Annual Meeting of Secretaries General of the ESC

Annual Meeting of Secretaries General of Economic and Social Councils of EU Member States and those of the European Economic and Social Committee took place in The Hague, Netherlands, Thursday 12 and Friday, May 13, 2011, at the Economic and Social Council (SER).

Annual Meeting of Secretaries General of the ESC

This meeting was attended by secretary generals from several countries including: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Slovakia, Spain.

Economic and Social Council of Romania was represented by Monica Bănărescu, Director - Department of International and Public Relations.

The central theme of the meeting "The future of social dialogue? CES activity conducted in a more diverse and polarized" offered ample opportunities for sharing experiences from each participating nation.

As a conclusion of this meeting, the recent economic crisis has put social and economic issues high on the political agenda at every European country. This has provided many opportunities for social dialogue, but at the same time, ESC and institutionalized social dialogue is facing new obstacles to reaching consensus. In many European countries, the contradictions between the social partners seem to be sharpening. This refers to the often harsh economic measures that governments are preparing, but are also linked to policies and polarization of society in general and reduced public confidence in the effectiveness and value of dialogue and consensus.

During the meeting the Secretary General, discussed the challenges facing the ESCs in different countries and how they might be countered. The agenda focused on the challenges of economic crisis on what it entails and what it means for the daily operation of the ESC.

ESC Romania's contribution, which was appreciated by participants, focused on recent changes relating to the legal framework of social dialogue in our country, and thus place it occupies in our institution in this context.

The Hague, Netherlands, 12 to 13 May 2011

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