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Noch ´ne EU- Kommission: Ad-Hoc-Gruppe soll koordinieren

Europäische Union - 10.03.2005 - von EU-Kommission

The role of the Ad Hoc Working Group is to assist the Employment Committee to promote co-ordination between Member States on employment and labour market issues. The Employment Committee defines the tasks which the Ad Hoc Group is asked to undertake on the Committee's behalf and the Group works under the delegated authority of the Committee, as set out in the Group's terms of reference.

Preparatory examination of the National Action Plans for employment and the format of the Cambridge Review examination

The Member States will submit their National Action Plans for employment (NAPs) in autumn 2005 in accordance with the NAP outline endorsed by EMCO earlier in the year. As usual, the NAPs 2005 will reflect the priorities of the Guidelines and employment recommendations as adopted by the Council, and endorsed by the European Council (foreseen for June 2005). As agreed, the NAPs for 2005 should focus on the implementation of reforms, and will also include the findings of the national evaluation work.

As usual, the Group will conduct an initial preparatory examination of the NAPs in November 2005 in order to prepare the discussions of the full Committee. The exact format for the Cambridge Review will be determined in advance of November and will be based on the generally positive feedback on the working method devised for the 2004 examinations. This method was supported as it provided more time for the examination of each NAP with more in depth discussion. In addition it was considered to provide a more effective mutual learning process.

The Ad Hoc Group may also wish to consider the various proposals for further improving the Cambridge Review examination of the NAPs on the basis of its report to the full Committee in November 2004.

Evaluation of employment policies and options for the 2006 mid-term review of the EES

The Barcelona European Council called for an intermediate evaluation of the Employment Strategy in 2006 to monitor achievement of the Stockholm intermediate employment objectives. The Ad Hoc Group played a key role in laying down some preparatory work for the evaluation in 2004 in light of the agreed cycle of the Guidelines. The Group should continue to take an active role in further developing this work over the course of 2005, linking outcomes with the Cambridge Review of the NAPs 2005. The Group should make regular updates to the full Committee with a view to preparing its discussions on this issue.

The Commission services will continue provide the Group with inputs on the evaluation exercise and on the macro evaluation led by the Commission.

Specific employment and labour market policy issues for discussion

As usual, the Group will assist the Committee by undertaking initial examinations of some relevant policy issues during 2005.

The policy themes which are likely to be discussed at the Group are inter alia: youth and an intergenerational approach (Commission Green Paper on demographic change); restructuring; and equal opportunities for all.

On the basis of the full Committee's discussions in February on the Commission's Green Paper on an EU approach to managing economic migration and further documents by the Commission, the Group could take forward and deepen discussions on this issue. These discussions could continue throughout the year as this work will be developed beyond the Green Paper, with the Group monitoring and discussing progress made. This work would also link to the Committee's contributions on the Commission's second annual report on immigration policy.

Following the work begun in 2004 by the Committee and the Group in the area of mainstreaming employment objectives into other policy areas, the Group will continue to consider ways to strengthen employment promotion across the policy spectrum.

On the basis of the work of the full Committee, the Group could be invited to further discuss the links between the European Social Fund and the Employment Strategy.

In the course of the year, the Group may also be invited to discuss other policy issues and the Group will report to the full Committee on the outcome of its discussions. To increase the effectiveness of the Group's work, the Group may wish to consider different means to conduct in-depth policy debates.

Mutual Learning Programme

Following the recommendations on strengthening mutual learning in 2004, 6 peer review meetings and 2 thematic review seminars are foreseen to be organised in 2005 under the new Mutual Learning programme. The thematic review seminar in April will focus on the theme of comprehensive strategies as a response to ageing and the thematic review seminar in September on the issue of increasing investment in human capital. In addition, a call for proposals will be launched by the Commission in early 2005 to support national and joint follow-up activities to the Mutual Learning programme.

The Commission will regularly inform the Ad Hoc Group on all mutual learning activities and provide examples of good practice. The Group could use these inputs along with the 2004 Cambridge Review report and the outcome of the Committee's discussions on mutual learning in June 2005 to feed into the full Committee's further deliberations on the outcomes of 2005 mutual learning activities (spring/autumn).

Co-operation with other actors

The Group will have a role to play in this area in continuing to strengthen close working links with the EPC's labour market working group (LMWG). In particular the Group may wish to co-operate with the LMWG in the context of the intermediate evaluation of the Employment Strategy in 2006 and the LMWG assessment of the labour market reforms called for also by the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines.

Dates for meetings of the Ad Hoc Working Group and the draft agendas for the year 2005

10 March (Thursday)

·Establishing effective working methods for the Group to conduct in-depth policy debates
·Mutual Learning programme
·Youth and an intergenerational approach (Commission Green Paper on demographic change)
·Commission Report 'Industrial Relations in Europe 2004'
·Restructuring and employment
·Adaptability (pulling together previous Committee debates)

15 July (Friday)

·Evaluation of the EES
·Mutual Learning programme – possibly a debate on a specific theme or themes
·Format of the 2005 Cambridge Review examination of the National Action Plans for employment

29 September (Thursday)

·Evaluation of the EES
·Mutual Learning programme –possibly a debate on a specific theme or themes
·Mainstreaming employment objectives into other policies
·Commission's second annual report on immigration

14 and 15 November (Monday/Tuesday)

·Preparatory Examination of the National Action Plans for Employment 2005

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