Minimum income policies in the EU: a misguided proposal

By Giovanni Caccavello

The European Parliament Committee on Employment and Social Affairs and the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs are currently promoting a new legislative proposal on minimum income policies as a tool for fighting poverty.  Although noble in its intentions, this whole initiative seems to rest purely on ideological grounds rather than on sound economics.  First of all, this legislative proposal fails to properly acknowledge the current situation of minimum income schemes in Member States. Secondly, it wrongly dismisses the key role played by structural reforms in restoring growth and competitiveness in some crisis-hit EU countries. Thirdly, it falls short of providing policy-makers with a clear strategy on how to tackle poverty and foster social cohesion.

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