Silver like our seniors’ hair colour.

I came across this term for the first time when reading the Council Conclusions on Active Ageing, adopted last week. Whilst everyone seems to be focused on tackling the immediate crisis and betting on the death of the Eurozone, the EU also has longer term ambitions.

We all know that challenges linked with the ageing population in Europe will underpin the next crisis around the corner. Moreover, sustainable financing of pensions and labour shortages have been on the political agenda of Member States for many years now but are deadlocked because no one wants to give away advantages which they thought were already in the bag.

So what’s new?

Have a look at the Conclusions. Under polite terms like “active ageing” and “intergenerational solidarity”, the entire text constitutes a direct call for the extension of employment periods.

Active ageing means creating opportunities for staying on the labour market for a longer period of time. By the time I write this I expect that French railway workers will already be on strike, but watch this space because the EU could still gently increase the pressure on Member States to get their collective acts together.

– Delphine