Commission kick-starts work on the European Year of Skills

The Commission has adopted its proposal to make 2023 the European Year of Skills, following the announcement by President Ursula von der Leyen in her 2022 State of the Union address.

The Commission has adopted its proposal to make 2023 the European Year of Skills, following the announcement by President Ursula von der Leyen in her 2022 State of the Union address.

The green and digital transitions are opening up new opportunities for people and the EU economy. Having the relevant skills empowers people to successfully navigate labour market changes and to fully engage in society and democracy.

This will ensure that nobody is left behind and the economic recovery as well as the green and digital transitions are socially fair and just.

A workforce with the skills that are in demand also contributes to sustainable growth, leads to more innovation and improves companies’ competitiveness.

However, currently more than three quarters of companies in the EU report difficulties in finding workers with the necessary skills, and latest figures from Eurostat suggest that only 37% of adults undertake training on a regular basis.

The Digital Economy and Society Index shows that 4 out of 10 adults and every third person who works in Europe lack basic digital skills. In addition, already in 2021, 28 occupations ranging from construction and healthcare to engineering and IT had shortages, showing a growing demand for both high and low-skilled workers.

There is also low representation of women in tech-related professions and studies, with only 1 in 6 IT specialists and 1 in 3 STEM graduates being women.

To encourage lifelong learning, Member States have endorsed the EU 2030 social targets that at least 60% of adults should participate in training every year, already presenting their national contribution to meeting this target.

This is also important to reach the employment rate target of at least 78% by 2030. The 2030 Digital Compass sets the EU target that by 2030, at least 80% of all adults should have at least basic digital skills, and there should be 20 million employed ICT specialists in the EU, while more women should be encouraged to take up such jobs.

For more information:https://commission.europa.eu/strategy-and-policy/priorities-2019-2024/europe-fit-digital-age/european-year-skills-2023_en#documents

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