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The Community employment strategy was worked out at the Luxembourg, Cardiff and Cologne European Councils. During these summits, the Heads of State and Government of the 15 Member States stressed their commitment to combating unemployment. A new employment title was introduced by the Amsterdam Treaty, according to which the promotion of employment is a "matter of common concern" of the Member States and one of the Community's goals.

Employment policy is a fundamental component of the Lisbon Strategy, which seeks to combine economic performance and competition with social progress and cohesion. Employment policy aims are supported by the European Social Fund, which finances job-creating measures.

One of the main goals of the Slovenian Presidency in the context of the Lisbon Strategy will be to strengthen its social dimension. By preparing a new 2008-2010 cycle of employment and social policy, Slovenia aims to ensure the continuity of the revised Lisbon Strategy as well as the stability of integrated guidelines for growth and jobs and employment policies guidelines contained therein. We believe that a balance must be struck between economic, employment and social dimension of the Lisbon Strategy to ensure the sustainable achievement of the Lisbon objectives.

Within this context, the Slovenian Presidency will continue the discussion on applying common flexicurity principles [link to the informal Council].

It is the presumption of the Slovenian Presidency that Europe must invest in its future, therefore we intend to pay particular attention to young people and their place in society [link to the conference on youth]. We wish to enhance the discussion on the promotion of the youth employment because young people, seen as the driving force of society, today face serious challenges in entering the labour market. Undoubtedly, young people are the most flexible group within the workforce; nevertheless, measures to ensure safety and stability are required.

The Slovenian Presidency will make every effort towards the continued development and efficient implementation of the legislative framework in the field of employment and labour.


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Date: 04.01.2008