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Press Release
Programme of the Troïka and Informal "EPSCO" Meeting – 7 and 8 April 2005

Date of release : 04-04-2005

Policy area : Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs

Event : Informal Meeting of Ministers for Labour and Employment

The meeting of the Troïka and the informal meeting of the Council of Labour and Employment Ministers of the European Union will be held on 7 and 8 April 2005 respectively in Luxembourg.

The current President of the Employment and Social Affairs Council (EPSCO) of the European Union, François Biltgen, Luxembourg’s Labour and Employment Minister, will chair both meetings, which will be held at the Kiem Conference Centre (CCK) on the Kirchberg Plateau.

The work during these two days will be devoted to the subject of company restructuring, a phenomenon which is increasingly common as our economies endeavour to become more competitive, and which is giving rise to serious concerns among Europe’s citizens.

The meeting of the Troïka (the current Presidency and the next two Presidencies) will be held on 7 April under the chairmanship of François Biltgen in the presence of the European Commissioner charged with Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Vladimir Špidla, the Austrian Republic’s Federal Minister of Economic Affairs and Labour, Martin Bartenstein, and the United Kingdom’s Parliamentary Secretary of State for Employment Relations, Competitiveness and Consumers, Gerry Sutcliffe.  The Presidents of the European Parliament’s Committee on Employment and Social Affairs and the Employment and Market Committee will also attend this meeting which will provide an opportunity for concertation with the representatives of the Union of Industrial and Employers' Confederations of Europe (UNICE), the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) and the European Centre of Enterprises with Public Participation and of Enterprises of General Economic Interest (CEEP) on the subject of restructuring from the viewpoint of the social partners. The Luxembourg social partners will be represented by Jean-Claude Reding (OGB-L), Robert Weber (LCGB), Charles Krombach (President of FEDIL) and Paul Reckinger (President of the Chamber of Craft Trades).

At the end of the Troïka meeting, a press conference will be held at 18.00 by the Luxembourg Presidency at the Kiem Conference Centre (CCK).

The informal meeting of the Ministers of Labour and Employment will take place on 8 April and will take place in two sessions.  

Commissioner Špidla will start the session with the presentation of the recent communication by the Commission on "Restructuring and employment", which analyses the role of the European Union in terms of anticipating and accompagnying restructuring in order to develop employment. The participants will then be invited to debate the phenomenon of "large-scale" restructuring. This affects whole sectors of the European economies, and the debate will focus on horizontal policies that could be envisaged to anticipate and guide restructuring more effectively in the major economic sectors, such as the textile industry, steel, the car industry or agriculture.

The afternoon will be reserved for "small-scale" restructuring. The Luxembourg Presidency will call on ministers to concentrate their reflection on "new jobs" to be developed in the context of creation of new opportunities, while highlighting the role of the various players concerned at regional and local level.

The objective of the informal meeting will be to enable the Labour and Employment Ministers to exchange views on the basis of practical experience in anticipating and managing restructuring within the various Member States. Ministers will be discussing the "tool boxes" that could serve as a reference and/or model for national, regional and local authorities if they find themselves having to deal with a restructuring operation.

A press conference by the Council will be held at 17.00 and will bring this informal meeting of the EPSCO Council to a close.

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This page was last modified on : 07-04-2005

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