THE MOBILE
GENERATION

8 proposals from Youth EPP
for Labour Mobility

Young people have been more adversely affected by unemployment than the average European citizen.

In fact, the youth unemployment rate in the EU is more than twice as large as the adult unemployment rate – 20% compared to 9.1 % (22.5 % compared to 10.5 in the euro area)

4.5 million young Europeans under the age of 25 (3.1 million in the euro area) are unemployed.

This is largely due to a multitude of factors, such as limited or no work experience and a mismatch between the skills young people possess and those demanded by the labour market, young people in Europe tend to be disadvantaged when entering the labour market.

More than four in ten young Europeans (43%) said in a Eurobarometer survey that they would like to work, study or undergo training in another EU country, the intra-EU labour mobility rate in the EU is only 0.29%.

To improve the match between demand and supply, mobility across EU countries should be enhanced.

There are a number of legal and administrative obstacles to labour mobility that must be eliminated. The greatest problems, which negatively affect labour mobility, are accommodation, language, partner residence, recognition of qualifications, conferral of rights for pension provision, employment opportunities, return to homeland mechanisms, historical obstacles and recognition of experience acquired in another country.

We highlight existing obstacles to the employment of women, elderly persons, young disabled people and migrants, all of which hinder integrated growth. It is important to create conditions for successful worker career changes, attainment of appropriate/ relevant qualifications, and improvement of workplace quality, the reduction of structural unemployment, active integration, as well as adequate and sustainable social protection.

YEPP calls for modernising employment, education and social security policies with the aim of strengthening labour mobility.

I am an employer, I need flexibility
I am an employee, I need security
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YEPP calls for
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A modern labour market that embraces the principle of flexicurity. More flexible employment with fair social protection, according to the principle of flexible security, which ensures the social protection of workers and their incomes while it allows for flexible human resources management to the employer.

Increased cooperation between Member States and simplified procedures regarding recognition and standardization of academic titles, continuous education diplomas, and professional qualifications in order to allow young professionals access to all opportunities across the EU.

YEPP calls for extending cross-border vocational training to familiarise young people with working in different EU Countries.

The importance of cross border labour mobility for economic growth and further EU labour market integration. One third of the EU population lives in a border region and more than 1 million EU citizens actually live in one country and work in another.

Today there is a proliferation of different overlapping initiatives operating in the same region like Eures Cross-border, Interreg and EGTC. Although the scope and goals of these initiatives differ, they all try to detect and overcome the above mentioned problems regarding frontier work. Coordination between these partnerships is sometimes lacking or even non-existing.

YEPP calls for more coherent management of European funds for cross border projects. A maximum impact requires low administrative costs.

I am paying my contributions,
I deserve my pension.

Supplementary pension entitlements are rarely, if at all, portable across EU countries. In practice, this means that mobile workers risk losing part of acquired pension rights and may face long vesting periods to build up new rights. This is a strong disincentive to taking up work abroad.

YEPP calls for the portability of pension entitlements earned in a foreign country.

I need access to health, anywhere I am.

According to the EU treaties, discrimination of EU citizens based on nationality is prohibited.

Mobile EU workers have a higher probability of being employed compared to the host countries’ citizens. Consequently they are contributing to the host country’s social security and welfare system. Therefore, welfare chauvinism, as understood by Eurosceptic and extreme-right parties, is not only against the fundamental values and freedoms of the EU, but also lacks a theoretical basis.

YEPP calls on all Member States to ensure affordable quality healthcare and social security services for all mobile EU workers.

While labour mobility is a growth driver for the EU economy, it may have a downside for countries going through economic recession.

To the short/medium term downside that labour mobility deprives countries of departure of their skilled workforce and their taxes and social contributions, the long term economic and societal benefits of returning mobile workers trained abroad have to be added into the equation.

YEPP calls on fostering youth entrepreneurship, lifting unnecessary barriers, and simplifying regulations for SMEs, to create quality jobs in countries going through economic recession.