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Eurogroup deal with Greece - more hardship for Greek workers and people

(13 July 2015) The longest Eurogroup summit has ended with a deal. If the Greek Parliament approves it, talks can start on a third financial assistance package. Several other national parliaments need to accept it as well. There is a list of measures for immediate approval and implementation. The deal demands labour market reforms. They want "rigorous reviews and modernisation of collective bargaining, industrial action and, in line with the relevant EU directive and best practice, (...)

Greek people’s voice to be respected by Eurogroup

(6 July 2015) The Greek people voted no to the proposals of the Eurogroup. The Eurogroup wanted more austerity measures as a condition for further financial assistance. The Greek government did not agree and is now supported by a clear majority of Greek workers and people. EPSU General Secretary Jan Willem Goudriaan says: "The Eurogroup needs to go back to the negotiating table. Greece needs debt relief and Greek people a prospect for growth" Greek people have not voted to leave the (...)

Macro-economic dialogue at technical level - what structural reform does work for workers and society?

(25 June 2015) The European Union economy is picking up again, but many factors are uncertain and it is not clear if the recovery will persist, could be the summary of a discussion on the state of the European economy in the macro-economic dialogue. The trade union side is more cautious also because the economy still lacks sufficient investment. Veronica Nilsson, the next ETUC Deputy General Secretary introduced the position of the ETUC, referring to the need for a serious investment plan (...)

Social investment, real social dialogue and public services out of TTIP addressed at Tripartite Social Summit

(20 March 2015) With more than 24 million unemployed, with high youth unemployment , with growing poverty and wealth inequality in Europe, we are not out of the economic crisis, was the message of the ETUC delegation to the Tripartite Social Summit. Therefore more public investment is needed and including in social infrastructure and public services. This will stimulate growth. We want environmentally sustainable growth and decent jobs. The Juncker plan while a step in the right direction (...)

Alliance calls for social and sustainable investment plan

(18 March 2015) The European Commission’s investment plan is missing a real commitment to quality jobs and sustainable growth as well as a strong social element. This is the message coming from the Semester Alliance, a broad European coalition bringing together environmental, social and equality groups and trade unions, including EPSU. The Alliance is calling on the European Council and the European Parliament to ensure that the European Commission’s proposal for a European Fund for (...)

European economic conference on the alternatives

(2 March 2015) Europe’s dilemma: austerity revisited or a new path for sustainable growth is the title of the upcoming event by the ETUI (European Trade Union Institute) regarding the possible economic alternatives to austerity. The election of the Greek government has proven that European citizens have said enough to austerity - the conference will discuss the alternatives proposed by new political forces emerging. The event takes place on March 20. For (...)

Macro-economic dialogue at political level - the mantra of structural reform prevalent - a contested approach

(17 February 2015) "Growth is not taking off due to a lack of investment. The risk of deflation is persistent with the structural reform agenda pursued by employers, ECB and European Commission making matters worse" was the message of the trade union delegation of ETUC in the macro-economic dialogue at political level. The ETUC General Secretary Bernadette Segol underlined what the ETUC expects of an Investment Programme and so-called Quantative Easing focused on the real economy. This (...)

Results of the Greek elections and new government are an opportunity for Europe to strengthen democracy

Negotiations for alternatives to austerity - Results of the Greek elections and new government are an opportunity for Europe to strengthen democracy (16 February 2015) As General Secretary of EPSU I signed the call of our German trade union colleagues and many others in solidarity with the Greek people. The initiative demands that the European Commission and the Eurogroup have serious negotiations with the new Greek government to respect the demands of the Greek people for a change of (...)

MEPs give cross-party support for key messages on Semester

Six MEPs from across the political spectrum expressed their support for calls to reform the European Semester - the annual process of economic governance. The key messages were drawn up by the EU Semester Alliance, a grouping of civil society groups with support from EPSU and the ETUC. The Alliance is calling for a much more democratic and transparent Semester, with increased involvement of national parliaments, the European Parliament, social partners and civil society. For the Alliance, (...)

Economic governance, Juncker’s investment plan, tax avoidance, health and safety and more on agenda of ETUC Executive

(10 December 2014) The economic situation in Europe and the impact on workers and our families and communities was the main topic of the ETUC Executive Committee (2-3 December). Close to 25 million people are unemployed. Deflation is a real threat and in several countries already happening. Restoring demand by having appropriate pay increases as well as public investment are therefore needed according to ETUC to get the European Union and in its wake the rest of Europe out of the recession. (...)

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