The Socialists and Democrats welcomed the presentation of the Commission’s second reflection paper on the future of Europe today as an encouraging sign that the Commission is willing to make globalisation one of their key priorities for the coming years. The S&D Group has been pushing for globalisation to be at the top of the EU’s agenda and are pleased that a number of S&D proposals were taken up in the Commission paper.
S&D Group vice-president responsible for globalisation Jeppe Kofod MEP said:

“It is good news that the Commission finally seems to be willing to tackle globalisation head on. While nation-states are ill-equipped to deal with global capital flows or the digital revolution on their own, the EU – with its 500 million citizens and one quarter of global GDP – is in a much stronger position to shape globalisation according to our values and manage it for the benefit of everyone. For too long, unfettered globalisation has benefited the few and not the many. By working together as Europeans we can harness globalisation, reaping the benefits of closer links between countries, continents and people, whilst shielding citizens and their jobs and security from the negative aspects.
“Yet, the Commission paper is not fully balanced. The Commission puts too much emphasis on markets and not enough on people. The EU can and must protect European workers against unfair competition and social dumping. Globalisation is not just about challenges and opportunities, as the Commission claims, but creates real problems for real people. The offshoring of manufacturing has left wastelands and huge pockets of unemployment, and digitisation leaves people concerned about their jobs and even more worried about their children’s futures. Recognising a problem is a first step towards solving it. It is high time we recognised the negative impact of globalisation and strengthened our labour markets in response. Active labour-market policies are crucial, both to protect job security and combat inequality.
“The victory of Emmanuel Macron against Le Pen’s populist anti-EU and anti-globalisation stance has created a momentum for EU action to harness globalisation. Let us use this opportunity wisely to build resilient societies, distribute the benefits of globalisation more widely and foster sustainable growth.”

Read the full S&D paper on harnessing globalisation.

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