by Party of European Socialists
The European Commission recovery plan announced today is a historic opportunity to kickstart the reconstruction of the Union and move towards a more progressive and people-oriented Europe. The Member States must grasp this opportunity, PES President Sergei Stanishev stated during the extraordinary PES Presidency meeting today.
Representatives from PES member parties and organisations convened digitally to discuss the proposal and how to move Europe towards a social, digital, gender-equal, and sustainable future.
The Presidency adopted a declaration welcoming the plan, which includes key progressive priorities like a strong recovery fund, increased Just Transition funding, investment in education and training for young people, the Child Guarantee, and taxing digital giants. The Presidency called on governments to urgently adopt and implement the plan.
PES President Sergei Stanishev said:
“This is the ambitious plan with solid resources that progressives have been pushing for from the very beginning. It is a lifeline for citizens and a breakthrough for our family. Now we have a historic chance to rejuvenate the EU.
“Europe must grasp this opportunity to set the recovery in motion. We must support the countries, regions and sectors that are being hit hardest, and strengthen our social model and the green and digital transitions. We must show that the European project places solidarity between countries, regions and people first. This must happen now. Recovery cannot wait.
“Member States must act together to deliver this as soon as possible, so the Commission’s plan can be put to work in the interest of all Europe’s citizens, to protect them, their jobs, and to relaunch the economy.
“This is a victory for our family as we push to create a green, social, digital, gender balanced, and sustainable future for Europe beyond this crisis.”
The PES Presidency declaration – In support of strong European action to contain and recover from the COVID-19 crisis – comes after a series of online discussions among member parties, videoconferences of progressive ministers, and various PES Networks meetings.
The recovery must address the short- and long term, moving us closer to our sustainability goals, harnessing the digital transition, ensuring gender equality, and fully realising social rights. The European Green Deal must be the engine of a new growth and jobs strategy, harnessing the potential of the Just Transition Fund, the renovation wave, and the transition to a circular economy, the declaration says. The recovery must build a future of social justice, equality, democratic accountability, the rule of law, human rights, quality education and healthcare, strong public services, an innovative economy, cultural creativity and respectful and inclusive societies.
The PES again welcomes the initiative of Commissioners Gentiloni and Schmit in creating a European unemployment instrument: SURE. This valuable tool must pave the way for a permanent European Unemployment Benefit Reinsurance Scheme with the resources to succeed. Further concrete measures in support of citizens, their jobs, access to culture and education must follow.
The full text of the PES Presidency Declaration – In support of strong European action to contain and recover from the COVID-19 crisis – can be read here.
Originally published here.