The President of the Economic and Social Council (ESC) Prof. Lalko Dulevski, the two ESC Vice-Presidents Dr. Konstantin Trenchev and Prof. Neno Pavlov as well as the President of Group III at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) Luca Jahier took part in a final National Conference under the heading: “Be active - what is needed? Older workers in the labour market”. It was organised by the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy of Bulgaria in connection with the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations (2012). The event was hold on 4th December 2012 at the Sheraton Sofia Hotel. The Minister of Labour and Social Policy Totyu Mladenov, as a national coordinator of the European Year in Bulgaria opened the conference.

Prof. Dulevski welcomed the active actions and the overall organisation of the carried out campaign by the Ministry Ministry of Labour and Social Policy concerning the European Year and stressed that due to it certain results were achieved, namely: there is a growing public interest in the issues of active working life of older people; it is noticeable the positive change in the attitude towards older people and their active aging, and the debates within the European year have shown that older people were the needed and valuable work potential for finding solutions to serious demographic issues of the labour market in Bulgaria.

Luca Jahier presented the contribution of the EESC in the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations. He stressed that nowadays in the European Union live more than 87 million people over the age of 65 and they need to be assessed as vital, employable and dynamic members of our society, active citizens, voters and consumers. Legal changes are needed to help older people be kept in the labour market. At the same time, older people need a stronger social integration and more positive attitude, where the media plays an important role. In this context, a significant contribution to solving the issues of older people will be further initiatives and policies in the forthcoming European Year of Citizens 2013 and 2014 expected to be dedicated to Reconciling Work and Family life.

Prof. Neno Pavlov presented the recently developed ESC own initiative opinion “Active Labour Ageing and Solidarity between Generations”. Along with the numerous issues of the demographic aging, the opinion  presents the priorities and actions that can improve the quality and adequacy of working life for older people, namely: activating positive motivational methods to keep them on the labour market and extending the working life without raising the retirement age;  overcoming the prejudices, barriers and negative stereotypes associated with the capacity for full participation and contribution of older people in the development of society; eliminating age discrimination in key areas such as labour market, health, education and improving access to various services.

Participations in the conference were made by Philip Hat - Head of the Department in the Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities of the European Commission, Svetlana Angelova -  Deputy Chairperson of the Labour and Social Policy Committee to the National Assembly, Zornitsa Roussinova - Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Policy, Biser Petkov - Governor of the National Social Security Institute, Reneta Indjova – President of the National Statistical Institute, Jordanka Fandakova - Mayor of Sofia municipality, representatives of various ministries, agencies, scientific institutions, NGOs and etc. They discussed the possibilities for achieving and reproducing the goals of the European Year for Active Ageing in terms of a globalizing labour market and within the demographic aging of population and workforce in Bulgaria.



is the “bridge” between citizens and the national government. Its mission is to support such “bridging” so as to facilitate the communication between the society and the national government. It is the new and modern institution of the civil dialogue.

The ESC's mission is to promote civil society organisations access to and involvement in the process of decision-making on strategic economic and social issues.

The main goal of ESC's operation is to enable different representatives of organised civil society to feel free to state their views whereas unanimity on matters of common interest is encouraged. The Council expresses and protects civil society interests by communicating agreed statements and proposals submitted by its members to the executive and legislative authorities.

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