Deputy Prime Minister Ana Birchall, European Commissioner Tibor Navracsics, Minister of Youth and Sports Bogdan Matei, Head of the Youth Department of the Council of Europe Antje Rothemund and President of the European Youth Forum Carina Autengruber all attended on Thursday the proceedings of the last day of the European Union Youth Conference, which is the main event of each Presidency, as well as the largest event dedicated to the youth of Europe and elsewhere.
The event was also attended by Secretary of State Cosmin Butuza and Sub-Secretary of State Cristina Andronic, and the debated topic was “Youth and Authority in Dialogue: the Role of Youth in the Future of the EU”. The proceedings were held at the national Library of Romania and gathered representatives of Ministries, European and international youth and labour market institutions, as well as representatives of youth from the Member States of the European Union.
In her speech delivered on this occasion, Ana Birchall presented the message of Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă, and underscored the importance placed by the Government upon youth and the programmes intended to bring forth their worth. “Youth are the future of Romania, its strategic resource. The governing programme we are implementing gives a fundamental role to the youth, through measures and strategies intended to bring forth the ambition, professionalism and enthusiasm of the youth. We have started programmes that cater primarily to the youth, we have allocated resources so as to secure a future for the new generations here, at home, in Romania. Successful initiatives, such as Start-Up Nation, programmes to integrate the youth in the labour market, or the Government Internship Programme, to give an example that I am particularly fond of, are only a few of the measures that have yielded remarkable results and have been well received by a large number of youth,” reads the message transmitted by Ana Birchall.
The second part of the Thursday meeting offered the occasion for a dialogue between the abovementioned guests and the youth in the hall, who were joined by those who wanted to ask questions online, through social media channels. The discussion was free and relaxed, the attending youth appreciating the openness of the authorities for such a dialogue.
“I am glad that today, under the aegis of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, I can welcome you to one of the most important events in Europe dedicated to dialogue with the youth. The problem of quality jobs for all youth is very important to us and is one of our priorities. It is very important to find youth in the workplace that they trained for. We have good and close relationships with the relevant ministries that deal with labour and education.
What you are doing here today is very important, and the way you engage and help us make decisions is to be commended. It is essential to have a permanent dialogue; the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Romanian Government are always interested in your problems and together we are trying to solve them. And dialogue is the first step that we must take,” Minister Bogdan Matei declared in opening the Conference.
During the press conference at the end of the meeting, the Minister of Youth and Sports underscored that one solution for reducing the number of youth that are leaving the country is the creation of new jobs.
“This is one of the problems raised by the youth. The Government continues to make special efforts to achieve this, and now the unemployment rate is decreasing, as you well know, and this shows that we care about the youth faced with these problems. However, this does not mean that we have solved all problems. We are happy that the Erasmus budget will double, and therefore cover part of the youth-related problems,” Bogdan Matei Said.