The Economic and Social Council of the Republic of Bulgaria, on a proposal from the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Bulgaria, elaborated an analysis of the programmes, projects and measures for active policy on the labour market set in the National Employment Action Plan for the year 2009, including the Human Resources Development Operational Programme, Beautiful Bulgaria Project and the Social Investment Fund in Bulgaria. The document was approved at a plenary session on 28th September and was submitted to Mr Totyu Mladenov, Minister of Labour and Social Policy, on 29th September in the presence of journalists.

As from the beginning of 2009 the economic situation and the business climate have abruptly changed, which required the adoption of urgent measures targeted mainly in three directions, it is stated in the analysis. These are as follows: maintaining employment and preventing unemployment; rapid covering within measures and programmes of new unemployed due to mass lay-offs and declining output; ensuring efficient protection of the most vulnerable groups and categories on the labour market under the conditions of deepening crisis.

The analysis is also based on the European employment policy tendencies. With its full membership since 2007 Bulgaria has undertaken a number of commitments, including the achievement of the objectives of the renewed Lisbon Strategy of 2005. The main benchmarks and instruments in this context are related to new quantitative and qualitative parameters of employment and labour force, which should be implemented by adequate mechanisms and instruments of the policies. The planned period coincides with the beginning of the development of a National Pathway to achieve flexicurity on the labour market for the period 2009-2011 - an approach, which is an integral part of the Lisbon conception.

In the adopted analysis the ESC puts forward a number of proposals for streamlining the active policies on the labour market and enhancing their effectiveness. The stress in the package is laid on major and significant problems, in response to the changes in employment and unemployment in our country at the current stage of the crisis. The proposals are related to clear and correct dovetailing the active policy with the peculiarities and the specific characteristics of the relevant target groups depending on their education and skills, age, gender, degree of capacity to work and professional status.

According to the ESC the active policy on the labour market should guarantee the achievement of positive changes in the three key priority fields as specified in the Communication from the European Commission entitled A Shared Commitment for Employment as adopted in June 2009. These are as follows: maintaining employment, creating jobs and promoting mobility; upgrading skills for matching labour market needs; increasing access to employment.

In the ESC's view the challenges are at least in two aspects as follows: on the one hand, there should be maintained and further developed the measures addressing the socially vulnerable groups of the society, and on the other hand there should be responded by adequate actions and programmes for maintaining employment and rapid covering the redundant workers and employees under the conditions of deepening crisis.

ESC is convinced that this is possible through increasing the budgetary funding (which is the policy of all the European countries) as well as through continuous monitoring and control of the efficient spending of the funding.



is the “bridge” between citizens and the national government. Its mission is to support such “bridging” so as to facilitate the communication between the society and the national government. It is the new and modern institution of the civil dialogue.

The ESC's mission is to promote civil society organisations access to and involvement in the process of decision-making on strategic economic and social issues.

The main goal of ESC's operation is to enable different representatives of organised civil society to feel free to state their views whereas unanimity on matters of common interest is encouraged. The Council expresses and protects civil society interests by communicating agreed statements and proposals submitted by its members to the executive and legislative authorities.

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