21 May 2019

Our Strategy to fight youth unemployment and create 5 million new jobs

THE FUTURE OF WE: Our Strategy to fight youth unemployment and create 5 million new jobs

Together, we have achieved great things in Europe: during the last years, economic recovery has reached millions of families and unemployment is at its lowest since 2009. Yet, too many Europeans still struggle finding work opportunities and one group is affected particularly hard: our youth. More than 3.3 million young people are still unemployed in 2019 in the EU. This is not only unfair, but it is also dangerous because Europe cannot afford to lose its talent and its future.

We want to create a Europe where everyone gets a chance, our youth most of all, and where no one is forced to leave his or her own home because of economic reasons. It is time to open a new chapter for Europe: we will create 5 million new jobs across Europe in upcoming years by investing in the great European potential. Our strategy is based on four pillars: trade, innovation, infrastructure, and our social market economy.

We will create new jobs by opening new paths with the rest of the world: Trade already supports around 36 million jobs in Europe. We want create even more jobs by opening our markets to the new opportunities of an ambitious global trade agenda. At the same time, we must protect our standards preventing unfair practices that undermine our workers and our values. In fact, we call for stricter anti-social dumping rules, the inclusion of a ban on child labour in every trade agreement with third countries, and to apply the ban on single-use plastic, which was agreed on in Europe, to all the products we import.

We will create new jobs by investing in the power of innovation: Over 830.000 innovative start-ups are active in the main European cities employing around 5 million people. It is through breakthrough digital and technological advancements that our European way of life will be shaped in the future: we have a choice to make, let others do it for us or go back to our true DNA and lead in the digital revolution. By doing this, we must put people and our fundamental values at the heart of innovation. We believe Europe has the potential to seize the next digital wave and to take the lead in artificial intelligence, robotics, biomedicine, big data, and mobility engineering. We believe that by pooling our resources in ambitious European projects not only will we create jobs, but we will also make a difference in people´s lives: we can develop smart homes for the elderly and join our forces in the fight against cancer.

We will create new jobs by setting up the most advanced infrastructure: We believe that good connection and mobility across all regions of Europe are crucial drivers for jobs. European potential would go to waste without a strong network between regions. The transport sector alone secures jobs for around 20 million people: connection creates opportunities. That is why we must complete road and rail infrastructure while seizing future possibilities by investing in the latest digital infrastructure, ensuring access to high-speed internet and world leading supercomputers to all European regions.

We will create new jobs by ensuring everyone contributes to our social market economy: Markets are crucial but we also believe in the social responsibility of firms. Creating opportunities for all is also a matter of fairness. Therefore, to deliver on our promise, we call for a new “Digital Fair Tax” for Internet Giants, to make sure those who benefit from our economy also contribute their fair share. In fact, the Digital Fair Tax will partly finance the Digital Transition Fund. We will establish the fund to support our workers when digital disruptions in the labour market occur, so we are ready to mitigate the impact of digitalisation and globalisation for the most vulnerable workers.

This is our ambitious strategy to create 5 million new jobs in the upcoming years and we know how to achieve it. Everyone will benefit from our openness to the world, from a decisive boost to the power of innovation to answer the big questions of the future, from the most advanced infrastructure to bring every corner to the centre, and from a social market economy fit for the 21st century. As next European Commission President, it will be one of my top priorities to create millions of new jobs.