Between 2008 and 2010 youth unemployment has increased by one million reaching the unacceptable level of more than 5 million unemployed young people. This means that on average one in five young people on the labour market cannot find a job and in certain Member States it is almost every second young person willing to work who faces this problem.

One of the key elements of the Youth Opportunities Initiative is that the European Commission will help Member States to use the European Social Fund (ESF) more efficiently, in particular knowing that 30 billion euro within the ESF is still uncommitted to projects. Furthermore, the new initiative proposes actions to enhance mobility of trainees and young workers.

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