European Globalisation Adjustment Fund for Displaced Workers
The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund for Displaced Workers (EGF) is a EU fund that has been introduced to express solidarity with workers or the self-employed who have been displaced due to major restructuring. The fund is a crisis fund to help displaced workers find new jobs quickly.
In the event of large-scale restructuring
The EGF can be mobilised for large-scale restructuring events, regardless of cause, for example during the coronavirus crisis, digitalisation, automation, the transition to a low-carbon economy or other major changes.
The main rule is that EGF helps out when more than 200 employees are made redundant from a single company or from several smaller companies in different industries. The fund has an annual budget of EUR 210 million for 2021–2027 and can cover 60 per cent of the costs.
Arbetsförmedlingen is the administrative agency for the fund. A special role is appointed and responsible for the application process, following up and monitoring ongoing projects and submitting a final report to the European Commission and the Government Offices of Sweden.
Read more about the EGF on the European Commission website:
Questions and answers
What is the application process?
Arbetsförmedlingen applies for financing on behalf of the Government. The European Commission home page lists the contact persons for the EGF.
The assignment is preceded by local, regional and national dialogues between the social partners, the business community and organisations. Arbetsförmedlingen collects information about the
redundancies together with the actors, maintains a dialogue with the Ministry of Employment and the European Commission and ensures that the criteria are fulfilled ahead of an application.
One of these criteria must be fulfilled
- At least 200 people made redundant within a period of four months within one company including suppliers and producers in the supply chain.
- At least 200 people made redundant within a six-month period in the same sector according to NACE 2 *, located in one or two NUTS 2 ** regions adjacent to one another.
- At least 200 people made redundant within a four-month period in the same or different sectors according to NACE 2, located in one NUTS 2 region.
The calculation is performed using different methods
- Date when the employer reports the planned redundancies in writing to the government agency concerned (Arbetsförmedlingen).
- Date when the employer gave the individual employee notice of redundancy.
- The date of the de facto termination of the contract of employment.
- The date when the placement end at the company. For a self-employed person, the date of cessation of activities.
*NACE 2 is the EU’s statistical classification of economic activities.
**NUTS 2 is the regional division used within the EU for reporting statistics.
Read about how to apply on the European Commission website:
Who is entitled to support?
The support is targeted at individual employees, the self-employed, temporary employees and fixed-term workers who have been made redundant within the specific project described in the application.
The money from the fund is individually adapted and may not be used to keep companies running or to help with modernisation or restructuring.
How can the EGF help?
The support is provided in the form of a coordinated package with measures customised for individuals where the need for training and the level of the education should be adapted to each aid recipient’s qualifications and skills.
The structure of the coordinated package has to take into consideration future labour market outlooks and skills requirements and has to complement Arbetsförmedlingen’s regular programmes.
- Bespoke training and retraining, including information and communication technology and other skills required in the digital era.
- Validation of knowledge and skills.
- Individual job coaching services and targeted group activities.
- Vocational guidance, counselling, mentorship.
- Reorientation support.
- Measures that promote entrepreneurship, support for self-employment, creation of new companies, employees taking over companies and cooperative activities.
- Special temporary measures such as jobseeker’s allowance, recruitment incentive for employers, resettlement allowance, child care allowance, training allowance, daily allowance and allowance to carers.
Read about how to apply on the European Commission website:
Our completed projects
The project took place between August 2017 and August 2019 for the 2,388 people who lost their jobs in conjunction with Ericsson laying off staff in 2016 from Ericsson’s facilities in Kumla, Kista, Borås, Gothenburg, Karlskrona and Linköping.
Out of the 2,388 redundancies, only 855 people registered with Arbetsförmedlingen. A total of 775 people had a conversation to survey their situation, of which only 80 people received specific measures through the EGF. Out of these 80, there are 48 who have found employment or started their own business. A total of 19 people have continued studying and are deemed likely to find employment when they finish their studies. There are 67 people who have been granted measures and are now employed or have continued studying. Of the other 13 participants, ten are jobseekers and three were prevented from taking on employment due to long-term illness.
The project focused on the 1,556 people within manufacturing of telecommunications equipment who were made redundant in 2015 after sweeping structural changes within global trade due to globalisation.
In recent years, Ericsson has concentrated its manufacturing and development in Asia, which is not only home to the most important growth markets, but is also where the same quality can be delivered at lower costs.
The project took place from March 2016 to March 2018 and was aimed at those who were affected by cutbacks in Katrineholm, Kumla, Kista, Borås, Gothenburg, Karlskrona and Linköping.
