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3 April 2019 UfM Ministerial on employment

Member states attending the conference, held under the title “Jobs, skills, and opportunities for all” discussed the most pressing labour market needs in the region, in particular, the “persistent inequality in access to jobs, mostly for women and young people” on 2 and 3 April in Portugal. The Ministers seconded this statement and insisted that “economic progress and social cohesion should go hand in hand” and reiterated their commitment “to creating the conditions to mainstream gender in employment and labor policies”, read the European Commission’s press release. EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills, and Labour Mobility Marianne Thyssen stressed the need “to equip people with digital skills” which is in the lines of what the Ministers considered important for skills and talent development. Jordanian Labour Minister Said Murad emphasized the need “to exchange knowledge and experience on the best practices to reduce poverty and unemployment” and to increase “women’s contribution to the economy” in the region. UfM Secretary General Nasser Kamel highlighted the domains where the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) is already engaged fully and called for “coordinated efforts and apt policy reforms, but also for integrated approaches” focusing on domains that are becoming a priority related to the “broad-ranging and multifaceted nature of the employment challenge.” The ministers reached a final declaration in which they decided to focus actions on “supporting decent job creation and entrepreneurship, mobilizing public and private stakeholders to create partnerships and synergies, building inclusive labor markets to integrate potentially vulnerable and disadvantaged groups and investing in quality education systems and training, skills, and employability in a changing world of work”. The Ministers agreed to convene the 5th Ministerial Conference on Employment and Labour in 2022. The UfM committed to tackling employment challenges in the Euro-Med region at this fourth Ministerial Conference in Employment and Labour hosted by the Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security of Portugal, José Antonio Vieira Da Silva.