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Thursday, 1 March 2018 - Brussels Final edition
Mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund: application EGF/2017/007 SE/Ericsson

European Parliament resolution of 1 March 2018 on the proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and of the Council on the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (application from Sweden – EGF/2017/007 SE/Ericsson) (COM(2017)0782 – C8-0010/2018 – 2018/2012(BUD))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Commission proposal to the European Parliament and the Council (COM(2017)0782 – C8‑0010/2018),

–  having regard to Regulation (EU) No 1309/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (2014-2020) and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1927/2006(1) (EGF Regulation),

–  having regard to Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 1311/2013 of 2 December 2013 laying down the multiannual financial framework for the years 2014-2020(2), and in particular Article 12 thereof,

–  having regard to the Interinstitutional Agreement of 2 December 2013 between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on budgetary discipline, on cooperation in budgetary matters and on sound financial management(3) (IIA of 2 December 2013), and in particular point 13 thereof,

–  having regard to the trilogue procedure provided for in point 13 of the IIA of 2 December 2013,

–  having regard to the letter of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs,

–  having regard to the letter of the Committee on Regional Development,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgets (A8-0032/2018),

A.  whereas the Union has set up legislative and budgetary instruments to provide additional support to workers who are suffering from the consequences of major structural changes in world trade patterns or of the global financial and economic crisis, and to assist their reintegration into the labour market;

B.  whereas, in order to facilitate the redeployment and reinsertion of workers made redundant, the Union’s financial assistance to workers made redundant should be dynamic and made available as quickly and efficiently as possible;

C.  whereas Sweden submitted application EGF/2017/007 SE/Ericsson for a financial contribution from the EGF, following 2388 redundancies, in the economic sector classified under the NACE Revision 2 Division 26 (Manufacture of computer, electronic and optical products) in the NUTS level 2 regions of Stockholm (SE11), Västsverige (SE23), and Östra Mellansverige (SE12), as well as in the area of Sydsverige (SE22);

D.  whereas the application is based on the intervention criteria of point (a) of Article 4(1) of the EGF Regulation, which requires at least 500 workers being made redundant over a reference period of four months in an enterprise in a Member State, including workers made redundant by suppliers and downstream producers and self-employed persons whose activity has ceased;

E.  whereas there have been several applications submitted from the same or related sectors and involving big companies in the recent years;

1.  Agrees with the Commission that the conditions set out in Article 13(1) of the EGF Regulation are met and that Sweden is entitled to a financial contribution of EUR 2 130 400 under that Regulation, which represents 60 % of the total cost of EUR 3 550 667;

2.  Notes that the Swedish authorities submitted the application on 9 August 2017, and that, following additional information provided by Sweden, the Commission finalised its assessment on 18 December 2017 and notified it to Parliament on 15 January 2018;

3.  Recalls that this is a second application from Sweden for a financial contribution from the EGF in relation to redundancies in Ericsson, following a previous application in March 2016 and a positive decision thereon(4);

4.  Regrets the low take-up of the previous 2016 EGF case involving redundancies at Ericsson but is pleased that lessons have been learnt from it; notes with approval that former employees targeted by the current application will be able to take up education and training without their redundancy payments being adversely affected;

5.  Notes that Sweden argues that the redundancies are linked to major structural changes in world trade patterns due to globalisation and more particularly to the negative growth in the hardware-centric business line of the telecom industry for Ericsson in Sweden due to global competition; points out that Ericsson has gradually been cutting staff in Sweden, but in the meantime has been growing worldwide;

6.  Is aware that there is a high demand for people with IT skills across the different regions, while there is a skills mismatch between those dismissed by Ericsson and labour market requirements; acknowledges that many people with the same skills are being made redundant at the same time, in the same geographical areas; considers that blue collar and older workers are in particular need of assistance; notes that the EGF could also facilitate the cross border movement of workers from shrinking sectors located in some Member States to expanding sectors in other Member States;

7.  Recalls the diversity of employees, both blue-collar and white-collar, affected by the redundancies; is concerned that some workers face a labour market with rather low demand in traditional manufacturing industries; acknowledges that opportunities for these workers in public or private sector service industries would require major retraining efforts;

8.  Notes that the application relates to 2 388 workers made redundant by Ericsson, of whom 900 will be targeted by the proposed measures; points to the fact that more than 30 % of that group are between 55 and 64 years of age with skills specific to the telecoms hardware industry, which are outdated for the current job market, and that they are therefore in a disadvantaged position to return to work and at risk of long-term unemployment; welcomes, therefore, the "Measures for Disadvantaged Groups" focus of the project;

9.  Welcomes the decision to provide specialised help to redundant workers above the age of 50 who are in danger of becoming long-term unemployed, and those with learning or physical disabilities, in view of the increased challenges they are likely to face in finding alternative work;

10.   Notes that the cost of allowances and incentives for dismissed workers almost reaches the limit of 35 % of the total cost of the coordinated package of personalised services listed under the point (b) of Article 7(1) of the EGF Regulation and that those actions are conditional on the active participation of the targeted beneficiaries in job-search or training activities;

11.  Notes that Sweden is planning five types of actions for the redundant workers covered by this application: (i) counselling and career planning, (ii) measures for disadvantaged groups, (iii) entrepreneurship support, (iv) education and training, (v) job search and mobility allowances; notes also that the proposed actions would help redundant workers to adapt their skills and facilitate their transition to new jobs or help them set up their own enterprises; stresses that the measures described constitute active labour market measures within the eligible actions set out in Article 7(1) of the EGF Regulation and do not substitute social protection measures; welcomes Sweden’s decision to start providing personalised services to the targeted beneficiaries in February 2017, in advance of the EGF application;

12.  Acknowledges that the coordinated package of personalised services has been drawn up in consultation with the targeted beneficiaries and their representatives as well as local public actors; calls for more consultations with entrepreneurs in order to match the development of new skills and education to their needs;

13.  Recalls that, in accordance with Article 7 of the EGF Regulation, the design of the coordinated package of personalised services should anticipate future labour market perspectives and required skills and should be compatible with the shift towards a resource-efficient and sustainable economy; welcomes the obligation for the Swedish Public Employment Service to include environmental demands in its calls for tender and in its own practice;

14.  Stresses that the Swedish authorities have confirmed that the eligible actions do not receive assistance from other Union funds or financial instruments;

15.  Reiterates that assistance from the EGF must not replace actions which are the responsibility of companies, by virtue of national law or collective agreements, or measures for restructuring companies or sectors;

16.  Calls on the Commission to urge national authorities to provide more details, in future proposals, on the sectors which have growth prospects and are therefore likely to hire people, as well as to gather substantiated data on the impact of the EGF funding, including on the quality, duration and sustainability of new jobs, on the number and percentage of self-employed persons and start-ups, and the reintegration rate achieved through the EGF;

17.  Recalls its appeal to the Commission to assure public access to all the documents related to EGF cases;

18.  Approves the decision annexed to this resolution;

19.  Instructs its President to sign the decision with the President of the Council and arrange for its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union;

20.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution, including its Annex, to the Council and the Commission.

(1) OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p. 855.
(2) OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p. 884.
(3) OJ C 373, 20.12.2013, p. 1.
(4) Decision (EU) 2016/1858 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 October 2016 on the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (following an application from Sweden — EGF/2016/002 SE/Ericsson) (OJ L 284, 20.10.2016, p. 25).



on the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund following an application from Sweden – EGF/2017/007 SE/Ericsson

(The text of this annex is not reproduced here since it corresponds to the final act, Decision (EU) 2018/514.)

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