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 Full text 
Tuesday, 15 January 2019 - Strasbourg Revised edition

European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) (debate)

  Jasenko Selimovic, on behalf of the ALDE Group. – Mr President, allow me to thank the rapporteur, co-rapporteurs and the Commission for their good work on an important file. This file is the EU’s main financial instrument to invest in people, and is key in strengthening social cohesion, improving social fairness and increasing competitiveness across Europe.

We have debated over months and agreed to outline the goals of this file together with the recommendations for country analysis provided by the European Semester.

I am happy that we managed to put together a higher focus on the social economy, skills forecasting, digital skills, early childhood education and care. We managed as well to put earmarks for youth employment and to try to achieve some flexibility for the next period. Crises will happen in the next period as well – like in this one – and it is important to have flexibility in order to cope with them successfully.

But what we mainly managed to do is to support the long-term integration of migrants into countries across Europe. These people are here whether you like it or not, whatever your proposal is for the solution for this problem, the country has to have the capacity and money in order to do the necessary work for the integration of these people into European society. And I am very proud that we succeeded in doing that.

We stressed the need to provide stronger support for single parents, use funds more effectively than today, and to replace access to regular education. I think this file will not achieve miracles, like any other file, but I think that it will contribute to seeing a better and stronger Europe in the next mandate.

Last updated: 15 May 2019Legal notice