Document stages in plenary
Document selected : O-000057/2013

Texts tabled :

O-000057/2013 (B7-0207/2013)

Debates :

PV 10/06/2013 - 18
CRE 10/06/2013 - 18

Votes :

Texts adopted :

Parliamentary questions
8 May 2013
Question for oral answer
to the Commission
Rule 115
Pervenche Berès, on behalf of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs

 Subject: Commission communication entitled 'Towards Social Investment for Growth and Cohesion - including implementing the European Social Fund 2014-2020' (COM(2013)0083)

The effects of the economic and social crisis, combined with demographic changes, are challenging current social welfare systems and the provision of decent social security in the Member States. Well-targeted and adequate social investment is necessary in order to stabilise the European economy, to promote employment and to enhance the skills of the labour force, thus raising the EU’s competitiveness. Social investment must therefore be strongly encouraged as part of the Member States’ economic and employment policies, and incorporated into the European Semester process with a view to achieving the employment, social and education objectives of the Europe 2020 strategy.

1. In the context of the Commission’s call on the Member States to make proposals for strengthening the social dimension of the Europe 2020 strategy, inter alia by improving its connection to existing processes and enhancing reporting on the performance of the Member States’ social systems, when and how is the Commission planning to strengthen its guidance? How would this feed into the European Semester, and how would it help to improve the social dimension of Economic and Monetary Union? How will the Commission seek to establish coherence between this guidance and fiscal recommendations?

2. Does the Commission agree with Parliament’s call on the Member States to consider signing up to a ‘Social Investment Pact’ which sets investment targets and creates a reinforced control mechanism for improving efforts to meet the targets of the Europe 2020 strategy? If so, how does the Commission intend to encourage the Member States to sign such a pact? What would be the role of civil society and the social partners?

3. When does the Commission plan to draw up a detailed roadmap specifying deadlines and targets for the Member States to implement active inclusion strategies, which are a crucial part of social investment? How would the Commission strengthen the governance of this process?

4. The Commission is proposing ‘social impact bonds’ or ‘social investment bonds’, ‘which incentivise private investors to finance social programmes by offering returns from the public sector if the programmes achieve positive social outcomes’. How would these work in practice?

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