Parliamentarians of the Baltic Sea region call for closer integration of education and the labour market


On Tuesday, 30 August, in Riga parliamentarians of the countries of the Baltic Sea region stressed the need to establish closer cooperation in education so as to integrate the education system with the labour market. The parliamentarians adopted the Resolution of the 25th Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference (BSPC) emphasising the role of education in improving the region’s competitiveness.

“Strong, high-quality education is crucial to the development of any region, however, we have to view it in context with the needs and requirements of the labour market. We cannot delay our response to changes in the labour market,” Jānis Vucāns, President of the BSPC and also the Baltic Assembly, said in his closing remarks at the annual conference.

The resolution of the conference that took place in Riga over the past couple of days calls for improving the quality of education and linking it to the labour market. The representatives of the region highlighted the need to facilitate cooperation between education institutions and employers, with a special emphasis on linking vocational education to the labour market. 

“It is necessary to improve the region’s reputation in education, if we want to promote our competitiveness. It is also crucial that we ensure an easily understandable system of mutual recognition of qualification and facilitate comparability,” Vucāns said. 

The President of the BSPC reported that the representatives of the region propose to develop a single labour market in the Baltic Sea region and promote labour mobility. The issue of more effective involvement in the labour market of youths and the long-term unemployed was also a focus of discussion.

Likewise, support was voiced for the development of sustainable tourism, placing an emphasis on the region as one tourism destination, as well as highlighting other recommendations regarding cooperation among the Baltic Sea region countries. 

In response to the terrorist attacks that have taken place in Europe and elsewhere during the past months, the BSPC resolution urges for closer cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

From 28 to 30 August, Riga is hosting the 25th Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference. This year, it focuses on high-quality education and labour as essential prerequisites for future economic growth of the Baltic Sea region countries.

High-quality education and efficient integration of education with the labour market has been one of the priorities of the Latvian presidency of the Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference. This meeting is the last BSPC event under the Latvian presidency, as this responsibility will now be transferred to the Hamburg parliament, Germany.

The Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference was established in 1991 as a forum for political dialogue between parliamentarians from the countries of the Baltic Sea region: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Russia, and Sweden. The BSPC gathers parliamentarians from 11 national parliaments, 11 regional parliaments, and 5 parliamentary organisations around the Baltic Sea. The Saeima, represented by its Baltic Assembly delegation, has been a participant since the establishment of the BSPC.

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