Antonio Tajani, commissioner in charge for Industry and entrepreneurship, dedicated the celebration of the Europe Day 2011 to the young people facing difficulties in finding a job. “Effective training programmes – said Tajani in a meeting last 9 May with more than 1000 youth at Bicocca University in Milan – need to be accessible to all young people from across the Member States in order to ensure that they have the necessary skills to apply to a variety of positions in the EU. During these difficult economic times we need to unlock the huge potential of start-up entrepreneurs and stimulate them to take the final step and set up a new enterprise. Small enterprises are creating most new jobs and are the driving force of our economy. One of the main priorities of the EU is ensure that there are prospects for growth and provide employment to young Europeans.”
Accelerating growth is really necessary for Europe, also because, according to an OECD report, the jobless rate among people between 15-24 years old in the 17 countries forming the eurozone, currently stands at 20.4 per cent, up from 14.6 per cent in February 2008, before the start of the financial crisis.
Considering that employment is one of the five ambitious objectives of Europe 2020 (toghether with innovation, education, social inclusion and climate/energy) the DG Enterprise and Industry promotes a number of activities to boost youth employment in the business sector, such as:
- Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs: This programme provides intensive on-the-job-training for 5 months in a company operating in different EU Member State, which will facilitate a successful start to their business training and offer potentially viable business ideas.
- The Small Business Act as a tool for job creation: Many initiatives are run under this scheme to support small enterprises and combat youth unemployment in this challenging economic climate.
- National Envoys for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs): Member States are encouraged to appoint an envoy whose task ensuring that SME issues such as improved business education are at the core of policy making.
- Adequate financing for SMEs: New approaches to improve access to finance for SMEs have been introduced and the Commission can now help a higher number of SMEs.
Will it be enough?