Effective 1 January 2012, the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) no longer provides support for workers who lose their job due to the global financial and economic crisis, ie a large share of current job losses. The hope for a solution that lingered even following this decision, adopted by the Employment and Social Affairs Council on 1 December 2011, now seems definitively dashed: the new Danish EU Presidency has so far planned only one working meeting on this matter and does not envisage any real solution. As a result, the European Commission has so far not received any applications for intervention for 2012.
The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund was set up in 2006 to facilitate the reabsorption into employment of European workers who lose their jobs as a direct result of changing global trade patterns. It offers individual, time-limited aid to the most vulnerable dismissed workers, consisting of vocational training or personalised coaching, for example.
Since 2009, member states have been able to submit aid applications for workers losing their jobs due to the crisis, matched with a higher co-financing rate (65% compared to 50% previously). Some 70 requests (for support for around 60,000 workers) were submitted on these terms.
Despite this high rate of use, at the 1 December Employment and Social Affairs Council, Germany, Slovakia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Latvia, the...