A total of 790 of the 1,556 people made redundant have been registered with Arbetsförmedlingen and formed the target group for this project. A survey of these 790 people shows that 230 have needed more intensive support. The added value within the project has primarily been support for regular studies and procured training programmes in order to meet the various skills requirements of the people made redundant so that they could quickly get out into the labour market.
The project was aimed at the 647 people who were made redundant by Volvo Group Truck Operation EMEA and its subcontractors due to reorganisation which had a negative impact on the sector and the region. Many of those made redundant had worked for Volvo Trucks for a long time and only had an upper secondary school education. Consequently, their skills needed to be enhanced in order to meet the needs in the labour market.
The majority of those affected were employed in Umeå, but also in Gothenburg and Eskilstuna. The project was run by Arbetsförmedlingen in Umeå during September 2015 and September 2017.
Out of those made redundant, 619 people were included in the target group for the project. Of that group, 450 have used the support in one form or another. A total of 93 per cent of this group (420 people) work, study or run their own business today – the highest proportion so far among the handful of EGF projects Arbetsförmedlingen has run. Even more spectacular is that no fewer than 159 people have chosen to take part in training, the majority within short-handed occupations. That is a comparatively large amount, especially considering the good state of the labour market.
The good cooperation between the various actors has been a factor contributing to the success of the project. The cooperation with Volvo Trucks, Umeå Municipality, IF Metall and the redeployment organisations Antenna, Startkraft and Aventus have reinforced and developed the conditions in the Umeå region.
In order to deal with the extensive consequences of Saab’s bankruptcy in Trollhättan, the company was granted support from the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund for Displaced Workers in the period May 2012 to May 2014. A large portion of those made redundant had been employed at Saab their entire working lives. The education level for the target group of 3,738 people turned out to be lower than demanded by the labour market, which is why measures to increase interest in education was needed.
Arbetsförmedlingen focussed on regular study programmes within vocational adult education, higher vocational education and university. About one third of the target group consisted of people over the age of 50 so new opportunities and a second chance opened up for many of them. Previous Saab employees were given the opportunity to go through tailored study programmes.
As nearly 90 per cent of the target group lived in Trollhättan, Vänersborg and Uddevalla, Arbetsförmedlingen decided to open a special office in Trollhättan. This meant that the resources were coordinated as efficiently as possible.
Project Saab has generated good results. A total of 84 per cent of the target group has found employment, completed education or started their own business.
When AstraZeneca’s facilities in Lund and Umeå were closed down in 2011, 750 people were given notice and lost their jobs.
The EGF project began in December 2011 and ran up until December 2013. Of the 558 people in the project, 71 per cent have found work or become self-supporting by starting their own business. A total of 58 people have received support from Arbetsförmedlingen to start their own business, and these are still active. The companies that have been started primarily operate in the pharmaceutical industry or sell services to other companies within medical research.
Of the 152 decisions that have been made regarding employment training within the project, 14 people have been trained as pharmacists through a bespoke condensed pharmacist training programme. Three have trained to become chemistry teachers through a supplementary teacher training programme. They are three out of a total of four who trained to be chemistry teachers in the country in 2013. Other measures have been skills enhancement or preparatory study programmes.
Arbetsförmedlingen has gained a new experience working with such a large group of jobseekers who are highly educated academics. A platform called ”Medicon Skills” was also started. This involved the business sector, government agencies and academia being able to meet in order to, together, create the conditions for skills supply within life sciences.
When it was revealed that there would be major redundancies at Volvo Cars AB and that Arbetsförmedlingen did not have any direct measures for the target group, it was evident that there was a major need for other types of measures. It became clear that the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund for Displaced Workers would be able to meet the need for measures that Arbetsförmedlingen was lacking. Consequently, this became the first project for Sweden and it took place between December 2008 and December 2011.
The target group for the project was all 3,126 people who had been made redundant from Volvo Cars AB and its subcontractors. The participants in the projects have been offered guidance, individual-based labour market training, adult education, enterprise training or other training in connection with starting their own business. The project has been a decisive factor for many as it was possible to study without having to take a study loan.
The project also took place in conjunction with a central government vocationally oriented adult education programme that offered a broad and established selection of courses in many locations around the country. It has been a successful project in proportion to the massive layoffs. In the target group, 68 per cent got a job, 19 per cent continued in labour market programmes and 13 per cent left Arbetsförmedlingen for reasons other than work.