‘Sustainable growth for all: choices for the future of social Europe’: the 2019 annual edition of Employment and Social Developments in Europe (ESDE) confirms that the EU is well placed to protect and enhance citizens’ living standards while pursuing an ambitious transition to an environmentally sustainable economy. ESDE confirms the continued expansion of the EU’s economy, all-time records for high employment and low unemployment as well as an improving social situation with the number of people at risk of poverty or social exclusion (AROPE) continuing to fall below its pre-crisis level. Nonetheless, ageing, globalisation, technological transformation, climate change and geopolitical uncertainties challenge the sustainability of these achievements and the EU’s socio-economic model. Citizens increasingly expect policymakers to accelerate the transition to a socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable economy that benefits the well-being of all and leaves nobody behind. ESDE discusses policy options that can preserve the EU’s competitiveness, sustain growth for the entire EU population and future generations, while transitioning to a climate-neutral economy. Making this a just transition requires mainstreaming social considerations upfront, in the design phase as well as in the implementation of all policies.
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