The FINANCIAL — The European Commission has proposed to provide Spain with €1.6m from the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) to help 350 redundant footwear industry workers in the Valencia region back into employment.
According to EUROPA, the funds, requested by the Spanish authorities, would help former workers from 143 mostly small enterprises. The proposal now goes to the European Parliament and the EU's Council of Ministers for approval.
EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion László Andor commented: "Spanish shoe industry workers have been hit hard by rising global competition. This proposal for 1.6 million euros from Europe's Globalisation Fund would help them to get new jobs by training them in new skills."
The Spanish application relates to 876 workers made redundant in 143 small and medium sized footwear manufacturing enterprises in in the region of 'Comunidad Valenciana'. The dismissals were the result of increased competition from shoes produced elsewhere in the world and compounded by the current economic crisis. China and India increasingly dominate the world trade in footwear, with countries such as Vietnam and Indonesia continuing to increase their share of world production.
The EGF money proposed would target the 350 workers with the most difficulties finding a new job. The support package proposed is to help the workers by providing them with one-to-one counselling and guidance; skills assessment and outplacement; coaching; general training and re-training; individual vocational training; entrepreneurship promotion and support; job-search allowance and a contribution to commuting expenses.
The total estimated cost of the package is €2.5 million, to which the EGF would provide €1.6 million.