Social partners discuss ESF+
The new European Social Fund+ was discussed at a meeting of the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development. This fund will integrate various funds together with a budget of nearly €100 billion for the whole of the European Union over the next seven years and will be crucial for the economic stimulus after the pandemic.
During this meeting, the social partners were introduced to the national programme linked to the European Social Fund+ 2021-2027, primarily to acquire first knowledge so that they can participate fully, reach important organisational-level targets by continuing to invest in their workers, and contribute to the goals that our country must achieve during the next seven years. The intention should be to continue offering more development opportunities to workers and giving them the tools to generate the living themselves.
Minister Carmelo Abela explained that, through this consultation on funds that reach the social sector, the discussion on what is needed for our country will continue so that Malta, along with the rest of the EU, reaches those citizens that are most in need – the discussion on work, as well as challenges such as the employability of a person. Along with this, education and lifelong learning must remain a priority. Inclusion is also a challenge that must be overcome, both in work as well as in society in general. Another important aspect is that of those materially deprived, in other words the fight against poverty and the risk of poverty.
Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi said that we are now entering a new phase of consultation about the objectives for European funds in Malta for the next seven years.Consultations took place over the past two years with entities and key stakeholders about the investment needs for our country. He said that this meeting with social partners in the MCESD was another opportunity to strengthen the consultation on European funds.
Dr Zrinzo Azzopardi said that the first programme to be put forward for public consultation is the one that will be co-financed by the European Social Fund+ which will total €204 million, mostly directed towards investment in human resources, in particular in education and training, in the field of social inclusion, health and in helping the most vulnerable in society.
Photo: DOI – Pierre Sammut