On the eve of the European Council of 27-28 June, several progressive leaders gathered in Brussels to define an action plan in the fight against youth unemployment in Europe. Hosted by the Parti Socialiste (PS) of Belgium and its leader Paul Magnette, the meeting saw the participation of Bruno Tobback (s.pa Belgium), Guglielmo Epifani (PD Italy), Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba (PSOE Spain), Martin Schulz (European Parliament President), Hannes Swoboda (S&D Group in the European Parliament) and Philip Cordery (PS France, representing Harlem Désir).
Youth unemployment will also be at the top of the agenda of the PES pre-Council Preparation Meeting, which will take place tomorrow 27 June in Brussels. This major event, which will be attended by PES Heads of State, Prime Ministers and Deputy Prime Ministers, will echo the conclusions of last week’s PES Council in Sofia and its appeal to “increase the speed and substance of the European Youth Guarantee”. Participants will include the Prime Minister of Italy,Enrico Letta, who has recently called for a swift implementation of the European Youth Guarantee.
Also today (26 June), Harlem Désir, First Secretary of the French Socialist Party (PS) and Sigmar Gabriel, Chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) met in Paris to stress the importance of “giving absolute priority to the fight against youth unemployment”. The German version of the joint statement, titled “Giving new hope to the European youth - for a change in European politics”, can be found here.
Next week (3 July), the PES and the SPD will co-organize a Social Affairs Ministerial in Berlin. The meeting will be hosted by SPD Chancellor candidate Peer Steinbrück, and will push for concrete steps in the implementation of the European Youth Guarantee.