PL MEP Alex Agius Saliba proposed changes to the current European rules to support Maltese and Gozitan workers in cases of mass redundancies. Agius Saliba forms part of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee in the European Parliament.
On a statement, Partit Laburista (PL) explained how currently, the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) provides financial support to people losing their jobs, as a result of major structural changes due to globalisation. When a large company shuts down, or production is moved outside the EU, or as a result of the global economic and financial crisis, the EU will activate the fund to help the redundant workers.
“Unfortunately, the current rules are set in such a way that are at a disadvantage to small companies and small countries, such as Malta”, said Agius Saliba.
He stated that due to its small size, Maltese and Gozitan companies could never be eligible and benefit from the current European rules. The MEP added that the ongoing revision of the EGF is an excellent opportunity to fix this gap and address the realities of the small labour markets and small Member States.
Agius Saliba insisted that redundancies of 500 workers in major Member States are just as equally as important as redundancy of 50 workers in smaller Member State. “In such cases, there will be a serious negative impact on the Maltese and Gozitan employment and the local economy.”
The statement stated that the MEP has tabled amendments to address this “particular injustice” so that smaller countries and companies will be able to benefit and be eligible under the future rules.