Tripartite social summit still set for 17 October
By Sophie Petitjean | Friday 14 October 2011
A tripartite social summit for growth and employment will be held on 17 October. This timing is unusual since the meeting is generally convened just ahead of the spring European Council. The summit’s date was maintained despite the postponement of the European Council from 17-18 October to Sunday 23 October. The different stakeholders confirmed the date, on 14 October, along with the meeting’s agenda and list of participants.
As agreed at the Employment and Social Affairs Council, on 3 October, the tripartite social summit “must determine ways of building trust and social dialogue to support recovery and structural reforms”.
“Mutual trust and common understanding of challenges ahead need to be strengthened with the social partners in order to set up a growth pattern for the EU’s long-term economic and social development,” reads the letter of invitation to the stakeholders, signed by the Commission, the European Council and the rotating Council Presidency.
The social summit is made up of the troika of heads of state or government (the current Presidency plus Denmark and Cyprus) accompanied by their respective employment ministers; European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso; Employment Commissioner László Andor; and the presidents/general secretaries of the leading employers’ and trade union organisations (BusinessEurope, CEEP, UEAPME and ETUC).
Meanwhile, the agenda of the European Council has not been confirmed. According to the latest information, the meeting of finance ministers (Ecofin) and the General Affairs Council will take place on Saturday, 22 October. The timing of the Eurogroup meeting has not yet been determined.
Appeal from BusinessEurope
BusinessEurope calls on the European Council meeting of 23 October to end the political indecisiveness that “fuels financial market instability and undermines consumer and business confidence”. In a letter to the heads of state and government, the European federation of private sector employers sets the following priorities: 1. safeguard the euro; 2. strengthen economic governance; and 3. focus on a small number of Commission proposals that can help drive growth and create jobs. “The efforts of entrepreneurs across Europe risk being undermined by continuing political uncertainty. By acting in a coordinated, consistent and decisive way, policy makers can help restore business and consumer confidence,” said the organisation’s head, Jürgen R. Thumann.