On 10 June, the European Commission adopted a new and comprehensive Skills Agenda for Europe. The aim is to ensure that people develop a broad set of skills from early on in life and to make the most of Europe’s human capital, which will ultimately boost employability, competitiveness and growth in Europe. The agenda calls on EU countries and stakeholders to improve the quality of skills and their relevance for the labour market. It looks to reduce the number of Europeans lacking adequate reading, writing, numeracy and digital skills. At the same time, it seeks to help highly-qualified young people find work that suits their potential and aspirations, make it easier for employers to recruit employees with the right profiles and to equip people with the skills and mindset to start their own businesses.
Concretely, the Commission proposes 10 actions to be taken forward over the next two years, some of which will be launched today:
- A Skills Guarantee to help low-skilled adults acquire a minimum level of literacy, numeracy and digital skills and progress towards an upper secondary qualification.
- A review of the European Qualifications Framework for a better understanding of qualifications and to make better use of all available skills in the European labour market.
- The “Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition” bringing together Member States and education, employment and industry stakeholders to develop a large digital talent pool and ensure that individuals and the labour force in Europe are equipped with adequate digital skills.
- The ‘Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills’ to improve skills intelligence and address skills shortages in specific economic sectors.
- A “Skills Profile Tool for Third Country Nationals” to support early identification and profiling of skills and qualifications of asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants.
- A revision of the Europass Framework, offering people better and easier-to-use tools to present their skills and get useful real-time information on skills needs and trends which can help with career and learning choices.
- Making Vocational Education and Training (VET) a first choice by enhancing opportunities for VET learners to undertake a work based learning experience and promoting greater visibility of good labour market outcomes of VET.
- A review of the Recommendation on Key Competences to help more people acquire the core set of skills necessary to work and live in the 21st century with a special focus on promoting entrepreneurial and innovation-oriented mind-sets and skills.
- An initiative on graduate tracking to improve information on how graduates progress in the labour market.
- A proposal to further analyse and exchange best practices on effective ways to address brain drain.
The complete press release with links to the Communication and background material is available here.