"It has to reach the countries from January, so member states already had to start preparing for absorbing this. The Commission provides support if it is necessary, and the implementation will have to take place on the basis of the job plans. Theses plans also have to be prepared in the autumn period," he told BNS in Vilnius on Friday.
Lithuanian Social Security and Labor Minister Algimanta Pabedinskienė told a press conference on Friday that Lithuania was already preparing to absorb the funds. Consultations with other countries' ministers should be held in the fall and Lithuania wants to absorb the support next year.
"These are European funds, European investments and that is really good. But every member state also has their initiatives to allocate certain funds from their budgets to step up their employment policy. We are getting ready and I hope that we will be ready. Moreover, we are inviting minister for a political discussion in the fall; to share good experience," the minister said.
Youth unemployment was discussed by EU ministers responsible for social affairs and employments at an informal meeting in Vilnius earlier this week. Ministers agreed that cooperation of social partners and member states is of particular importance in this case. Employers also have a special role to play here. Workplace learning is possible only when employers together with educational establishments apply apprenticeships schemes, specific training program and promote this training model. It is necessary to develop favorable conditions for companies in member states level and to set promotion measures.
Taking into account the observations expressed by member states on Friday, the Lithuanian presidency would draft a Council Declaration on the establishment of European Alliance for Apprenticeships and present it to ministers for considerations during the next meeting of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs (EPSCO) Council.
Lithuania could hope for up to 900 million litas (EUR 259 million) for fighting youth unemployment in 2014-2015, Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė said on Thursday.
EU leaders agreed last week to allocate EUR 6 billion for tackling youth unemployment.