European Commission publishes first paper on Silver Economy and opens multi-stakeholder debate
Launched during the European Summit on Innovation for Active and Healthy Ageing in March 2015, the background document 'Growing the Silver Economy', drafted jointly by different Directorates-General within the European Commission, is a first attempt to present what the Silver Economy has to offer in a rapidly ageing Europe and what the European Union is already doing to support it.
It furthermore examines possible EU Silver Economy actions based on existing initiatives and their potential for generating new jobs and growth. The paper does not propose any new initiative as such, and the suggested actions do not constitute any commitment by the European Commission at this stage. They serve as input for further discussion.
The document recognises the stakeholders' call to have a strong EU role and broader, cross-DG policy support, e.g. tackling regulatory aspects, privacy, standardisation and usability issues. Consistent coordination across relevant policy areas can strengthen informed policymaking, enhance synergies across policy initiatives, prevent undesirable overlaps and maximise the impact of EU policy outcomes. The paper also notes that Silver Economy could be boosted if public expenditure on active and healthy ageing would also be considered as an investment. Achieving these objectives would require pro-active public policies designed to enable strategic investments and spending designed to foster active ageing, good health, social inclusion and independence, it concludes.