On 11th and 12th October, the European Youth Forum hosted the “Gender Equality and You” Conference in conjunction with the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the Austrian National Youth Forum.

The Conference aimed  at inspiring a positive and open dialogue at eye-level between young people, youth representatives, ministers and other high-level political representatives as well as experts from NGOs, public administration, international and EU bodies.

Bringing gender equality back on the EU’s list of priorities is a common goal of the Trio Presidency of Estonia, Bulgaria and Austria. The aim of the high-level discussion was to have an initial and open exchange of ideas about possible ways to launch these actions and to implement them in a sustainable way.

 

I had the pleasure to facilitate discussion on better labor market inclusion of women.

 

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Digitalisation and its impact on the labour market, the professional skills of the future, new forms of employment and a better work-life balance were among the topics discussed at the international conference “Future of work– a lifecycle approach". The event in the context of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU took place in Sofia on 21 and 22 March.

The Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU reached a common understanding on the possible compromise of the proposal for revision of the Posting of Workers Directive. Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Policy Zornitsa Roussinova led the negotiations on behalf of the Council while Élisabeth Morin-Chartier (EPP) and Agnes Jongerius (S&D) represented the European Parliament. Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, represented the European Commission in the trialogue. The proposal will be presented in Coreper for approval by the Member States and in the European Parliament for approval by the Members of the Parliament.

 The progress in the negotiation process was achieved in Brussels late in the evening on March 18th.

"We believe that the negotiated proposed package is a balanced one. It establishes the principle of equal pay for equal work in the same place, and at the same time provides more legal certainty for both workers and employers", said Deputy Minister Roussinova in a statement to the media. She also underlined that the compromise proposal negotiated by the Bulgarian Presidency preserves the basic elements of the agreement reached by the Member States in the EPSCO Council on 23 of October 2017.

The amendments of the Directive aim at establishing clear rules for the provision of services in the European Single Market while at the same time ensure better protection of the posted workers’ rights.

Final agreement on the Directive will strengthen the social dimension of the European Union - one of the basic priorities of the Bulgarian Presidency. In the long-term, the practical implementation of the Directive will put into effect the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights, in particular the principle of fair working conditions.

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The sixty-second session of the Commission on the Status of Women took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York,12-13 March 2018.

I had to honor to speak on behalf of the European Union and its member states.

EU takes step closer to "posted workers" deal

The EU took a step further towards granting equal pay for equal work when people take a temporary job in another member state - but a final deal is still not guaranteed.

Negotiators from the EU Council - representing member states - the European Parliament and the European Commission last night confirmed most of a previous agreement between EU ministers last October, but more discussions are needed.

In statement on Thursday morning, they said only that they have reached "a common understanding on the contours of a possible agreement" to revise the so-called posted workers directive.

The joint statement on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive

The joint statement on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive takes place on 1 March 2018, in Brussels. It follows months of intensive negotiations, as the negotiators have reached a common understanding on the contours of a possible agreement on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive. 

Preliminary remarks by Zornitsa ROUSSINOVA, Deputy Minister for Labour and Social Policy of Bulgaria, at the joint press point: 

Joint statement by European Parliament Co-Rapporteurs Elisabeth Morin-Chartier and Agnes Jongerius, Bulgarian Deputy Minister for Labour and Social Policy Zornitsa Roussinova and Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility Marianne Thyssen on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive:

After intensive negotiations this evening we, the negotiators on behalf of the European Parliament, the Council and Commission, are satisfied to have covered all issues during the 7th trilogue meeting. We reached a common understanding on the contours of a possible agreement on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive. We believe that the proposed package agreement on the table is balanced. The possible agreement establishes the principle of equal pay for equal work on the same place, whilst providing more legal certainty for both workers and employers.

 We will now present the results of our negotiations within our respective institutions and will do our utmost to secure the mandates necessary for the final conclusion.

 

The Bulgarian Presidency views the social focus of the next budget as the only way for Europe to achieve its goals and have a future,” said Zornitsa Roussinova, Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Policy of Bulgaria. She added that every third person in Bulgaria has taken advantage of the European Social Fund. So far, 800 000 Bulgarians have completed ESF-financed trainings that have supported their integration in the labour market.

The International Conference "Investing in People - the Way Forward", dedicated to the future of the European Social Fund, will take place on February 15-16 in Sofia Tech Park. The event constitutes a key milestone in the consultation process on strategic and program aspects of future EU investment in people.

 The purpose of the conference is to offer a platform for expressing positions and ideas on the topic, as well as identifying main trends for the future investment in human capital. The two-day event will conclude with a panel, summarizing conclusions and recommendations for future investments in human capital in line with the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights.
 
The conference will bring together around 350 representatives of EU institutions, national, regional, and local authorities, social partners, civil society organizations, academics and other stakeholders.

The Bulgarian Presidency started negotiations with the European Parliament regarding the adoption of changes to the Posted Workers Directive. This is the first trilogue, held by the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU on this legislative act.

 On behalf of the Presidency negotiations were conducted by the Deputy-Minister of Labour and Social Policy Rositsa Russinova. The European Parliament was presented by Agnes Jongerius (S&D) and Élisabeth Morin-Chartier (UMP). On behalf of the European Commission Marianne Thyssen, the Commissioner for employment, social affairs, skills and labour mobility, took part in the trialogue.