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Abstract

In the next ten years European public finance is going to confront a number of major choices. Developments that can reasonably be expected to affect the financing of our pensions system, social protection, health system, education and the cleaning up of our environment are all pointing towards higher levels of expenditure.

Usually these issues are analysed in isolation. This document is an attempt to compare the different trends and identify some of the main drivers. The picture that emerges shows that the next few years present a window of opportunity in which to re-organise and discuss some of the basic roles and agreements on which our social protection, health and pension systems have been built. The full impact of the different trends on public expenditure, however, will be felt after the year 2010. In education the major (financial) effort is up-front since it is the most important avenue that European society has to invest in its future. An environmentally sustainable society will require a continuous effort, in view of the fact that delaying the necessary investments could increase the costs by several orders of magnitude.

Additional information

Authors: FAHRENKROG G, IPTS, Seville (ES);DELGADO L, IPTS, Seville (ES)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 19036 EN (1999),57pp, Euro: free of charge
Availability: Available from the European Commission, DG XII Communication Unit, rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 200, B-1049 Bruxelles (BE) Tel: +32-2-2950001 Fax:+32-2-2958220 E-mail:rtd-info@ec.europa.eu
ISBN: ISBN: Not available
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