Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament today backed recommendations to improve the European Semester from a social point of view. The Annual Growth Survey 2019 (AGS) is part of the European Semester for economic policy coordination, and sets out what the Commission considers to be the economic priorities for the EU, coupled with policy guidance for member states. The S&Ds believe the Commission guidance is still too narrowly focused on fiscal consolidation and structural reforms that ignore the social consequences of the past years, at a time when we should be focused on improving wages, improving job quality and crisis-proofing our social protection systems for the future.
Maria Arena, S&D negotiator on this dossier said:
“I am happy with today's outcome. European citizens deserve better and more progressive recommendations from the Commission. The S&D Group managed to push the report voted today in the right direction. I hope that in this way, we can get the Commission more focused on the things that really matter: fair wealth distribution, meaningful collective bargaining, decent wages and decent pensions.”
Agnes Jongerius, S&D coordinator on employment and social affairs added:
“The signal we are giving today is that the European Semester cannot ignore people in insecure, atypical and precarious jobs. The social effects of the past recession are still felt every day by far too many European citizens. Now that the worst of the crisis is behind us, Brussels should be telling member states about strengthening their social protection systems and reducing inequality – not about further fiscal measures that hit the most vulnerable the hardest. That is why the position we took today is important.”