EU job-search aid worth €1.2m for 300 dismissed workers in Spain

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This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.


Over 300 metal workers in the Basque region in Spain who lost their jobs because of the COVID-19 pandemic set to receive €1.2 million in EU aid.

Members of the Committee on Budgets on Tuesday approved Spain’s request for support from the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund for Displaced Workers (EGF), acknowledging that “the COVID-19 pandemic, the strict lockdown measures implemented in the second quarter of 2020 in Spain and the subsequent shortages of supplies and raw materials have adversely affected the metal sector in the country”.

MEPs note that the funding application relates in total to 491 displaced workers whose activity has ceased, and that Spain expects that of the total eligible beneficiaries 300 will participate in the measures. Support will range from career guidance and individualised job-search support, to acquiring new or additional skills, vocational and on-the-job training, and support and funding to start a business.

The total estimated cost of the support measures is €1.4 million, of which the EGF will contribute 85% (€1.2 million). The Basque public employment service (Lanbide) will cover the remaining amount.

The draft report by rapporteur Eider Gardiazabal (S&D, Spain) recommending that Parliament approve the aid was passed by 26 votes, none against and no abstentions. Approval by plenary is expected during the 22-25 November session in Strasbourg.

Background

Under the new EGF regulation 2021-2027, the Fund will continue to support workers and self-employed people whose activity has stopped. The new rules allow support for more people affected by restructuring of their jobs or sector: all types of unexpected major restructuring events can be eligible for support, including the economic effects of the COVID-19 crisis, as well as larger economic trends like decarbonisation and automation. Member States can apply for EU funding when at least 200 workers lose their jobs within a specific reference period.

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