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Paris Job Summit: Chamber recommendations to boost youth employment
Participating in today’s Paris Youth Employment Summit, EUROCHAMBRES’ Honorary President Christoph Leitl presented to Heads of State and Ministers a list of recommendations that – if implemented fast and effectively – should bring youth unemployment back to pre-crisis levels (just above 15%) within five years.
Deliver short-term actions to stimulate youth employment
While some important measures will take years to show results, Mr Leitl highlighted the scope for immediate action: “Youth unemployment has risen by over 50% since 2008.  With swift and effective action, Chambers believe that it’s possible to get the rate back down to the pre-crisis level within the next five years.  Actions should focus on strengthening links between schools and businesses, promoting entrepreneurship and increasing labour and youth mobility across Europe.”  EUROCHAMBRES also highlights the importance of addressing the demand-supply mismatch by improving skills forecasting and linking the results better to the provision of training.

Invest in quality apprenticeships to increase employability

Member states with well-established dual apprenticeship systems have been largely spared from the rise in youth unemployment in recent years.  Yet in several countries, vocational education and training (VET) remains fully school-based and does not adequately meet the needs of businesses.  Increasing the share of work-based learning, supporting employers that train apprentices and improving the attractiveness of apprenticeships will address this problem.

Restore business confidence and growth

Businesses will create more work if the economic outlook improves, if they have the tools to invest and grow and if the labour market is favourable.  Here, EUROCHAMBRES highlights in particular the need to tackle the shortage in financing and to revive bank lending to businesses by establishing a European Guarantee Platform.

It is now up to national governments to implement measures on the ground, in collaboration with key stakeholders such as Chambers.  The European institutions must provide support and coordination through fostering peer-learning activities, driving further structural reforms and providing co-funding in particular for mobility schemes, capacity building and SME financing.

The full list of Chamber recommendations to tackle youth unemployment is available here.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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