More investment in social infrastructure (SII) needed, new report says

On January 23 the European Commission and the European Long-Term Investors (ELTI) Association published a report on ‘Boosting Investment in Social Infrastructure in Europe’. Chaired by the former European Commission President Romano Prodi and French Economic and Finance Minister Christian Sautter, the report comes to the conclusion that both public and private investment in social affairs are insufficient in Europe. CESI welcomes the report which underpins its longstanding demand for more social investments in Europe.

Due to one-sided austerity policies or the lack of prospect of immediate profit, public and private investors have for too long turned a blind eye to the social, economic and financial benefits of social infrastructure investment. “Investment in education, health and affordable housing is essential for economic growth, for the well-being of people and upward convergence in the EU”, Lieve Fransen, co-author of the study, underlined on the occasion of the publication of the report.

The study was very much welcomed by CESI’s Secretary General Klaus Heeger, who had contributed to the group advising the High Level Task Force: “We congratulate the study’s initiators and authors. It is the right moment for it. We believe in responsible spending policies, but Europe cannot be built on stability criteria alone.

In view of the 2019 elections, the EU and member states can now also bring the proof that cohesion is not an empty word, but that “investing if people” is now primordial. Not only for the well-being of people, but also for business!”

The full report is available here. More information about CESI’s position on social investments can be accessed in a Congress motion on ‘Investing in people’ adopted in December 2016.

Picture: Study cover ‘Boosting investment in social infrastructure in Europe’ © 2018