprint for job-creation and fresh economic vigour, promotes new forms of finance such as micro-lending, encourages development schemes for young entrepreneurs and calls for better-targeted training to address the skills mismatches currently holding back recruitment.
It also advocates the process of so-called re-shoring – the trend of companies bringing back to Europe production and services which had previously been moved abroad.
Employment spokesman and Stoke-on-Trent Conservative MEP, Anthea McIntyre said: “It is good to see that one of the first major policy discussions in this new parliament is on the continuing disaster of youth employment. ”
The Stoke-on-Trent MEP went on: “We have been told job-creation is the top priority of the Commission President Mr Juncker… and cutting back the over-regulation that stifles employment will be central to Britain’s renegotiated terms with the EU under David Cameron.
“I believe Brussels is at last getting the message that businesses create jobs, not EU dictacts. With small businesses providing 90 million jobs in the EU, accounting for over 67% of private-sector jobs, red tape hits hard the small companies that matter so much.
“With the withdrawal of the burdensome Maternity Leave Directive and the dropping of silly health and safety proposals for hairdressers, it seems the penny may have dropped at the European Commission.”
Miss McIntyre observed: “Policy makers in Brussels and elsewhere in Europe would do well to look at Britain where unemployment is falling, businesses are recruiting and jobs, which were lost over the last two decades to emerging markets, are returning to our shores.
“Creating the right environment for businesses to get on, expand and grow, has to be the focus. The real way to create jobs in Europe is by cutting bureaucracy and letting businesses get on with it.”