New Skills Agenda for Europe launched today

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The European Commission has adopted today a new Skills Agenda for Europe. The agenda aims to ensure that people develop a broad set of skills from early on in life for the jobs of today and tomorrow. This task is essential to boost employability, competitiveness and growth across the EU.

Today’s New Skills Agenda for Europe calls on EU countries and stakeholders to improve the quality of skills and their relevance for the labour market.

According to studies, 70 million Europeans lack adequate reading and writing skills, and even more have poor numeracy and digitals skills. This puts them at risk of unemployment, poverty and social exclusion. The Agenda seeks 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 skills and to equip people with the skills and mindset to start their own businesses.

To help tackle skills challenges, the Commission proposes 10 actions:

  • 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.
  • To develop a large digital talent pool within the “Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition”.
  • The ‘Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills’ to improve skills intelligence and address skills shortages in specific economic sectors.
  • A “Skills Profile Tool Kit 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.
  • 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 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.

See the factsheet below for more on the role of education in development of skills and why the New Skills Agenda is needed.

See all related documentation to the New Skills Agenda, including the Communication, Council Recommendations proposals and Country factsheets.

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