Magazine article European Social Policy

Social Council : Conclusions of the Informal Meeting of Guimaraes

Magazine article European Social Policy

Social Council : Conclusions of the Informal Meeting of Guimaraes

Article excerpt

To conclude the informal meeting of EU employment and social affairs ministers in Guimaraes on 5-6 July 2007, the Portuguese EU Presidency adopted a declaration of 12 key points together with German (previous Presidency) and Slovenia (next Presidency):

Coordination of policies is one of the most important tools for European progress in employment and social issues.

The expression of the viewpoints of member states, EU institutions, social partners and NGO's representatives has enabled us to identify core messages for the future.

The need to improve the integration and visibility of social priorities within the broader strategic framework of the reform of European economic and social models has been stressed as a horizontal factor for the success of such an endeavour.

To strengthen and further improve policy coordination dynamics, it should be done through both the clear mapping of strategic priorities, and, on the other hand, by increasing the efficiency of our methods to deliver positive outcomes. Results are, therefore, a key word.

Active ageing, in the context of demographic changes, is a decisive element to foster the sustainability of social protection systems.

Social inclusion. A fundamental dimension of sustainable development strategies for Europe, it provides tools to create opportunities for all and to maximise the potential of European societies and economies. Future steps in active inclusion', based on promoting labour market integration, adequate minimum income schemes and access to quality social services, may help build a solid and balanced framework in the field of inclusion. …

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